Today I thought I will do something fun and share all my hidden gems of Johannesburg.  The city have some of the weirdest place and each so unique.  Its worth the  drive to go visit them all.

1.   The Radium Beer Hall

This is one of the oldest pubs in Johannesburg, and truthfully you can feel the age when you walk into the pub.  With high press ceilings and wooden floors you can inhale the Irish pub vibe with the occasional jazzy saxophone in the background.

  • Where: 282 Louis Botha Avenue, Orange Grove, Johannesburg, 2192
  • Contact: 011 728 3866

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2.   Go Record Mad

Lets take a step back into the past and listen to all those masters our grand daddies jived to.  Might think where to find those classics, no more my friends.  In Linden there is this little hidden gem, Record Mad, amazing little spot of musical glory.  You can find every records you can think of, or at least every one I could think of at the moment.

Try this hidden gem, I’m sure you will love it as I do.

  • Where: Shop 4, Linden Place, 59 4th Avenue, Linden

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3. The Blue Room

Linden not only offers to please your ears, but also your eyes with The Blue Room. Some of you might love it and other might hate it.  But I can tell you this is a shop filled with Kitsch from top to bottom.  But don’t judge so harshly for not all kitsch is bad, The Blue Room offers the good kind too.

  • Where: 57, 3rd Avenue, Linden

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4. Collectors Treasury

Words cannot describe this chose, absolute madness from top to bottom, from left to right.  But if you can manage to look pass and step pass the madness then you will open your eyes and touch to nothing but amazement.  Amazement of knowledge and wonder, for this is one of Jozi’s most precious gems.  A palace of books, books and more, endless more books.  You can find books here from the 1400’s to modern day, I’m not joking.  But the gist to know is, take a morning and visit this gem.  You will find a book or two to your liking, I have no doubt in my mind.

  • Where: 244 Commissioner Street  
  • Contact: 011 334 6556

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5.  The Bioscope Independent Cinema

I can’t help to be biased about the Bioscope, I love the place.  It is the only independent cinema in South Africa, meaning that they can show what they want and what you want. The Bioscope makes movies fun again, not only showing the latest repetition of Hollywood, but rather focusing on some cult classics, old favourites and the avant-garde of films today.

With their great taste in mind they make it even more fun.  The owners of the Bioscope take great innovation in creating special evenings, such as Noodle box Cinema or Mistery Wednesday.  They also have an outside screening from time to time, these tend to be perfect for a romantic date.

Go check out their website, they explain all their great ideas and movies just enough to get you there.

  • Where: 286 Fox Street, Maboneng

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6.   The Night Of 1000 Drawings

O wow, this was a special evening.  The Sci-Bono in Newtown was converted into a massive 2000 Doodle drawing gallery.  The idea of this night was to have anyone (literally anyone) submit a doodle or two.  Some of these doodles were great, others inspiring and then of course the less inspiring kind.  But the gist is that all purchases (yes you can buy these random doodles) were given to a few selected charity organisations.

This event will be for some and others will hate it, but I feel if you can get a night out on the town, get some inspiration and spend some coin for a good cause, then why not.

The Night of a 1000 drawings happens once a year only, so keep your eyes and ears open for this year’s night of a 1000 drawings.

  • Where: They don’t have a fixed address

7.  City Outfitters

This is a hidden gem similar to Collectors Treasury.  A place where you will find something to your liking and something that will fit your pocket.  One of the city’s most valued business.  Find any piece of clothing you can think of at an affordable price.  City Outfitters is worth a look-see.

  • Where: 43 Macintyre Street, Jeppestown

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Written by Lizl Brink, Lizl is copywriter and designer based in Johannesburg, she is also a frequent contributor to the Mafadi blog, and as an Urban investor and rejuvenation shares a passion for urban regeneration, go check out her personal portfolio here
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