Imagine a place where you could go with your baby/kid, they’d be looked after if you wanted, and you could have your nails and hair done, or a massage, before having a cappuccino or lunch. Imagine too a place where you could meet other moms, share any new-mom woes, or just chill out and read that book you haven’t got to in months.
That place is Mami Paradiso, in Randpark Ridge in Joburg, and if there was a place I wished for as a new mom, it was this – somewhere to connect, relax and feel “normal’. Granted, I spent many hours at play venues where childminders watched over my son while I relaxed, but there was never really a place in the early days that I could ask questions, and admit to all my anxieties.
Plus, there was never a venue that offered me the services like haircutting, manicures and waxing, that made me feel normal and “womanly”, but which I battled to find time for as a full-day working mom.
Mama Paradiso is set in a house, and the intention is that it should feel like a home away from home, which exactly is what it feels like – though one with a hair salon, spa and coffee shop. Other things that Mami Paradiso offers:
- Super Mami Meals – readymade meals for the whole family.
- Permanently Beautiful – permanent make-up.
- Music Box – music classes for kids.
- Paitula Yoga .
- Events and parties – birthday parties; pamper parties; bridal showers; baby showers; boy / girl reveal parties; and other events. Contact us to help you plan a customised, individual and unforgettable occasion!
- Art classes for adults and children
- A qualified lactation consultant that provides individual lactation consultations and breastfeeding support groups
- A dietician with a specialisation in paediatric nutrition, as well as nutrition during pregnancy and after
- Antenatal classes
- Child health and safety courses
- Monthly high teas and informational seminars
I spoke to Sasha Frade-Bekker, the owner of Mami Paradiso, and mom of three kids, about why she started Mama Paradiso, and more about the ethos there, and the “home away from home” concept.
Why did you start MP?
After struggling in my own pregnancies and finding places of support and comfort after having my first two children, I realised that there was a real gap – places for moms – that could support them, that could provide them with services while they were pregnant and also afterwards for as minor as things as getting their nails done to major things such as support during trials of breastfeeding, and everything in between.
I wanted a place that moms felt was their second home, people who understood and could empathise without judging, and a place that they could come and get everything they needed – material and otherwise.
What do you hope to give moms – and kids – with MP?
Please see response above. But over and above that, want to give moms and their kids a place that they feel at ease, that they can come to and just relax and enjoy the environment, chat, and where kids feel at home too. Our childminders aren’t there to just look after the children, but the children that come to Mami Paradiso adore them – often running in before their parents do.
Do you think you’re filling a gap for new moms and moms in general?
I think the gap that we have filled is providing everything in one place, and yes, in terms of support and understanding I think we have filled a gap especially in this day in age where many moms (new and old)are often far away from their parents and other support structures. Even those that often have these close to them, still feel they need a different kind of understanding than what friends and family can provide.
I also think we are rather unique in providing a place of comfort for moms – a place where they are the focus, and that they can come and do what they need to do to with peace of mind.
Where do dads fit in at MP?
Our core focus is moms, but that also means it’s family given that for moms if family is happy and content so are they – many of our clients see coming to MP as a family affair; kids are well looked after, mom can do her hair and get pampered, dad watches his favourite sports game, and then afterwards they have a nice meal together. Everyone is happy, but more importantly, everyone is together.