Agri­cul­tural land could be bloom­ing good buy

Michelle Funke dis­cov­ers that a his­toric Con­stan­tia rose gar­den is about to be sold by ten­der

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THE Old Sillery Rose Gar­den, a rare and beau­ti­ful piece of land with his­tor­i­cal and cul­tural sig­nif­i­cance in the Con­stan­tia val­ley, is to be sold by ten­der through Gre­eff Prop­er­ties, an ex­clu­sive af­fil­i­ate of Christie’s In­ter­na­tional Real Es­tate. Mea­sur­ing 3.2174ha, the Old Sillery Rose Gar­den en­joys Grade II her­itage sta­tus.

As part of one of the few 19th cen­tury Bri­tish era land­hold­ings es­tab­lished in the Con­stan­tia Val­ley, The Old Sillery Rose Gar­den is sig­nif­i­cant for its agri­cul­tural her­itage, as a site for the cul­ti­va­tion of veg­eta­bles, herbs and flow­ers.

On the neigh­bour­ing coun­cil prop­erty, be­hind Con­stan­tia’s well known and loved “lo­cal”, Pedd­lars on the Bend, one can still pur­chase fresh bunches of the blooms cul­ti­vated in this highly fer­tile cor­ner of the val­ley.

Ac­cessed by Brounger Lane, an un­paved coun­try road, The Old Sillery Rose Gar­den is se­cluded and en­tirely ru­ral. It is home to two wa­ter­courses, vines and var­i­ous cul­ti­vated ar­eas de­mar­cated by tree lines, fur­rows and gur­gling streams. The sur­round­ing moun­tains can be seen be­yond the trees over the lay­er­ing of farm­land.

In terms of the new in­te­grated zon­ing scheme, the site is zoned as Sin­gle Res­i­den­tial 1 with a band of pub­lic open space wrap­ping around the east­ern, south­ern and western bound­aries. De­vel­op­ment po­ten­tial is pos­si­ble within the her­itage in­di­ca­tors.

“With its lo­ca­tion in­te­gral to the green­belt sys­tem, the land would make an ideal eques­trian prop­erty or a low-im­pact, lim­ited res­i­den­tial de­vel­op­ment; how­ever the rich soil and agri­cul­tural her­itage sug­gest good po­ten­tial for an or­ganic pro­duce farm or a farm­ers’ mar­ket,” says Gre­eff Prop­er­ties CEO, Mike Gre­eff.

“We an­tic­i­pate a good deal of re­sponse to the sale by ten­der of this unique site,” he says.

“The ten­der process re­quires that nei­ther the agent, nor the sell- er or the prospec­tive buy­ers are aware of the amounts of any of­fers sub­mit­ted un­til a spec­i­fied date,” ex­plains Gre­eff, adding that the prop­er­ties may be viewed on ad­ver­tised show days and by ap­point­ment prior to the sub­mis­sion date for of­fers. On the dead­line day, all of­fers, which will be in sealed en­velopes, are to be opened and seen for the first time by the seller and es­tate agent alike.

“The ten­der process is best suited to se­ri­ous sell­ers who de­sire a quick sale. It cre­ates a spirit of com­pe­ti­tion among buy­ers and en­cour­ages them to sub­mit their very best of­fer at the out­set as op­posed to their cheeki­est.

“Apart from the speed and ef­fi­ciency a ten­der can cre­ate, sell­ers usu­ally find the ten­der process re­ward­ing than the fol­low­ing of tra­di­tional av­enues to sell a prop­erty, and this is not just from a pos­si­ble fi­nan­cial point of view, it’s also about a per­ceived sense of fair­ness,” says Gre­eff, who notes that since the ten­der process in­vari­ably yields sev­eral of­fers, all of which are pre­sented to the seller, he or she has the op­por­tu­nity to se­lect the best op­tion.

“The key for the seller is that he or she re­tains con­trol over the sell­ing process as there’s no obli­ga­tion to choose one of the ten­ders if none of them is found to be ac­cept­able. The agent may go back to the buy­ers and ne­go­ti­ate for a higher price or the seller can ask for a re­tender at a newly spec­i­fied date,” ex­plains Gre­eff.

He says that the ad­van­tage for the buyer is that no mat­ter what fig­ure he or she of­fers, it will be pre­sented to the seller who, in turn, may not ac­cept any of­fer be­fore the pre-spec­i­fied dead­line has been reached. Buy­ers may also make con­di­tional of­fers which will be in­cluded in the en­ve­lope.

“The se­crecy of the process ob­vi­ously means that the prospec­tive buy­ers can­not base their of­fers on those of other in­ter­ested par­ties, nor can bids be pushed up as they might be in a pub­lic auc­tion,” says Gre­eff.

“This is a rare op­por­tu­nity to own an en­tirely ru­ral piece of the Con­stan­tia val­ley’s her­itage and to en­sure the con­tin­u­a­tion of a beau­ti­ful and mean­ing­ful legacy.”

Ten­ders close on Oc­to­ber 31. Con­tact: Gre­eff Prop­er­ties Arie Kadé 083 448 0488 Ch­eryl Teubes 082 457 9980 Chris­ti­aan Steytler 082 658 0071 Angie Bloom 083 678 7876

Above and be­low: The his­toric Old Sillery Rose Gar­den. Dat­ing back to the 19th cen­tury, the farm is a liv­ing link to the ‘golden age’ of Cape Town’s orig­i­nal flower sell­ers.

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