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Fashion and food at South Africa’s top malls
Shopping for fashion and food may sound like mutually exclusive activities if the tabloids’ claims that fashionistas survive on a lettuce leaf a day are true. But if you love to shop and eat, you’ll find food and fashion hotspots where both the couture and the cuisine are catwalk-worthy.
Did you know?
Canal Walk in Cape Town has 400 stores and the Gateway Shopping Centre in Umhlanga in KwaZulu-Natal has 380 stores.
Shopping for food and fashion is a favourite preoccupation of stylish travellers the world over.
With ever-more South African fashion designers showcasing their collections in the fashion capitals of the world, the famous by-line, New York, London, Milan and Paris, will soon include the suffix: Mzansi (a popular nickname for South Africa).
Unquestionably one of South Africa’s top food and fashion spots is Sandton City, in Johannesburg. Among the largest shopping malls in southern Africa, here you’ll find Avenue des Champs-Élysées stores like Louise Vuitton, Dior, Yves St Laurent and Chanel, along with local fashion celebs like Marion and Lindie, David Tlale and Jenni Button.
For lunch, it has to be the adjoining Nelson Mandela Square, where you can stretch out your legs (to show off your latest Laboutin platform pumps), and mull over whether to eat seafood, steak, haute African, Thai or posh Indian from the myriad restaurants on the piazza.
In northern Johannesburg, within an 11km radius of Sandton, you’ll find even more must-visit places to shop for food and fashion. Hyde Park Corner, Rosebank Mall and the leisure and lifestyle precinct of Melrose Arch stock international clothing labels and funky local designers galore.
Hungry shoppers will delight in Hyde Park Corner’s Asian-inspired, seafood and steakhouse restaurants, while Melrose Arch’s and Rosebank’s chic outdoor piazzas are adored by those who love to preen and be seen eating at upmarket franchise restaurants.
Nearer to central Johannesburg, 44 Stanley Avenue is style-central for food- and fashion-seekers. Unusual clothing outlets with Africa-inspired fashion go well with the selection of artisan bakeries and trendy outdoor cafés serving planet-friendly food.
Not to be outdone, Cape Town is also foremost with its food and fashion offerings.
The Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, known simply as the ‘V&A’, is where the jet set refresh their walk-in wardrobes. At the V&A, aside from the likes of Jimmy Choo, Armani and Burberry, you’ll find head-to-toe African fashion inspiration, and its selection of kiddie couture is brilliant.
It goes without saying that you’ll want to celebrate your fabulous fashion finds with champagne and a seafood feast on the wharf …
Still in Cape Town, head for the southern suburbs, and in under 20 minutes you’ll find yourself at Cavendish Square in the fashionable suburb of Claremont. Discover some of the best-kept local fashion secrets that enable Capetonians to look so trendy: Nicci, Jenni Button and Jo Borkett, to name a few.
After your spree, indulge in the guilty pleasure of a deluxe fillet steak and porcini mushroom burger with all the trimmings and a Lindt chocolate milkshake from Gourmet Burgers.
Food-loving followers of fashion have style options aplenty in KwaZulu-Natal,with its exotic melange of African, Asian and European influences. In Umhlanga in the north of the city, the Gateway Mall isn’t dubbed the ‘Theatre of Shopping’ for nothing. The multi-storey mega-mall is a shopper’s heaven. Once you’ve splurged on stylish must-haves from footwear to fashion accessories, there’s Thai, authentic Indian, sushi and more to boost your energy levels.
The Musgrave Centre, in the trendy Durban suburb of Berea, lures lovers of limited edition fashion wear with creations by local designers Charcoal & Chocolate and Forbidden Couture, as well as mainstream European brands like Daniel Hetchter and Uzzi. Finish your spree with a nutrient-boosting wrap or juice at Kauai, or a scrumptious salad from the Red Lime Café.