Private space near forest
UMHLANGA Rocks, situated on the balmy north coast of KwaZulu-Natal has been attracting highend investors for years. What started out as a sleepy seaside village has been transformed and the Umhlanga of today has everything for the discerning holidaymaker as well as for those who choose to make it their permanent home.
Bordered by the last remaining strip of the indigenous dry coastal dune forest that once grew along the entire north coast as far as Westbrook, the Hawaan Forest Estate has remained one of Umhlanga’s best kept secrets.
“The Hawaan Forest Estate is everything that most local eco and golf estates are not,” says Chris Tyson, CEO of Tyson Properties which has secured a sole mandate to market the estate. “This small, well maintained and exclusive estate offers the peace and privacy that conventional, densely settled urban developments do not, while still providing the security and amenities enjoyed by residents of upmarket complexes.
“It is remarkable that one can be just a few minutes from the busy Umhlanga centre, close to Gateway and the surrounding business node, as well as schools, hospitals, golf courses and even the beach — but still escape back to this tranquil forest setting.”
The estate measures 157 acres with building rights for a total of 165 homes. However, it is already 50% developed with some property owners having bought more than one plot so the completed estate is expected to number just 114 houses. Of the phases released so far there are currently only 13 sites left.
“Developers and long-time business partners Pat Naicker and Tony O’Neil have created the blueprint for a truly extraordinary place. The Hawaan Forest Estate has been meticulously planned and designed with the help of architect Stefan Antoni and indigenous gardening guru Geoff Nichols, who has complemented this with his horticultural expertise and understanding of the neighbouring forest,” says Tyson.
Naicker and O’Neil bought the property from Durban Country Club in 2003 and carefully considered the roll–out of their planning applications and conceptual process as it evolved.
The partners gathered a team representing 19 different disciplines in terms of locality for town planning, architecture, environment, surveying and design engineering and a strong environmental team which carefully researched the potential development in a holistic way.
“From the outset, we decided that we would not interfere with the forest. Our land was largely dysfunctional as the cane area had been denuded over a number of years as it had been farmed, while the forest was left at risk and used as dumping and fly-tipping area, so we decided to reverse that and rehabilitate it along the way,” Naicker explains.
Architect Stephan Antoni, who created the estate’s overall layout, decided to bring ‘the forest fingers’ through indigenous landscaping, thereby ‘making’ the estate part of the protected Hawaan Forest. The 55ha Hawaan Forest is currently under the stewardship of the Environment Society of Southern Africa and has been declared a nature reserve.
Construction began in 2004, the first property was registered in November 2005 and the first homeowner arrived in 2006.
In addition to a luxury home, investors receive the benefit of a lush forest setting with incredible biodiversity that includes more varieties of trees than in all of Europe as well as a plethora of birds and butterflies and natural neighbours such as mongoose, bushbuck, bush pigs and red duiker.
All properties are strategically placed, affording corridor views towards forest and ocean. Roads with quaint names such as Mongoose Crossing, Coral Tree and Nightjar View curve through the estate, providing privacy and slowing traffic.
Gardening is strictly indigenous and homeowners have a list of 600 plants to choose from. No pets are allowed on the estate, a necessary sacrifice to protect the birds and wildlife. Price: Stands from R1,4m — just under R2m Completed 1387m2 home — R29,5m Contact: Tyson Properties Tessa Douglas 083 631 0835 Office: 031 561 6100
This 1 387m home within the Hawaan Forest Estate is on the market for R29,5m .