Bosjes Chapel.
Bosjes Chapel.
Image: Supplied

1. BOSJES KAPEL

This crisp, ethereal structure echoes the rolling contours of the surrounding Breede Valley in the Western Cape. The sculptural design, inspired by Psalm 36:7 (How priceless is your unfailing love, O God! People take refuge in the shadow of your wings), and the natural locale transform cues from traditional Cape Dutch architecture to create a contemporary SA icon.

2. CIRCA GALLERY

An awkward leftover site at the edge of the Rosebank CBD was transformed by this gallery, a building that is simultaneously iconic and restrained. Its undulating steel facade hugs the corner, creating a visually interesting and permeable urban edge, while beckoning patrons to explore the spaces within.

Circa Gallery.
Circa Gallery.
Image: Supplied

3. 11 DIAGONAL STREET: "THE DIAMOND"

Helmut Jahn’s unashamedly modern, mirrored masterpiece in Joburg perfectly captures the glamour of the 1980s. The blue glazed "diamond" (created to be the head office of De Beers) embraces the chaotic city surrounding it, refracting vignettes of 11Diagonal Street and the endless sky above, in its elegant jewel-faceted facades.

4. ZEITZ MOCAA MUSEUM

This Cape Town structure is closer to an artwork than a building in the traditional sense. The cathedral-like gallery entrance is carved from the cellular concrete tubes of an abandoned 1920s grain silo, freeing a contemporary space from within the historic structure. The off-shutter industrial concrete exterior ties the building to the V&A Waterfront complex, while a viewing deck on the top floor offers vistas across the city and all the way to Robben Island.

The Zeitz MOCAA.
The Zeitz MOCAA.
Image: Supplied

5. MOSES MABHIDA STADIUM 

"Can you feel it? It is here!" Almost 10 years later, these words stir the sense of excitement, possibility and ubuntu of the 2010 Soccer World Cup. The Durban stadium captures the 2010 spirit in a crisp, timeless structure, artfully woven into the city fabric via 6km of pristine beachfront promenade.

Moses Mabhida Stadium.
Moses Mabhida Stadium.
Image: Getty Images / Roger de la Harpe / Education Images / Universal Images Group

6. CONSTITUTION HILL 

This beautiful precinct, seat of the court responsible for enshrining and upholding our constitution, is built within the confines of the former Old Fort prison in Joburg. Former Constitutional Court judge Albie Sachs summed it up perfectly: "A new Constitutional Court rising there would dramatise the transformation of SA from a racist, authoritarian society to a constitutional democracy. A more South African centre of repression and hope could not have been found. Above all, it had history. This wasn’t just a neutral space — this was a space of intense drama, of human emotion, of repression, of resistance. And here was the chance to convert negativity into positivity."

This article was originally published by the Financial Mail.

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