South African Cultural Observatory National Conference



Restored in 2005, Turbine Hall is an integral part of Johannesburg’s architectural history, situated in the city’s Newtown art and cultural precinct. The iconic turbine hall is now host to a range of world-class events, conferences and is the city’s coveted wedding and party setting. turbine hall is also a sought-after conference and general events venue.

The Forum Turbine Hall

65 Ntemi Piliso Street

GPS Coordinates
-26.203367, 28.034900


Contact Paula Holmes for any enquiries on 041 504 4930 or

For information on accommodation click here.


Arrival & Departure

Directions: Venue Turbine Hall 65 Ntemi Piliso Street, Newtown, Johannesburg.

Parking for the Turbine Hall Conference Venue will be in the Anglo Gold Ashanti parkade located on 76 Jeppe Street, Newtown. You will see parking attendants with signs to show you where to go.

GPS coordinates for the Turbine Hall

-26.203367 degrees South 

28.034900 degrees East



Many different transport options are available including:

  • Uber
  • Meter taxis
  • Mini-bus taxis
  • City buses

There are also shuttles available - find out more below. 

Public transportation available:

Shuttle services

Airport Shuttles SA features various shuttle services to transport you to the Turbine Hall, Newtown, for R470 per trip one way for sedan 1-3 passengers. R670 per trip one way for Combi/Van 4-7 passengers. Shuttle services are located at OR Tambo International Airport, ground floor. For more information, visit their website:

Rental cars

O.R. Tambo International Airport has most major rental car companies located at the airport. For more information, visit:


About Newtown 

Located in the western sector of the Johannesburg city centre, Newtown is one of the five tourism developments aimed at inner-city regeneration. The suburb is a safe and attractive place to work, live and visit. The area is synonymous with the heritage and culture of South Africa and especially Johannesburg. Newtown can be accessed through the Nelson Mandela Bridge and the associated M1/Carr Street interchange. The Nelson Mandela Bridge opened on 20 July 2003 and has become the gateway from the north into Newtown.

The Newtown Cultural Precinct, in downtown Johannesburg, has a distinctly cosmopolitan vibe; and underlying its trendy coffee shops, restaurants, art galleries and clubs is the same avant-garde attitude that made it a hot-bed of protest theatre, music and poetry during the apartheid-era.

Mary Fitzgerald Square in Newtown is named after the 1920s labour activist and deputy mayor of Johannesburg. The Newtown Cultural Precinct is the heart and soul of Johannesburg's cultural landscape, a place where the creative arts are nurtured and celebrated.

Few places embrace cultural diversity like Newtown. Here, Hindi celebrants light up theskyline with massive Diwali firework displays, dancing dragons breathe fire into the Chinese New Year, Gay Pride queen's samba across the Nelson Mandela Bridge, and jazz aficionados flock to Newtown's annual Joy of Jazz Festival.

Centred on Mary Fitzgerald Square, Newtown is packed with museums, art galleries, craft workshops, dance studios, live music venues, nightclubs, bars and restaurants. Among Newtown Cultural Precinct's more famous landmarks are Museum Africa, the Market Theatre and Gramadoelas restaurant.

In Newtown, you can also explore the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre, browse alternative bookshops, tour the SAB World of Beer, or shop for local art and crafts at numerous galleries. Nearby is the Oriental Plaza, a famous – and cheap – shopping destination.

Perhaps because of its politically turbulent past, Newtown Cultural Precinct remains resolutely colour-blind. Since the mid 1900s, musicians, artists, poets and dancers, irrespective of race, gathered here, seeking relief from life under apartheid through creative expression. This vein of defiance still keeps Newtown's creative pulse throbbing, so if cutting-edge, controversial and boundary-breaking creative expression inspires you, you'll find it here.

For a quintessential Johannesburg night out, look no further than Newtown. Drop in at Kaldi’s Coffee for a pick-me-up brew from Ethiopia, Tanzania or Kenya; watch the sun slip down over the City of Gold from a trendy café overlooking the square; take in a show or an art exhibition before a night of clubbing or grooving to live jazz. Creative Newtown will keep you endlessly entertained.


Exploring Newtown

If you are planning to explore Newtown, you might consider the following:

 We recommend the following places:

  • The Market Theatre
  • SciBono
  • SAB World of Beer
  • The Newtown Junction

And in the broader inner city circle we recommend:

  • Constitutional Hill
  • The Orbit Jazz Club
  • Maboneng Precinct
  • Braamfontein Precinct
  • The Apartheid Museum 
  • The Origins Centre
  • Rosebank Art Mile 


Hotels in the vicinity 


Distance from Turbine Hall:

                            Website link

Mapungubwe Hotel


The Bannister Hotel


Alcazaba Lodge


Hotel Devonshire


Protea Hotel by Marriot


Orient Hotel


Hotel Lamunu Braamfontein


011 242 8600

Hotel Galaxy Tower Fordsburg


Diggers Inn hotel


 027 11 834 7819  

Park Station Inn


City Lodge Hotel Newtown.


12 decades JNB Art Hotel


Garden Court Milpark


SUN1 Berea


Palm Continental Hotel



Turbine Hall

Turbine Hall

Cultural Observatory issues call for National Conference papers

January 31, 2017: THE SOUTH African Cultural Observatory (SACO) today announced the theme for its national conference of the arts, heritage and culture sectors.

2016 National Conference Highlights

Watch the SACO 'National Conference 2016 - Counting Culture' highlights video featuring interviews with some of the speakers and participants; and conference insights and lessons.

About the South African Cultural Observatory

Led by the Department of Arts and Culture, and hosted by NMMU, the SACO is a statistical research institute which charts the impact of the cultural and creative industries in South Africa.

Address: 21-23 Donkin Street, Donkin Creative Precinct, Central, Port Elizabeth
Tel: +27 (0)41 504 4930