Gauteng may be the smallest of South Africa's nine provinces, but it contains both Pretoria and Johannesburg. With a population of more than 11 million, it is responsible for generating somewhere in the region of 33 percent of the country's gross domestic product. In fact, the province generates approximately 10 percent of the GDP created by the whole of sub-Saharan Africa. While Gauteng event venues are kept busy with all this activity, they are sure to welcome groups.
Gauteng's international airport is OR Tambo International Airport (JNB), just outside of Johannesburg. Flights arrive from all over the world, including ones from Atlanta, New York and Washington, DC-Dulles.
Chief among convention venues in Gauteng, the Sandton Convention Center has 220,000 square feet of function space on four levels; it can accommodate up to 10,000 persons (including The Pavilion hosting up to 4,500 on its own).
Hotel venues in Gauteng include the 300-suite Protea Hotel Parktonian, which has room for up to 450 persons in 12 meeting rooms; the 150-room Lakes Hotel & Conference Center, which has space for up to 400 delegates; and the 115-room, ultra-luxurious, hillside-hugging Westcliff, which contains the Jacaranda Hill Conference Center for up to 200 persons. Two hip choices – indeed, in the brand Urban Hip Hotels – are the 69-room Nicol and 50-room Splice, both of which have 140-seat theaters.
Special venue choices in Gauteng include two huge sports stadiums dedicated to sports embraced fully by South Africans: the FNB Stadium, known as Soccer City, which hosted the final of the 2010 World Cup, has a capacity of 95,000 persons and has conference and banqueting space for 2,000, and Ellis Park Stadium, Coca-Cola Park, which hosted the 1995 Rugby World Cup final and has 60,000 seats, an 800-seat conference center, 13 meeting rooms and a theater for 120. Other choices include The Forum Turbine Hall, in an old electricity station, which has space for conferences of up to 800 persons, dinners of 320 and receptions of 500; conference and function space Summer Place, which has room for groups of up to 200 persons amid pools and landscaped gardens, and – back to sport – the very plush Royal Johannesburg & Kensington Golf Club, which has more than 130 years of history, two 18-hole golf courses, two meeting rooms, a patio and The St. George's Room for 250 persons, among other spaces.
Restaurants in the province able to host your party include the Gramadoelas, whose guests have included Queen Elizabeth II and President Bill Clinton and is in the Market Theater; Ami Restaurant & Champagne Bar, which can be reserved for groups of 85 for dinner, 250 for cocktails; Local Grill, which has a beef menu and a great wine cellar; Narina Trogon, named for a species of bird, which has a main dining room seating 80 persons, a courtyard and two private spaces; and La Belle Terrasse, at the aforementioned Westcliff, if you really want to spoil your charges.