Areas and Places

CT’s V&A Waterfront & Foreshore currently leading property boom

Cape Town, V&A Waterfront
A view of the V&A Waterfront Marina, home to the most expensive real estate in the country and the flagship residential area for downtown Cape Town. Expect to pay around R75,000/sqm for a one-bedroomed apartment on the canals and R85,000/sqm for two bedrooms. Front Yacht Basin (FYB) apartments sell for up to R140,000/sqm depending on the apartment and position.

With billions invested in new developments that are turning downtown Cape Town into a mini-Manhattan, the Waterfront and Foreshore precincts are currently the most exciting residential markets to invest in according to Ross Levin, Finella Botes and Lynn Pinn, Seeff’s team for the areas.

In just five years, the V&A Marina yielded sales worth R2.030 billion at an average price of R10.464m.

While most property markets are down, the Waterfront has experienced sales growth of about 6% this year and, Levin says that property values have practically doubled in the five years since 2011.

“Let me illustrate”, he adds. “In 2011, a two-bedroomed apartment in Juliette on the canal sold for R7m at R40,230/sqm. The same apartment recently sold for R13m at R76,471/sqm, thus equating to some 86% growth in just five years and yielding a handsome profit of R6m”.

“On the Front Yacht Basin (FYB), a two-bedroomed apartment in Penrith sold five years ago for R11.4m (R45,418/sqm). The same apartment sold last year for R19m (R87,156/sqm), yielding 67% growth and a profit of some R7.6m in just five years”.

The entry level price for the Waterfront is now between R7m and R9m and on a rate per square metre, apartments now sell for around R84,020/sqm on average, ranging to R140,000/sqm at the top end.

Canal apartments now command around R75,000/sqm for one bedroom and R85,000/sqm for two bedrooms. Front Yacht Basin (FYB) apartments sell for up to R140,000/sqm depending on the apartment and position.

The agents note that demand in the R10m-R20m price band has picked up in the third quarter as we head into the busier summer months. The overall average listing period is also down from 39 days in the second quarter to about a month (33 days) while the overall days on the market is down from 124 in 2014 to just 48 days on average this year.

The highest demand for canal-facing apartments is in the R8m-R12m range and for FYB apartments, in the R15m-R25m range.

“At the neighbouring Silo Precinct, development is now nearing completion and demand for residential apartments is picking up notably”, continue the agents. The Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCCA), a historic first for the African continent is set to open in 2017 as will the first Radisson Red Hotel and a luxury, 28-roomed hotel by renowned hotelier, Liz Biden of the Royal Portfolio.

“All of this”, says Levin, “will attract tens of thousands of people to the area and of course with that, demand for residential apartments. There are several Silo residential developments under construction. The completed Silo 2 now commands around R70,000-R98,000/sqm for one and two bedroomed units”.

The adjacent Foreshore area, already home to high demand residential complexes such as Canal Quays and Harbour Bridge, is soon to be home to the new The Yacht Club that will open the area to the harbour.

“This is one of the most exciting developments in the area. Add to that the upgrade to major landmarks such as the CTICC (Cape Town International Convention Centre) and Artscape Theatre, addition of a flagship Virgin Active Gymnasium and a high concentration of luxury hotels, and you can see why we regard this whole area as one to watch”, say the agents.

Although on the fringes of the CBD, the Foreshore already boasts a higher average sales price of around R3.3m compared to the CBD’s average of around R2.3m. The premium here, say the agents, is attributable to the close proximity to the Waterfront.

Apartment prices on the Foreshore range from around R3.3m for a one-bedroomed unit and upwards of R4.2m for a two-bedroomed unit.

Adding to the attraction of the area, is the close proximity to the fast developing financial and legal district, now home to several high profile brand names such as Bowman Gilfillan, Cliff Dekker Hofmeyr, Investec, First Rand and Edward Nathan Sonnenbergs.

Aside from the V&A Waterfront with its 5-star shopping, leisure and dining right on the doorstep, you are just minutes from De Waterkant, Gardens and the high streets of Green Point and Sea Point for shopping, services and a host of hot eateries and hangouts. The Blue Flag beaches of the Atlantic Seaboard, Camps Bay and Clifton are also mere minutes away.

Globally, waterfront property tends to not only hold values, but produce capital growth at a faster pace compared to surrounding real estate, a trend that we have seen at the Waterfront, say the agents.

Already, a recent Lightstone Report, named the Waterfront’s Dock Road as the most expensive real estate in the country, commanding an average sales price last year of R108,000/sqm.

Downtown apartments are also hot investments for the rental market, adds Dinis Martins, Seeff’s COO for the Atlantic Seaboard and City Bowl. At the Foreshore, a two-bedroomed apartment can now command a monthly rental of around R18,000-R20,000 per month and significantly higher at the Waterfront, ranging to as much R45,000-R55,000, depending on the unit, location and time of year.

The summer rates for the Silo’s are around R38,000-R40,000/month for one and two bedroomed units according to Village and Life.