Mutual Heights Community Website

Mutual Heights is a sectional title scheme (as defined in South African law), located in a noteworthy art-deco building in Darling Street, Cape Town. This web site serves the needs of the Mutual Heights Community: owners, residents, tenants, the managing agents, service providers, and others.

The Mutual Building

Opened in 1940 as the headquarters of what is now the Old Mutual insurance and financial services company, the "Mutual Building" (or "Mutual Gebou" in Afrikaans) was reportedly then the tallest building in Africa apart from the Pyramids in Egypt, and it had the fastest lifts - they still work, and they are still fast. It is one of the finest art deco buildings in the southern hemisphere, but with neo-classical features; it was one of the first conversions of an office building to residential use in the central business district of Cape Town.

  • Read more about the history of the building here.
  • See the wikipedia page here.
  • See the location of the building on Google Maps here
  • Download a 30-page copy of the Wikipedia pages (2Mb) here.
The granite cladding of the building is said to have come from a single boulder on the Paarl Mountain

The community

The community at Mutual Heights includes permanent residents, tenants, and short stay visitors. The care of the building and the community is the responsibility of the managing agents, supported by a building manager and a concierge.

What is your interest in the building?:



Since the inception of the scheme in 2005, the value of apartments in the Mutual Building has increased steadily. Cape Town continues to attract international attention from businesses and holiday makers, and there is a rising city-centre population of professional people looking for accommodation. Apart from the obvious convenience of living right in the city centre, with parking for your car, the exceptional nature of this heritage building will always attract the attention of art deco and architectural specialists. The ongoing cost of owning space in the building is reasonable, the levy rate has always been within a few percentage points of the average.

Registered users of the web site (owners and their nominees) can manage their visitors, submit maintenance requests, submit community reports, and access other useful information.



A large number of the apartments in the building are rented out on a long-term basis. The management office does not get directly involved with the management of tenancies but the local independent agents will all be willing to help. Living in the city centre has huge advantages. Within walking distance there are: supermarkets, fine food shops, the main post office, restaurants, coffee shops, chemists, doctors and opthalmologists. Apart from these basics, the building is a short step away from the City Hall (symphony concerts in the season), the Fugard Theatre (continuous theatre productions) and the occasional jazz club.

Just dwell for a moment on the opportunity to live so close to your city centre job; the location is particularly convenient for those involved with Parliament and the government of the Western Cape.


Short stay visitor

The rise of Cape Town as a world-class conference and holiday destination has led to a rising demand for places to stay in the city centre, and it is not surprising that some of the apartments in the Mutual Building are now available through booking channels such as and At Mutual Heights we manage the accommodation of short-stay visitors through our web site - it is the responsibility of owners (or their agents) to register you ahead of your arrival, so that you can be appropriately welcomed. The Concierge is on duty during normal working hours; otherwise our security desk deals with arrivals.

Please make sure that your host provides us with all the information that is needed to register you - when we have it you will receive a confirmation by email.

The team

There are several people concerned with day-to-day and longer term management of the sectional title scheme, but there are just three that you need to know about: the Chair of the Trustees, the Building Manager, and the Concierge.



Andy Bytheway was appointed Chair of the Mutual Heights Trustees in 2008. He is a retired senior academic who moved to South Africa in 1998. He has been developing and curating the community web site since the early days in 2016 - just one of his retirement projects.

Building manager

Building manager

Dayyaan Ismail has extensive experience of building management in Cape Town and he joined the management team in February 2019. He looks after the contractors working on the fabric of the building and maintains the rolling Maintenance Plan.



Jose Vital was appointed Concierge in 2017, after a period of time as senior Security Officer. He is the point of first contact for visitors at the front desk, and can deal with all those difficult questions about living and working in Mutual Heights. He speaks English, French and Portuguese.

Notices and news

Recent notices

(04 Jan 2020) Banking Hall NYE party: Comments about this extended party are invited

(31 Dec 2019) Banking Hall NYE party: The Banking Hall is hosting a New Year's eve party

(31 Dec 2019) Cleaning and restoring the East Side of the building: The large space between the Mutual Building and the Eastern Bazaar will be cleaned and restored early in the new year.

Recent news

(20 Jan 2020) 2020 Cape Town Cycle Tour - 8 March 2020 - Start Road Closures: Please see the attached message from the organisers

(17 Jan 2020) Join a walking tour of the Companys Garden: The "Friends of the Companys Garden" have a guided walk at 10am on Saturday 25 January.

(12 Jan 2020) Newsletter #46 is now available: New Managing Agents | Security | Visitor management | The Lift project | Geysers and insurance | Pets | New chairperson

Recent advisories

(11 Nov 2019) NOTICE OF FILM SHOOT INSIDE THE BANKING HALL - A film shoot will take place in the banking hall from the 12 November 2019 - 26 November 2019. Shooting will take place between 8 am - 6 pm on the dates specified.

(11 Nov 2019) Skyriders will be cleaning and painting the white steel beams and poles inside the Atrium for the next two weeks.


Do you want to get in touch?

Thank you!