Cape Town -
If you consider paying R100 000 a month to rent a property in Cape Town extravagant, imagine paying R100 000 a day.
That’s the current rental price for a night’s stay at the 7 000 square metre Enigma mansion at The Glen in Camps Bay.
Only some of the wealthiest people in the world would be able to afford a few days at the mansion which would cost about R3 million a month and R36.5m a year to rent if one stayed there every day.
For commercial or feature film shoots, it could turn out to be even more expensive.
FHM magazine has just completed a film shoot with eight international models there, which cost it R190 000 for every 10 hours, said Celeste Lombard, the rental agent at Lola Kramer Properties.
Enigma, which resembles a castle and is situated in a manicured park, is punted as Cape Town’s “grandest and most palatial mansion”.
Shaun Kramer, the sales agent for the property agency, said:
“It’s the most expensive house in South Africa, to rent and to buy.” He said its purchase price was R355m.
It was but one of several properties its European owners had across the world, including on the Spanish party island Ibiza.
As for what one gets for the extraordinary price tag: although the names of guests are kept confidential, some comments on the mansion’s website are revealing.
Londoner “Kate M” said she and her companions, who stayed there for two weeks in January, were initially reluctant to book due to the high price, but it was “the best deal we ever got” and “just out of this world”.
“Enigma is pure opulence, sensuality, a dream for the senses. If your desire is to live one time in a true ultra-luxurious palace, but with the convenience of the latest available technology, then this is the place to go.”
“Angelina B”, from California, said there was so much to see in Cape Town, but she and her fellow travellers never left the property.
“There are other stunning places… but if you love glamour, perfection, beauty and luxury while at the same time have total privacy, I can’t think of any other place which could compete,” she said.
Kramer said the owners had consolidated four properties into one and had an “eclectic taste”. Some items inside were “incredibly valuable”.
Interestingly, some of its key features are things one can’t buy – for example its view and tranquility. Its location, which offers unobstructed views of Lion’s Head, Table Mountain, The Twelve Apostles and the ocean, is described as being “one of the most spectacular on the South African coastline”.
Inside the mansion are four suites, a studio apartment and a two-storey guest house, which the agents say outclass even seven-star hotels.
* Door handles, plates and even hinges that are gilded pieces of art hand-made in Argentina by craftsmen who replicated door handles from the time of Louis XIV, the aristocratic King of France between 1643 and 1715, who lived in the Palace of Versailles.
* Wallpaper handprinted by Zuber in Paris and Persian Tabriz carpets from Essie in London.
* Chandeliers and wall lamps that are either antique or handmade.
* Original works of art, including a white Carrara marble statue named the Greek Slave sculpted in 1859 by the 19th century Italian sculptor Scipione Tadolini.
* A 100m2 3D cinema with interior decor that comes from a Moroccan palace.
* There are 10 terraces, an Olympic-sized pool, several tea houses, temples, a gym, a dance studio, a sauna, a wine cellar and a massage room.
* Every room has a 3D television and offers state-of-the-art technology, including iPads controlling music, air-conditioning, under floor heating and light settings.
* Nine staff to cater for guests with all meals concoted by chef Richard Chamberlain.