Multi-million rand investment in Port Elizabeth is raising the profile of the city, which, despite being South Africa’s fifth largest, has been a well-kept secret in terms of its value for money real estate.
That’s according to Ian Olivier, area principal of Pam Golding Properties Port Elizabeth, who says it’s glaringly obvious that, on the back of ongoing investment in the city’s western areas and the Coega IDZ, property prices are poised for significant growth.
“Given the confidence being shown in our market by outside developers who see enormous potential and opportunity, I think our market is going to start playing catch-up with other coastal destinations,” he avers.
Olivier says further that while Port Elizabeth has traditionally had a small appetite for properties in the R3 million plus bracket, interest in prime homes is rising as professionals relocate from other provinces and cities to the suburbs.
Colloquially referred to as the 10 minute city in the past, although Port Elizabeth drivers have had to add approximately 10 minutes to their drive time from Port Elizabeth International Airport as a result of expansion and increased road traffic in recent years, this still makes the city one of the least congested in the country. “Over and above this is the friendly city’s easy accessibility to the sea and temperate climate and you have all the hallmarks of an internationally desirable residential destination.”
Among the stand-out properties currently being marketed by Pam Golding Properties Port Elizabeth are a refurbished ocean-fronting apartment in an iconic block in Summerstrand, where the average selling price is R2.3 million, an architect-designed home on the Little Walmer Golf Course, a turn-of-the-century Mill Park home with various business options and an exclusive new contemporary-style development in Humewood aimed at high net worth buyers seeking a secure, coastal lifestyle.
Priced at R3.75 million the apartment, located at No 1 Summerstrand, is one of 17 units in the ocean-facing block, which was built in 1986. On the second floor, it looks out on to Shark Rock Pier and Port Elizabeth’s main swimming beach, Hobie Beach. Stylishly redecorated with porcelain tiles and modern light fittings, the 159sqm unit comprises expansive living areas, a cordon bleu kitchen, three bedrooms, two new bathrooms, two garages and a storeroom.
Part of the appeal of No 1 Summerstrand, says Olivier, is its air of grandeur. Surrounded by palm trees befitting its coastal positioning, it is well maintained and very secure, with access control and coded entry.
Unit sizes range from 159sqm upward, with the penthouse, which sold for R8 million in 2015, stretching over 400sqm in extent. Most recent selling prices put the square metre price at between R16 000 and R20 000, which is a premium in Port Elizabeth.
“Owners have been here either from the outset or in excess of eight years, a very low turnover indicative of a desirable living space and level of comfort. And the position is unsurpassed for seafront amenities. An exclusive, well-managed and quiet building with wheel chair facilities and accommodation for carers, its owners have traditionally comprised mostly retirees. Recently however, younger families who don’t reside permanently in PE have started buying units for holiday homes,” he says.
“Regardless of whether they’ve been renovated or not – and most units have been completely refurbished and redecorated in keeping with the building’s modern and exclusive aesthetic, they all feature spacious, gracious living areas designed around spectacular ocean views.”
Buyers with upwards of R2.7 million to spend would also do well to consider Mur de Roche, a recently launched new six unit development in upmarket Humewood. Featuring a number of ‘green’ elements, including solar geysers, gas hobs, Low-E glazing, insulated ceilings, and with a rainwater harvesting system planned for the future, the development is a quick stroll away from Humewood Beach and a host of vibey eateries.
Designed around secure, lock-up and go living, all units have sea views and at least one covered balcony with a stainless steel braai. They range in size from 122sqm to 217sqm and start at R2.7 million. Fittings are high-end and include porcelain floor tiles in the living areas, luxury bedroom carpets, solid granite/quartz kitchen counter tops, concealed cisterns and ceramic disk water mixers. Upper floor units feature raked elevated ceilings complete with dormer window detail.