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Traveling Around Johannesburg

Aired January 2, 2014 - 05:30:00   ET



SHALDON KOPMAN, DESIGNER, NAKED APE (voice-over): We create a tunnel based on (INAUDIBLE). This is what is buyer and elevates. This is where the energy is.

This particular area, this is where clients come, they sit down, they have consultations, chat about this and that. There's a change room over there. They go through the various different styles of suiting, you know. And if there's anything that they want that is a little bit more funkier, like a coat or something like that, we're always able to let them see the styles we have.

All of this is sample sizes.


KOPMAN (voice-over): This is a primary example right here, OK? For this particular jacket, which was worn on the cover of "GQ" magazine (INAUDIBLE) jacket (INAUDIBLE) is drawn off the inspiration of a beautiful Zulu bead (ph). So that's the Zulu bead (ph). And that's (INAUDIBLE) out of that (INAUDIBLE).

So something as simple as that. The season was glad (INAUDIBLE) was heritage and we created our own heritage, you know, out of the African (INAUDIBLE).

It's a big city. But the city itself is not that big. But it's (INAUDIBLE) surrounding areas, like you have your (INAUDIBLE) and your rose bike (ph) and your four ways (ph) and your brightens (ph), meadowlands (ph), and so forth. And it just stretches out. So designers are scattered all over the place.

It's a world-class African city.


KOPMAN (voice-over): This is Constitution Hill. We are -- it's got a hell of a history. I'm not going to behave like I'm a tourguide, but I can tell you that there's some dark, dark, dark past within these walls.

It is emotionally burdening as it is. It is transformed into something that is absolutely beautiful when it comes to creativity. I keep on about creativity. That's what we are in Johannesburg. If you look at it, it's beautiful. All the breadth, nothing -- everything here that was broken down was used to reconstruct complete model of recycling. This is our constitutional court (ph). This is where it all goes down, major decisions. What's also quite nice about this is the fact that you're right on top of the hill. So you can have a beautiful view of the entire Johannesburg, the summers (ph). You will see the zoo from here. And where you see all of these pictures (ph) it's just a reminder of where we are right now, (INAUDIBLE) where we act (ph), how we stand (ph), what we do (ph), what we represent as a nation, what we represent as a country and so how important we are to the rest of the continent and the world at large.

Yes, it's very, very sad sound. You can even hear the motion of the voices. It's sad. These are the sounds you often hear, you know, whether it be church or whether it be a rally, a gathering, political gathering, you know? Crying for freedom, crying for freedom of expression, just cries for relief of prisoners that weren't meant to be held in captive to start with, you know. It's very sad. But that is what you call the cries of apartheid, I suppose.


KOPMAN: (INAUDIBLE), guys. We have a particular neighborhood called Duber (ph). And we're visiting really, really nice, interesting little restaurant called (INAUDIBLE). This friend of mine, his name is Taban (ph), this is his grandmother's home. So I'm sure she'll be very proud of what her grandson has -- (INAUDIBLE) entrepreneurial skills, right? So this is (INAUDIBLE), like to hang out here. It's nice. It's intimate (ph). It's cozy, very lovely. And there is very limited menu. And that's what we like.

All right. Here we create (INAUDIBLE).


TABAN (PH): (INAUDIBLE) my grandmother's house, my father's mother's house. So I was a toddler here.



TABAN (PH): (INAUDIBLE). There are a lot of restaurants in subway (ph) who have quite a bit of history behind them. And people normally opening the tea bar (ph) that used to be a hangout when you were young or used to be a family affair. So (INAUDIBLE) house that you enter (INAUDIBLE). (INAUDIBLE), 80-90 percent of our patrons, all up in the northern suburbs. But every weekend (INAUDIBLE) because most people grow up and so it is always a way to connect with their community. Yes, you work in the city, but most of your weekend is you want to straight here. This is where you would stay and find out local trends, what are people listening to and what are people (INAUDIBLE). This is really staying connected with your -- with your (INAUDIBLE).



KOPMAN: Here we're marching down Vilikazi Street. As many of you know there's -- Vilikazi Street is full of history, man. So you find a lot of new houses that are being converted into businesses. Fantastic energy, fantastic vibes. This is the buzz and this is the hub of where it's happening (INAUDIBLE) any given afternoon.

What you do find here is people in the street, the streets are full of people. That's community for you, your neighbors actually know what your kids look like, you know? And they've -- for me this is very important, especially growing up and especially when it comes to understanding culture.



THANDISWA MAZWAI, MUSICIAN: I'm in Newtown, which has always kind of been the cultural hub of Johannesburg. This is where you can find a lot of clubs, live music joints. I love the part of town; I like the graffiti. I mean, I'm generally into graffiti. I don't know who the artists are or anything. I don't follow it like that. But I like that the city is changing a lot, you know? People are taking over the city in very interesting ways. (INAUDIBLE). I like what it says. It says, "Are you free or are you dom?" "Dom" in Afrikaans means are you stupid. But if you put the words together, freedom is (INAUDIBLE) are you free or are you dom, you know, it's kind of one of those things that goes around in the -- in South Africa, you know. People wonder about their freedom.

I just like downtown Johannesburg. It's one of those places that you feel like you need to be in the habit (ph). This is a crazy country. It's a crazy place. It's (INAUDIBLE) place. And I think (INAUDIBLE) just trying to make it work, black, white, Indian, all the crazy people of the Rainbow Nation.

And this is just the part of my market, which is a Zulu market. (INAUDIBLE) everything here. This is cool (INAUDIBLE). It's very cool. (INAUDIBLE). This is like -- there's been one part (INAUDIBLE) for ages. So they're kind of traditional Zulu slippers (ph). Everybody else kind of has market (INAUDIBLE). But this is uniquely -- this is only Zulus (INAUDIBLE) here.

We have traditionally (INAUDIBLE) and that goes on the head. And they have things that they put on the front. And this is from adornment (INAUDIBLE). But that's (INAUDIBLE) such a bad thing.

These are cool, huh?

They are so cool.

This is a cool place. They go on your arms. (INAUDIBLE).

(INAUDIBLE). (INAUDIBLE). He's the bass player. He should be cute wearing that (INAUDIBLE).

DARIO D'ANGELI, CHEF, CUBE TASTING KITCHEN: I'm Dario. Welcome to Cube. (INAUDIBLE). If you haven't been to Cube before, with me in the kitchen (INAUDIBLE). The three of us will take care of you this evening, we're your personal chefs as well as a walking menus for the evening.

This where the textural element inside your mouth, salmon that has been soaked in a (INAUDIBLE) oil with a little lime and coriander. (INAUDIBLE). So we're not going with that (INAUDIBLE). There's a bubble of (INAUDIBLE) on your palate. All right.

(INAUDIBLE) interaction between the customers (INAUDIBLE). That's why we've got an open (INAUDIBLE) kitchen like this. We want people to feel part of the whole thing, not just feel like they're sitting in their own little private kitchen (INAUDIBLE), sort of private dining room and stuff. And we should be taking care of them.



D'ANGELI: (INAUDIBLE). (INAUDIBLE) food market. (INAUDIBLE) make their little things and grow their little stuff (INAUDIBLE). (INAUDIBLE) very popular.

It's a kind of a cool concept. It's a really -- I think it's a great (INAUDIBLE). I had this in the middle of (INAUDIBLE). (INAUDIBLE) middle of (INAUDIBLE). I think it's very, very nice. (INAUDIBLE) variety of things (INAUDIBLE).

(INAUDIBLE). What's it (INAUDIBLE), jerky? Yes. So our vision of beef jerky (INAUDIBLE). (INAUDIBLE).

It isn't as cheap (INAUDIBLE) shopping (INAUDIBLE). (INAUDIBLE) to me that's sort of the value of doing something like this. You've got some guy who decided what you want to do is pastry. And he spends his whole week making beautiful pastries that he puts on the market here. It's great. What better thing can you -- what better thing to support than that?



NECHAMA BRODIE, AUTHOR, "THE JOBURG BOOK": Main Street was one of the first streets (INAUDIBLE) Johannesburg. And what it is now is kind of a headquarters of the mining houses, the chamber of mines just behind us. And over the years, as any city's been rejuvenated and restored, they've added a little stretch on a pedestrianized section of Main Street, where they showcase parts of the history of Johannesburg.

So it's a really condensed section where you can get a glimpse of the origins of the city, which is really all about gold mining. There was nothing here before. There was no water; there were no people. There were no trees.

The strange thing about Johannesburg is the (INAUDIBLE). All it is is a city based entirely on making money. It has, at the same time, produced two of perhaps the most important human rights political leaders that we've known in the last three centuries, which is Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi, neither of whom were born here, but both of whom were formed here, in a sense.

Gandhi was in South Africa for two decades or more, a large portion of which was spent in Johannesburg and this is Gandhi Square. It used to be the site of the original law court. And Gandhi was a lawyer. So the law court got demolished to make way for a vast terminal. And they put up a statue. The sculptures are often targeted for lots of vandalism, but they're (INAUDIBLE) steal the heavy metal.

And so this has got fences on it to stop people from chopping off Gandhi's head to melt it down for its worth in metal.


BRODIE: This is the art (ph) museum and it's a fairly new art (INAUDIBLE) space for Johannesburg. One of the things I speak about is Johannesburg's inability to access its history and to preserve its past. So you can mark that by the number of museums (INAUDIBLE) we had. And JoBurg has had (INAUDIBLE). So it's really important as the city rejuvenates that we start creating spaces that are public spaces.

Now this museum is for South African artists. And again, (INAUDIBLE) from contemporary art to older, more traditional forms of art, what we -- when I was growing up, we would have called craft. But I think in hindsight we acknowledge that these beautifully made pieces of woodwork or beadwork are actually art. They're not just na
(INAUDIBLE) landowners (INAUDIBLE) gradually transformed the space from (INAUDIBLE) sort of warehouses and storage areas to really beautifully courtyards and (INAUDIBLE) restaurant and art gallery there. There's an (INAUDIBLE) coffee roaster that's (INAUDIBLE) Africa. There are little shops and boutiques. There's local clothing designers, jewelry designers and even though it's kind of closed in because it's all in a massive complex, it's the opposite of a shopping mall.

We have really viral (INAUDIBLE) tendencies that are spreading across South Africa, Cape Town being probably the center. But Johannesburg isn't immune and what (INAUDIBLE) nice part of that, as much as I want to mark hipster culture, is the explosion of locally made produce and beer in South Africa and (INAUDIBLE). So you can get incredible craft beer. And (INAUDIBLE) very reasonable in South Africa compared to (INAUDIBLE) rest of the world. And the beer yard (ph) is (INAUDIBLE) great local beers with some delicious local produce. There's very, very nice local wine as well.

SIYA MTHEMBU, MUSICIAN, THE BROTHER MOVES ON: We're in (INAUDIBLE) at the (INAUDIBLE) cafe, what I call My House Cafe. It's (INAUDIBLE) played this club. But we played every single place in JoBurg (INAUDIBLE). It's in what looks like an industrial area. Behind Newtown precinct. I'll take you guys to Troyeville (INAUDIBLE) seafood at one of the few places (INAUDIBLE) great seafood (INAUDIBLE).


MTHEMBU: I know it looks like (INAUDIBLE) at the back of someone (INAUDIBLE) random courtyard. But there's so much history. This is like a lot of like cultural events which are outside of the sphere, happened here. So presidents, (INAUDIBLE) gave a talk and the discussion he had (INAUDIBLE) like editors of the big dailies, the big newspapers, he gave a talk (INAUDIBLE) politicians come through here, artists come through here, musicians come through here. (INAUDIBLE). (INAUDIBLE) people.

This chili sauce -- I know, from hell. (INAUDIBLE) hottest chili sauce that's edible I've ever had.

This Portuguese cuisine. For us it's actually a link to Mozambique quite a bit. (INAUDIBLE). That's the (INAUDIBLE) we have. And (INAUDIBLE). Yes. (INAUDIBLE).