Scenic living

Set against the scenic backdrop of the Helderberg Mountains, surrounded by winelands and with Blue Flag beaches about ten minutes from the town, Somerset West is where family value truly rules.

While it is a little more than half an hour's drive out of the city along the N2 and boasts modern conveniences and top class schools and facilities, the town is arguably the best urban environment in which to raise a family says Seeff Somerset manager, Loretta Diab.

The natural surroundings are inspiring and the town offers family homes to suit every buyer's budget; from smaller starter homes priced below R1,5 million to larger homes with swimming pools set on big plots priced upwards of R2,5 million, comments Diab. The town offers excellent public and private schools, the University of Stellenbosch is just down the road, as is UCT and other Cape Town higher learning facilities.

The town is also popular with retirees looking for peaceful surrounds while the close proximity of the airport attracts European swallows' and Johannesburg buyers looking for second homes in the winelands, adds Diab. The town's growing commercial sector and entrepreneurial opportunities has also seen growth in relocations to the town.

Market activity has been stable, comments Diab, with an increase of 24 percent in total sales in the town over the last year. The most active portion of the market has been family homes in the price band of between R2 million and R4 million, but a number of larger family homes sold in the upper millions including an Erinvale house sold by Seeff for R11,627 million, says Diab.

For family buyers looking for a larger home set in a park-like garden, agent Marie Smit is marketing a home that offers exceptional family value. Situated in the verdant suburb of Golden Acre and close to private schools, the home is set on a large stand of 4,845sqm with a lush, irrigated garden that includes a lovely pond and swimming pool. There is loads of space for to roam and grow, adds the agent.

The home itself is reminiscent of an English country-house and is surrounded by covered patios and pergolas with stunning views. The large farm-style kitchen has a pantry and laundry room. The living areas include two lounges with fireplaces, a dining room and a wine cellar. Three spacious bedrooms are located on the upper level while a guest suite with an en-suite bathroom is located on the lower level. The property includes staff accommodation, a double garage and a borehole and is on the market for R8,15 million.

The agent says that given the size of the land, it can easily be subdivided or converted into a hospitality establishment to capitalise on the town's growing tourism industry.

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