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Duo brings the vibe back to Mahikeng

Mothusi Leotlela and Dice Lenkwe, co-owners of Straateng Meat Lounge.
Mothusi Leotlela and Dice Lenkwe, co-owners of Straateng Meat Lounge.

Two North West entrepreneurs who established an attractive contemporary outdoor hang-out spot at Signal Hill in Mahikeng are aiming for the stars.

Dise Lenkwe and Mothusi Leotlela, the owners of Straateng Meat Lounge, are hoping to breathe a new life into Mahikeng's social scene.

Lenkwe is a graphic designer while Leotlela is a visual engineer. Their place has attracted the who's who of Mahikeng and those visiting the town. The business employs 21 people from Signal Hill and other areas nearby.

"We are the home of urban youth culture and provide a space where art, timeless music and remarkable food is served," said Lenkwe.

The pair started the lounge last year with a promise to entice, inspire and bring together a community of inspirational individuals through the sharing of art, music, food and laughter.

The idea to open their business was as a result of their struggle to get something to eat after 10pm.

"Basically there was no place to get good food. We ended eating pies from the local garage," said Lenkwe.

He said it immediately dawned on them that there was a gap in the market.

"Then an idea for a meat lounge was born. However, we didn't want it to be like any other meat lounge."

Lenkwe said what they offered was a rich lifestyle blend that fuses street and urban culture into one.

Modelled on Mzansi's widely celebrated shisanyama experience, Straateng boasts a car wash and a music lounge

"We give our clients musical tunes ranging from acid jazz to old school hip-hop (Tuks Senganga for example), unplugged, latin, bossa, neo-soul and, depending on how we feel, soulful house music."

Straateng is largely an outdoor venue, taking advantage of Mahikeng's warm weather. The venue is set up with shipping containers. Lounge and dining furniture, marked by large umbrellas, sprawls out from the containers to a wide, lawn covered area.

"We differentiate ourselves from other local spots through the kind of music we play. I really enjoy hosting people."

Earlier this month, on Workers' Day, motswako rapper Molemi provided live entertainment.

Straateng's clientele is balanced in terms of gender, with their age ranging from 23 to 50.

Leotlela said: "They are brought together by the music. We also provide a space for people to network and form new relations."

The duo also plans to make the venue a tourism hub, not only for entertainment but also for information visitors to Mahikeng will need to explore the hidden gems of the provincial capital.

"We want to rebuild what Mahikeng used to be known for, which was the heart of entertainment.

"We are in the business of selling an experience, which was then sold by word of mouth.

"We have always wanted people to be our advocates and sell Strateng to their peers, families and friends."

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