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Hibberdene: Beaches beckon holiday haven

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Considered the gateway to Hibiscus Coast, Hibberdene is an affordable destination with beautiful beaches

Considered the gateway to the Hibiscus Coast, Hibberdene is a small coastal town located halfway between Scottburgh and Margate that has long been a popular holiday destination for local and foreign tourists.

Named after the former postmaster-general of Natal, Charles Maxwell-Hibberd, Hibberdene is known as an affordable destination as well as for its outstanding beaches ideal for swimming, scuba diving and snorkelling.

The town has five popular beaches, four of which are secured by shark nets.

Hibberdene serves as a shopping centre for the small settlements and countryside surrounding the town, while a twice-daily shuttle bus connects the town with Margate, Port Shepstone, Durban and King Shaka International Airport.

Centrally positioned along the KZN South Coast, Hibberdene is within easy reach of all the amenities along this stretch of coastline, offering holidaymakers and local residents access to a choice of beaches, rock, surf and deep-sea fishing, golf courses, restaurants and other interesting nuggets of entertainment.

Business opportunities abound within the tourism sector, from holiday and short-term accommodation letting to bed-and-breakfast facilities, self-catering cottages and flats, hotels, guest houses, restaurant and beverage outlets, shopping facilities and entertainment ventures.

The central shopping district includes Hibberdene Village Mall with Spar as the anchor tenant; the smaller Marlin Mall with Pick n Pay Local and Pick n Pay Liquors as the anchor and the strip mall development anchored by the Engen garage on its northern access. While accommodating national retailers to sustain the foot traffic, the three zones are a key factor in supporting the local economy by providing outlets from which local businesses and entrepreneurs can open retailing and service facilities.

The Mercury Hibberdene Children’s Holiday Home has provided seaside holidays to generations of underprivileged children since opening its doors in 1935. The facility generates income by offering accommodation to corporate businesses and private individuals. Picture: Terry Haywood Photography

Another key element to Hibberdene is The Mercury Hibberdene Children’s Holiday Home, a facility that opened in 1935 to provide children’s holidays to underprivileged youth. The home accommodates 120 children separated into two dormitories overlooking the garden and the sea with camps organised during each school holiday.

In providing that seaside experience, the home operates commercial accommodation facilities for team-building, corporate outings and private initiatives.

Investors seeking opportunities to enter the Hibberdene commercial property market can take advantage of various businesses for sale. Pam Golding Properties has an ice business on its books for R650000 that includes ice machines, sealers, a water filtration system, glass top display freezer, ice-making bins and other essential equipment. The property can be leased on a three-year contract for R6500 a month excluding lights and water.

Hibberdene has sound tourist attractions with good beaches, accommodation and caravan parks as well as the possibility for improvements and development. The Vida Centre includes various food outlets. Picture: Terry Haywood Photography

Re/Max Coast and Country has vacant land with sea views on its books within walking distance of the main beach and entertainment.

The 1081m² site on the market for R230000 can provide an opportunity to build accommodation that can be let when not in private use or used as a business investment capitalising on holidaymakers.

Engel & Volkers KZN South Coast has a 4ha smallholding for sale that has a main double-storey colonial-style house with wraparound verandas and various other accommodation options from which income can be derived. On the market for R2.8million, the main house consists of four bedrooms, a designer kitchen with granite counter tops and a separate scullery.

There is also a rondavel and flat with the former including a large en-suite bedroom and lounge, dining area and entrance hall. The flat has been renovated and comprises two bedrooms, an open-plan lounge and a kitchen.

The farming area includes workshops and sheds, staff toilets and showers as well as six offices, a store room, kitchen and bathroom facilities. The property is under irrigation with its own borehole and a shared dam.

The Marlin Mall has Pick n Pay as its anchor tenant. Picture: Terry Haywood Photography

Fun park, holiday chalets, fresh fish outlet among attractions

The Jolly Roger Fun Pub 

This small fun park, eatery and pub is located on Hibberdene’s main beach and offers a full day’s entertainment to patrons. Adults and children alike can ride the super tubes or play mini-golf before enjoying a meal and drinks while admiring the sea views. 

Fifi’s Fresh Fish and Takeaway

An iconic business on the South Coast, the queues that wind outside the door speak to the value and worth of this business capitalising on its location near the sea. 

One of several holiday accommodation facilities in Hibberdene, this one operated by Mr Holiday Letting. Picture: Terry Haywood Photography

Marhaba South Coast Chalets

One of numerous businesses offering beachfront accommodation in Hibberdene, the Marhaba South Coast Chalets provides patrons with luxury, comfort and hospitality at reasonable rates. Units have fully equipped kitchens, colour TV sets, outdoor furniture, braai facilities and secure parking, while the communal area includes a games room, swimming pool and dart board.

Hattitude

With its name playing on the urban definition for an attitude that comes with wearing certain hats, specifically ones which are rare, expensive, show authority or denote a fraternity or group membership, Hattitude offers patrons stylish hats and accessories from its outlet in the Hibberdene Village Mall.

Mr Holiday

Letting Also one among a host of similar businesses, Mr Holiday Letting specialises in shortterm holiday rentals.

Income-generating opportunities

Land availability

Hibberdene has significant tracts of land available for development on which investors and/or developers can capitalise as a business opportunity. Opportunities for revamping and redevelopment. Typical of older seaside towns, Hibberdene could benefit from investments into revamping, upgrading and redeveloping some of its shabbier properties and amenities. Rather than being viewed as a negative, this provides opportunities for new business to stimulate local economy.

Labour

A sad reality of South Africa generally and the South Coast specifically, is local unemployment levels are high, meaning a supply of skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled labour is plentiful. 

Informal street trading is prevalent along Hibberdene’s beaches. Picture: Terry Haywood Photography

Capitalising on the growing tourism demand

The KwaZulu-Natal South Coast has always played second fiddle to the more expensive North Coast, but there remain significant opportunities for capitalising on the growing tourism demand in this market segment. These include holiday rentals and accommodation, tour guiding, birding and nature-related ventures, entertainment and food and beverage outlets – either within national franchises or as independent players.

Lifestyle

Few lifestyles beat living near the beachfront and Hibberdene offers the opportunity to move away from the rat race and embrace quieter living within earshot of the crashing waves and within easy access of some of the country’s most prestigious golf courses.

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