The South of France east of Marseilles is now virtually out of bounds to anyone seeking reasonably priced waterside properties with berthing. But west of the Rhône there are two new developments about to come on line in the emptier spaces of the Carmague. Port St Louis is known to most Mediterranean cruising people as the place where the Rhône finally arrives at the sea. Its marina is well known for offering relatively cheap over-wintering, and now a new development affords sailors the the comforts of dry land.

Go WestAll the 85 apartments in Le Nautilea will have a terrace or balcony that borders the sea or overlooks the marina. The choice of apartments ranges from one to three bedrooms, varying in size from €115,600 for 36.6 square metres, to €227,600 for living space of 79.4 square metres. The agent, Penny Zoldan of Latitudes, sees Le Nautilea as a good investment opportunity. “As well as the possibility of occasional lets,” (including yachties working on their boats ashore in the marina) “there is also an option to let on lease of three to nine years with a return of between 4.06% & 5.08%,” she says.

Le Nautilea is a little way out of the town of Port St Louis and overlooks a bay popular with fishermen. The area boasts lots of opportunities for riding, bird watching and eating good seafood. The nearest airport is Marseilles, although Nîmes is not far away and the development is due for completion at the end of 2007.

Go WestFurther west in Languedoc-Roussillon work starts soon at Quai Saint-Loius (Port du Roy), a brand-new waterside village in Port Grimaud style without the Grimaud price tag. The project is being developed by several French companies who will offer different sizes and designs of villa on various quays around the purpose built marina. Most of the 240 units will be terraced houses with two, three or four bedrooms, plus a few apartments. The villas will be Mediterranean in style and colour- ing with balconies and small gardens overlooking the water. Nearly every house will have its own berth at the end of the garden, with a maximum size of 15 metres, depending on the property, although an existing bridge limits air draught to 4 metres. The Marina, which has access to the sea through a seven kilometre channel alongside the region’s famous salt plains, will be created by flooding the site with fresh water. Yachtsmen keen to keep their boats nearby might find a mooring under the shadow of the crenellated walls of Aigues Mortes, the medieval walled town a short walk along the towpath.

Served by Montpelier and Nîmes airports, prices for a two- bedroom villa start at €215,000 with a good possibility of long and short term rentals. Completion is expected in late 2007.

Latitudes French Property Agents;
Tel: 020 8951 5155;