MARLIZE MEYER: “The shop has an ethos – to support creative South African manufacturers, local crafters and community projects.
Africa Joy is a curated gift shop with products from mainly Southern Africa but also other African countries. The shop’s recent move to the main entrance level of Casterbridge is being enjoyed by customers for its convenience and new look.
Marlize Meyer and Dudu Nkosi have worked together since late 2009 getting to know their customers’ gift buying needs and preferences.
They were joined in 2016 by Makhosi cat who is a great and much-loved attraction. Makhosi is ‘priceless’ despite many offers from customers wishing to buy him.
Africa Joy is home to Jenny Morgan Renssen’s Red Bush jewellery, made right here in White River. It is a consistent hot seller because of Jenny’s ability to keep her product fresh and affordable.
Nina Bosch Ceramic Jewellery and Michel James’ Art by Murray are other “homegrown” products. Marlize admits to a weakness for Zenta Marketing’s Jacaranda wood homeware made here in rural Mpumalanga.
From elsewhere Le Lapin’s practical dishwasher safe porcelain tableware in cool ivory and grey with a splash of red, featuring cheeky bunnies and birds remains a favourite, while the Whimsical Collection continues to delight.
Keeping Africa Joy fresh and interesting means that Marlize is always on the lookout for new product. Sometimes even customers will introduce a worthy craftsman or manufacturer to become a supplier.
Interesting items that irresistibly find their way into your bag are from a broad range of products including homeware, fashion accessories, gifts for men and children, lovely scented soaps and burners as well as original greeting cards.
Dudu remains the friendly face of Africa Joy assisting locals choose gifts and tourists to find special something to remind them of their Lowveld travels. Dudu encourages regular customers to join the Africa Joy Customer Loyalty Card system which rewards their spending with a discount voucher from time to time.
The little White River jewel that is Africa Joy manages to find and shine a spotlight on locally made treasures often lost in shopping malls and big cities.