ABLEWIKI:Sammy marks building

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Date of origin
Previous names
Inner City, CBD
C/o Church and Prinsloo streets
Magisterial district
South Africa
GPS coordinates
Planning authority name
Sammy Marks
William De Zwaan
Project architect/Designer
William De Zwaan
Commissioning owner

Sammy Marks
Current owner
Current occupant
Thuthukani financial srevice-Clerks and secretaries doing the admin work of the Sammy Marks Square. The shopfronts consists of Ammy, the Perfume Gallery, Torga Optical, Uzzi, Levisons, Hip-Hop
Previous uses
20th C shopping street/'mall', still is that today.
Current use
Walkway with shops at shopfront and the Admin loft offices on the second floor.
Google maps here



It is the last built shopping complex of Sammy Marks. This Avant-Garde notion in shopping culture of the 20th C, filled with retail and commercial opportunities.

Current known heritage status

It is a national monument.

Known interested and affected parties

Sammy Marks, the Mine magnate, and was heavily involved in the industrial and agricultural development of the ZA republic. De Zwaan was the Architect.


Of the architect
William De Zwaan, born in Amsterdam, was apprenticed to the Amsterdam City Architect. He came to the ZAR in the pre Anglo-Boer war period, 1890 to be an architect’s assistant. He then worked with the’ Departement of Openbare Werke’ van die ZAR. Lastly, he worked in a partnership with Soff. His other works include: the Old President Hotel (The Grand Hotel); the Nederlandsche Bank Building, houses he built in two;s next to each other in Waterkloof’s streets eg. Lawley Str, Albert Str, Premier Str and Main Str, in collaboration with SA Township & Mining Co; Sir Patrick Fitzpatrick commissioned De Zwaan to do his personal house; Rissik’s house; Nellmapius house and 2 summer houses at Zwartkops. It all adds to 16 big projects. He was known as the ‘big aristocratic Hollander’ (Du Plessis 1990). His nickname was Zwaantjie/Wim. (ARTEF)He designed mostly in the ‘mock’ Tudor style: tin roofs, peaked wooden ventilation openings, shuttered wood-frame windows with small panes and entrance stoeps.
Of the building
In 1903 designed the Sammy Marks Building, this happened in the same time as the Tudor chambers on Church Square and the Saxon Chambers & the Afrik house in Paul Kruger Str. The shopfronts of this building remembers us of the Amsterdam ‘gragtehuise’.(WIKI). In the North-western corner of the building parts is removed to achieve in installing underpinning bases in and outside of the gable wall as well as casting re-concrete into the wall, that was a highly complex process, completed without troubles (PHYCON).
Of the Square
The R215 million project (Murray & Robberts), is one of Pretoria’s biggest combined projects between the City Council and the private sector. It is built in the Neo-Dutch architectural style and why it carries importance is it is the only remaining example of this style in SA. When it was built, the existing façade and roof of the building had to be maintained, the roof sheets had to be treated and repaired with the same profile. It naturally included the historical building of Sammy Marks and the Kynoch building (ARTEF)

Description of site and/or structures and/or interior spaces

It has 3-storey brickwork cells on packed stone foundations. It testifies of excellent workmanship. It refers to De Zwaan’s Dutch Bank on Church Square. Part



W.J.De Zwaan, viewed on 29 August 2010
< >
Sammy Marks, viewed on 29 August 2010
Sammy Marks Building, AbleSpace on the University Of Pretoria’s website, University of Pretoria etd. Hutten, E.R, 2005. Viewed on 28 August 2010. (PHYCON)


File:Sammy Marks Building final.pdf

The white Kynoch building, now a surgery, at the back, the Sammy Marks Building.

Same bricks used, as the Reserve Investment Building, most probably from the same quarry. The Architect and the Architect of above mentioned buildings were in partnership.

An amazing interactive space, C/o Church and Prinsloo Streets.
Art Nouveuish. Like Café Riché, organic shapes in cast iron.

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