Hell Hath no Fury Like a Black South Easter

Private Property South Africa
Anna-Marie Smith

However, there is an upside to dodging gale force winds during summer. After all, the notorious Cape Doctor provides clear blue skies supposedly free of pollution. And, since it seldom blows uninterruptedly for longer than a week or two, waking up to the calm can bring new found appreciation for the natural beauty of this city.

Which, in turn leads to industry comments related to the havoc caused on building sites, or while showing prospective buyers around on scheduled show days. They say that by seeking professional advice, Cape home owners and tenants can share in the simple pleasures enjoyed by their fair weather counterparts from upcountry, such as planning a braai.

Last week saw wind speeds of 164km/h on top of Table Mountain, and 145km/h at Table Bay, when many leisure and business activities temporarily came to a halt. This was also when residents and visitors sought indoor tranquillity, while others lapped up luxurious living derived from investments made in one of the city’s windless pockets of land.

Also working with the wind, are Cape Town’s architectural fraternity and property developers, reputed specialists in the field of optimum orientation. Daily shelter during hot summer months, when outdoor living and entertainment is high in demand, also makes for sound re-sale value, they say. Such as properties where exterior as well as interior patio and veranda spaces reflect architectural designs with long-term planning in mind. Whether starting from scratch, buying an existing property, or renting, tap into valuable advice from industry professionals, who over time have become masters of their trade in designing, building and selling properties with optimum wind shelter.

This is also when property agents working and living along the city’s golden mile, the Atlantic Sea Board describe the priceless benefits of offering firsthand knowledge of a lifestyle in a particular area. About property sales in the so called wind free areas of Bakoven, Bantry Bay and Clifton, they say living there themselves contributes to the successful clenching of deals, often with unprecedented price tags. In addition to prime development there, is ongoing demand and supply that drives unprecedented capital growth.

The city’s moderate Mediterranean climate offers an outdoor lifestyle that is rated highly for permanent as well as holiday living. As a result, when searching for an ideal solution during summer, be it a freestanding house or an estate home, a seaside apartment or townhouse, outdoor entertainment areas are mostly part of a plan. And when not sheltered, say the agents, look out for possibilities of creating outdoor areas to provide convenient entertainment in the garden and braai areas during summer. Although those holding the title deeds to properties are free to make alterations providing that building plans are in order, tenants in rented homes are best advised to communicate their needs at the earliest opportunity when dealing with agents and landlords.

Popular solutions for wind shelter at apartments and townhouses range from permanent glass enclosures on balconies and verandas that allow cross ventilation, to temporary, retractable and removable solutions in a variety of materials. Other cost effective, long-term solutions are the growing of hedges, and part enclosures such as timber and latte structures that make for ideal wind breakers. Modern designs, where generous budgets allow for interior and exterior flow, usually allow sheltered pool areas and indoor courtyards, with additional benefits during winters being sunny solariums and indoor gardens.

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