Cape Town - Plettenberg Bay on the Garden Route is one of only a handful of locations in South Africa where there is appetite for property that falls in the super luxury bracket, according to Hein Pretorius, broker principal of Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty in the town dubbed SA’s “millionaire playground”.
According to New World Wealth’s South Africa 2016 Wealth Report, the coastal holiday town’s sought-after Beachyhead Drive, lined with mansion after mansion overlooking Plett’s unspoilt beaches, boasts the most expensive houses outside of Cape Town.
Pretorius says the New World Wealth report notes that there were some 2 300 South African homes valued at R20m or more as of December 2015. The majority are in Cape Town (880) and Johannesburg (550), but Plettenberg Bay, a very small town, boasts an astonishing 120 homes in that price bracket and ranks third in the country.
One of those properties currently on the market for R75m is the “Castle on the Cliff”, a massive villa designed like a castle and constructed using local stone. Perched on a cliff in the Robberg nature reserve, the 5-bedroom Vygekraal Estate overlooks the coastline and sits at the foot of some of South Africa’s most scenic hiking trails.
Featuring its own private dam, huge prehistoric cave and large sea-filtered rock pool, the estate spans 66 hectares.
Well-positioned patios take advantage of the spectacular views and, depending on the prevailing winds, you can enjoy outdoor living almost all year round. The northern side accommodates a swimming pool and manicured gardens surround the building.
A winding natural path leads from the castle to a cave that dates back to pre-historic times. This expansive natural wonder was home to people thousands of years ago and various artefacts that have been found on-site. These belong to this home and are included in the sale.
According to deeds records, the property last changed hands in 2008 for R48m and Pretorius says it is still one of the most expensive ever sold in Plettenberg Bay.
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“Estates this spectacular are as rare as hens’ teeth and when the opportunity arises to own such a gem there is always market appetite. It’s a unique home that will find a unique buyer - someone who treasures privacy and outstanding natural beauty.
“It’s also a property made for entertaining with a catering-size kitchen and flowing living areas. There is spacious staff accommodation on site, as well as an estate manager’s cottage.”
Steven Neufeld, manager principal of Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty in Plettenberg Bay, says the first half of 2016 has been the best year to date for this period and there has been significant market growth across the board.
“There is absolutely no doubt that despite the weak economy, demand for property in Plettenberg Bay remains extremely high. With 483 property registrations recorded between January and the end of July, 2016 looks poised to be a record year, with the previous high being in 2011 when 611 properties transfers were registered," says Neufeld.
“It’s a distinct possibility that we will break the record when one considers that almost 40% of the house and estate sales concluded between August 2015 and July 2016 occurred in the three months between May and July this year, with 57 freehold sales to a combined value of R121.21m and 47 security estate transactions worth a total of R131.67m recorded respectively.”Read Fin24's top stories trending on Twitter: