Thanks so much for all your enthusiasm about Better. It’s really great to have positive comments and to know that there is a community out there that wants this space.
We are deeply embroiled in creating the physical space (think tilers and painters) and buying furniture, but at the same time we are working on the operational details.
So, in answer to all your questions, here is more detail about how Better will work, including…
- Who is Better for?
- How will Better work?
- What will it cost?
Please get in touch with any further questions you have…
Who is Better for?
Does Better cater for my creative domain?
We’d like Better to cater for any and every creative domain. We are limited at the moment by the space and equipment we can afford, but we’ll grow and expand. We are writers, artists, and tech tinkerers, so we may have a bias towards those domains. We will update you on the specific equipment we are getting later this month.
Creative domains that are noisy (metalwork) and require large dedicated spaces (dance) or equipment (ceramics) will be hard to accommodate to start with. But please speak to us, come along and see how you can be part of Better. We welcome suggestions and are very willing to explore how to fit you in.
What type of people is Better designed for?
Everyone is welcome. We anticipate having members aged 18 to 80 and we welcome hipsters, the hip-replacement crowd, the fabulous and the frumpy! We think that a mix will be more interesting. Better people are likely to be tolerant and open-minded, with an urge to create. If you subscribe to our values, it might be easier to fit in.
So, what are the Better values?
We want to create a space that is kind, gentle, welcoming, inclusive, happy, light, open, sparkly, handmade, comfortable, cosy, warm, upbeat, stimulating, permissive and encouraging. If that sounds good to you, you are probably our kind of person.
Can I bring my children to Better?
Sorry, no. While we love children, Better is a place for being productive. In our experience, children are not conducive to productivity. It’s also more complex for us to provide an environment that is safe for children. So you must be 18 years or older to be a member of Better and to be at Better.
How will Better work?
How do memberships work?
Better operates on a membership basis. In order to use the spaces and equipment we offer you need to become a member. (For the curious, we also have a flat day fee so that you can get a feel for the place.) There are three tiers of membership with different costs and benefits. Full details of the membership tiers will be published on our web site soon, but the basics are:
- Tier 1 (starving artist) gives you access to the premises 10 days a month, free tea and coffee and internet access, and some shared equipment and resources. This tier is designed for those who want to be part of Better, on a tight budget.
- Tier 2 (regular maker) gives you access to the premises every day of the month, all the free stuff, your own locker and off-street parking. This tier is designed for people who will be regularly using Better for their own creative pursuits.
- Tier 3 (creative agent) gives you access to everything that Tier 2 does but also offers the option to book rooms for exclusive use, secretarial services and tech support. This tier is designed for those who are making a living from their creative work and will use Better as a base to both create and sell products or services.
Can I rent space at Better?
Not really. We have a membership model, not a rental model. You become a member of Better and that gives you access to use shared spaces. Our premises are not big enough to give you exclusive use of areas (except for short periods of time), but we hope to grow.
Can I run a workshop / seminar / event at Better?
Yes, we’d really like members to help us make Better a lively, interesting place. We are super keen to encourage this, provided that the subject matter is related to creative endeavours. Please talk to us about your idea. The cost will depend on the format of the events and your tier of membership (see more below).
Do you have parking?
Yes, we have off-street, covered parking behind a big motorised gate, BUT it is limited. This means that this parking is only available to members on tier 2 and tier 3. Tier 1 members and day-visitors can park on Englewold Street, with a full-time security guard watching your cars. We encourage Better people to use public transport, bicycles and other, better forms of transport. All bicycles get to park inside.
What will it cost?
We want to keep membership affordable, but to offer a full range of services to those who want them, so our initial pricing is:
- Tier 1 (starving artist): R550 per month
- Tier 2 (regular maker): R1200 per month
- Tier 3 (creative agent): R2600 per month
If you pay up-front for 3 months you get a 5% discount, and if you pay up-front for 6 months you get a 10% discount.
We prefer that people join as members and become part of the Better community, but if you want to spend a day just to check it out, or you are in town for a few days, you can get access to Better for R150 a day.
Workshop / seminar / event costs
The cost to attend an event at Better will depend on the individual event and who is facilitating it. Prices will be advertised for each event.
To run a workshop at Better will cost you (the facilitator) a minimum of R440 for administrative services (advertising, taking bookings and payments, room set-up) plus R100 per attendee per day (for access to the venue, tea and coffee, and Wi-fi). Additional administrative fees will apply if your workshop runs over more than one day, involves more than 10 delegates or runs in the evening. Optional charges apply for arranging lunch, materials etc. If you are a Tier 3 member, many of these charges will be included in your membership. Full details will be published on our website soon.