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Kenilworth Beach Tea Room
Ocean Beach, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal


Type:Tea Room

In times gone by, located right next to where the Rachel Finlayson beach baths are still located today, was the spectacular Kenilworth Tea Rooms building, owned by the Newton family. The Kenilworth Tea Rooms was the original beachfront arcade. It was a wondrous place, filled with entertainment for young and old.

In 1907 an unusual bathing enclosure was erected on the beach outside to protect bathers from shark attacks. The construction resulted in the expansion of the Kenilworth Tea Rooms, to include all manner of outdoor and indoor entertainment. However, in 1928 the bathing structure had to be removed due to the high maintenance cost.

By the 1930’s the Kenilworth Tea Rooms was the most popular beachfront arcade for locals and visitors alike. in the late 50’s and 60’s developments included go-carts, classic car rides, a motorboat pond, a paddling pool and a cave of horrors. The entire arcade was unfortunately demolished in the late 70’s to give way to other developments.

(Extracted from 5 Star Durban article by Meredith Haywood, November 6, 2014. Accessed 2020 09 16)

Writings about this entry

Hillebrand, Melanie. 1986. Art and architecture in Natal, 1910-1940. Pietermaritzburg: Unpublished Ph.D. Dept Fine Art and History of Art, University of Natal. pg 478