Norval Foundation, Cape Town, South Africa. Great art, magnificent food


The Norval Foundation opened to the public on Saturday, April 28, 2018.  It is located at 4 Steenberg Road, Steenberg Estate, Cape Town.  Property mogul Louis Norval funded the Foundation.  The Foundation’s architecture is as beautiful as the artwork inside.  It is home to one of the largest privately-owned collections of South African modern art in the world.  The Norval Foundation houses the Norval family collection, which counts among its archive the works of the Gerard Sekoto Foundation, Edoardo Villa Estate Collection, and the Alexis Preller Archive, all to be found between the sprawling sculpture garden, outdoor amphitheater, multiple exhibition spaces, research library, restaurant, bar, shop and children’s playground.

We ate at the restaurant twice.  And recommend it highly.  The Skotnes Restaurant is the culinary arm of the Norval Foundation.  Named after legendary South African artist and teacher Cecil Skotnes, the restaurant is naturally at home in the world of art.

To fully appreciate the Norval Foundation, we need to understand the driving force and motivation of Louis Norval, his successes and achievements leading to this welcome addition to Cape Town’s culture.

Louis Norval accomplishments include:

  • educated at Lyttelton Hoerskool (high school), Centurion (near Pretoria, in Gauteng, South Africa)
  • graduated with a BSc (QS) (with distinction) from the University of Pretoria in 1979
  • co-founder, Executive Chairman, and Chief Executive of Attfund Limited (one of the largest private property investment companies in South Africa) until the company was sold to Hyprop Investments Limited (a REIT listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange) in 2011
  • Managing Director of the Parkdev Asset Managers/Parkdev Group of Companies
  • Executive Chairman of Homestead Group Holdings Limited
  • serves on the board of several other companies including:
    • Hyprop Investments Limited
    • a founding member and Senior Partner of Noval Wentzel Steinberg Quantity Surveyors
    • serves as a Director of Stenham European Shopping Centre Fund
    • a Non-Executive Director at Capital & Regional plc since September 15, 2009
    • a Non-Executive Director of Hyprop Investments Limited since September 1, 2011
    • served as an Executive Director of Sycom Property Fund Managers Limited from June 30, 2006, to August 2010
    • served as an Executive Director of Baker Street Associates Holdings (Pty) Ltd
    • served as a Director of Stenham European Shopping Centre Fund from July 3, 2007, to August 16, 2010
    • served as a Director of Baker Street Association Holdings (Pty) Ltd
  • Chairman of Pretoria Country Club
  • represented South Africa in golf in 1979

On a personal note, one of the exhibitions was by David Goldblatt.  David was born November 29, 1930, in Randfontein, and died June 25, 2018, in Johannesburg.  The Norval Foundation featured an hour-plus movie of David’s life, his disagreement with the apartheid policies of the white Nationalist government, and his complete disappointment with the corruption that has wracked the African National Congress (ANC), the current black ruling party in South Africa.  Growing up in South Africa, David was a celebrity that we admired.

Click here for more information on the Norval Foundation.