Launch of the new Samsung Galaxy S23 Series

This week I attended the launch of the new Samsung Galaxy S23 Series at Artistry in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. unveiled the Galaxy S23 Ultra, Galaxy S23+, and Galaxy S23, marking a new era of Galaxy’s ultimate premium phone experience. Samsung Galaxy’s most epic camera gives users more freedom to explore their creativity, like capturing truly cinematic Nightography videos with transformative artificial intelligence (AI). The Snapdragon® 8 Gen 2 Mobile Platform for Galaxy unleashes a future-ready mobile gaming experience and powerfully sustained game play, supported by exclusive chipset enhancements made possible by Samsung’s close collaboration with Qualcomm. Galaxy S23 series’ new standard-setting innovations are housed within a striking design that advances Samsung’s sustainability commitment with the more recycled materials of any Galaxy smartphone.

“The most impactful technology is measured, not just by what it enables for people today, but also how it contributes to a better future,” said TM Roh, President and Head of Mobile eXperience Business at Samsung Electronics. “Galaxy S23 Ultra and the entire Galaxy S series line-up are the new standard-bearers of a trustworthy premium smartphone experience that merges industry-leading innovation and future-forward sustainability.”

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QWEST TV Launches on DSTV

With exclusive access to high-end music, great concerts, documentaries and never-seen archived interviews, the global music streaming platform, QWEST TV, officially launched on DStv channel 330 recently.
 
Music lovers will now be able to access QWEST TV via the DStv bouquet (channel 330) as well as on the Showmax platform. The Channel will be included in all the DStv packages in 44 countries across the continent.
 
Available exclusively to DStv customers, the channels offering includes:

  • Exclusive concerts from legendary artists as well as Rising Stars from across the globe
  • Premium music documentaries
  • Archived artist footage
  • Unreleased interviews with music icons including Erykah Badu, Questlove, Salif Keita, Gregory Porter, Marcus Miller, Seun Kuti, Kamasi Washington and Fatoumata Diawara

 
Founded in 2017 by musical genius, the legendary Quincy Jones, alongside TV and music producer and programmer Reza Ackbaraly,  Qwest TV plans to bring genre-agnostic musical content to the African continent.

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Cotton Fest Line-Up Confirmed for Johannesburg

Following the successful Cape Town edition, the highly anticipated Cotton Fest returns to Johannesburg and has a confirmed line-up.

Taking place in the inner city on Saturday, the 4th of February, the festival will once again merge both established and young emerging local talents performing live across three energy packed stages.

Founded to showcase the diversities in various popular music genres with the aim of fusing the gaps within the different local movements, the event platform also celebrates fashion and sport.

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Just Teddy Unveiled in Nelson Mandela Square in Sandton

I recently attended the launch of the fine boutique pâtisserie and boulangerie Just Teddy in Nelson Mandela Square. The event was spectacular, with belly dancers showing off their mystical moves, which mesmerized those in attendance.

Just Teddy is renowned for having redefined heritage haute cuisine, curating a fashion-inspired fusion of Parisian delights fused with Middle Eastern flair. Now, visitors to Nelson Mandela Square can savour and experience the luxury café dining and world-class confectionery creations that accompany Just Teddy’s signature savoir-faire, with a new dining destination that was unveiled recently in Africa’s richest square mile.

The emerald of Nelson Mandela Square, Just Teddy, takes its Middle Eastern flavour even further.  The décor was inspired by the chic decadence of Dubai, offering purveyors of fine banqueting everything the brand is renowned for, and more, now with a sumptuous dinner menu added to the bespoke experience. Additionally, a champagne bar and semifreddo station will add to the exclusive artistry of the Nelson Mandela Square experience.

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Maserati Grecale Launches in South Africa


A few years ago I got to experience the magic of Maserati when I test drove one of their convertibles at the GeroTech driving range. So I was excited when the invitation to the new Maserati Grecale popped into my inbox!

So off we went, to the launch of the new Maserati Grecale in Bryanston, Johannesburg.

Grecale strikes the right balance between versatilityeleganceperformance and innovation, guaranteeing performance, comfort and safety, all at the same time. These features are combined with off-road capabilities and uncompromising driving pleasure.
Developed at the Maserati Innovation Lab in Modena, the new SUV is produced at the Cassino plant.

Grecale is a range within the range, the Trident brand’s fullest ever. An extremely wide range of engines is available: conventional internal combustion, hybrid and, in a year’s time, Grecale will also be the first full-electric SUV in Maserati history.

Three versions are coming to South Africa:

GT, powered by a four-cylinder mild hybrid engine capable of delivering 300 hp; 

Modena, with a four-cylinder 330-hp mild hybrid engine;

and the powerful Trofeo, equipped with a high-performance 3.0L 530-hp petrol V6 based on the Nettuno engine fitted to the MC20.

At launch, the Grecale is also available in the PrimaSerie Launch Edition, a limited edition featuring exclusive content.

To complete the range, the Grecale Folgore, the 100% electric version with 400V technology.

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DJ Kyeezi Opens Destiny – New Upmarket Lounge in Cape Town

Together with three industry friends, popular radio and media personality DJ Kyeezi announced his latest business endeavor DESTINY, a luxury champagne lounge that opened in the Cape Town inner city this week – just in time for the festive season.

Radio personality Khanya ‘Kyeezi’ Siyengo earlier this year joined forces with three partners, restaurateur extraordinaire Theo Pearson, experiential event specialist Bevan Chetty and marketing guru (and my personal friend) Natano Brache, to come up with a luxury destination, set to change the face of entertainment in the Cape Town CBD.

Having officially opened its doors, the launch was attended by local celebrities, media and other key industry players including AKA, Clarissa Cupido, DJ Milkshake, Tamara Snow, Danine Naidoo, Chad Saaiman, Shahan Ramkissoon, Neevas Harris, culture kings Hayden Manuel and Rolo Rozay. 

This premium champagne lounge targets a young discerning, affluent local and international clientele. Nestled in the heart of the city, DESTINY plans to set the precedent for the highest quality entertainment with a combination of class, luxury and style offering the ultimate summer experience.

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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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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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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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