Sitari Country Estate just outside Somerset West, winner of an award as Highly Commended Residential Development South Africa, at the Africa and Arabia Property Awards Summit for 2015 to 2016 held in Dubai, is the largest residential development of its type in the Western Cape.
Launched two years ago, with what is expected to be a 7–8-year journey to full maturity, Sitari is set to become an impressive presence faster than is the norm, since homes there have to be built within 2 years from registration of transfer of Country Plots.
John Coetzee, one of the Directors of Uvest Property Group, the developers of Sitari, provides an update on how things are progressing two years into this R4 billion mega-project: “Since launching we have sold in excess of 451 Country Plots, Village and Country Homes and Premium and Luxury Apartments to purchasers – excluding development partners – at close to R500 million in value. We are currently sold out of all of our Premium and Luxury Apartments and Village Homes, and are gearing up to launch the next few schemes at Sitari.”
This premium housing estate is seeing high demand, indicated by the limited availability of stock at any given time, and the rapid development that is evident on site. Adds Coetzee: “Continued buyer interest is making Sitari the fastest selling estate in the Helderberg/Winelands area. The lowest priced plot you can buy in Sitari is now priced at R895 000, while the apartments fetch from over R1m up to R1.95m, and houses range from R2.6m to R6m or R7m. I have no doubt that these figures will appreciate remarkably as the estate and all of its facilities continues to come to maturity.”
In terms of building progress to date, 168 own title plans and 234 sectional title units have been approved by Sitari’s governing Architectural Review Committee. Of the own title plans, 101 have been submitted to Council so far; of these, 72 have been approved and 29 are currently in the system. Of the sectional title units, 225 plans have been submitted to Council and 124 of these have been approved, with 101 still in the system.
Forty-two single title houses are currently under construction, and 27 already have their roofs on. Nine houses have been fully completed and seven of these have been handed over to their new owners.
The first sectional title block, The Grand Olive with 69 luxury apartments, is at second-floor level and should be completed by the end of the year. The impressive main gatehouse has its roof on and will be fully operational by early September 2016. This includes a sales centre with a one-of-a-kind display area, estate management office, and security control room with high-tech monitors providing 24-hour surveillance. The gatehouse complex also offers first-class office space available to purchase on a sectional title basis, and a business centre equipped with wifi.
The start of the school year on 13 January 2016 saw Curro Castle Sitari (for ages 3 months to 5 years) as well as Curro Sitari primary school and Curro Sitari high school opening their doors to 202 children. The schools have parallel-medium classes, teaching English- and Afrikaans-speaking learners separately, and include Grades R and 1 to 9. Additional Grades will be phased in as Curro Sitari grows – which it certainly will, since an estimated 10 000 residents will be living in Sitari Country Estate once it is complete.
As at 1 August 2016 there are 240 learners, and Executive Head (principal) of Curro Sitari, Phil Snyman, reports that they opened two new classes in the Curro Castle Sitari in the past 7 months: “We are currently advertising 10 new posts for 2017, and are opening a third Grade 1 and a third Grade 8 class in 2017. From January 2017 all Grade 5-10 learners will no longer be using textbooks, but tablets.
“In January 2017 we will have our first Grade 10 class, in 2018 Grade 11 and in 2019 our first matric class, who will be writing the IEB examinations like most of the elite independent schools in South Africa. The expected amount of learners for 2017 is 340 in January, which should grow to 400 by the end of 2017.”
Currently available for purchase in Sitari Country Estate are Phase 3 Country Plots, while premium apartments in The Boulevard are soon to be launched. Adds Coetzee: “These apartments mark a further improvement to the already high benchmark set at Sitari, with exclusive finishes and flexibility allowing buyers to select either Miele or Smeg ovens and complementary appliances. Potential buyers are advised to register their interest for upcoming Luxury Apartments and Village Homes on the Sitari website.”
Extensive provision for security and the fact that the estate provides so comprehensively for a great country lifestyle, close to all amenities, Somerset West, Stellenbosch, and beaches, all play a role in the popularity of Sitari County Estate – which is sure to increase as it takes more and more tangible shape.