Searching for a home in South Africa: carved into a mountain in Cape Town

this is Five bedroom house He appeared on the slopes of Table Mountain in Oranjezet, a suburb of Cape Town, South Africa. Set on approximately three-quarters of an acre, the home was designed to mimic a mountain landscape and is a landmark, with an undulating concrete roof and extensive use of wood and stone.

“The house is actually built into the mountain,” said Ryan Ackerman, an agent at Pam Golding Estate, which has the listing. “The owners wanted it to be a kind of sanctuary. They enjoy meditating and going in health retreats. So it was very much about creating a sanctuary as a home.”

Ackermann said the house, built in 2011, was among the first in the area to have an “ecological pool,” a swimming pool that uses plants and microorganisms, rather than chemicals, to purify water. The pool is heated by solar panels, which are also used to provide backup power during power outages.

The in-house spa room is located at one end of the pool, and the front can be opened to make it easier for swimmers to access it directly. It has a sauna, hot tub, shower and hammam in red Zellige tiles made in Zimbabwe.

A concrete staircase goes up to the glass front entrance to the house one level above it. The entrance opens onto the main living and dining area, and a large, airy space with a double-sided fireplace and black granite floors. Glass walls slide away on one side to open the room to a dining terrace with retractable awnings.

On the other side of the room is a stunning wall of backlit bookshelves that extend to the floor below. Stairs from the living room lead down the length of the library to the yoga studio on the ground floor, which is flanked by two offices. This floor also contains a theater room and a wine cellar.

There is a large kitchen across from the entrance hall. It has a tall stainless steel island with Gaggenau and Viking appliances built in. There is a separate wash-basin outside the kitchen, as well as two guest bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms. A staircase descends from the kitchen to the attached three-car garage, laundry facilities, and staff accommodations.

Another upper level is the base suite and what the owners use as a children’s suite. The basic suite has a glass wall opening to the outside, a wooden rolled veranda, a dressing room, and a bathroom with free-standing bathtub. The children’s suite has two bedrooms with en suite bathrooms and a large common room.

The gated property also has a standalone cottage with bedroom, kitchen and bathroom. Both the cottage and the house have underfloor heating throughout.

Oranjezicht is located minutes from Cape Town’s Kloof and Bree streets, which are lined with restaurants, cafes and nightclubs. The famous Camps Bay Beach on the city’s Atlantic coast is a 10-minute drive away, and Cape Town International Airport is around 20 minutes away.

With approximately 180 miles of coastline and 4.4 million residents, Cape Town is the largest city in the Western Cape province of South Africa. The upper end of the housing market is booming, driven largely by European buyers

Cape Town has become the flavor of the month,” said Sean Phillips, RE/MAX Living Sales Officer. “We have more clients who are really well off and who are optimistic about the way things are going in South Africa and feel confident about investing here.”

Nationally, sales transactions during the second quarter of 2022 increased 32 percent compared to the same period last year, according to a Market Report From RE/MAX, South Africa. The median price for a single-family home was 1.42 million rand ($85,000), an 8 percent increase from last year.

The Western Cape, which borders the Atlantic and Indian Oceans, is the most active and most expensive market in South Africa, with an average asking price of 2.5 million rand ($150,000).

In Cape Town, start-up activity has slowed — between 3 million and 6 million rand ($180,000 and $360,000) — since last November, when interest rates started rising, Ackermann said. Prices are now around 9 percent – high compared to the US but not unusual for South Africa.

But most high-end international customers pay with cash, and are unaffected by higher prices, Phillips said. In the highly sought-after Camps Bay area, on Cape Town’s Atlantic coast, properties in need of work start at around 10 million rand ($600,000), he said, noting that last year there were four sales of about 50 million rand ($3 million). dollars) in the Camping Bay area.

“It is a beautiful four-bedroom home with stunning views, excellent workmanship, smart home system, motorized blinds, and elevator,” he said. “It could be at the water’s edge or upstairs.”

Desirable locations also include Cape Town’s southern suburbs, namely Constantia and Upper Claremont, thanks to their proximity to schools, parks and wineries, said Richard Olotto, Knight Frank’s agent. He also noted the new luxury developments underway in Cape Town’s Central Business District.

Cape Town, the oldest and second largest city (after Johannesburg) in South Africa, has long been an attractive investment destination for Europeans, in part because it is in the same time zone as Central Europe, and provides a warm haven during the winter, said Paul Turner, owner of Engel & Völkers Atlantic Sea Board and City Bowl.

He said the majority of foreign buyers come from Germany, Britain and the Netherlands, but there are also some from Italy, France and Switzerland.

The number of Americans flying so much now that there are direct flights to Cape Town from the US Mr Phillips said he recently sold an invisible drug to two Atlanta doctors. Having previously visited Cape Town and lost a property they had bid on, they decided to move quickly when Mr. Phillips gave them a virtual tour of another one after they returned home.

“They arrived about six weeks later and were pleasantly surprised by what they bought,” he said.

Mr Turner said there are no restrictions on foreign buyers in South Africa, and the buying process is straightforward.

Foreign investors may only borrow a maximum of 50% of the value of the property they are buying. “But because of our high interest rates, most foreign investors are not interested in borrowing locally anyway,” he said.

An attorney, called the carrier, handles the transaction, including verifying the correct transfer of the bond. The seller chooses the carrier, but the buyer pays the fee. Total transaction fees vary depending on the price of the property, but generally come in at about 10 percent of the purchase price, Mr. Olotu said.

Non-residents must pay tax on any capital gains when they sell property.

South Africa has 11 official languages; Afrikaans and English are widely spoken.
South African rand (1 rand = 0.06 dollars)

a duty to transport On a graduated scale, it starts at 3 percent for properties sold over one million rand ($60,000). The highest rate of 13 percent is owed on that portion of the property over 11 million rand ($660,000).

According to Mr. Ackermann, property taxes on this home are 16,500 rand ($990) per month.

Ryan Ackerman and Karen Coetzee, Pam Golding Properties011-27-21-276-3233

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