Nontokozo Madonsela
Nontokozo Madonsela
Image: Supplied

To what extent is time a luxury in 2024?

Time is always a luxury, and how I manage my time is important. I try to be present in whatever space I’m in, so if I’m in a meeting, I’m not on the phone, and when I’m home, I am also deliberate with my time.


What are your essential grooming products?

I am a massive believer in L’Oreal’s Infallible Liquid Lipstick. I love all lipsticks that last 24 hours.


Favourite scent?

Frederic Malle’s Portrait of a Lady and Tom Ford’s Noir De Noir.


Frederic Malle’s Portrait of a Lady
Frederic Malle’s Portrait of a Lady
Image: Supplied

From where do you access your greatest power?

From connections with the people I love. And journaling! I have a journal, and I use it.


What is your all-time favourite place to eat out?

That’s difficult, because restaurants come and go in Joburg. Right now, I really love any place that has tapas. And Parea Taverna [in Illovo], the original Greek restaurant on my side of town.


If money were no object, what would your dream buy be?

A luxury super yacht, those amazing ones you see in yachting magazines. One that’s big enough to take my whole family and my loved ones.


Alexander McQueen SS24
Alexander McQueen SS24
Image: Dave Benett Gallo Images

Your all-time favourite clothing brands?

Alexander McQueen and Ferragamo.


What is the most inspiring thing ever said to you?

“Do it afraid,” by Joyce Meyer. It’s a principle I live by.


Your biggest purchase that you a) regret and b) would buy all over again?

This beautiful ring I bought in Venice. It’s huge and impractical, and you’ve never seen me wear it. But I love it. It’s beautiful to look at and every time I wear it, I’m like, “Oh, it’s too much!”


What are you listening to?

To my own podcast: The Truth Table with Nontokozo. It’s candid conversations with guests who share their life lessons. And I have a playlist inspired by my word of the year — “lift” — with tracks like Labrinth’s Lift Off and Kanye West & Jay-Z’s Lift Off.


Your favourite summer destination outside of South Africa?

Italy, of course, and Morocco — Morocco is just delicious in every way.


Vatican City, Rome, Italy
Vatican City, Rome, Italy
Image: Supplied

Your favourite room?

The garden! Being with nature, with trees, and the sight of the swimming pool. I love being in the water, it’s a special thing. I have comfortable patio furniture, so I can work, journal, do colouring — anything to quiet my brain. And I love sitting outside, even when it rains.


The most challenging aspect of your job in the past year?

Conflict. Managing the team dynamics within the teams I lead. But solving conflict comes with the job; it’s a leadership thing.


Are you a collector of anything?

Chunky, chunky, chunky jewellery, mostly earrings. Chunky and gorgeous. And fragranced candles.


What makes you happiest?

Being in the kitchen, cooking a meal with family and friends with loud conversations and laughter and music in the background.


Chunky, chunky earrings
Chunky, chunky earrings
Image: Supplied

Your best travel tip?

Don’t over-plan. Leave some room to just get in a cab and go somewhere you wouldn’t have planned to go. And get tips when you get there. Ask, you know, “Where is a good restaurant?”


What is the most positive thing about money?

When it’s IN the bank account!


What inspires your work?

The pursuit to do better and the unexpected. To delight and surprise.


The one indulgence you would never forgo?

Whisky, baby!

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