By TBY | Dominican Republic | Aug 31, 2014
Meanwhile, what attracted 4.5 million people to holiday on the Caribbean island is patently obvious, even before you down your first rum. Yet, the resort sector involves more than visitors […]
Meanwhile, what attracted 4.5 million people to holiday on the Caribbean island is patently obvious, even before you down your first rum. Yet, the resort sector involves more than visitors in loud shirts, and its investment proposition generates revenue as foreigners and locals alike part with cash for bricks and mortar. The beaches are therefore large blips on the radar of luxury real estate developers as they meet foreign demand for coastal accommodation from the awfully well off.
THINGS THEY RESORT TO
Most tourists freshly arrived frown at the prospect of sleeping on the beach. They haven’t had to either, as the Dominican tourism infrastructure is in the midst of exponential growth. The sector had 2,475 rooms under construction from January to June 2013, just over the Bahamas’ print of 2,271. One force behind this construction boom is Grupo Piñero, a vast hospitality player that owns the prestigious 12 property Bahía Príncipe hotel chain, boasting over 6,000 rooms, while providing as many Dominican jobs. Additionally, Spanish Globalia group is set to invest in the construction of 3,500 additional hotel rooms. And meanwhile, Puerto Plata’s Amber Cove cruise ship facility will facilitate increased visitor arrivals.
HOME SWEET CASA
In recent years, the pronounced development of Dominican resorts, primarily Punta Cana and Casa de Campo, has enticed international home-buyers to purchase holiday getaways, generate rental income, or relocate. And while for reasons of proximity most hail from the US, Canadians, Western Europeans and Russians have joined the party. The legal framework is foreign-ownership friendly and residency a relatively simple affair, while political and economic stability have underpinned a sustained rise in luxury housing prices. A front door in up market coastal areas can set you back anywhere from $6 million for a swanky villa with your own private beach, while two zero’s short of that sum will buy you a modest condo.
Not that the locals are left out of the property investment equation, mind you, a case in point being the prestigious Puerto Bahia project on Samaná Peninsula, a haven for all things yachting. According to the Juan Bancalari, President of Puerto Bahia, “As per the owners of the housing properties in Puerto Bahia, around 70% to 75% of them are Dominican citizens.”
A glowing example of the high-end real estate on offer is Grupo Piñero’s “Playa Nueva Romana” real estate resort, a colossal 6.5 million sqm scheme where celebrity tenants include Spanish tennis virtuoso Rafael Nadal. The underlying concept is a popular one, namely to provide a self-contained community featuring all a resident could need without leaving. With two kilometers of beach, as many first class golf courses, a marina, and exclusive shopping and dining, in addition to all of the wellness facilities residents can’t do without, it has proven to be a magnet for investment. Properties come in 20 styles varying in location from proximity to the beach to a short putt from the golf course.