The recent announcement that The Links at Fancourt Hotel and Golf Estate on the Garden Route in the Western Cape has been voted one of the world’s 100 greatest golf courses by the US edition of Golf Digest reaffirms the world-class standard of facilities at this prime residential and golf course development, says Stephen Murray, manager of Pam Golding Properties’ George office, marketers of residential property at Fancourt.
Rated at number 34 out of the top 100 in the world, and designed by world-renowned golfer Gary Player, The Links is one of only two South African courses listed, the other being Leopard Creek in Mpumalanga which is in 84th place. Interestingly, in the South African edition of Golf Digest, Fancourt’s three golf courses, The Links, Montagu and Outeniqua, are currently rated 1st, 6th and 17th respectively among South Africa’s 100 best golf courses. Among various prestigious events, in December 2013 Fancourt (Outeniqua course) hosted the Ernie Els Invitational while the annual Didata tournament was held in February this year (2014) on the Outeniqua and Montagu courses.
Originally launched in 1991, Fancourt was taken over by the Plattners in 1994. It is now well established, with 75 percent (365 units) of the total of 488 properties sold and approximately 348 units completed, nearing completion or in the planning stage. Undeveloped land on the estate comprises 124 developer stands and a further 16 stands for re-sale, which means that the entire estate is almost 72 percent developed.
Ongoing investment in the estate by the developers includes the recent refurbishment of the Manor House Hotel into a 5-Star boutique hotel, upgrade of all three restaurants, construction of a new café and deli, improvements to the spa and sport and leisure facilities – which incorporates new golf course equipment and facilities at The Links, Montagu and Outeniqua golf courses.
Says Murray: “Refurbishment of the clubhouse reception area and of the recreation centre in particular has enhanced Fancourt from a residential perspective as the latter is an ideal facility for families with younger children – not only for tourists but especially for permanent residents.”
He says the consistent popularity of this prime residential property estate among home buyers is evident. “There is certainly heightened interest in Fancourt among buyers. Sales over the past 10 months include properties over the R10 million price range – a positive indicator, as during the economic recession sales in this price band were scarce. Currently the bulk of demand and Pam Golding Properties sales are in the R5 million to R7 million price bracket.
“Because of the quality of its facilities Fancourt is hard to compare with other golf estate developments, while from a property perspective Fancourt will always command a premium in relation to other estates – due to all the factors mentioned.”
Murray says by far the majority of buyers at Fancourt are South Africans who are relocating, with the balance being those from the UK and a few German buyers. “The trend is definitely towards the estate becoming more of a primary residence for home owners, and we estimate that currently 60 percent of our sales are to permanent residents.“
Prices of vacant stands currently available for purchase include 2506-4961sqm plots in Links Ridge, priced from R3 million to R3.95 million, including VAT. There are also four completed homes for re-sale in Links Ridge, priced from R15 million, a re-sale home in Links Avenue priced at R42 million and two re-sale stands each 6400sqm in size in Links Avenue, priced at R20.8 million for both (or for sale individually on request).
In addition, there are 13 newly released stands adjacent to the 9th hole on the Montagu Ridge golf course, priced from R2.6 million to R3.8 million (including VAT), ranging in size from 1123sqm to 1684sqm and set among landscaped indigenous gardens.