New Host for Ultimate Braai Master (Season 8)

Tapfuma Makina, one of South Africa’s favourite news and sports anchors, has been announced as the new Ultimate Braai Master (UBM) host for Season 8 (S8).

Rhodes University scholar, Tapfuma Makina’s plans to continue on and study medicine after completing his BSc in Biochemistry and Microbiology changed direction after becoming a presenter on campus radio revealed a natural talent for storytelling.

Now, after almost two decades in radio and television, as well as hosting and presenting premieres and awards across sports, enterprise and entertainment, broadcasting is in his professional DNA.

His distinctive voice, familiar to many from HeartFM, Top Billing, eNCA and beyond, has captured many SA broadcasting highlights in recent years.

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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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Urchin Makes Waves in Cape Town’s Culinary Scene

The culinary panorama in the Mother City has been elevated with the opening of Urchin Restaurant, located at The Hyatt Regency Cape Town on Buitengracht Street.

There is a complexity to achieving true simplicity in a restaurant setting. It is an art. At Urchin Restaurant it is a beautifully and precisely choreographed ballet in which sustainable fresh fish and seafood are the prima and danseur. The hallmarks of the Urchin elemental ocean dining experience are underpinned by excellent, unobtrusive service, locally sourced and produced ingredients, and world class wine from a carefully curated wine cellar.

The Chef

Throughout his life, Chef Gerard van Staden has strived to achieve greatness within his chosen field, and so far, his personality and inquisitiveness have allowed him to achieve many great things in South Africa and abroad. Growing up in a single parent family in Zimbabwe, Gerard taught himself to cook out of necessity, not knowing that he was following a path which would eventually lead him to becoming acclaimed Chef of the Year on three occasions, alongside South Africa’s Number One restaurant in two different locations.

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Last Minute Christmas Gift Guide

Things can get a little awkward when you realise that you forgot to buy a Christmas gift for your loved ones.  But don’t be too hard on yourself, we’ve all been there. Despite the best laid plans, Christmas always manages to appear out of nowhere and surprise us. Between all the shopping, cooking, baking, wrapping, and prepping for the big day, something is bound to fall through the cracks. The good news is that you’ve realised before it’s too late, and there is still plenty of time to muster up a meaningful gift.

Let’s face it, figuring out what to gift someone can be quite challenging. Even more so when you only have a matter of days to pull something together.  While you could grab a holiday card and stuff it with cash, the best gifts are thoughtful ones. That’s why the gift of experiences is an amazing idea as experiences are meaningful, surprising, and often, much more impactful. And what bigger impact can you make when you give the gift of experiencing the Kruger National Park? Kruger National Park, and its surrounds, boast some of South Africa, and the world’s most breathtaking natural wonders. From the iconic wildlife, such as the Big Five, to majestic rivers and waterfalls, and vast forest canopies to unique outdoor experiences.

Below is a last-minute Christmas gift guide to suit any budget and what’s even better is that you don’t have to leave the comfort of your home. 

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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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Sandton City Launches Iconic Festive Season Campaign

Tansey Coetzee & daughter Peyton with Santa Claus at Sandton City

As the festive lights start sparkling, and families start counting down to the upcoming holidays, South Africa’s most iconic shopping centre, Sandton City, has unveiled its festive season campaign. Titled The Festive City, it’s everything Christmas dreams are made of, featuring the most sought-after brands and more.

For starters, the centre court (outside Checkers) will play host to festive brand immersions for shoppers of all ages, by two beloved brands. LEGO®’s zone will feature a maze filled with ever changing play zones, once-in-a-lifetime building experiences, a chance to also add your brick to the South African flag build, two LEGO® brick pits, a Duplo zone for the small ones and the chance to shop the latest LEGO® collections with promotional offers.

The Little Generosity Shop by Cadbury Dairy Milk will provide you with ways to spread generosity and kindness. Here, you can donate toys to children in need, enjoy a reading corner, get Cadbury’s branded gift wrapping and do exclusive shopping in a generous chocolate world filled with treats.

Santa Claus himself will make his much-anticipated arrival to Sandton City on the 1st of December and will also be stationed in the centre court, where photo opportunities and merchandise extensions will make any heart sing.

Fan favourite brand Chuckles® will stage a Life’s a Ball activation on level 6 outside Woolworths. Visitors to this area will be able to shop the exclusive Chuckles gifting range, and personalise their Chuckles purchases right there, making these gifts even more special.

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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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First Circle K Convenience Store Opens in South Africa

South Africa’s first Circle K convenience store, now open in eastern Pretoria, is a precursor to a multi-store roll out in the coming months and part of a bigger forecourt deal with Puma Energy which will give access to over one hundred sites across South Africa.

Millat Convenience and Puma energy concluded an agreement that will see an accelerated roll out of Circle K stores on Puma Energy forecourts across the country.

The agreement is a clear sign of the confidence two major international brands have in South Africa’s future in the short term and could create around 2000 jobs.

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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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Signature High Tea by Just Teddy for a limited time at The Winston Hotel

If you have been craving for a decadent high tea served in a luxurious garden setting, then I have good news for you!

A drool-worthy collaboration between two bespoke brands, The Winston Hotel and Just Teddy Fine Boulangerie & Pâtisserie, has resulted in a high tea experience with a curated menu that will raise the bar in the high tea sector to new heights.

Jo’burgers will be familiar with the Just Teddy brand, who also have a busy restaurant in Hyde Park Corner. I’ve been before and enjoyed a beautiful lunch. But now you can experience their famous high tea in the tranquil garden setting of The Winston Hotel.

Commencing the weekend of 29 October, High Tea by Just Teddy will be served in two sittings every Saturday and Sunday for a limited time only at The Winston Hotel in Rosebank, Johannesburg. This unique partnership between the Millat Investments owned hotel and Just Teddy in an ideal, classic hotel setting is synonymous with the best high tea venues globally. This high-end “pop-up” style experience breaks new ground in developing unique high tea experiences with quality beverages and food within a classic, indoor / outdoor setting.

Served in the lounge area / courtyard of The Winston Hotel, this curated high tea menu by Just Teddy is a fitting farewell to The Winston as we know it. In June 2022, Millat Investments acquired The Winston Hotel and signed an agreement with Hyatt Hotels that will see The Winston Hotel rebranded to the luxury Park Hyatt brand. Extensive refurbishment is scheduled to commence at the beginning of December, and the hotel will officially re-open as the Park Hyatt Johannesburg in early 2023.

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