“With demand for apartments in the southern suburbs at an all-time high, the launch of a new development in Wynberg is perfectly timed,” says Mike Greeff, CEO of Greeff Properties, Christie’s International Real Estate. Greeff Properties is launching The Chelsea, located on Aliwal Road.“The project will encompass a redevelopment of an existing building, formerly Aliwal Court, as well as the construction of an entirely new structure,” says Greeff.
“This is a rare opportunity to develop something new in Wynberg, particularly in the Chelsea vicinity,” says Warren Adler of BRIC Developments. Adler in partnership with Peter Blyth are developing this site, and Adler is currently also developing 28 apartments in Bree Street under the banner Urban ON. The Chelsea development project is being backed by Buffet Investments and Investec.
“Dating back to the 1940s, the existing structure has good “bones” with thick walls, spacious layouts and suspended solid wood floors,” says architect Robert
Silke, adding that the wooden floors and the shell of the existing building will be retained, while the interiors will undergo a total reconstruction featuring top-end finishes and fixtures such as Grohe sanitary ware, Smeg kitchen appliances and quartz carpeting in the bathrooms. Natural stone surfaces will be used for counter tops in the kitchens. “Paint finishes include: Gloss duco kitchens and satin duco on the built-in cupboards,” says Silke, who has also specified bulkheads as a feature in all apartments with the idea of housing recessed lighting, which, he says, will imbue a softer, more gentle and flattering glow to the interiors. “The bulkhead also creates the illusion of a ceiling with endless space,” adds Silke.
“In Phase One, there are four apartments per floor, so each occupies a corner and will feature windows on two sides. This is a rare luxury in apartment design,” says Silke. Space is another advantage in Phase One of the Chelsea, where according to Silke, the ceiling height is above average due to the 40s origins of the existing building, while the rooms are also generously proportioned. Thoughtful design in the form of sliding doors for built-in cupboards and en-suite bathrooms helps to save space, and the installation of floor-to- ceiling mirrors on these doors will offer the perception of a double sized room.
On offer in Phase One, are one-bedroom, one-bathroom apartments and two- bedroom, one-bathroom apartments. “Both sizes feature truly efficient layouts,” says Silke, adding that a six-seater dining room table can be accommodated along with a lounge suite, thanks to a linear kitchen, which, he says, is spot on with the global trend and current architectural best practice.
Under-slung sinks will be installed in the kitchens to allow for more counter space.
Phase One of the Chelsea will comprise three storeys, and be home to twelve units. Prices range from R1,510 000 for a one-bedroom, one bathroom unit to R1, 905 000 for a two-bedroom, one-bathroom unit. Prices include parking bays. There is no transfer duty.
Phase one occupation is envisaged in November 2016.
“Phase two will take the form of a completely new structure to be erected in the area adjacent the existing building. This state-of- the-art, five-storey structure – the ground floor of which will house undercover parking – will be home to just eight units. There will be two per floor comprising four two-bedroom apartments measuring 88m2 and four bachelor/studio apartments measuring 38m 2 each,” says Adler. He adds that finishes will be the same as those planned for Phase One with the exception of the floors, which will be high quality vinyl laminate in lime- washed oak.
“The two-bedroom units boast windows on three sides, which essentially creates a house in the sky with wonderful vistas of the old Chelsea village to the south, across the tree canopies and suburban roof tops to the mountains to the west,” says Silke. He adds that in terms of energy regulations, the south-facing side offers the advantage of using a lot of glass, so soft indirect light will abound. “All big windows are recessed under generous eaves providing shade from the heat and allowing floor-to- ceiling glazing.” This has the added advantage of privacy for the balcony below.
“The roof on the existing building, which is to be Phase One, will be replaced with a lower pitched version to further augment views from Phase Two,” explains Peter Blyth. “Given that this is a fully developed area, views are unlikely to be blocked or impeded by future development.”
“While there are certainly periods of activity along Aliwal Road, seclusion and privacy from the street will be provided by the existing trees on site, as well as solid balustrades which will embrace balconies,” says Blyth.
“The architectural vision is clean and contemporary, while considered use of white plaster and wood finishes gives a nod to the existing heritage design paradigm prevalent in Chelsea,” explains Silke.
“Our property choices are guided by our attention to detail as much as it is guided by our keen eye for bustling hot spots of urban living,” says Adler, adding that the position of The Chelsea, just around the corner from the characterful collection of restaurants, coffee shops, galleries, antique and décor stores of Wynberg Chelsea, not to mention the attraction of historic Maynardville, offers a unique and desirable lifestyle for those who choose to live there.
“Wynberg, and in particular the Chelsea area, which boasts one of Cape Town’s highest concentrations of surviving heritage buildings and homes, tops the wish lists of an increasing number of buyers,” says Greeff, whose company recently launched and sold out 21 on Wellington, 300 meters from Chelsea Wynberg.
“On the day of the launch alone, nine out of a total of 12 units were sold, ” says Greeff. “Demand is huge for apartments like these and we already have a waiting list of interested buyers on our data base,” adds Greeff.
“Propstats figures reflect that over the past 12 months, the average selling price of sectional title apartments in Wynberg rose by 8.2% when compared to the average selling price for the 12 months preceding that,” says Greeff. “Properties in Chelsea are being snapped up within a day of listing, and at full asking price in a number of cases,” says Greeff. “Most of the buyers are couples and young professionals – there are some investors and down scalers too”.
“The Chelsea is ideal for all of the above and would also suit single parents or small families with children at one of the nearby schools,” adds Greeff. The Chelsea is situated across the road from Wynberg Girls High School.