Long-stay apartment in Cape Town

Oct 27th, 2004, 05:48 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 2
Long-stay apartment in Cape Town


We are traveling to Cape Town on business this summer and need a place for a month and a half in December.

I was wondering if there are any travelers who've rented a FURNISHED apartment or flat in Cape Town (maximum 10 minutes away from the Waterfront area)?

We're hoping for some advice from local residents on this forum on recommended places to stay and what kind of rents we'd be looking at for a penthouse, studio or one-bedroom apartment for a month and a half. Also, do Cape Town apartments come standard with washer/driers, equipped kitchens .etc?

We were thinking of a budget of USD1200 to USD1400 - hopefully lower than this range. Any help with estimates would be appreciated...we can't find nothing on the internet that looks useful.

This is our second time on business to SA so we're kind of familiar with Cape Town, but always stayed at the Cape Grace so this will be a different experience and we don't know what to expect! Any help, suggestions and advice would be most appreciated.

Thank you for your help in advance,

bobjamessd is offline  
Oct 27th, 2004, 08:48 AM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,501
Hello Robert,

From what I can see on the Internet, your budget may be unrealistic. You'll be there during the South African summer school holidays, when accommodation in Cape Town is at a premium.

Having been in your situation, i.e., living and working in a city for a short assignment that nonetheless was longer than a vacation, I advise against a studio apartment (which sometimes is called a bachelor flat in South Africa). After a few days, one yearns for one's own space (one person wants to watch TV while the other person wants to read a book, etc.). So I recommend a one-bedroomed apartment at a minimum.

I think you'll find that, while you may have valued proximity to the Waterfront during a short stay in Cape Town, that will be a much less important factor during a longer stay.

The suburb of Observatory has some cute houses. They are tiny places in which labourers used to live earlier in Cape Town's history. More recently, however, the area has become gentrified, and many of the houses have been renovated. The area is within easy reach of downtown. While the houses are small, most of them would enable you to have a bedroom that is separate from the living room / dining room / kitchen.

Other neighbourhoods you could investigate include Rosebank, Rondebosch, Newlands, Claremont, Bishops Court, and Kenilworth. Since they are on the east side of Table Mountain and Devil's Peak, without ocean views, they are less inclined to be inundated by the vacationers who head for the Atlantic seaboard on the one hand or for the seaside towns on the east side of the Peninsula (Muizenberg, St. James, Fish Hoek, Simon's Town) on the other hand.

You can expect furnished apartments to have modern conveniences, such as microwave ovens, etc. My South African family members all have washing machines. Most, but not all, have dryers. Those who have dryers use them only as a back up during rainy weather. When the weather is sunny, they hang their laundry to dry. South African apartment buildings provide space for hanging clothes in the sun. If you pay a reasonable rental rate, I believe you could expect a dryer. If you go for a more budget-oriented place, I don't know if you can be confident it'll come with a dryer.

When people move around the world on expat assignments, it's quite common for them to use the services of a relocation consultant who helps them to find accommodation, schools for their children, etc. The services of those consultants usually are not cheap. Nonetheless, it is a different market than tourism, and competent relocation consultants really know what they are doing.

I did a Google search for RELOCATION CONSULTANT + SOUTH AFRICA, and found African Corporate Relocation Agencies. One of the services they offer is "Shortlisting of properties to view as per client specification." I don't know if it would be worth your while to contact them. It could be that, for a stay of only 45 days, their fee would be out of line with their usefulness to you. Anyway, if you want to find out more about them, their website is


A Google search for BUDGET + ACCOMMODATION + CAPE TOWN brought up these websites that may be of interest:

Global Wave Internet Marketing (Pty) Ltd claims to identify accommodation in the city of your choice and within the budget of your choice:


Accommodation Finders claims to be able to find accommodation ranging from R100 to R5,000 per day as well as monthly rates:


If you are going to be doing business in Cape Town, I imagine you have business contacts there. I don't know if you've thought of picking their brains. If you haven't tried that yet, I think it would be a good idea to do so.

Oh yes, make all of your accommodation enquiries in South African Rands. Don't even mention US Dollars. That will give you a better chance of securing a cheaper, "local" rate.

The only Fodorite who lives in Cape Town, as far as I know, is Selwyn. He is off travelling in Europe, but will be returning home in a few days.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Oct 27th, 2004, 08:58 AM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 43
Hi Robert,

There's a company in Cape Town called Village & Life (http://www.villageandlife.co.za/) which rents out fully furnished flats, both long & short term. I'm sure they can help you out but you should contact them asap because as Judy mentioned, December is high season.

Good luck and enjoy in Cape Town! Kristin
Oipuka is offline  
Oct 27th, 2004, 09:58 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,097
Hi Bobjamessd,

I think that Judy has summarised the situation very well with regard to apartment hiring in Cape Town over December and January. I do however want to emphasize something that she has mentioned and that is that in the December/Januaray period I think it is very unlikely that you will find a furnished apartment, 10 minutes away from the Waterfront, within your budget range. If you ask me the budget range needed would be an absolute minimum of R12000/month which relates to about US$2000. This range would be at a low budget level and once again I believe you would be very lucky to find this type of apartment.

As per an earlier suggestion Village and Life do cater, with an excellent product, for what you are calling for however I highly doubt if you would find anything lower than $2200/month with this organisation. In a nutshell it is a case of supply and demand and in the December/January period there is a huge demand so apartment owners call for high prices and I might add dislike long leases.

I am sorry that this is a bit of a negative answer but it is a realistic one.

You might want to try the following websites where you might be lucky to find what you are looking for:





Sorry I cannot be of more help. If you decide on an apartment and want some help in terms of finding out some more on the ground info please feel free to write to this forum and I will try and help you accordingly.

Judy I have just arrived back in Johannesburg and will be right back in the saddle in a couple of days time trying to catch up on all. Croatia, Slovenia and Italy were absolutely wonderful BUT Cape Town still remains the number one spot.

Selwyn Davidowitz

Selwyn_Davidowitz is offline  
Oct 28th, 2004, 12:06 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,501
Welcome home, Selwyn.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Oct 28th, 2004, 12:59 PM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 33
Selwyn, join Judy in a hearty Welcome
home too, hope you had a great journey..r/wes
colonelwes is offline  
Oct 30th, 2004, 06:48 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 2
Thank you Judy, Kristin and Selwyn for your assistance - I will look at the links you suggest.

I am very worried about avaibility now and hope we can get a place. I like your suggestion about getting a place further away as after a while the closeness to the waterfront may not matter much. So thank you folks and wish me luck!!

bobjamessd is offline  

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