Developments with free will

Something people the world over aspire to is freedom, and it is this philosophy that South African residential development company Century Property Developments has flourished on.

All of Century’s lifestyle estates are designed to provide a sense of personal freedom and expression while maintaining tight security measures for each and every resident and their families.

Having proclaimed its core mission to be to create viable, well-planned developments, Century has worked hard since it was founded back in 1975 to meet this target.

The firm has provided increasing asset values for purchasers by enhancing the areas in which they have been located; an approach that has played a role in establishing high standards in residential development within an increasingly competitive market.

A gem for Gauteng

Specialising in residential developments and exclusive lifestyle estates, Century offers what it describes as “a uniquely South African experience” focused on financial feasibility and sustainability within the province of Gauteng. Its development track record is impressive and includes the Hilltop Loft Apartments, a 192 apartment development in Midrand, the nearby Crowthorne Village that consists of 25 homes and 28 apartments, and the upcoming Helderfontein Estate and Riversands Country Estate in Fourways.

The company claims that behind these successes lay the four cornerstones of its design ethos; these include the use of indigenous landscaping and natural materials such as wood, stone and exposed brick in their original state, as well as ecologically-friendly products in natural tones.

Strictly indigenous landscaping is combined with a uniquely South African architectural style to create an overall aesthetic that is unique to both Century and the South African community.

This philosophy is reflected in every aspect and discipline of its developments, and is something the company carefully monitors through its very own aesthetics committee, which acts to discourage clichéd and exotic styles such as Balinese or Tuscan.

One of its most impressive developments is the Waterfall Hills Mature Lifestyle Community.

A trip to Waterfall Hills

Situated between Kyalami and Sandton and adjacent to Waterfall Equestrian Estate, Waterfall Hills offer investors a mature lifestyle where comfort, enjoyment, care and security are the key considerations.

A strong emphasis on a celebration of life has been placed on Waterfall Hills by Century, who designed the development with socially-active and lively retirees in mind.

Century also focused on maintenance, insurance and security during the design stage of the project, in order to provide the easier approach to life insisted upon from today’s formerly hard-working retirees.

The development consists of 198 luxury freestanding houses ranging from one to three bedrooms, 55 one and two bedroom exclusive apartments and penthouse suites situated in the Waterfall Manor.

The active residents of the development have access to a range of sporting facilities including tennis courts and bowling greens, as well as a chipping and putting area for golfers.

Walking trails, a horticultural centre, and a gym with a large swimming pool are other features of the development.

Those looking for more of a laid-back existence do not need to worry, as other facilities on the estate include a movie theatre, various specialist shops, a health spa and an arts and crafts studio. All the facilities within the estate’s focal point, Waterfall Manor, are available to all residents and their guests.

According to Century the general mantra behind the development is that residents who have worked their whole lives will now be able to relax and enjoy an active, carefree lifestyle.

Waterfall Hills is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the large Waterfall City. Currently under construction in Johannesburg, Century is responsible for bringing one of the biggest single developments of its kind to South Africa.

Estimated to cost close to R 45billion and covering an area of 1,700ha, the Waterfall City development will be large enough upon completion to link the boroughs of Sunninghill, Midrand, Woodmead and Buccleuch, allowing residents easy access to local landmarks and facilities outside of the complex, as well as providing Century with a large pool of potential local investors.

It has been dubbed a ‘cradle to grave’ city, and will include a hospital, residential compounds, five-star hotels, conference centres, a school, offices, a lake, gym, malls, retail centres, lifestyle centres and even a cemetery.

Along with Waterfall Hills Mature Lifestyle Estate, the wider city will include the 640Ha Waterfall Country Estate and Village, and the 140Ha Waterfall Equestrian Estate.

Portfolio and people to be proud of

Established more than three decades ago, Century has evolved into a diverse entity through the addition of residential developments and luxury boutique hotels to its portfolio.

The company was originally focused on developing shopping centres in rural areas, but has since firmly established its presence in South Africa’s residential development market without looking back.

Take the Carlswald Lifestyle Estate, for example, Century is delivering a 42Ha development with a uniquely South African flavour in terms of architecture, indigenous landscaping and ‘green’ lifestyle.

The company has also demonstrated its versatile capabilities at a project named ‘The Yard’, a complex that comprises 130 student apartments.

Historically the company was in the business of trading and developing retail shopping space, but today has successfully shifted that focus onto the ‘Country Lifestyle’ segment of the property market.

This shift in focus has brought with it great emphasis on ‘green’ design, and passive climatic architecture as a key priority.

The man leading the company’s ambitious charge is Mark Corbett — a young, dynamic Wits BSc (Building) graduate, who has project managed many of the group’s shopping centre sites.

The company has now firmly entrenched itself in the housing market and in home ownership, and today has a firm belief that architecture should interact with landscaping as demonstrated in its practise of strictly adhering to an indigenous landscaping policy.

As it aims to continue to meet the demand for sustainable housing in the Johannesburg area, Century’s sales office is open seven days a week.

Building a stellar reputation

Century’s success as a leading South African developer has been reflected in the amount of awards it has received from reputable organisation in the past few years.

In 2009 its Waterfall Equestrian and Waterfall Hills Mature Lifestyle Estates won a total of six awards at the CNBC International Property Awards.

Among its achievements at the international ceremony it romped home with the Best Residential Development in South Africa for Waterfall Equestrian Estate, which also went on to collect the Best Residential Development in Africa award.

Waterfall Hills was also noted as Best Retirement Development in Africa and won when representing the continent of Africa in the ‘Best of the World’ awards ceremony in San Diego.

In South Africa, Century is noted as one of the most celebrated companies within the country’s property arena.

In 2010, CEO Mark Corbett was named a ‘Young Lion’ winner at the Nedbank Property Professional Awards.

Waterfall Equestrian Estate has won a total of seven Concrete Manufacturers Association Masonry Awards for Excellence, with two being in the Premier category two years in a row — the first such achievement by any property developer in history.

Finally, back in 2006, Carlswald Lifestyle Estate was listed as one of the top 10 non-golf residential estates in Southern Africa by two notable magazine titles.

Behind everything the company does, however, is the mantra of family values. The idea of wholesome family living has inspired Century to offers its residents a unique opportunity to live an environmentally conscious lifestyle while continuing to enjoy the benefits of a secure neighbourhood.

Its urban designs are centred on the needs of a community as a whole, and in bringing family values and wholesome living together the company has played a large role in setting the tone in the development of South African lifestyle estates.