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HOTSPOT: MAVERICK CORNER

ELLE’s Sheena Bagshawe reports on Maverick Corner in Maboneng – an exciting new development with a diverse mix of eateries, nightlife, fashion and accessories.

The Vibe?

The retail space is comprised of a leafy outdoor courtyard where you can relax or order food in a pretty and laid-back setting. The corner continues Maboneng’s love affair with art and there’s a stunning mural by street artist Dal East along the Commissioner Street facade.

Five of the retail spaces at Maverick Corner are repurposed shipping containers and the shops are owner-operated, so customers can interact with the people behind the business. What’s more is almost all of the shops are studios too, so you get to see the goods being made while you browse and chat to the designers.

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What to wear?

We suggest picking up on the neighbourhood’s love for African print but keeping it cute and casual like Stella Jean 2014. Think clashing, printed separates in sixties shapes with oversized head accessories.

The Stores?

Stitch&Steel specialises in bespoke African wax cloth ladieswear with an urban edge and durability. Designer Linda Gale (featured above) was inspired by the vibrancy of traditional fabrics and prints on a trip to Malawi and so the brand was born.  Stitch&Steel offers small batches with six garments made per design and each handmade item can be tailored to a customer’s wants and needs.

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Anomali is a jewellery brand that repurposes and recycles to make its beautiful pieces. Most of the items are crafted from old spoons! For the guys, five8ths hand-tailors, meticulously crafted shirts and men’s accessories made from biodegradable, non-synthetic materials. American designer and entrepreneur manager Liz Kading makes each shirt individually for an exceptional fit and sources products like corozo nut buttons, which are made from the nut of the Tagua palm tree in South America, rather than plastic.

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Whippet Cycles specialises in building custom fixed gear bicycles and restoring vintage components. Owner Emile Kruger used cycling as his main mode of transport while living in London and bought his passion back to SA when he returned. “I’ve always had an obsession with shipping containers, and how people repurpose them – so I couldn’t believe my luck when I found out they were up for lease” he says about his store space.

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Food served?

For the adventurous palette stop by King James’ XIV Ethiopian, even if only to try some of the very strong coffee. Fridays are vegetarian at King James’ XIV and it’s the day Ethiopian expats from around downtown Jo’burg make their way to the eatery. What sets King James’ XIV apart from other similar restaurants in the area is that its dishes are more authentic and use traditional Ethiopian spice combinations.

Fabulous Burger Boys specialises in gourmet burgers and apart from the cheese, every filing the boys use is made in the kitchen.

A popular stand from Maboneng’s Market on Main every Sunday is Soul Souvlaki, it serves up a crowd pleasing Greek pita and will be opening a permanent space at Maverick corner before the end of March.

And the drinks?

YesSir! is a pin-up-themed diner, bar and entertainment venue. Their signature drink is the Planet Claire, a mix of vanilla vodka, Amaretto, lime and a bitter kick of homemade cranberry juice. You have to try it.

For dessert?

Cocobelle Desserts focuses on artisanal sweets including frozen yoghurt and granitas as well as pastries with a local twist like koeksisters or malva pudding cupcakes. The store is housed in an old, flatbed truck that owner, baker and fro-yo maker Cornel Visser found and converted into the most charming sweet store around. Cornel admits that frozen yoghurt is a healthier indulgence than ice-cream; she focuses on flavour using fruit pulp and full cream milk instead of skimping on texture. Her granitas come in exotic flavours like hibiscus and pineapple or rosewater and apple, refreshing but delicate.

For more info see: mabonengprecinct.com