This coastal village marks the south-eastern point of False Bay and is proudly located in the heart of the 100 000ha UNESCO Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve (KBR). Poetic nature lovers describe it as a ‘zig zag ribbon of narrow coastal plain squeezed between the ocean and huge sandstone mountains’ that together with the Buffelsrivier running through it, encapsulates the wonders of living naturally in Pringle Bay.
Situated just over an hour’s drive from Cape Town, for those travelling by car via the scenic Clarence Drive this coastal meander runs through the towns of Strand, Gordon’s Bay, with Bettys Bay and Kleinmond following shortly after.
In addition to the spectacular birdlife here as a result of the prolific indigenous vegetation, the village is well known for its rocky beaches where residents are free to fish and picnic while watching spectacular sunsets. Some attend to their vines and orchards while others work from home or commute between cities to rejuvenate their souls within a pristine natural environment.
The KBR is one of only three SA biospheres holding UNESCO status, while the other two, namely the Waterberg Biosphere Reserve and the Kruger to Canyons Biosphere Reserve are located upcountry. Pringle Bay is not just any biosphere reserve, but has become a well documented coastal phenomenon resulting from its rich Fynbos heritage cultivated in a unique eco system. Further environmental status bestowed upon Pringle Bay’s biosphere in relation to global phenomena, is that out of the 1880 different plant species found here, 77 of those occur nowhere else on this planet. Botanists usually explain this rare status by comparing it with the entire United Kingdom that holds only 22 endemic species.
And so the typical profile of residents in this holiday village matches that of their special surroundings. The town boasts a growing number of homeowners who are artists from the fine art world to theatre and film industries, as well as those who after years of visiting as holidaymakers realized its potential as a retirement option.
Although there are no sectional share properties many houses go onto the holiday rental market in the high season periods during December through to February. Typical holiday rentals sleeping six to eight, located close to the beach with seaviews, are currently advertised for anything between R1 500 to R3 600 per day.
Interestingly, with a healthy mix of holiday homes and permanent residences Pringle Bay, unlike other holiday towns nationally where properties are declining in value, house prices here have made a comeback after hitting a slump during 2010 when average freehold prices dropped to R710 000.00. Growth in property prices here over the past seven years is illustrated in 2004’s average prices of R222 000.00 peaking at R1-million in 2009. The only dip in seven years is shown by Lightstone when average prices of R1.026-million in 2009 dropped to R710 000.00 in 2010, with a part recovery to R1.008-million seen during the past three months of 2011.
The neighbouring suburbs of RooiEls and Kleinmond where average freehold values are R2.8 and R1-million respectively are also holiday home favourites with Capetonians. Rated 15th in the Overstrand Municipal listings with average values of R1.2-million Pringle Bay’s close neighbour, Bettys Bay is in 13th place with average values of R1.3-million.