Where to go for Dinner and a Show
Cape Town’s best theatres and the restaurants that surround them.
From Cape Town’s premier performing arts venues to glitzy, intimate stages, the Mother City has a dazzling array of places from where to catch a local, or often international, production. Here are some of our favourites, along with the restaurants that surround them. Curtains up!
The magnificent Artscape is one of Cape Town’s original and very best theatres, and usually hosts the biggest and highest profile productions in town. Headlining acts have recently included Chicago, The Sound of Music, and Swan Lake, but as there are four theatres, expect a good mix at any given time. We love the regal character and old-school feel that invites a bit of dressing up for a sparkling night out.
Where to eat? There is a small restaurant next to the theatre, but if you would like to elevate the evening, we suggest FYN for an exquisite fine dining experience, La Tete for clean, French cuisine with a twist, or Bouchon for a quick (but stylish) tapas meal.
Located in the heart of District Six, and named after South Africa’s very own world-famous playwright, Athol Fugard, The Fugard Theatre has quickly risen to popularity. So much so that CNN named it one of the best things to do in Cape Town. So what’s on at this premier spot, located in a strikingly renovated Church Hall? Well, you might catch anything from The Rocky Horror Show to local award-winner Kunene & The King. If you’re visiting in June, Kinky Boots is on and promises to be a stellar performance. We recommend booking now if you don’t want to miss out.
Where to grab a bite? Aubergine for something a bit special. This firm favourite in the Cape Town foodie scene is ideal for those who love their wine, exceptional service, a touch of sophistication and fusion dishes that combine local ingredients with seasonal flavours. Insider tip: always say ‘yes’ to the oysters.
If it is just a quick bite you are after, the lovely Maria’s in Dunkley Square serves up Greek fare with contemporary flair. In summer, the fairy light-strewn courtyard is ideal, and in winter, they light up the fireplace, so either way, you and your mezze board and wine will be comfy in this atmospheric location.
This Bree Street ‘purple palace’, as it is fondly known, is home to cabaret and good times! The first of its kind in Cape Town, Gate 69 is a ‘burlesque meets the birdcage’ mash, featuring three men in drag, who perform wittily written skits and numbers that will have you in stitches. After grabbing a drink at the bar, you will head upstairs, where a two-tier mezze platter of treats awaits. Soup and delectable purple Patron ice-cream follow, so no need to eat out here.
The theatre is dark, cozy, and dressed in shades of gold and purple – with waitstaff in equally as glitzy outfits. Top tip: dress up in your most outrageous number for this one: you won’t feel out of place amongst the perms, eye-shadow and larger than life hair on display.
Theatre on the Bay
South African Producer and Theatre Manager, Peter Toerien’s, Theatre on The Bay serves up great food and great theatre in equal measure. Located in the beach suburb of Camps Bay, this modern venue stages musicals, comedy, cabaret, dance and even pantomimes. Its prime location on the Camps Bay strip means that you are ideally positioned for a lighthearted, great night out.
Macbeth is on until 1 June, but the line up doesn’t end there. Make sure to keep checking their site for upcoming shows, and then book your seat
Where to eat? Side Dish Bistro, located on the first floor of the theatre, offers some hearty and straightforward fare, but if you are looking to explore the Camps Bay strip, we suggest The Codfather for fantastic seafood or UMI for sushi.
A little further afield, The Baxter Theatre in Rondebosch is a Cape Town institution and forms part of Cape Town’s rich performing arts history. It defied the Apartheid regime by putting on multi-racial, cutting-edge performances, and continues this legacy today. Expect top quality musicals, dance, comedies, drama, and even ballet in this beautiful grande dame.
Where to eat? If you are an Indian food fan, look no further than the buffet. It is scrumptious, well run and exceptionally well priced. If you would like to venture out before or after you watch the stars on stage, we suggest Barristers Grill for great steaks or Myoga for some gastronomic dining experiences that might even rival your show for theatrics.
Blog post by Tarah Darge