Winners of the 2022 Eat Out Woolworths Restaurant Awards

Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen, John Norris-Rogers & Siv Pillay

The top restaurants in South Africa were announced at the 2022 Eat Out Woolworths Restaurant Awards on Sunday 20 November at GrandWest in Cape Town. The industry was celebrated in a spectacular display of gourmet food, creative drinks and top-notch entertainment, which had over 700 guests, including some of SA’s favourite celebrities, on their feet.

The new star rating system results were announced, with restaurants being awarded either one, two or three stars. To be included on the shortlist, each restaurant had to achieve a minimum rating of 70 points out of 100. This was based on several factors, including the quality of their offering – from the décor, ambience and service to the wine list, ingredients used and quality of the food. One star was awarded to those restaurants who scored 70 – 80, two stars to those scoring 80 – 90, and three stars to those scoring 90+, with Restaurant of the Year awarded to the establishment with the highest score.

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‘WE ARE EGG’ Officially Launches in Johannesburg

Last week, I attended the official launch of the award-winning, next generation, experiential department store called We Are EGG at the Zone in Rosebank, with over 650 esteemed guests.

Boasting a long list of the whose who of the fashion and entertainment world in attendance, including TV royalty Candice Modiselle,  Angel Sithole, Thandy  Matlaila, Cedric Fourie, Jason Willemse and Sipho Eric Ndlovu, media personalities Kim Jayde, Taryn Louch and Luthando ‘Lootz’ Shosha, artists Leanne Dlamini and Gigi Lamayne and many more.

Also in attendance was former Miss SA Shudufhadzo Musida and newly crowned Mrs South Africa Palesa Matjekane. Award winners Yaya Mavunda and Tumi ‘Itumeleng ‘Powerhouse’ Mokwwatlo delivered the fashion. We are EGG brand partners Amanda Du Pont of Lelive and Roxy Burger of The Piercery also attended the official opening. Fashion designers Paledi Segapo, Hangwani Nengovhela, Sello Medupe and Craig Jacobs also showed up to support the opening.  

Guests were welcomed by retail pioneers, We are EGG owners Paul Simon and Arie Fabian who handled formalities, followed by a night of colourful fashion, live entertainment and an endless flow of Patron Paloma cocktails and cold servings of Heineken. The Jagermeister Brass Cartel were a huge highlight of the evening, while various DJs entertained the guests. Guests got a taste of what to expect from Mamasamba, We are EGG’s Restaurant set to open next month, with delicious plates.

Having officially opened last month, the store not only offers the ultimate curated shopping experience under one roof, but really is more of a lifestyle destination, with a coffee shop and soon-to-open restaurant. Featuring some of the freshest fashion brands for men, women and kids, this beautifully curated fashion hub includes over 150 carefully selected brands, 85% of which are South African owned, with a significant percentage being female owned.

The carefully curated, multi-faceted department store operates from Monday – Wednesday 9am-6pm, Thursday to Saturday 9am-7pm and Sunday 9am-5pm.

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KENDALL + KYLIE Launch in South Africa

KENDALL + KYLIE is a global lifestyle brand created by beloved style icons and fashion authorities, Kendall and Kylie Jenner. With a unique and unparalleled presence across the digital landscape, Kendall and Kylie have defined themselves as two of the most popular icons and personalities of this generation, with over 350 million fans globally.

Their clothing captures the unpredictable essence of today’s young fashion lover: confident, stylish, on trend and in charge.

By designing for their own lifestyle and tastes and identifying with the woman they inspire, the KENDALL + KYLIE brand serves an ambitious audience of taste makers who appreciate authentic style and who have influence among their immediate peers and social groups. 

The KENDALL + KYLIE audience are social media followers and savvy web users who closely follow fashion trends every season.

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Taj Hotel Cape Town Gets A Refresh

The Taj Cape Town has always presented the perfect meeting place between the past and present: a magnificent heritage building with a proud history in the epicentre of an equally historic city, where the movers and shakers of the day meet. Now, the hotel is readying for an exciting future, thanks to a new reveal of its beautifully refreshed ground floor.

Mark Wernich, General Cluster Manager Africa for Taj Hotels, notes that there are many reasons to be proud of Taj Cape Town; not least the way it has graciously thrived through a tumultuous time for the entire hospitality industry. With both local and international arrivals on the up, the refurbishment of the hotel comes at the perfect time for Taj Cape Town to welcome a new breed of international tourists, business and MICE travellers and local guests on the lookout for exceptional experiences.

“The beauty of our spaces has always attracted people eager to indulge in a little opulent luxury – from barristers to members of parliament, from international guests who are already familiar with Taj Hotels’ exacting standards and commitment to Tajness to locals who want an inner city experience with a difference,” Wernich muses. “The elements which created this appeal remained unchanged – our warm hospitality and emphasis on helping guests create lasting memories of this beautiful city will always be a given. But we’ve upped the ante by modernising and refreshing the space, while also adding some fantastic new offerings.”

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Cotton Fest Cape Town

Organisers of one of SA’s biggest culture gatherings, Cotton Fest, have announced the full festival line-up for the upcoming show in Cape Town next month. 

The concert, set to kick off the festive season, will feature over 50 of South Africa’s hottest known and emerging Hip Hop and Amapiano headliners talent/artists from both Cape Town and Johannesburg respectively.

Taking place at Paarden Eiland Park on Saturday, the 10th December 2022, the show just surpassed 60% tickets sold.

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Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Makes African Box Office History

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. © 2022 MARVEL.

Marvel Studios’ Black Panther: Wakanda Forever roared into cinemas across the continent this past weekend (11-13 November, including previews) and, in doing so, lit up the box office. Across all territories, the follow up to Ryan Coogler’s 2018 hit Black Panther proved a draw for cinema-going audiences with just under 300k attendances being reported.

In West Africa, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever became the biggest industry opening weekend of all time with a box office tally of ₦240m. In East Africa the film earned Kes 25m, earning the titles of both the biggest opening weekend box office of 2022 and the biggest post-pandemic opening to date. In Southern Africa, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever brought in R16.5m respectively, becoming the biggest opening weekend box office of 2022.

2018’s Black Panther remains the number 1 film of all time in both East and West Africa, and the number 2 film of all time in Southern Africa.

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Joburg Film Festival Youth and Audience Development Programme

With just a few weeks to go before the prestigious Joburg Film Festival takes place in Sandton, the JFF Youth and Audience Development programme continues in the Ekurhuleni and Tshwane regions this month.

Following the successful programmes in Sedibeng and the Westrand last month, the next series of workshops has now been announced with the Ekurhuleni edition set to take place at the Rhoo Hlatswayo Art Centre on 19-20 November, followed by the Tshwane programme confirmed to take place on the 26-27 November at the Women’s Living Heritage Museum.

Developed to prioritise growth and upskilling of young upcoming local filmmakers in underdeveloped areas within the province, the JFF Youth and Audience Development programme is an integral pillar of the festival. For the past few years, this event has provided life changing experiences for emerging film talent, with over 200 aspiring local young creatives / filmmakers attending the programme thus far. 

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Cape Town Jazz On The Lawn

This December, live music lovers are in for a treat with the much-anticipated return of one of the city’s most vibrant and socially interactive jazz festivals, the original (and now official) Jazz on the Lawn. After a decade-long hiatus, the new Jazz on the Lawn Weekender (now planned over two days, 10-11 December 2022) builds on the very successful formula that made it a mainstay on the jazz calendar for a few years running. Jazz on the Lawn is a registered trademark of Uncle Cal Entertainment.

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Standard Bank Top Women Awards 2022

A few weeks ago, I attended the annual Standard Bank Top Women Virtual Conference which showcased phenomenal women doing amazing work in various fields, from commerce, corporates, NGOs, media and entertainment to small businesses and start-ups.

On the 10th of November 2022, the Standard Bank Top Women Awards 2022 took place at Emperors Palace in Johannesburg. The awards had over 700 attendees and a combination of over 30 phenomenal women across Africa and organisations advocating for gender equality and women empowerment. The Standard Bank Top Women Awards 2022 is the fastest growing gender-empowered awards platform, with the theme of “Rise Above the Noise, the programme was aimed at uplifting and celebrating companies and women that continue to do great work in their respective fields.

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Sports Highlights On ESPN Africa This Summer

I recently attended the ESPN Sports Fest which showcased what one can look forward to on the Disney owned channel this summer.

The mainly American sports channel, ESPN, also has an African component highlighting some African Sports content.

I got to play some American Football and pretend I was an NBA player by shooting some hoops on the mini basketball court. Others in attendance tried their hand at shadow boxing, at the media event.

Kyle de Klerk, Director of Sports Commercial and Business at The Walt Disney Company, addressed the audience and showcased what locals can look forward to in a short promo video – as can be seen in my TikTok & Instagram video below.

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