I don’t know how this maven missed the first evening of Christmas in July in Parkhurst. Having been a bit of a party-gal over the previous week or so, I was very pleased for an early night last Thursday. But then a friend said ‘Just pop into Mot Mot for a sherry, Parkhurst is buzzing and there’s a beautiful full moon’. I’m not sure which was the most compelling, the thought of Mot Mot (one of my favourite shops even before it’s excellent revamp ); the full moon in the clear winter’s sky on a relatively warm Highveld winter’s evening; the street buzz of late opening on 4th Ave; … or maybe even the sherry? FOMO struck (surely I’m too old for this?) …, and never one to miss out, I hot-footed it down the hill. Christmas lights abounded; people spilled out onto pavements chatting in groups; there were bagpipers and carol-singers; and a general feeling of festivity and good cheer prevailed.
And the best thing is that there is another evening of Christmas in July this Thursday 28th July. So make sure you don’t miss it. It really had a great atmosphere. Not too crowded but enough of a crowd to be fun and vibey. And Mot Mot is looking even more stunning than previously. They have joined up with Garden Bleu and have all sorts of amazing funky items you really don’t need, but know you will regret it if you don’t purchase, and equally know will always find the perfect place in your home. Mervyn Gers’ fabulous platters and bowls with stylish fish designs, stunning ceramics by Loren Kaplan, a huge section of bowls and
beakers from Potter’s Seed and of course Strawberry Thief’s fabulous chairs with bold multi-coloured fabrics, are all there to tempt you. The teaming up with Garden Bleu (who have long been in neighbouring Greenside), adds a great range and variety to Mot Mot’s offerings – wicker baskets for amazing cymbidium orchids, lots of metal decorative objects for outside walls, unusual plant hangers. It is a real treasure trove of wonderfully different objects and furniture. You will not be disappointed – it’s a treat.
There are a couple of new restaurants that have opened (between 14th and 13th Streets). Salsa is a Mexican restaurant described as fun and vibey so if a whole group are going to 4th Ave, it would be a good place to get something to eat and break bread. Café del Sol Tre is next door to Salsa. The name Tre celebrates the power of three – the 3 members of the family who run it (Mamma Luciana, daughter Chiara and son Ryan); it’s their third restaurant (the other two are in Olivedale and Bryanston); and it’s a reference to the triangular designs of Art Deco – the theme and style of the Parkhurst restaurant. The Olivedale Café del Sol has an excellent reputation so it’s worth giving this one a try.
Coobs (in the same block), has just launched the Supper Club where they provide a seasonal menu (so always fresh ingredients) paired with SA’s best boutique wines. Chef James Diack says: ‘Coobs is one of only two restaurants in South Africa which can accurately trace the provenance of its food – meaning we know exactly where our ingredients come from’. I want to find out which/where the other restaurant is!
Along with all the restaurants, pavement cafes & coffee bars (fortunately no night clubs – which has been Parkhurst’s saving grace .. witness Melville and Greenside’s downward slide), 4th Ave Parkhurst has managed to maintain its wonderfully old-fashioned high street feel with shops like the renowned Braeside butchery; the ever-helpful chemist; and hardware (nothing is ever unsolvable here); and of course the Parkhust Bookshop – another veritable treasure trove which warrants a blogpost all of its own. There are boutiques (Desray, Banana Moon, Egality); nail bars and beauty salons (Sorbet and Africology); specialty stores: Santos (every kind of stylish storage and display box you could want), the Kitchen Shop, Polly Potter’s Toy Store, Rick’s Secondhand Bookshop; antique shops and interior décor shops.
So even when its’ not Christmas in July, it’s a great street for wandering and window-shopping. It’s always a firm favourite with guests staying at http://www.lizatlancaster.co.za (only 5 minutes away by car).