The Seven Manmade Wonders of Johannesburg

We’ve got some pretty cool man-made wonders in town – here are some of our favourites. 

johannesburg architecture

Carlton Centre

Also known as the roof of Africa, the Carlton Centre used to be the Carlton Hotel with the ground and bottom floors being a luxury centre for folks to drop their cash at – one of its most prominent guests at the time would be Hillary Clinton. It takes only 45 seconds to go from the ground floor to the 5oth, which is known as the Roof Of Africa.

Address: 150 Commissioner St, Johannesburg, 2001


11 Diagonal Street

Designed by German-American architect Helmut Jahn, 11 Diagonal Street was designed to look like a diamond reflecting in the Jozi sky. With floor-to-ceiling windows, the 80-metre high building stands out like a sore thumb among the other skyscrapers. Construction was concluded in 1984… and come to think of it, it kind of looks pretty 80s.

Address: 11 Diagonal St, Johannesburg, 2001


The Ansteys Building

During the late 1930s an art deco styled building popped up in downtown Johannesburg. At the time it was the tallest building in Africa and was owned by a guy called Norman Anstey. Anstey ran the Anstey’s Department Store.

Address:  59 Joubert St, Johannesburg, 2001


Hillbrow Tower

The most prominent structure in town is the Hillbrow Tower. Fun fact about this building is that it always needs to be higher than the tallest building in town so that the telecoms signals sent from it won’t be interrupted. Pretty cool, eh? Unfortunately, it’s closed to the public due to security reasons though it used to host a revolving restaurant at the top.

Address: Hillbrow Tower, Banket St, Johannesburg, 2038


Michelangelo hotel

Yeah, yeah it’s not in Johannesburg but it’s still part of the metropolitan, right? The most icon feature of the Sandton skyline pokes out like a spire on the horizon. The Michelangelo Hotel is where celebrities and world leaders stay when they visit the city. From Justin Bieber to Barack Obama and every other A-grade celebrity in between. At 140 meters tall and between R30 000 and R60 000 per square meter The Michelangelo Hotel is an exclusive kind of real estate.

Address: 135 West St, Sandton, Johannesburg, 2196


Ponte City 

Lat but not least, Ponte City. This high rise was almost turned into a vertical prison until developers snatched it from ruin. Today this once-upon-a-time slum of a skyscraper boasts a 100% upper-middle-class occupancy. Ponte is an iconic point of interest and acts as a beacon to where the neighbourhood of Hillbrow can be found. Though the neighbourhood itself has a bad reputation it’s seen an ample amount of upliftment since Ponte’s redevelopment.

Address: Joe Slovo Dr, Johannesburg, 2198


By Shawn Greyling

Have you been to any or all of these concrete monsters? Let us know in the comments section below. Help us spread the love Jozi has to offer by sharing this article on social media. 

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