Trying to find cool places around Johannesburg to take your kids isn’t the easiest thing to do, in fact, I find it quite frustrating because half of them are either cool for the kids and dismal for the parents or vice versa. I mean all I’m looking for is an awesome balance between things to do for the kids, a place that serves nice food and then a cool atmosphere to round it all up, is that too much to ask?
I haven’t been to 27 Boxes in Melville for a while so when I found out that it’s been taken on by a new development and has been given a whole new facelift, which includes new shops, restaurants, new branding and most importantly a new entertainment and play area for kids, I was really interested to check it out again, which I did last weekend and I’m happy to say that they have really done a nice job sprucing it up and there are definitely some new and improved spaces for kids which is great!
One of the spots I really liked is a kid’s school called Tinker School run by a lovely lady named Pippa who is all about making sure her little visitors have the best time in her wonderland of games, toys, paints, mud, farm animals and more. She also has a drop-and-go policy, so you can book your kid in and then take a walk around knowing that they’re safe and sound and having the best time. Another store they have, which I’m actually really keen to take Nina James too is a cooking school called Kidchen Concepts. I mean how cute that they get to dress up like little chefs and learn how to make stuff?
*The playground itself is really nice, but I do feel like it’s not shaded enough, so make sure you bring along a hat and some sunscreen.
I took a long walk around to see what else they had to offer, especially in the food department because well, I like food a lot and I came across some really noteworthy spots, I obviously didn’t get to eat at all of them because I’m not a savage, but I did try out a few of the smaller vendors. If you guys do go you must get yourself some homemade dumplings from a stand called Kong, which is run by a mom and daughter team, so good! And then you have to try a cronut from X&O Patisserie, delicious!
A couple of other places I liked the look of and I will definitely be back to try is The Countess, which is a smokehouse. The inside is really industrial looking with lots of fascinating little bits and bobs, it actually reminded me a bit of Truth in Cape Town and then another little eatery called The Side Plate, the outside looked like somewhere Snow White might sit and have her breakfast, it also looked like they made a mean stack of flapjacks.
There are also over 70 stores stocking all kinds of local goods so when you’re done filling up your belly up you can then fill up your boot with some cool items. You will find all sorts of things to buy from handbags to ceramics, clothes, jewelry, art, furniture and more. It’s actually not a bad spot to do a bit of Christmas shopping.
All in all, I would say that 27 Boxes is one of those places that if you have kids, or even if you don’t it makes for a great morning/afternoon out.
Address: 75 4th Ave, Melville, Johannesburg
Telephone number: 0860 109 237