First Thursdays Durban is a revival of underground precincts. I was a first-timer to the interesting Station Drive quarter, next to the iconic Lion Match building. My evening adventure on the streets of this place was filled with curiosity.
The transformation of the buildings is just incredible. The Warehouse was a colourful invite into small boutique food. I was sweetly impressed with Momenti Artisan Gelato. What a pure taste of ice-cream and it was an indulgence of flavours of plum & ginger, chocolate, and Madagascan vanilla.
The Plant presented a nice open space for music, dance and chilled space. The street came to vigor with Salsa Dancing and boosted the street energy. After The Plant, I moved into the Loading Bay that had a collective array of quaint and vintage pop-up stores, and the coolest Barber Shop.
“First Thursdays connected me to the dream of freedom on the streets of Durban. A place to celebrate pure local creatives and talent…”
As the evening lingered, the influx of people and liveliness increased and I found myself in the middle of a Bollywood Flash Mob dancing that infused the air with joyous melodies, leaving the crowds around them in awe. This was perfectly matched by the aromatic and delicious tandoor naan wraps by Roti & Chai, which just swirled you more into the cultural experience.
I was so engrossed with all the activity that I had to remind myself to go to the InterNations Networking meeting, held at Fortune Coffee, in The Exchange. I walked through the street flea market, and into a trendy semi-industrial space. Giving my feet a rest, I indulged in conversations with interesting people and shared short stories, that strangers usually do.
But the sounds echoed from the streets and I could not miss visiting the much talked-about Distillery 031. It was vibey and I have noted to spend more time there at the next First Thursdays. I further enquired the other small yet unique artisanal stores from S43 Brewery to Street Side Sliders and Shisanyama. The concluding stop was at The Station, which showcased added surprises of retail to tattoo sketching and an art exhibition at Studio 031.
First Thursdays Station Drive is an astounding digestion of space, creativity, design, food, drinks, music, art and street energy, which also spills out to Florida Road. First Thursdays connected me to the dream of freedom on the streets of Durban. A place to celebrate pure local creatives and talent with pure enjoyment! I am smiling!