Wednesday, July 04, 2012
Tiffindell goes on auction block - July 12 with no
Hospitality companies, developers and investors are expected to
turn out in force for the auction of South Africa's only ski
In its heyday, the 101ha farm on the Ben McDhui peak of the
Drakensberg Mountains in Eastern Cape drew hordes of South Africans
and overseas visitors, who were guaranteed 100 days of snow every
year - with snow machines to ensure skiing was always possible.
The auction on July 12 - with no reserve price set - will mark
the end of a four-year legal battle that has raged over the
property. In its final days, the resort struggled to operate
without snow machines and ski lifts, which were among the assets
that had been attached.
The High Street Auction Company said that Tiffindell's
controversial, bitter and much-publicised demise began in 2007,
with a sale gone sour. It only ended last October, following a
draining four-year legal battle.
"KPMG were appointed liquidators in 2009 and now the resort
will finally be sold to the highest bidder," said Nick
Pretorius, the auction house's Sales Director. He added that while
"no reserve" or "absolute auctions" were rare in
South Africa, the decision had been made in respect of Tiffindell
to ensure a true, market-related value for the property was
"Absolute auctions are uncommon because there is no price
protection on the seller's behalf. However, we and the liquidators
agreed that because everyone has the chance to participate in an
absolute auction, a simple case of the highest bidder wins will
generate the best possible price in current market
conditions," he explained.