Fine & Country expands to sought-after Stellenbosch

A melting pot of the arts, culture and world renowned wine combines to create Stellenbosch – one of the Western Cape’s most sought-after lifestyle destinations and the latest addition to the Fine & Country portfolio. The town’s heritage is interwoven into the rich tapestry of South Africa’s past and firmly entrenched in pushing its future to ever greater heights in food, wine, art and philosophy.
Stellenbosch – South Africa’s 2nd oldest town

Stellenbosch has a myriad history dating back to its establishment in 1679 by then Governor of the Cape, Simon van der Stel, the town’s namesake. Located on the banks of the Eerste Rivier, Stellenbosch quickly grew into an independent authority as early as 1682. This rapid establishment belies the tranquil pace of life found here today, set against the backdrop of the scenic Jonkershoek Mountains. The town’s historic Cape Vernacular architecture and design reminds of a small European village, with various luxury homes and residential estates continuing the theme into modern living.

The arrival of the Huguenots in 1690 gave rise to the birth of one of the world’s most sought-after wine regions. Today, the area’s wine farms are well represented at the many international wine and spirit shows, where these producers consistently win gold or even double golds for their accomplished vintages. It is easy to get lost in the history of this village but like its dignified rise to the top of the wine regions in South Africa, the real estate industry in Stellenbosch is about to get a shake up with the launch of the internationally acclaimed property brand,
Fine & Country.

 

 A discerning team of local real estate experts

At the helm of Fine & Country Stellenbosch are Jaco Minnie, a local Stellenbosch attorney who obtained his LLB degree from Stellenbosch University. He is supported by Donovan Comerma, a chartered account and head of a property development group in Stellenbosch, as well as Barbara Kriel – a reputable realty consultant from Worcester and long-time Stellenbosch resident.

Jaco had the following to say on how the Fine & Country brand aligns with their discerning target market:  “The Stellenbosch look and feel, especially in terms of the luxury market, attracts a very specific buyer who is willing and able to pay a premium for the Stellenbosch lifestyle. We found the quality of the Fine & Country brand, materials, resources and its truly international exposure, with specific reference to its global footprint, to best suited to promote the lifestyle on offer in Stellenbosch.

A desirable lifestyle

With wine being the lifeblood of Stellenbosch, there are of course the associated benefits that come with such a region. Prospective home-owners will discover that Stellenbosch plays host to some of the country’s top restaurants. Culture is a very important part of everyday Stellenbosch life with art galleries aplenty, music festivals weekly and a plethora of outdoor activities – Stellenbosch will spoil you for choice. Outdoor enthusiasts enjoy the Jonkershoek nature reserve in particular, offering kilometers of scenic running and cycling trails. Stellenbosch also plays home to Maties Rugby Club, one of the oldest and biggest clubs in the world, at the famous Danie Craven Stadium.

Barbara comments that due to Stellenbosch’s focus on culture and quality of life, this “little Europe” has attracted inland families who want to take advantage of the town’s country lifestyle, top schools, wine estates and outdoor living. She continues: “Lifestyle is a primary driver of property values and rentals in Stellenbosch. Recognized as a sought-after node for luxury real estate in the Western Cape, demand is high which means that available properties are limited.”Stellenbosch continues to be a top location as primary residence for South African families as well holiday homes to international investors. It easily rivals fellow ‘wine’ villages like Paarl and Franschhoek and is consistent contender in South Africa’s top places to live.”

Low density living

Donovan notes the trend of an increasing number of mixed-use developments in most of Cape Town’s main commercial nodes such as the CBD, Waterfront, Century City and Claremont as a means of keeping up with lifestyle needs associated with densification. In Stellenbosch, this trend is less evident as the town is not a main commercial node, and therefore mixed-use properties are less evident in the luxury segment of the market.

The trend is however visible in luxury student accommodation in and around central Stellenbosch. A lot has been said of South Africa’s problems in terms of political instability, rising crime, rising inflation and the decrease in service delivery and many have speculated that the knock-on effect would be an overall slowing down of our economy especially in sectors like real estate. He adds: “We disagree with these sentiments as we have not seen a decrease in demand and in fact South Africa and especially towns like Stellenbosch continue to offer good value and return on investment when compared with similar destinations in Europe.”

The Stellenbosch office

Much like the area Fine & Country Stellenbosch will be operating in, the office aims to establish itself on the foundations of authenticity whilst offering the international standard of top-quality bespoke marketing services to its clients. With an offering that will be hard to beat, the goal is to attract top performing estate agents in the area to advance their careers with the use of cutting-edge technology, international opportunities and business systems. Like a good old glass of wine, Fine & Country Stellenbosch looks forward to being of excellent service to its target market no matter their palate.

 

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