Search #Maboneng on Instagram and you’ll be faced with endless posts of vibrant street art, independent cafes and artisan markets, for this is an urban heartland that has been transformed in recent times by youth, creativity and passion. Taking on an identity not dissimilar to NYC’s Williamsburg (yet remaining undeniably cooler), Maboneng is just one example of how Jo’burg is casually shrugging off old assumptions, and proving that actually – this sprawling metropolis might just be one to watch. With Maboneng leading the charge in more ways than one, join us as we take a look at the neighbourhood’s unmissable highlights.
ART & ARCHITECTURE
You don’t need to work too hard to find Maboneng’s famed arts scene – it can be discovered gracing the walls of most of the district’s buildings. It’s an artistic initiative that has breathed life into the area, transforming it from a run-down suburb into a creative hive of activity. And within these decorated buildings, you’ll find yet more inspiration, as Maboneng lays claim to a number of independent galleries. An ideal way to make the most of the art and architecture here would be with a meander through the open air museum that is Maboneng Precinct, before ducking into the Museum of African Design (moadjhb.com), a vast warehouse space that represents Africa’s first museum dedicated wholly to design.
It’s a fact that creativity breeds creativity, and once the artist’s started to arrive in Maboneng, it wasn’t long before the culinary connoisseurs turned up too. And trust us, we’re not complaining. The district is at the centre of Jo’burg’s culinary scene, thanks to an endless list of eclectic institutions. For the ultimate smorgasbord, head to Market on Main (marketonmain.co.za) between 10am and 3pm on Sunday, and take your pick of local delicacies and international flavours. Lunch is best served by Zulu sushi chefs (of course) at The Blackanese (theblackanese.co.za) on Kruger Street, whilst dinner doesn’t come much better than the hearty Ethiopian food you’ll dive into at Little Addis.
Maboneng’s great shopping scene is undoubtedly a by-product of the creativity that abounds here, and on any given day you’ll easily be able to get your hands on authentic crafts and inspiring works of art. For locally designed clothing, Newbrow will delight you with fashion inspired by Maboneng’s industrial roots, whilst Arts on Main will offer up an endless selection of books, art pieces, photographs and prints – all of which you’ll want to take home with you.
Like the sound of Maboneng? Remember, we can take you on immersive city tours throughout your stay with us. Enquire today:
Tel: +27 (0)11 292 6000