From dairy to delightful

Private Property South Africa

Hot on the heels of another successful round of sales that saw virtually all of its last vacant freehold stands sell out, Southdowns Estate is now making available a select collection of full-title, plot and plan clusters.

That’s the news from Jack Prentice, MD of Southdowns Management Services (SMS), who explains that the release of the clusters represents a new era in Southdowns’s success story, which began in 2004.

Situated in Irene, Centurion, Southdowns Estate occupies land that originally formed part of the neighbouring 118-year-old Irene Dairy Farm. Pockets of the original dairy farm have been preserved and incorporated into the estate. The farm also served as inspiration for the estate’s farm-style architectural palette, which set it apart from the contemporary golf estates that were so much in vogue at the time.

Notes Prentice: “I think it’s safe to say Southdowns pioneered the shift towards country-style living in Pretoria, Gauteng. We offered something truly unique which made people sit up and take notice.”

In a bid to provide a “taste’ of Southdowns”, the estate released seven luxury clusters named The Paddocks in July 2014. Paddocks residences will measure between 260 and 400m² and occupy stands measuring between 1 000 and 2 200m² Construction on two of the clusters is well underway. These will be made available as show houses around October this year. Prices range from R3.5-million to R5-million per Paddocks cluster.

Approximately 20 clusters located along Southdowns’ Bakwena Avenue will be brought to market alongside the Paddocks clusters. Owners will be entitled to construct architecturally-designed homes measuring between 200 and 400m² on stands measuring between 500 and 1 200sm². Prices start at R3.5-million. Plans to develop approximately 74 additional cluster homes are in the pipeline.

Many phases

The release of the clusters forms but one of Southdowns’ many phases. The estate officially launched with the release of approximately 380 freehold stands in 2004. The stands measured between 980 and 3 000m², were priced at between R600 000 and R2-million and sold within weeks of being released.

Prentice points out that during the last round of sales, the average freehold stand sold for between R2-million and R3-million. Completed freehold properties now sell for around R5-million on average. The highest price achieved to date for a Southdowns freehold home is R10.5-million.

Interestingly, according to Prentice, a number of international companies have cottoned on to what Southdowns has to offer and are now leasing some of the freehold properties for as much as R45 000per month.

The Lofts

Approximately 50 sectional title townhouses called The Lofts were launched in 2007. These measure between 126m² and 280m² and typically feature two or three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a gas braai and under-floor heating. High end finishes come standard and some units offer pools.

Current Lofts prices start at R1.8-million. Prentice explains that these units have proven particularly popular with buy-to-let investors who lease them out at between R11 000 and R20 000 per month. It is envisaged that approximately 90 additional properties of this nature will be released over the next few years. Upon completion, Prentice explains that Southdowns will feature around 730 residences in total.

But wait, there’s more …

Of course there is more to Southdowns than just an excellent address and appealing architectural style. Southdowns offers a number of convenient amenities including 13km of walking, hiking and cycling trails, play parks and a fitness centre.

Residents can also make use of the adjoining Irene Country Club. A Gautrain stop. The Southdowns office park and shopping centre (which features a state-of-the-art medical centre) all lie within walking distance of the estate.

Southdowns also boasts a private, external educational node where budding students can attend a pre-school or Southdowns College, which offers comprehensive academic, sports and boarding facilities. A fully-equipped theatre, which doubles as a conference and events space has also been established at the educational node, along with the Open Window School of Visual Communication.

And even more …

Other Southdowns “value-adds” include a one-of-a-kind natural gas pipeline, which has proven a major boon in the wake of escalating electricity costs and load shedding, a fibre-optic backbone that is now being fed to all the estate’s homes and top-notch security protocols backed by military grade security cameras.

Taking all of these elements into account, it’s not surprising that the estate was named the best-performing luxury estate in Pretoria by the Financial Mail in 2012 and 2013.

Notes Prentice: “We are exceptionally proud of what we have achieved at Southdowns and look forward to building on this unique lifestyle offering for many years to come.”

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