NEIGHBOURHOOD

PROPERTY: Spotlight on Summerstrand

Golden beaches of this PE suburb make it a popular home for families

 Summerstrand is one of the Bay’s oldest and most popular suburbs, and it’s easy to see why.

In the early years of the city, Summerstrand was part of the Strandfontein farm owned by Piet Retief.

“He is honoured through a monument close to the Summerstrand Village shopping area,” says resident Sune Diedericks.

This sought-after suburb is right by Port Elizabeth’s main beachfront, while the Boardwalk casino and entertainment complex, Summerstrand Village shopping centre, Humewood Links golf course, Bayworld, and Nelson Mandela University are all within easy reach. The Port Elizabeth Airport is also just 10 minutes drive away.

“I would definitely recommend this area to people in the market as it’s so close to the beach. There are also good pre-primary, primary and high schools within a radius of one or two kilometres; plenty of retirement villages and – during high season – a lot of entertainment close by,” says Sune.

Property

According to Sune, properties in Summerstrand vary considerably and there are options to suit most buyers ranging from impressive, free-standing homes to convenient townhouses and lock-up-and-go apartments.

“It caters to a wide range of people – single, married, young and old,” she says.

Given that the suburb has three Nelson Mandela University campuses, students are also well catered to. Many homeowners have added student accommodation to their homes over the years.

Since the beachfront is such a drawcard for tourists, especially in summer, there are also numerous hotels and guesthouses to suit all tastes and budgets.

The unbeatable location is a big plus for people looking to buy properties, too. Many of these properties boast appealing views and being so close to the beach is a decided boon.

“Our home is located in the older part of Summerstrand. I love that it’s spacious, with a big garden and also close to schools,” says Sune.

Shark Rock pier in Summerstrand
Shark Rock pier in Summerstrand

Schooling

There are schools ranging from pre-primary to high school and then, of course, tertiary education at NMU in Summerstrand.

“My kids have been to Dolfyntjie Pre-primary, followed by Summerwood Primary and then Pearson High School. We think back with fond memories to the schools they attended,” Sune says.

“The schools provide excellent academic support and offer a wide range of cultural activities and great sport facilities.”

Cape Recife school also has a solid reputation and strives to provide quality education and support services for pupils with special education needs.

Hobie Beach in Summerstrand
Hobie Beach in Summerstrand

Explore

Hobie Beach, which is also the scene of the annual Splash Festival centred around Shark Rock Pier every Easter, is among the most sought-after beaches.

Pollok Beach farther south is also popular and you’ll frequently see windsurfers, surfers and other watersports enthusiasts in the area.

The entire beachfront promenade is also popular for walks – the walk from the pier to Something Good is popular.

The Boardwalk caters to all ages and has a casino for adults, with 700 slot machines and 20 gaming tables. There’s an entertainment centre, mini-golf and go-karting as well as a variety of eating establishments and shops in the complex.

Entertainment is always on offer, either at the Boardwalk amphitheatre or at the hotel's convention centre.

Golf enthusiasts can head to the Humewood golf course while Bayworld and the museum complex just opposite Humewood Beach make a fun weekend or school holiday visit.

Property prices

You can expect to pay around R2,5-million to R4-million for a house in Summerstrand with the median asking price R2,698-million for a typical property such as four-bedroom house.

You can expect to pay R1,5-million upwards for a property in a complex and R1,65-million for one of the sea-facing apartments.

Around half of the property in this suburb is in houses - 53% - following by flats with 30% and homes in a complex at 17%.

The Radisson Blue is one of two five-star hotels in Summerstrand
The Radisson Blue is one of two five-star hotels in Summerstrand

DO

  • There’s so much to do in Summerstrand. You could either spend the day at the beach relaxing or try your hand at watersports.
  • At Bayworld you’ll see penguins and seals at the oceanarium. The museum provides a fascinating glimpse into the Bay’s historic and prehistoric past and the snake park at Bayworld is also worth checking out.
  • Happy Valley with its pathways is still popular with families over weekends, but best avoided after dark.
  • Cape Recife Nature Reserve boasts a stunning beach, rolling dunes, coastal fynbos, marine and birdlife, rock pools, and a 133-year-old lighthouse. Sanccob also has a centre here. The reserve is renowned as a must-do birding site in Port Elizabeth for marine and freshwater birds.The tern roost at Cape Recife is considered the best place in SA to spot the roseate tern. Seven species of tern are found here including the roseate tern, Antarctic tern and occasionally the Damara tern. Waterbirds that are often seen include the little bittern, South African shelduck, African black oystercatcher and Southern tchagra.

SHOP

There is limited shopping area.

“Summerstrand Village and the Spar complex in Humewood provide all the necessities,” says Sune.

There are also some shops at the Boardwalk, and a SuperSPAR in Admiralty Way.

The Boardwalk in Summerstrand offers several activities
The Boardwalk in Summerstrand offers several activities

EAT

  • Spur: family-friendly fare;
  • Something Good: fun roadhouse which has a surfer vibe and great burgers;
  • Blue Waters Café: dining on the water’s edge;
  • Coachman on the Bay: surf and turf next to the ocean;
  • La Kouzina: something for everyone – from pizzas and sushi to burgers and pastas;
  • Ocean Basket: no-frills seafood but always good;
  • Raasoie: delicious Indian fare (it is Halaal);
  • Company Social Brasserie: craft beers and burgers;
  • Ginger Restaurant: fine dining on the beachfront;
  • Barneys Tavern: great for drinks with friends and to watch rugby;
  • John Dorys: good seafood.
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