Large Beach Property in Mtwapa

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The main house, large swimming pool and guest house are on an elevated cliff which overlooks the Indian Ocean and the Mtwapa Creek. The second house is at sea level on the beach.
Location :

Situated at Mtwapa, 8 miles north of Mombasa (30 minutes drive from the international airport ) is a freehold property with an area of approximately 10 acres.  It includes 1200 feet of beach frontage. Of this, about three quarters faces the Indian Ocean and the remainder looks across the Mtwapa Creek. It is backed by a swathe of natural forest which contains the Jumba ruins and which is protected by law. 

Ruins in the forest

Unique features of this property:

  • Properties of this size anywhere near Mombasa have virtually ceased to exist and as such never come on the market. 
  • This property has its own well which provides a permanent supply of fresh, sweet water and is the only one on this stretch of the beach. 
  • The property is surrounded by protected natural forest. 
  • It has the most spectacular views of any other property on the Kenyan coast, overlooking the Indian Ocean and the Mtwapa Creek. 
    Asking price is US$ 750,000

    White line indicates property boundary. The seaward boundary is the high water mark.
    400 metres direct frontage and views over the Indian Ocean and the very beautiful Mtwapa Creek.

    DESCRIPTION: The property is a unique small, privately owned, coastal estate extending in all to approximately 10 acres. The views are extraordinary; the property is set on high ground overlooking and with direct frontage to both the Indian Ocean and the impressive Mtwapa Creek. This type of landholding was once commonplace in coastal areas and, in keeping with the rest of the world, has become increasingly rare and valuable.
    The property's land extends to include the Jumba Ruins, a National Heritage site, which is also an area reclaimed to some extent by natural rainforest, which serves not only to protect and seclude the property, but also includes the very pretty, long and imposing private access drive. As the Jumba Ruins are a National Heritage site, this area of the estate can never be taken over for re-development and therefore will help to preserve the unique quality of the property, set undeniably in one of the most beautiful positions in Mombasa within an area of East Africa renowned for its natural beauty. Until you visit, it is difficult to imagine just how idyllic a location this is. Hewn out of virgin land and mangrove forest some 50 years ago by a previous owner at a time when it was still possible to choose the finest locations with the most wonderful views and build, and subsequently bought in 1971 by the owner’s father, a member of the Noon family, one of the pioneering dynasties of East Africa, Today it would be impossible to find this amount of land to purchase with has the benefit of both Indian Ocean and Mtwapa Creek frontage, and is also within easy access of the important African coastal city of Mombasa. The potential for re-design and enlargement is fantastic or to be occupied just as it is; either way, I am sure for the new owner this property will make a dream, reality.
    Situation and Transport: The area in which the property is situated, Mtwapa, is only 8 miles north of Mombasa and only approximately 45 minutes from Mombasa’s international airport. There is an excellent road from Mombasa to Nairobi, which also continues to Malindi. There is a grass airfield available for the use of light aircraft approximately 5 miles to the north of the property at Kijipwa. There are wonderful opportunities to visit the national parks of Kenya, with the Mwaluganje Elephant Sanctuary within easy driving distance and Tsavo National Park for safari expeditions, with road and air links giving easy access for visits to the Serengeti and Masai Mara.
    The Jumba Ruins is a romantic site of a once thriving Arab town with graceful houses occupied by wealthy merchants with winding streets, the remains of which still can be seen today. A town of some 60 houses and a mosque, which was built in the 13th century which has slowly over the centuries been reclaimed by the natural rainforest, its towering trees have grown through walls with massive roots and vines weaving their way where once there were windows, chimneys and streets. Perhaps it was just a decline in trading or invaders from another country that caused the demise of this once busy trading town; it is not certain. However, it is certain that today the ruins and forest are home to multitudes of indigenous animal, bird and plant life, and by their presence give another unique feature to the property.
    Flora and Fauna: It is an every day occurrence to see the ibis perching on the roof of the main house or flying over the grounds and across the creek. A pair of fish eagles have a nest nearby, the pretty Sykes monkeys chatter and stare inquisitively at you as you pass, the tiny antelope, the DikDik, always very shy is quite likely to be startled into flight as you walk along the drive to the house. The grounds have been planted over the years with coconut palms, frangipani, euphorbia and flame trees, with a majestic baobab tree, and it is not hard to understand looking at the tree why Africans call this tree in Swahili ‘the upside down tree’. A level croquet lawn was constructed immediately to the front of the property, which allows an uninterrupted view overlooking the Indian Ocean and the Mtwapa Creek. Standing in the gardens, looking out over the Indian Ocean, you get the distinct feeling that time has stood still. The fishermen are still plying their trade from dug-out canoes and trading dhows still cross the horizon.
    Leisure Facilities: The ancient city of Mombasa is still the most wonderful and romantic mix of many cultures and architecture, predominantly Arab, with its wonderful old fortress, Fort Jesus, which was constructed in the 15th century by the Portuguese and still dominates the coastline of Mombasa. The original colonial Mombasa Club still flourishes, and there are a number of first class hotels, excellent European style shops and, of course, throughout the old town the picturesque Arab shops and houses. The Tamarind Restaurant, offering internationally acclaimed seafood, occupies a wonderful position and is a superb location for the evening out with its fully equipped dhow which can be hired for special occasions or for sunset dining. Locally to the property The Moorings will be found, an unusual and casual floating bar and restaurant moored with access from a causeway toward the end of Mtwapa Creek, offering excellent food, wine, and cold beer; just another lovely place for an evening visit or to enjoy watersports. The property is also not far from the famous Nyali Beach with its wonderful hotels and casinos, and also the Nyali Golf & Country Club which is an 18-hole golf course with a par of 71 and an S.S.S. of 72. It is a real championship layout with impeccable greens and some testing short rough. There are five par 3s, all having a degree of chance for the badly hit shot and monsoon winds at different times of the year can either be a help or a hindrance, making an easy par 4 or a difficult par 5 for the higher handicap golfer. There is a club house with all facilities and a resident pro, whose pro shop will be happy to hire out sets of clubs, even for the left handed golfer. A high class restaurant adjoins the club house and snacks at the restaurant are obtainable in the club house at all times. The club also has tennis courts and squash courts, and there is a swimming pool for cooling off after the game.
    Game fishing: There is game fishing with expert captains easily to hand for the owners living only a short distance away. There is wonderful fishing for marlin and sail fish, to include big game fly fishing. The Mtwapa Creek offers safe and easily accessible areas for water skiing and sailing.
    History: A strip of coast land, which also included this property, was once under the jurisdiction of the Sultan of Zanzibar and in a treaty with the British, when they relinquished sovereignty of Zanzibar, this strip of land was returned to Kenya. Advertisements describing the Nyali Beach Hotel which was one of the first, luxury, truly international standard hotels in Mombasa, was described in its advertising as having “All the romance of the South Seas, with none of the desert island hardships”, which perhaps also sums up this property. It is interesting to note that the Nyali Beach Hotel was constructed by the grandfather of the present owner. Kenya has 480 kilometres (300 miles) of beautiful coastline which stretches from the Tanzanian border just north of the latitude 5º south to the boundaries of Somalia beyond the Arab-influenced island of Lamu. Mombasa was well known as a port for centuries, noted by the Greeks in the 1st century AD and it was with the help of Ptolemy’s early maps (on which Mombasa was named Tonike) that the great Victorian explorers went in search of the Nile, struggling inland from the coast to discover Lake Victoria; first Burton and Speke, then Speke and Grant, and Henry Morton Stanley for his epic finding of Dr. David Livingstone in 1871. In 1874 Stanley made yet another plunge across the whole breadth of Africa (his ‘Dark Continent’) tracing the mighty Congo River to its mouth on the Atlantic, a journey of 5,000 desperate miles taking 999 days, after which, it was said, Africa was never quite the same again. The explorations of those great Victorians put East Africa on the map only so far as Europe and America were concerned. Looking out at the Indian Ocean from the property or Mombasa there is a lot more to meet the eye than just the swell of the Indian Ocean breaking on the barrier reef – you are looking at liquid history. In the 7th century thousands of Muslims emigrated to Africa’s East Coast to set up townships and markets, bring their knowledge, customs and religion. In 1498 a Portuguese fleet under Vasco da Gama arrived in Mombasa. It was during the Portuguese occupation that Fort Jesus was constructed and it was not until 1729 that the Portuguese were finally driven out. There was a succession of Arab governors right up to the Protectorate days in 1895. Mombasa for centuries has been chronicled as one of the notable trading ports with a long association with the slave trade. Long after trading in slaves, prevalent for centuries along the whole coastline, was considered a crime by Christian countries, it was not so regarded by the Muslim countries. It was the putting down of the slave trade, passionately and actively campaigned for by Queen Victoria’s ‘empire builders’, that finally put an end to Mombasa’s bloodier history and diverted energies and enthusiasms into more progressive channels. Providing slaves for France’s overseas possessions – Ile de France (Mauritius) and Bourbon (Reunion) – as cheap labour for the sugar plantations, had made a lucrative living for many who were reluctant to see its abolition. At the turn of the century, however, the Railway from Mombasa to Lake Victoria was constructed. By opening up Eastern Africa, it put paid to slave trading activities and brought with it opportunities for civilisation, settlement and stability which has continued to the present time.
    MAIN HOUSE: Constructed of coral blocks under a terracotta tiled roof, supplied from Oriental Tiles and imported from Bangalore, India. Reception hall, large central inner hall, library/study area, sitting room, dining room, veranda, kitchen, 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, double carport. Note: The guest cottage is only separated from the property by some 28’ and could become a natural extension of the main building by infilling.
    THE GUEST COTTAGE: Sitting room with dining area, kitchen, veranda, bedroom with en suite bathroom.
    BEACH COTTAGE: Constructed of coral block under a Makuti thatched room. Lounge with enclosed veranda, dining room/living room, kitchen, 2 bedrooms both with en suite shower rooms. Secure store, covered car parking.
    OUTBUILDINGS: Separate quarters for 4 servants, including kitchen, wash rooms and toilets. Large lock-up workshops. Large swimming pool. Storage tank holding 70,000 gallons of rainwater collected from the roof of the main house. The property has its own well which provides a permanent supply of fresh, sweet water and is the only one on this stretch of the coast; a rare and very valuable asset.
    Note: The main house has an adjacent detached guest house and there is also a beach house directly overlooking the sea, which could also be further guest accommodation. The buildings might be developed further and benefit from further modernisation.

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    Updated: 16 February 2006 - Copyright © 2006, Web pages authored by STUDIO 2001