In the most famous, largest and oldest
wine-growing region of the Western Cape not far from Table Mountain, many wine
farms are available for sale. Numerous winemakers, many from the
German-speaking countries, have tried to fulfil the dream of owning their own
winery in the South African sun.
However, even in one of
the most beautiful corners of the world, international economic crises do not
go unnoticed. Some of the farms once
started with great hopes are now on sale again. The industry predicts that real
estate prices will return to a more realistic level, but this does not mean
that these wineries are on offer for unrealistic bargain prices.
Wine Farms - News Wine Estates - Cape Town Property in South Africa
Wine Farms in Stellenbosch, Franschhoek and Paarl
Anyone who decides to buy a South African winery
must be prepared to compete with the wealthy from all over the world. In the
wine regions between Stellenbosch, Paarl and Franschhoek, there are Italian
industrialists, Swiss art collectors and American real estate moguls, as well
as European and South African large industrials. For example, the English
jeweler Laurence Graff, who invested about 30 million euros to turn an aging
wine estate into a luxury hotel.
The majority of the
owners, however, keep their farms in the family for decades and pass them on
from generation to generation. Nevertheless, even in the small market of the
historical wineries, there is movement. In mid-2011, for example, two
investment banks from the Czech Republic and Great Britain secured the Cape
Town wine estate Klein Constantia, where wine has been produced since 1689. The
industry is speculating on a price of 200 million Rand (20 million euro). The historical
Lanzerac estate also passed into the hands of a foreign buyer in a similar
The economy magazine
"Financial Mail" expects that Constantia Uitsig will soon be on sale,
and a possible sale of Boschendal, which also belongs to the oldest wineries in
South Africa, is an ‘open secret’.
By the end of the 1980s, the wine region of Cape Town was still quite laid-back. No one could imagine that South African wines would be found in every German supermarket - and wineries in the Western Cape of South Africa would be as popular as villas on the Mediterranean.
then, the industry experienced many ups and downs. Today, some winemakers
consider selling or reducing their farms. The international market is flooded
with wine from the so-called New World. At the same time the production costs
keep increasing Prices for
wineries have decreased by about 30 percent over the last one and a half years.
Farms were owned by an estimated 80% foreign investors and 20% domestic
investors, but now the ratio has reversed. Many affluent South Africans took
the place of the Europeans. However, the classical operation of an agricultural
business is not their main interest – owning a wine farm is viewed above all as
an investment in a certain type of lifestyle.
Today a visit to the Cape wine region is essential for Cape Town tourists. Visitors stand in awe of the dramatic mountain scenery, the aesthetically pleasing vines and the quaint Cape Dutch houses. It is no wonder that one or the other visitor goes home with a hunger to return to SA and own their own slice of South African heaven.
Europeans have been
leading the way in terms of wine at the Cape. Franschhoek was founded by the
Huguenots in the late 17th century. The French, however, were not the first to
grow wine – it was the Dutch who landed at the southern tip of Africa in 1652
who introduced winemaking.
The first governor of the Cape region, Simon van der
Stel, introduced the first vines in South Africa, imposed penalties for picking
immature grapes and planted oaks to produce the wine barrels needed for
storage. The beautiful tree-studded & historical town of Stellenbosch was named
after Van der Stel. He was also the pioneer who produced the "Vin de
Constance" on Klein Constantia, which even Napoleon tasted.
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