St Francis Links goes from strength to strenght

Jeff ClauseSanta Says

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Friday, December 01, 2023 Facebook Twitter Website URL Club Website Reply Address Phone Number

St Francis Links goes from strength to strength!

by Bev Mortimer, Editor of our local St Francis Chronicle
This year, 2023, marks a significant milestone for St Francis Links because its property development period will come to an end at the estate’s next AGM on 11 January 2024.

Although all directors serving the estate have always been property owners as well, the boards of the Homeowners Association (HOA) and Club will no longer have any developer representation. The development period came as a result of all the remaining developer properties, some of which were purchased by the HOA, and which are now being sold.

So the next phase of this successful estate’s story gets even more exciting. Liezl Clause, operations manager of St Francis Links told St Francis Chronicle plans are underway to develop expanded family recreational facilities to cater for more residents who seek a full array of activities to entertain each member of the family, no matter their age.

Now in its 17th year, St Francis Links is booming. With a current shortage of property stock, the supply and demand chain currently have vacant land and completed homes at the highest pricing the estate has ever experienced. The entry level is now R550 000 for vacant land, while homes are nearing R18 million in price.

Before Covid, the estate had around 22 homes under construction at once. A post-pandemic boom in property sales and development of homes within the HOA’s strict design guidelines has led to more than 50 homes under construction consistently over the last two years.

It is interesting to note these homes are around 80% permanently occupied, as opposed to only 54% pre-Covid.  In 2020/2021, there were 112, (including 17 homes), transfers of freehold properties that were registered. This climbed to 150 (including 41 completed homes) in 2021/2022.

Once considered to be a second home development with mostly holidaymakers visiting over seasonal periods, the estate continues to turn heads since it continues to prosper. When the estate first opened in 2006, it won an award as the ‘Best New Golf Course in South Africa’.

The estate then went on to climb the ladder further and it is now firmly established as the 4th Top Ranked Course in the country.  The estate’s accolades in golf also include ‘The Best Golf Course in South Africa’, awarded in Dubai in 2021, plus numerous experience awards. The Club also won a number of ‘Best Wedding Venue’ accolades.

“We realise our estate is diverse and that not everyone plays golf,” Liezl says. “Young families, and grandchildren visiting their grandparents, need more amenities.”

She adds the Links is looking at establishing multi-sport and recreational facilities, in addition to the highly frequented Leisure Centre. This centre boasts an exclusive gymnasium and 20m heated pool with a retractable cover which opened almost 11 years ago.

“St Francis Links has earned the reputation of being a proven and unique destination for weddings, conferences and also first home residents” CEO, Jeff Clause, relates. He says the careful and responsible development of the estate contributed to the beauty of the celebrated fauna and flora enjoyed there. Indeed, since the estate is home to many species of birds, it is not unusual and it is a delight for visitors and residents to spot antelope, tortoise and other beautiful wildlife while enjoying walks on the estate.

With the acquisition of some 80 hectares of land by the HOA from the developer, Jeff also reveals that more hiking trails and mountain bike routes will expand the offering for outdoor enthusiasts. “Early foresight by our boards of directors, along with sustainable and responsible development, strict environmental protocols and building regulations has secured a vision which many from the metros in our country can only dream of.” Jeff points out that besides this pristine piece of land, the HOA also owns the Sand River Nature Reserve and is the custodian of its rich biodiversity since working closely with the Greater Kromme Stewardship Trust and Conservation Outcomes.

“In addition, the estate’s infrastructure is sound, well maintained and managed in-house – and this includes water and electrical reticulation,” Jeff says.

Of interest also, is that more than three years ago, the Links HOA invested in a large water treatment plant and now produces all of its own potable and non-potable water. Construction of new homes use only non-potable water delivered by the estate’s two water bowser trucks.  These trucks have also been used during fires in Sea Vista.

Jeff also remarks: “A strong balance sheet with well managed reserves have ensured that property owners have never faced special levies. Comparisons to estates of a similar nature show the levies paid by Links owners are among the lowest in the country.

“And we as management of this lovely pocket of excellence are well aware of  our social responsibility. Five of the most senior employees serve the Disaster Volunteer Group and the estate team members often help out wherever they are needed. They have assisted in maintaining the St Francis Community Gardens for years and also host many fundraising events for organisations such as the NSRI, Hospice and others.”

Together with their team, Jeff and Liezl Clause have built a culture of inclusiveness and they welcome local and international visitors as if they were members. “The recently renovated bar inside the clubhouse has been well received by everyone who frequents this beautiful building forming the heart of the estate. It features a new open plan pizza oven station and was recently a favourite destination to view the Rugby World Cup. This is phase one of clubhouse upgrades.”

Jeff and Liezl also reveal that Phase two plans are underway to upgrade the bar, furniture and event facilities.  The Links’ new chef Pieter Germishuys and new food and beverage manager Garth Concar are breathing new life and service that one would expect of a destination such as this, into the club offering.

The new menu features scrumptious dishes, which several have vouched for and the Links team plans an exciting festive season programme which they will publish soon.

In hindsight it is important to add that St Francis Links is truly a close community within a community. It is a place where residents feel secure. One new resident told St Francis Chronicle they have never felt safer, nor lived in a more cared for, friendly environment.

The Ladies Celebrate the holidays!
Every Tuesday, come rain or shine, the Links ladies meet for coffee at 10am. It has become a fun time of sharing and supporting each other. They enjoyed their year-end breakfast on Tuesday and had the best time! Every Links lady is precious and we invite our residents to join in.

Congratulations to Shamornay and Habibul!
On Saturday 25 November, we celebrated one of our very special own!  Shamornay, our valuable golf team member married the love of her life, Habibul Allam. Congratulations to you both!

The Library – Bring One – Borrow One
Located in the Leisure Centre, the library is well-stocked for the Links residents! Thanks to Tim and Sue Elliott as well as James Brown for maintaining it, building more shelves and always keeping an eye!

Stirling has something for everyone (Oyster Bay turnoff)
Here is a little (large) “punt” for our member, Stirling Olivier, best known for his role with Re-Max and their support for our monthly golf days. Stirling also makes music and has performed here at the Links. Now you can join in to listen (at the Oyster Bay turnoff – ONE 33 Gin Distillery) and belly-laugh with Barry Hilton and live music on offer!
Other Events at ONE 33

 Great golf
Re / Max Competition
Par-3 Betterball Stableford – 24th November 2023
1st Place
Pandy Katakuzinos
Roger Smith
27 Points C.i
2nd Place
Fouche Swart
Kevin McClure
27 Points C.o
3rd Place
Justin Rosewarne
Werner Siemens
24 Points
Saturday School IPS – 24th November 2023
1st Place
Vlam Micahu 42 Points
2nd Place
Darren Sugden 39 Points
3rd Place
Tony Gunton 38 Points
4th Place
MJ Venter 37 Points C/i
5th Place
Yan Coesens 37 Points C/i & C/o

More to look forward to
Friday Lunch Specials
Join us on Friday afternoons for our Fishy Frydays Special. Open to members and visitors. Running for a limited time only!
Family Sundays at St Francis Links
As we move into the festive season, it is always nice to spend some quality time with your family. So join us for Family Sundays throughout December.
Book Now!
Gino Fabbri in Artificial Un-Intelligence – 21 December 2023
It will be a laugh a minute with Gino Fabbri for one night only at St Francis Links!
Book Now!
The Sensational Six at St Francis – 23 December 2023
Join us for a night to remember!
Book Now!

More than a fitting
It’s 10, 20, 30 or more metres
We could tell you that you should have a fitting. But that’s not where the conversation should start. If we’re talking tee shots, the conversation starts with you:

How far are you hitting your tee shots with your swing speed?
How consistently do you make good contact and get to your longer distances?
How many times do you find the fairway?

From those answers, comes a discussion about ambition and priority. What would make the biggest impact on your game and your enjoyment of the game?

The conversation is still about you, because what we’re searching for is the best result for you.

Now we go to work. With your swing, swing speed, and launch data, how do we quickly maximise your results in distance, accuracy, and consistency? What can we do with a perfectly fitted club to change your game from the tee?
The gift we can give you
We want to change your experience out on the golf course, tee-shot after tee-shot. It’s what we’re trained to do. It’s what the technology now makes even easier for us to do. It’s never been easier to find the right launch angle and spin rate (with your ball speed) to deliver you the best possible results.
Book an assessment and fitting with us

Duca Del Cosma: Your Italian Sole Mate
Book a shoe fitting

Connections in the holidays
The best thing about Christmas
While many in the northern hemisphere are having to put the clubs away, or pull on the extra layers and thermal gloves, this time of the year offers us the gift of golf.
Use some time in the holiday to get out and play golf with friends or family. Recharge on the golf course. Remember there’s not many activities that are better for your well-being than playing a round of golf with friends.
And there’s few feelings more joyous than feeling a solid iron approach shot leave the iron face or to sense that you’ve found the sweet spot with your driver. And how do you feel when you see a golf ball check and stop after you’ve hit a pitch shot?
Can we help?
How can we help make this the best golfing holiday season for you?
Let us know how we can help



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