R1bn hotel and apartment development for Cape Town CBD

John Rabie (left) of Signatura and Shaun Rai on one of the penthouse balconies. (Supplied)
John Rabie (left) of Signatura and Shaun Rai on one of the penthouse balconies. (Supplied)

Cape Town - Construction and remodelling of the former Safmarine building in Cape Town's central business district (CBD) will be complete by the end of next year, and will see it transformed into the Radisson Blu Hotel and Residence, Cape Town.

Situated on the corner of Riebeek and Long, the property is located at the start of Cape Town’s Fan Walk and is just under a 10 minute walk away from the V&A Waterfront.

There will be 11 floors of executive apartments filling the top half of the building. The lower half of the building will become one of the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group’s flagship city developments.

A backup generator will service the entire building.

It is a development of R1bn and is the brainchild of veteran developer John Rabie, and property owner Shaun Rai. Rabie, the non-executive chair of Rabie Properties, masterminded the multi-billion rand Century City and Westlake developments.

In the past two years, through his Signatura label, Rabie has rejuvenated 19 buildings throughout Cape Town and the Atlantic Seaboard. The new apartment blocks were developed in response to the demand from SA’s growing upper middle class for luxury living close to the city and by the ocean.

Rai is the founding director and member of various successful property investment companies.  He is acting CEO of JSE listed Ascension Property Fund, which at the date of the last published interim financial results in December 2014 had achieved a total return of 73.7% and 82.6% on it’s A-linked units and B-linked units respectively. Rai’s Stonehill Property Fund acquired the building from Old Mutual in July 2014.

“Although the Cape Town city centre is well known to be open for business, it is increasingly becoming a very sought-after home address,” said Rabie.

According to the latest statistics from the Central City Improvement District, residential property worth R296m was sold in the CBD in 2014, with average prices rising from R1.3m to R1.55m from the year before.

“The apartments will be particularly attractive to international executives and local businesspeople who want to stay in Cape Town and have the V&A Waterfront, with its top restaurants and shops, as well as the Cape Town International Convention Centre on their doorstep,” said Rabie.

The executive units start at 40m². Penthouses are between 150m² and 160m² with 12m² to 24m² terraces. Prices start at R1.63m.

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