Featherbrooke Estate5th Apr 2017
The perfect outdoor lifestyle
A love and appreciation of the great outdoors is a core element of the lifestyle at Featherbrooke and the estate has won three coveted SALI awards.
The estate was initially seen as being ‘too far out’ of the main cities and, as a result, consumer interest was cautiously slow. However, a stronger housing market has seen development mushroom, and large malls and satellite shopping centres as well as a number of private schools and even the opening of a casino in the area have resulted in the growth of the local community and the need for new and financially viable residential property.
The full title properties range in value from R 3 million up to R 13 million and the few vacant stands’ prices range from R 1.8 million to R 4 million, with one recently selling for R 5 million. More than 90% of homeowners occupy their properties, with the remaining choosing to receive a rental income.
Featherbrooke Estate offers an extremely convenient option for city professionals wanting easy access to neighbouring regions such as Pretoria, Roodepoort and Johannesburg, with the nearest main intersection at Hendrik Potgieter and the N14 Krugersdorp Pretoria Highway only minutes away. The vast majority of the residents fall between the ages of 35 and 55. Young families are attracted to the on-site Montessori School, and the recently opened hospital and clinic add to the convenience of living at Featherbrooke Estate.
A love and appreciation of the great outdoors is a core element of the lifestyle at Featherbrooke and the estate has won three coveted SALI awards – two Gold and one Silver – for their well-maintained, indigenous-friendly gardens. Gardening services are outsourced to an external contractor who maintains all parks and common property, whilst residents remain in charge of maintaining the pavements and their own properties. The fully developed estate is cloaked in natural woodland and just over 20 hectares of the 146-hectare estate is designated to succulent gardens, luscious parklands, winding walkways and 17 dams that cater to all needs.
Sugarbush Park, along the western edge of the estate, has been left virtually untouched and offers a natural connection to the botanical gardens, with protea grasslands dominating properties toward the mountain, whilst the gently flowing Crocodile River along the eastern boundary provides endless hours of pleasure. Residents have direct access to the adjacent botanical gardens offering a fantastic opportunity to walk, hike, climb or just simply enjoy the sight of the black eagles against the waterfall, whilst a number of tennis and squash courts as well as a soccer field, netball poles and a cricket pitch cater for the more active, with the clubhouse available for refreshments. Pilates, karate and dance classes and a photo club on the estate are run by private entities for residents and an extensive refurbishment has just taken place to accommodate a new restaurant, and includes additional toilet facilities and an enclosed lapa area, as well as a conference venue for small meetings, intimate weddings and children’s parties. Children are also accommodated with wooden play equipment in four of the parks and skateboarding facilities, as well as a stimulating Children’s Exploration Garden.
The master plan allows for 1045 stands, of which 1026 are completed, with expertly designed homes forming part of five cluster-sections. Houses in Res 1 are situated on larger stands and homes range from nothing smaller than 220m² to 1200m², whereas those homes in Res 2 are no smaller than 160m². Residents are encouraged to allow the free movement of small animals that also call the estate home, including a number of tortoises and mongoose. The estate has an extensive list of wild birds, in excess of 110, and there is even a bird hide and cycad ramble, providing residents with a rare and special opportunity to enjoy bird sightings and cycad spotting.
A total of five full-time staff members are currently employed and a board of 10 members, along with management staff, oversee the daily operations and communicate with residents via a monthly magazine and on-site information boards, SMS and email correspondence as well as the estate website and social media pages. A recycling collection service is provided and a privately employed refuse removal service is also used. Solar geysers and panels are allowed on properties provided that they remain within the guidelines of the aesthetics committee, and residents are permitted to harvest rainwater. The Featherbrooke Homeowners’ Association Board rates corporate governance extremely high with committee terms of reference and has various checks and balances in place to ensure strict compliance. The estate has a mountain ridge and no public roads alongside any part of the estate, with only one entrance and exit point, which is managed around the clock by an outsourced private security company. Residents can be assured of extremely secure access control, which includes cameras, electric fences, access control and patrol vehicles during the day and night.
Security related new age technology is constantly upgraded, whilst identity verification technology, CCTV cameras, license and disc barcode scanners are used at gate entry. SMS-authorised access technology provides residents with freedom of choice in terms of visitor access and a control room with large TV screens and IT equipment and air-cooled safe room monitor the 132 infrared motion detection CCTV cameras on the 5km fence, which is manned by two controllers 24/7, and homeowners also have the option to have a house alarm linked to the main gate.
From its inception more than 20 years ago, it was always envisaged that Featherbrooke Estate would maintain the indigenous ethos of the local area and act as an extension of the adjacent gardens. Maintaining a green footprint is second nature to this estate, which perfectly balances an optimal lifestyle while being seamlessly at one with nature.
Images Courtesy: Paul Smulders RE/MAX Masters