Buying and Renting Property in Seapoint
Sea Point (Afrikaans: Seepunt) is Cape Town's most densely populated suburb, situated between Signal Hill and the Atlantic Ocean a few kilometres to the west of Cape Town's CBD. Moving from Sea Point to the CBD, one passes through first the small Three Anchor Bay suburb, then Green Point. Seaward from Green Point is the area known as Mouille Point (pronounced MOO-lee), where the local lighthouse is situated.
Sea Point is the only high-rise area available along the entire Cape Town shoreline and therefore a very popular area for living, investing and owning first or second homes and apartments. Before the upward rise of its real estate it used to be regarded in parts as a dangerous area, as some apartment blocks were neglected by absentee owners. Since its oceanside location and the interests of foreign investors has pushed prices upwards, criminality has moved to other suburbs, such as Rondebosch and Constantia. Many foreigners and local investors see it as a place of urban rejuvenation with many Dutch, German and British owned properties.
Due to the previous Group Areas Act Sea Point has an uncommon South African demographic profile. Sea Point has a diverse community consisting mainly of whites as the area was historically, during the apartheid era, classified as a white area. In the late 1990's the area experienced an increase of ownership from foreigners and from the local coloured population of South Africa. Today Sea Point is home to many ethnic, social and religious groups such as Jews, gays and Nigerians.
Layout and lifestyle
Sea Point is a suburb of Cape Town which is situated on a narrow stretch of land between Cape Town's well known table mountain in the southeast and the Atlantic Ocean in the northwest. It is a high density suburb where space is at a premium due to its prime oceanside location. Houses are built closely together towards the northern mountainside while many apartment buildings are more common from its centre and towards the beachfront. An important communal space is the beachfront promenade, a paved walkway along the beachfront used by residents and tourists for walking, jogging or socialising. Looking upwards from the promenade towards Lion's Head and Signal Hill on either side of Table Mountain the suburb shows its more exclusive areas against the upper mountainside within the so-called "Avenues", connecting roads which lead towards the upper edge of the suburb.
All along the oceanside of the Sea Point promenade the coastline has different characteristics. Some parts are rocky and almost inaccessible, other parts have open beaches. Sea Point beach adjoins an Olympic sized seawater swimming pool, another beach further towards the city is known as Rocklands. Adjoining Sea Point is Three Anchor Bay. Sea Point's beaches are generally covered with washed up mussels from the oceanside, unlike the beaches of Clifton and Camps Bay. The rocks off the beaches are Basaltic, with extensive beds of kelp seaweed offshore. Unlike the Indian Ocean side of the peninsula, the water is colder (11C - 16C). Graaf's Pool is a U-shaped concrete structure built out on the rocks, a walkway measuring about 50m into the ocean and ending in a broader T-shape. It is often used by couples and tourists on their late afternoon walk to experience the fresh air from the ocean.
Ships entering the harbour in Table Bay from the east coast of Africa have to round the coast at Sea Point and over the years many of them have come to grief on the reefs just off shore. In May 1954, during a great storm, the "Basuto Coast" (246 tonnes) ended up on the rocks within a few metres of the concrete wall of the promenade. A fireman who came to the assistance of the crew was swept off the wall of the swimming pool adjacent to the promenade by waves and was never seen again. The vessel was soon cut up and carried away for scrap.
In July 1966 a large cargo ship, the "S.A. Seafarer", was stranded on the rocks only a couple of hundred metres from the Three Anchor Bay beach. The stranding was the cause of one of Cape Town's earliest great environmental scares, because the cargo included drums of tetramethyl lead and tetraethyl lead, volatile and highly toxic compounds that were in those days added as a lubricant to motor fuels. The ship was gradually destroyed by the huge swells that habitually roll in from the south Atlantic. Salvage from the ship can still be found in local antique shops.
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