History of the Centre

Just 50 years ago, sandy horse trails and grassy estates snaked their way along the land that is now home to one of Johannesburg's best shopping centres. The creation of Sandton City helped transform Sandton from a farming community into a bustling business district.

Constructed by Rapp and Maister during the early 1970s, Sandton City opened its doors to eager shoppers on 12 September, 1973 and soon went on to become one of the most prestigious shopping centres in Africa.

Sandton City was "born" in 1973, and has continued to grow and develop since then. Just imagine, when the shopping centre was first launched, it covered only 50 000m˛ and following our refurbishment, which was completed in late 2011, it now measures 146 803m² (215 000m² - Nelson Mandela Square, Office Space and the Sandton Sun Hotel). That means you can fit the original centre into the new centre more than four times!

We take a glance into the Sandton City's star-studded past: 

SANDTON CITY TIMELINE

  • 1973

    • Sandton City had a GLA (gross lettable area) of 50 000m²
    • 120 stores over four levels
    • 2500 parking bays
    • The Sandton City Office Towers consisted of 21 levels and 25 000 m² GLA
  • 1983

    • An additional 44 000m² of space was added, making the total area 94 000m²
    • 250 stores
    • The 5-star Sandton Sun and Intercontinental Towers were launched
    • 8 000 parking bays
  • 1992 - 1995

    • Sandton City underwent a major refurbishment of the common areas in the centre.
  • 2001

    • Sandton City underwent a R35-million development
    • 295 retail stores
    • GLA was increased to 128 000m²
    • 10 000 parking bays
    • The new Food Court was completed
    • Giant video wall was constructed
    • 6-metre sheer water wall constructed
  • 2002

    • A new level was developed, the Home Living retail level (level 2)
    • The cinema complex received a refurbishment
  • 2011

    • New Protea Court added
    • 70 New stores opened their doors
  • 2015

    • The luxurious Diamond Walk was opened in the link between the centre and the Sandton Sun hotel
    • International luxury brands – Arque Champagne Crescent, Billionaire, Bvlgari, Ermenegildo Zegna, Gucci, Giorgio Armani, Jimmy Choo, Burberry, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Louis Vuitton, Cartier, MontBlanc, Salvatore Ferragamo.

DID YOU KNOW?

• Sandton City was nearly called Knoppieslaagte City Shopping Centre.
• Together, Sandton City and Nelson Mandela Square comprise the largest retail complex in Africa.
MAKING HISTORY
In 2011, Sandton City embarked on a R1.77 billion refurbishment and expansion project that included the addition of the Protea Court, an additional 30 000m² retail space, and an interior upgrade of the centre.

Sandton City’s Diamond Walk, which opened in 2015, can be found in a spectacular new mall where Sandton City’s upper level links with the Sandton Sun and InterContinental Johannesburg Sandton Towers hotels. Crafted to showcase its luxurious brands, this generous mall elegantly sparkles, inspired by the magnificence of the diamond, from its polish and shine to its brilliantly cut facets. The stylish walk was crafted in a R185-million redevelopment project to fashion a stunning setting befitting of the world’s most coveted luxury retail brands with all the glamour of world-class shopping.

In 40 years, Sandton City has established itself as South Africa's premier destination of international glamour, top fashion and lifestyle outlets and world-class service. So what does the future hold for Sandton City? Nothing but the very best of everything.