Johannesburg

Where to celebrate Valentine's Day in Joburg

08 Feb 2018

A romantic dinner a deux with the one you love is a great way to show that special someone that you care. From literary-inspired menus bookworms would love to a moonlight picnic in one of the city's secret gardens, here are some romantic ideas for how to celebrate Valentine's in Joburg this February.

MOVIES & MUSIC

GAUTENG OPERA LOVE SONGS AT 1 FOX MARKET
Sat Feb 10

The Gauteng Opera company are a local favourite at the 1 Fox Market Shed in the 1 Fox Precinct where they regularly perform free concerts in the market's sunny beer garden. Marking Valentine's Day Gauteng Opera return once again to the 1 Fox Precinct on Saturday Feb 10 to perform a special free concert celebrating the greatest modern and classical love songs. performs at the Sheds.
The market is open all day and the free concert starts at 19:00.

JAZZ ON THE HILL
Sun Feb 11

One of Joburg's most famous luxury hotels, the Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff's Jazz on the Hill series sees local jazz stars performing live on the hotel's Flames terrace with its stunning view over the treed suburbs.
On Sun Feb 11 South African jazz vocalist Lindiwe Maxolo performs at this special Valentine's edition of Jazz on the Hill. Tickets include a gourmet buffet cooked up the the hotel's much praised fine dining restaurants.
Costs R795 per person. Book your tickets online here.

TRUE ROMANCE SCREENING AT THE BIOSCOPE

Wed Feb 14
The Valentine's Day screening of Tony Scott's cult classic True Romance is an annual tradition at The Bioscope independent cinema in Maboneng. Scripted by Quentin Tarrantino this is certainly not your typical romantic comedy and is ideal for couples who hate schmaltzy entertainment.
Tickets cost R50 per person. Screenings at 18:00 and 20:30. Tickets can be booked online here.

LIVE JAZZ AND DINNER AT THE ORBIT
Wed Feb 14

Combine good food, world-class jazz and the company of the one you love most and you have a perfect recipe for a most memorable Valentine's evening. Book a table for two with a view of the stage and be serenaded by some of the finest musicians on the South African jazz scene while enjoying delicious contemporary bistro fare from The Orbit's special Valentine's Day menu. Serenading diners on Valentine's evening is blind pianist Yonele Mnana. To book email info@theorbit.co.za or call +27 11 339 6645.
Call +27 11 339 6645 or email info@theorbit.co.za to book a table. The Valentine's dinner costs R350 per person.

VALENTINE'S MARKETS

LEARN TO SALSA AT ROSEBANK SUNDAY MARKET
Sun Feb 11
Put on your dancing shoes and head to the Rosebank Sunday Market this Valentine’s weekend for a free beginners salsa class with the Salsa Addicts. Impress your partner with new found dance moves after browsing the market's many stalls for a unique Valentine’s gift.
The free beginners salsa class runs from 12:00-14:00.

MARKET ON MAIN NIGHT MARKET VALENTINE'S EDITION
Wed Feb 14

Market on Main is the Sunday heartbeat of the Maboneng district and the monthly Night Market brings all the usual food and fashion traders that Market On Main shoppers love plus DJs, cocktails and a party atmosphere to get you in the mood for the weekend. February's night market takes place on February 14 and is a special Valentine's Day edition.

SINGLES EVENTS

DATING IN THE DARK
Tue Feb 13
A singles night with a difference. Dating in the Dark offers an alternative to the modern fashion of ‘blind’ dating (or as most people call it, Tinder), mixing a classic speed dating style with the added novelty of darkness. Yes, the room is completely dark, meaning that attendees need to rely on the good old fashioned art of conversation to secure a date or phone number at the end of the night.
Tickets cost R150 and can be booked online here. Note this is an event for heterosexuals/bisexuals.

ROMANTIC PICNICS

PICNIC UNDER THE STARS AT WALTER SISULU BOTANICAL GARDENS
Wed Feb 14

Pack a picnic and enjoy a romantic evening outdoors while lounging on the beautifully tended lawns of one of Joburg's most loved green spaces, the Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens. This is a unique opportunity to enjoy the park after hours and catch a glimpse of the starry skies on the edge of Joburg.
Entrance costs R50.

A MOVIE UNDER THE STARS AT SHEPSTONE GARDENS
Wed Feb 14
This Valentine’s Day, the beautiful Shepstone Gardens hosts a romantic open-air movie screening of the Ryan Gosling classic The Notebook. Located at the foot of the Observatory Ridge, Shepstone Gardens is one of Joburg’s many impressive 'secret gardens' that opens its gates to the public only for special occasions. Tickets for the event include a picnic basket prepared by Pop Up Food SA filled with gourmet pates, salads and desserts, plus bottomless prosecco, craft beers and craft gin and tonics.
Tickets cost R700 per couple. Gates open at 16:00 and the movie starts at 20:00. Email nadia@shepstonegardens.co.za to book.

A BLUESY PICNIC AT NIROX SCULPTURE PARK

Sat Feb 17
The glorious rolling parkland of the Nirox Sculpture Park in the Cradle of Humankind is the venue for the Valentine's Blues festival, a chilled out day of live music, gourmet market food and boutique wines. Some of the finest names in South African acoustic folk and blues are on the line-up including Albert Frost, Dan Patlansky and Laurie Levine, as well as one of Joburg's most popular local live acts Urban Village whose exciting alternative music fuses traditional and contemporary rural and urban sounds.
Tickets cost R330 per person (R360 at the gate subject to availability). Tickets can be booked online here.

VALENTINE'S EVENING DINNERS

FIVE COURSE DINNER AT THE GLAMOROUS THE PALAZZO AT MONTECASINO
Wed Feb 14

Montecasino's glamorous Palazzo Hotel presents a sumptuous romantic Valentine's themed five-course dinner at their fine dining restaurant Medeo. Arrive early and enjoy drinks on the deck overlooking the luscious gardens and pool before settling in for an evening of fine food and music. Dishes on the menu include an amuse bouche of goat’s cheese paired with walnut couscous, compressed apples and blueberry gel and for dessert strawberry and pistachio shortcake topped with whipped strawberry and rose ganache, fresh strawberries, pistachio custard and strawberry rose meringues.
Dinner costs R615 per person and includes live entertainment and a Valentine's gift. To make a booking call +27 11 510 3000 or email Danielle.peters@tsogosun.com

JOZI FLING AT TURBINE HALL

Wed Feb 14
Wine and dine in style with the Forum Company’s Jozi Fling Valentine’s dinner at the iconic Newtown venue Turbine Hall. Dinner is a five-course gourmet meal plated in The Forum Company's inimitable style and accompanied by fabulous drinks. Book for two or make it a girls’ night out and add a table of friends.
Email theforum.turbinebookings@theforum.co.za to book.

A VALENTINE'S WITH VEUVE AT ARBOUR CAFE
Wed Feb 14

This Valentine's Day Birdhaven's cute courtyard cafe and restaurant Arbour Cafe is treating guests to a four course dinner and champagne in partnership with that most luxurious of champagne labels, Veuve Cliquot. The Valentine's promotion costs R890 for two and includes a four course meal and two glass of Veuve Cliquot Rose Champagne.
Dinner costs R890 for two. To book call +27 11 788 4111.

BE MY VALENTINE AT STANLEY BEER YARD
Wed Feb 14

If your beau loves beer treat them to dinner at one of Joburg's best craft beer venues Stanley Beer Yard in 44 Stanley. Stanley Beer Yard's Valentine's special costs R350 for two and includes two craft beers and a starter and main dish each. Email stan@stanleybar.co.za to book.

A LITERARY INSPIRED VALENTINE'S DINNER AT EB SOCIAL KITCHEN & BAR
Wed Feb 14
This Valentine's Day EB Social Kitchen and Bar’s new head chef Yohann Saumande is cooking up a special seven-course romance novel-inspired menu. Courses include The Age of Innocence appetiser (Namibian oysters on a sphere of gazpacho consommé, lemon pearl and sea weed chips), and for dessert the decadent Scarlet Letter, a pistachio nougat parfait and raspberry sorbet with chocolate sauce and almond dentelle.
Dinner costs R560 per person. To book call +27 11 268 6039, email reservations@socialkitchenandbar.co.za or WhatsApp +27 64 737 4901.

STEAKHOUSE SHARING PLATTER FOR TWO AT THE BULL RUN

Wed Feb 14
Meat lovers make your way to The Bull Run steakhouse in Sandton for a casual sharing-platter meal for two. Upon arrival you'll be greeted with cocktail oysters and bubbly as an appetiser to the main event. Dishes on the platters include grilled calamari with spicy chorizo, Brazilian rump steak and Cajun grilled queen prawns with lemon butter cream. To end off the meal there's a mix of both savoury and sweet with a cheeseboard paired with nuts, crackers and preserves, and for that final romantic touch, chocolate-dipped strawberries.
The sharing platter costs R370 per person Booking is essential. To book contact +27 11 884 1400 or email info@thebullrun.co.za.

DINNER A DEUX AT RADISSON BLU GAUTRAIN
Wed Feb 14
Indulge in a three-course dinner at the Radisson Blu Gautrain in Sandton. The Valentine's Day special includes buffalo mozzarella and roasted plum tomato tarts with grilled asparagus and rocket and walnut pesto, nicoise salad with pan-seared calamari and lime butter emulsion and a red velvet Swiss roll accompanied by white chocolate ganache, rosewater chiffon cake and candied rose petals.
Dinner costs R880 per couple. Email centralone.gautrain@radissonblu.com to book.

VALENTINE'S DINNER AT THE MARABI CLUB
Treat yourself to a night out at one of Joburg's most acclaimed pop up restaurants this Valentine’s Day. With a combination of superb food, slick service and a moodily-lit stage on which a jazz band plays, The Marabi Club is one of downtown Joburg's most memorable dinner destinations. This season's edition of The Marabi Club pop up (open until March) is headed by Australian chef Russell Armstrong (formerly of EB Social Kitchen) and San Pellegrino Young Chef 2018 finalist Vusi Ndlovu. Bookings are essential.

LUNCH IN THE COUNTRYSIDE

COUNTRYSIDE ROMANCE AT DE HOEK
Sun Feb 11 and 18

Escape city at the beautiful 5-Star boutique hotel De Hoek, an hour’s drive north of Joburg. On consecutive Sundays in February De Hoek is serving a romantic Valentine's luncheon in the gardens. The four course menu includes halibut served on rose petal risotto with chanterelle mushrooms in a rosewater milk sauce and a buratta cheeseboard with figs, walnuts, balsamic and verdant gin pressed pears and rooibos rye bread. Guests also receive a glass of bubbly and strawberries on arrival to set the mood.
The luncheon costs R520 per person and can be booked online here.

ROMANTIC SPA PACKAGES

VALENTINE'S SPA DAY AT THE FAIRWAY HOTEL & SPA
Throughout February
Head down to The Fairway Spa in Randpark for a couples’ spa day and take advantage of their special Valentine’s Package. Start the day with some time in the Rasul Chamber before a 60-minute aromatherapy massage and a facial. End off the day with chocolates to share and head to the Vista Deck for a drink and to enjoy a view of the sunset.
The Fairway Spa Valentine's Day package costs R1200 per couple and runs throughout February. To book call +27 11 478 8020 or email spareception@thefairway.co.za

Associated Venues

The Bull Run

 Protea Hotel Balalaika, 20 Maude St, Sandton
EDITOR'S PICK

EB Social Kitchen and Bar

 Hyde Park Corner, cnr Jan Smuts Ave and William Nicol Dr, Hyde Park

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