Johannesburg

Melville and Auckland Park

12 Aug 2019
created 14 Nov 2013
Melville’s bohemian reputation was forged during the 1980s and early 1990s as it attracted the alternative Afrikaner set – academics, writers, artists, performers and poets. Melville was living like a wild child at a time when apartheid was doing its best to strangle the nation into conformity. Today it retains its alternative and eclectic feel, its high street along 7th Street devoid of big-name brands and the sameness that so often accompanies a modern change of fortune, its denizens a mix of hues and proclivities. With its proximity to two universities, Melville is a popular student hangout and also a nightlife capital. Its late-night bars have earned their fair share of notoriety, and with close to 30 guest houses it’s also a popular tourist stopover.

These days the wild child appears to be growing up with a steady growth in upmarket bars and restaurants dominating 7th Street, while the quirky 27Boxes, a container shopping development located between 3rd and 4th Avenues, just off 7th Street has brought to the neighbourhood a family-friendly atmosphere with a great kids playground and quirky shops fashion and gift shops. A few blocks away facing the Melville Koppies is the Bamboo Centre which has one of Joburg's best bookshops Love books and an excellent Asian restaurant The Great Eastern Food Bar on the rooftop.

The bars and restaurants along 7th Street seem to change almost as frequently as the seasons. Some of our current favourites include the intimate La Petite Maison for fine dining, the charming and eclectic pizzeria Ant Cafe, harvest-table cafe The Whippet, popular South African restaurant Lucky Bean and lively bars such as Hells Kitchen, Lonely Hearts Club and the Tiny Tiki Bar.

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