If you’ve trundled the rustic chapels of the platteland, manicured gardens of hotels and looked at more empty banqueting rooms than you care to remember, maybe it’s time to start thinking of alternatives for your Johannesburg wedding.
Weddings don’t have to be picture perfect countryside escapes, just as they don’t require the frilly chair covers and peacock-fanned napkins that we’ve all witnessed over the years. If you’re a true city slicker kinda couple, then it’s time to look at what the inner city is offering.
Here are our tops picks for Jozi’s best inner-city wedding venues:
The Thunder Walker
Inside a narrow old bank building, The Thunder Walker is an ode to the financial district of Johannesburg. Built in 1904, Somerset House (the building) oozes history from its walls. One of The Thunder Walker’s main selling points is the Zwipi Underground Bar – housed in an old bank ground a story underground. The original vault doors, lock boxes, marble domino floor and gold hand-lettered signage is all in tact.
On the first floor of the building is the Scatterlings Restaurant, and a boutique hotel will be opened on the top floors in the coming months. The building’s arcade opens onto Ghandi Square. The large arcade is open to the galleria ceiling, forming a perfect frame for an aisle, and imagine the photos inside the vault!
The Living Room
Self-described as an eco urban venue, The Living Room has views over the city wrapped in the extensive greenery that crawls the walls and balconies. The simple wooden furniture is the perfect backdrop to add your own signature touches to be enjoyed by your guests as the sun sets over the city.
Set in the trendy Maboneng district, it’s a blend of the art and culture of the area, a true nouveau Jozi experience. What more could you ask for when the panoramic city views are your backdrop, accompanied by fine fare and crafted cocktails?
Looking out over the buildings of Braamfontein, Randlords sits at the highest point on the western side of Johannesburg and is a truly elegant celebration of the city of gold. With multiple levels, wide open decks and a glass-encased reception area, the sparkling lights of Jozi will light up any wedding and set the scene for a gloriously romantic union.
This venue is fully-catered too and can offer sophisticated sit-down dinners or light canape options for your guests to enjoy. There is a dedicated bar with a well thought out wine menu and signature cocktails too!
Thirteen Venue & Bar
Warm wood tones mixed with smoky glass and red teak parquet flooring make Thirteen Venue & Bar one of Johannesburg’s most svelte potential wedding venues. With 360-degree views over the city, it’s certainly primed to host a large wedding, seating up to 150 people for dinner.
Thirteen Venue & Bar is located in the heart of trendy Braamfontein, and reflects the style of a sophisticated champagne and cigar bar. One of the perks of this venue is the 02h00 cut-off time, slightly later than many other Jozi venues in the central business district.
The sense of grandeur of a bygone era is what makes the Rand Club so appealing as an inner-city wedding venue. The iconic suitcase climbing up the impeccable common area is the perfect fit for your ceremony, while the heritage of the banquet hall will impress your guests.
Reminiscent of Joburg’s history, the Rand Club is nothing short of elegance embodied. The signature royal reds and soft blues of the venue leave little to be done when it comes to decor!
Arts on Main
If you’re a creative couple and love the idea of being surrounded by artist’s studios in one of Jozi’s most dynamic hubs, then look to Arts on Main. With different common spaces available within the complex, including an outside courtyard dotted with olive trees, you have a choice of where to host a ceremony and reception.
The rooftop above Canteen is famous for its salsa sessions. Imagine a salsa dance-off on a rooftop with you and your besties to celebrate your love?
Fox Junction Event Venue
A popular event venue, wedged amongst a brewery, restaurants, distilleries and a market, the 1Fox Precinct was one of the original mining camps that led Joburg to what it is today. The huge sheds housed trams and buses that formed part of the transport infrastructure of the city and their rustic appeal hasn’t died.
The Fox Junction Event Venue is one of the city’s largest (it can fit 2000 people!), and the exposed beams and structures from the original sheds are all part of the charm. The structure is adjacent to The Good Luck Bar, which would definitely set the scene for a real party!
One Eloff Rooftop
One of the lesser-known venues in Johannesburg, the large rooftop deck at One Eloff Rooftop can hold up to 350 people, and offers a view over the city that spans east and west. Inside, the venue has two levels and a fully-equipped bar.
The glass balconies give the impression of no boundaries between you and the iconic Jozi Skyline we all know and love. There is also so much opportunity to design the wedding of your dreams with this as your backdrop.
An historic venue that now fills the space of an old power station, Turbine Hall is a massive building that was renovated and now houses offices and event space. With your guests seated between the large concrete pylons of the original structure, or your photos on the walkways and gantries of the structure, everything is set to be incredible at any wedding held here.
What are some of your favourite wedding venues in Joburg? Let us know in the comments below.