Sean Fraser who has written several travel and guide books, has just published one which covers Johannesburg, Soweto, Pretoria and surrounds. I have not seen it yet so am looking forward to browsing through it. I still think that Nechama Brodie’s book on Johannesburg : The Joburg Book published in 2008, is excellent. For more on Fraser’s Gauteng A-Z , see : http://struiktravel.bookslive.co.za/blog/2011/11/10/sean-frasers-new-indispensable-travel-guide-gauteng-a-z/
Southern Sun recently bought The Grace hotel in Rosebank for R85m. They are planning to do major refurbishments to the 73 room hotel and turning it into a boutique hotel targeting corporates, but with an intimate feel. Southern Sun managing director Graham Wood said it will be Southern Sun’s first “boutique deluxe” in Johannesburg. This will be the first Southern Sun hotel in the Rosebank node, an area Wood says has major growth potential.
Ghandi’s philosphy of Satyagraha (non-violent non-cooperation) was born in South Africa and more specifically in what was then the Transvaal, in the first decade of the 20th Century. Ghandi arrived in Johannebsurg in 1893 and stayed at various places during the 12 years he was in Johannesburg. For more on this see Eric Itzkin’s excellent book Ghandi’s Johannesburg. One of the places where Ghandi lived in Johannesburg has been restored by a French Travel Company as a guest house and heritage resource – a really wonderful example of adaptive re-use and sustainable heritage. The Kraal at 15 Pine Road in Orchards was built by the famous architect Hermann Kallenbach who was a great freind of Ghandi’s. C ompleted in 1908 Gandhi and Kallenbach lived there until the end of 1909.
Free tours of the house are available, with or without lunch. It is open from 8am to 5pm, Mondays to Sundays. Book a 45-minute tour on 011 485 5928.