Tsogo Sun’s Gold Reef City Casino takes over Back O’ the MoonMay 14th, 2012 by Susan Reynard | Categories: industry, restaurants, tourism
Gold Reef City Casino re-launched the Back O’ the Moon restaurant on 10 May to celebrate its ownership of this popular venue. Modelled on the original Back O’ the Moon shebeen in Sophiatown, the restaurant had undergone a revamp to offer an upmarket yet relaxed dinner, dance and music venue south of Johannesburg.
The re-opening of the restaurant was attended by various local celebrities, including former Idols judge Mara Louw, actor and film producer Joe Mafela, radio presenter and television personality Michael da Pinna, and model and actor Stevel Marc.
The entertainment for the evening was a journey down memory lane, as iconic music artist Abigail Kubeka who was founded by the late Miriam Makeba at age 16 sang for guests on the specially built and lit stage. Also included in the entertainment line-up was Thapelo Mafokeng, a dancer and vocalist for the last 40 years, who was accompanied by performers directed by local choreographer Cassius Tlhotlhalemaje.
Back O’ the Moon attracts a wide range of clientele, from corporate to leisure, for business and pleasure, with its menu of international cuisine, plush decor of silver, bronze and burgundy with chandeliers and framed musical instruments, vibey atmosphere and sophisticated live entertainment. The venue seats 280 people across two tiers, giving everyone a view of the stage. It is a revival of the upmarket dinner and dance offering.
It caters for special events, wedding celebrations, birthday parties, corporate functions and business meetings and also offers a spacious and elegant private dining room for those who need some privacy.
“I’m very excited to be part of the restoration of the legendary Back O’ the Moon,” says Mike Page, Gold Reef City’s director of operations and complex. “Our newly restored venue respects the rich tradition of Sophiatown, while blending in modern concepts in design and programming. This is a superb venue for any event, big or small. We look forward to building on its legacy while creating more memories for generations to come.”
Most nights, diners can relax to the sounds of the in-house band or a guest artist. The Back O’ the Moon band features Colin ‘Bones’ Delight and Ronnie Joyce, who have played for the Rockets and shared platforms with Jonathan Butler, Percey Sledge and Richard John Smith. Performing alongside them are Hayley Christian (previously in musicals Dream Girls, Motown Magic, Motown Gold and Sisters in Song) and drummer and singer Cedric Wessels.