Part of the original Newlands Farmhouse, dating back to the 1700s.
One of Cape Town's oldest suburban residences, this property is today a well-loved and wholly unique family home, boasting a superlative location in the sought-after Southern Suburbs. This Grande Dame retains much of the elegance and grace of the 18th century - including the original gateway built in 1794, the almost-five-metre-high ceilings and the distinctive Cape Dutch gabling; as well as the stature of the 1840s when it was extended and embellished with Victorian features. But it has also been lovingly renovated to provide a contemporary family home with cutting-edge technology and innovative green features that propel it seamlessly into the 21st century.
There are subtle nods throughout to this National Monument's rich history. These include the original Cape Dutch windows and shutters, the yellow wood and teak doors in the lounge and dining room and a rare stinkwood floor. The subsequent Victorian influence can be seen in the plaster architraves above the door lintels, the chamfered edges on interior wall corners and the exposed decorative wallpaper panel exposed in the interior passage. The formal lounge boasts Brazilian mahogany panelling from the Cape Town Opera House. It was placed in the home in the 1920s when the property was formerly rezoned for residential use. There are also light fittings from the same period. Although redesigned for open-plan living, the new flow does not eclipse the old-world charm of this historical gem. By closing a few doors, the downstairs area converts easily into an imposing formal dining and reception area. One can almost picture these rooms filled with guests as it would have been during the 18th century when its first owner, Alexander van Breda, entertained. Today, it is filled with light as the doors lead onto a bright conservatory kitchen that has been configured to blend with the garden and mountain backdrop.
There are three sizable high-ceilinged bedrooms and a large family room downstairs. Upstairs has been converted into a self-contained living unit, complete with bathroom and bedroom. The property is ideal for a family working from home, as this space can also be used as a loft office, children's play area or teen lounge.
There is also an outhouse which has been converted into a dual-use space: an office and a self-contained guest cottage. Other features include four functional fireplaces, state-of-the-art security, an 11-metre solar-heated swimming pool and a barbecue place - once used as a dovecote - that is more than 250 years old.
Set on an expansive erf of almost 2,000m2, the property offers a farm-like sense of tranquility that belies its suburban location close to top schools and the city centre. As such, it affords the idyllic lifestyle one would expect from a rustic retreat. The masterful overlay of past and present has reimagined this heritage property, transforming it into a distinctive and contemporary family home.