Cape golf estates amongst the most sought-after in the country

The golf estates of the Cape, from those in and around the metropole to those of the Winelands and Garden Route are some of the most sought-after and expensive in the country with buyers prepared to pay well into the upper millions for an exclusive home according to real estate group, Seeff.

There has been a steady year-on-year improvement in the demand for golf estate homes over the last two years with buyers prepared to pay ever higher prices for a home in an exclusive estate such as Steenberg (Tokai), Sunset Links (Milnerton), Atlantic Beach Estate (Melkbosstrand) and in the winelands areas such as De Zalze (Stellenbosch), Boschenmeer and Pearl Valley (Paarl) according to Seeff's agents.

Golf estate properties tend to be about 30-40% more expensive than normal freehold homes due to the cost of establishing and maintaining a golf estate. Steenberg agent, Mandy Kuhn for example says that where you would normally pay around R25 000-R30 000/sqm for a home in Tokai, a top end home in Steenberg could set you back about R40 000-56 000/sqm. The entry level price for a home in Tokai is for example around R2.5 million, whereas it is around R11 million in Steenberg.

In addition to access to an often championship golf course, many of the estates have added amenities such as a clubhouse with a bar and restaurants, tennis courts, swimming pool and even a gym. Some, Erinvale and Steenberg for example, have meeting and conference facilities, ideal for business executives and professionals such as attorneys who can have meetings close to home.

While golf estates tend to appeal to golfers, these are equally popular with professionals and business executives who just want to enjoy the lifestyle, says Kuhn. It is also an ideal environment for family buyers and are often in close proximity of top private schools. Steenberg is for example close to Reddam House.

Some estates also boast between 20-50% investment and foreign buyers, mostly the so-called ‘swallows' from the UK, Germany and other northern European countries. Investors are generally drawn by the high demand for rental homes with rental rates of anything upwards of R20 000 per month in Pearl Valley to R60 000 per month in Steenberg according to Kuhn.

Of course the Cape golf estates tend to benefit from a stunning location, adding to both the demand and value of property. Steenberg on the slopes of Constantiaberg for example has vineyard and mountain views while Atlantic Beach and Sunset Links on the western side enjoy sea and Table Mountain views and beach access.

Pearl Valley and Boschenmeer just outside Paarl enjoy stunning mountain and vineyard scenery as does De Zalze in Stellenbosch according to Pierre Germishuys, managing director for the Winelands/Boland area.

Erinvale in Somerset West borders world-renowned wineries, Lourensford and Vergelen as well as the Helderberg Nature Reserve with direct access for residents.

Arabella, located on the way to Kleinmond enjoys a spectacular setting with beautiful country villas that are ideal for a weekend escape. It is close to Hermanus and about an hour's drive from the Cape Town International Airport. Aside from the opportunity to indulge in golf, there are the hotel facilities that include restaurants and a spa according to John du Toit, principal for the Overstrand area.

Where the lifestyle may have been the initial driver of demand and continues to be a key factor, this has generally now been eclipsed by the desire for top class security, says Loretta Diab from Somerset West.

Living in an estate such as Erinvale allows you to escape the hustle, bustle and stress of city living at the end of each day, she adds. If you are an avid golfer, it is an added bonus that you can indulge in your beloved sport whenever you feel like it. There are also beautiful gardens and dams and plenty of walking, cycling and outdoor living to be had.

It is no surprise then that golf and lifestyle property has seen some of the best capital growth in the country, despite the subdued economic climate. Whereas the average price growth nationally has been around 7-8%, some golf estates in the Cape has seen annual price growth of up to 20% especially in the metro area estates such as Steenberg (Tokai/Constantia) and Sunset Links (Milnerton).

In terms of pricing, Steenberg Golf Estate (Tokai/Constantia) with its stunning location against the southern slopes of Table Mountain, vineyard views and championship golf course, is the most expensive not only in the Cape, but the country Entry level prices start at around R11 million and range to about R30 million at the top end, says Kuhn.

Erinvale (Somerset West) is one of the most popular golf courses in the country frequented by international celebrities (Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones for example) and favoured by the Springboks and Proteas when they visit the Cape. Properties here are still about 15-20% undervalued although the estate has just seen a record sale that has taken its top price paid to R23 million.

On the western side, the beach golf estates, Atlantic Beach and Sunset Links will set you back upwards of around R4 million for a luxury house to around R18 million in the latter.

Arabella starts at around R2.5 million while Erinvale in Somerset West start at around R5.5 million and can range to well above R20 million to R30 million.

Boschenmeer starts at about R2.5 million while Pearl Valley starts at around R2.7 million and ranges to about R22.5 million at the top end according to agent, Elza Oberholzer.

De Zalze boast an entry level price of around R7.7 million and a top end price of around R18-R20 million.

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