Umhlanga becomes the world's oyster

The prestigious Oyster property development in Umhlanga is drawing high-profile buyers from inland regions as well as an increasing number of international leisure buyers.
So says Wade Latham of Chas Everitt International in Umhlanga, who has recently sold several multimillion-rand Oyster apartments. “The development is surrounded by quality real estate such as the landmark Oyster Box Hotel that was recently upgraded to five-star status by the international Red Carnation Group, and the five-star Beverley Hills Hotel. It is also near Umhlanga’s famous lighthouse, which adds real seaside charm.

This 247sqm apartment in Oyster Rock was recently sold by Chas Everitt Umhlanga for R8,1m
"It is also one of the top locations in Umhlanga and the three high-rise blocks - Oyster Rock, Oyster Schelles and Oyster Quays - are right on the seafront, offering unobstructed views of the Dolphin Coast.  This is no doubt why resale prices here were not materially affected by the 2008/ 09 recession."
Demand remains strong and units sell fast when they become available, he says. “In fact there is usually a waiting list, with cash buyers willing to step in quickly when units come to market. Typical buyers are financially independent and not affected by economic cycles, while sellers are seldom under pressure to sell.”
About 20% of recent buyers in the Oyster development are international leisure investors hailing from diverse locations such as Switzerland, Thailand, Singapore and California, Latham says. “And we see more top businessmen from Gauteng buying in Umhlanga in preference to Cape Town now, with the luxury Oyster apartments being their particular targets.

It features three ensuite bedrooms and a study as well as open-plan kitchen, dining and lounge areas and 180-degree sea views. It also has two undercover parking bays.
"This trend has been boosted by the opening of the new international airport just 10km from Umhlanga, which makes it quick for wealthy Gauteng buyers to travel here for weekend breakaways. And for longer holidays, it is a shorter drive to KZN that to the Cape. The weather here is also milder than in Cape Town and the balmy water temperature of the Indian Ocean is an added attraction."
Oyster apartments achieve prices of between R30 000 and  R40 000/sqm and prices rise along with elevation. Prices of two-bedroom units on lower levels start at around R3,5m, while three-bedroom apartments sell at prices between R5m and R5,6m. Bigger three- or four-bedroom units of around 240sqm sell at around the R8m mark (see photos)

This 184sqm apartment in Oyster Rock was recently sold by Chas Everitt Umhlanga for R5,3m. It features three ensuite bedrooms,open-plan kitchen, dining and lounge areas and two undercover parking bays.
Top buyers put their names on waiting lists for sub-penthouses and the spacious luxury penthouses on the top floors, he says and Chas Everitt Umhlanga recently concluded a transaction to the value of R12m for a sub-penthouse on the 15th floor of the Oyster Schellesblock. This unit takes up the entire floor and has a footprint of 477sqm.
The triplex penthouse of more than 700sqm on the 16th floor in the same block was recently sold independently for R31m.

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