It’s been many years since Strand’s Beach Road saw significant residential construction, with the last development in the area signed off over a decade ago. Since then – the beginning of what would prove to be a massive worldwide recession – a lot has changed in this seaside neighbourhood.
“If we look back to 2008, which is when the last real development was taking place on Beach Road in Strand, South Africa was sitting in a very weak economic position and interest rates were 15.5%,” says Wouter Joubert, Co Franchisee at Rawson Properties Strand. “As such, it was no real surprise that there were only 36 property transactions on the whole of Beach Road. The highest price was a modest R5.481 million and the total spend across all purchases came in at just under R62.5 million.”
By contrast, Joubert says the Beach Road property market has performed remarkably well over the last five years, despite the economic and political pressures that have been at play over this time.
“By 2014, the Beach Road market had improved to such an extent that it racked up 171 sales that year, doubled the highest price achieved in 2008, and almost quintupled the total spend on properties in the area,” he says. “These figures were just as buoyant in 2017 and 2018, and early 2019 shows positive signs as well, with strong and ongoing demand for these oceanfront properties.”
According to Joubert, one of the biggest forces behind Beach Road’s recovery as a seaside property destination of choice was the R180 million refurbishment of the sea wall and extensive Strand Pavilion and Central Precinct upgrade project.
“Strand was always a very popular beach holiday destination, but this took a bit of a knock when the Pavilion and beachfront areas became run-down,” he explains. “Thankfully, the City of Cape Town realised the seriousness of the problem and actioned a massive refurbishment programme to restore the area to its former glory. Since then, we’ve seen a dramatic uptick in tourism once again, driving a very strong holiday property and short-term letting market.”
Another R103 million investment was recently made into upgrading Broadway Boulevard to make Strand more accessible and minimise local traffic issues. However, excellent infrastructure is hardly the only force behind Beach Road’s popularity with investors.
“Property prices are a huge motivating factor for investing in Beach Road,” says Joubert. “The value for money is truly exceptional – particularly in relation to comparable Cape Town neighbourhoods like Sea Point, Green Point and Bloubergstrand.”
This unusual combination of value for money, growing popularity and minimal new stock has left Beach Road ripe for new development, Joubert reveals.
“We’ve had a lot of enquiries about future developments in the Beach Road area now that the elections are over and the economy and property market appear to be on the road to recovery,” he says. “As a result, we’re very pleased to be able to announce the upcoming launch of The Marine – a brand new luxury development offering investors the chance to tap into the amazing potential of the area.”
The Marine, designed by Pure Object Architects and developed by Visual International Holdings, promises 38 two-bedroomed apartments and 4 three-bedroomed penthouses. All the units feature top-quality finishes, sea-facing balconies and two parking bays, and benefit from 24-hour security and access control. Prices start at R1.299 million, VAT inclusive and transfer-duty-free, with penthouses topping the list at a mere R2.999 million.
“The design, location and amenities make The Marine perfect for holiday apartments and short-term letting, but the units are equally suited to those starting out or scaling down who don’t want to compromise on lifestyle or quality,” says Joubert. “Either way, we expect to see purchasers realising excellent returns on their investment as Beach Road, and its spectacular properties, continue on their upward trajectory.”