Buy African: Merchants on Long – Africa’s First Concept Store

 

Merchants on Long Interior 2

Merchants on Long Shop Window

 

Exclusively stocking design produced in Africa, Merchants on Long is very high on my list for when I eventually visit Cape Town. It’s really exciting to see how the brand has expanded to now include…

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Home around the world: Madiba, Brooklyn, USA

Madiba-Brooklyn-New-York 
A debut post in a new series, "home around the world." Having lived outside the continent for almost 11 years now, there is nothing more uplifting than finding a spot where I can experience a little bit of home. This series is dedicated to showcasing some of those places and sharing the details, in case you ever need a dose. I'd love to hear about any gems you've found. To share your story, get in touch.

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A funky lounge-cum-restaurant-cum-bar grows in Brooklyn. A cornerstone in my 10+ year love-affair with Fort Greene.

Inside, a large painting of Madiba himself; a chandelier made from glass coca cola bottles and; the kind of metal trunk (painted blue) that you may have carried to boarding school, form part of the eclectic decor. Jam jars for glasses and a kiosk-type wall with foodstuffs from home on sale. This is Madiba, a South African Experience, south of the Manhattan bridge.

Madiba-coke-chandelier

About 10 years ago (I wince smile as I realise how old wise I'm getting), before New York's notorious Cabaret License was introduced, many a great night of dancing was had at the corner of Carlton and Dekalb. After the kitchen closed, dining tables would be moved aside, creating an intimate dancefloor. I think that's probably the best word to describe the atmosphere at Madiba. Visiting last summer, for the first time in years, I was delighted to run into familiar faces including DJ Stone* who's still doing his thing on their decks. There might not be the same dancefloor destruction to the freshest house and kwaito as in days gone by but, that warm afri-love vibe is definitely still in the air.


[*link to an interesting short video where Stone is interviewed by Africa is a Country blogger, Sean Jacobs]
Images from the Madiba website