Sea views and property news
Cruising World MagazineOf all the Caribbean islands,Grenada is one of the least commercially developed. So beguiling are its palm fringed islands, turquoise seas, azure skies and tropical air that many are keen to buy into their very own “island in the sun”. The island’s haunting beauty and its welcoming population, has encouraged a sizeable number of foreign nationals, largely from the U.K. and North America to become permanent or part-time residents.

Cruising World MagazineThe island boasts mountains, forests and a dazzling coastline, but it is the many indented bays of the South Coast that are the star attractions. The prime residential areas are Lance aux Epines, True Blue, Fort Jeudy and Westerhall Point where building lots go for around U.S.$2.00-5.00 (£1.15 - £2.90) a square foot or about $44,000-98,000 (£26,000 - £56,000) for half an acre depending on location and proximity to the water. The large individually built homes in the area tend to be in “colonial tropical style”, often in wood with large wrap-around verandas. Most are painted in gentle pastels but a substantial number are decorated with the locally popular bright colours from deep turquoise to hot orange. Those currently on the market are for sale by private owners rather than developers such as the 5-bedroom fully furnished property set in ¾ of an acre with breathtaking views over Westerhall Point at US$390,000 (£230,000). Prices have risen following Hurricane Ivan, but are now stabilising.

Cruising World MagazineTapping into local knowledge is the best way to get the most attractive properties at the keenest prices but for visitors that is easier said than done. Unlike many other Caribbean islands at present there are no purpose built condominiums or gated developments although several are either under construction or in the planning stages. One such is Virgin Bay next door to Horizon Yacht in True Blue Bay. The new marina will have 80 berths and the developers plan to cut through from the beach to create a lagoon with further berths for residents in the proposed encircling houses and apartments. At Prickly Bay a popular area with easy access to the capital St George’s, the area around the marina is being developed by Prickly Bay Waterside Limited. The development will include extensions to the berthing, allowing space for 120 boats. Jutting out into the bay will be 7, 5-bed 5-bathrooom “Marine” houses designed to look like boat prows thrusting into the water. Phase 1 is due for completion in 2006.

Cruising World MagazineSeveral bays to the East is Egmont Point, a beautiful peninsular reached across a new bridge. An infrastructure of roads and services has been laid out allowing access to the lots dotted around the bay and on the hillsides amongst the trees. As all seashore in Grenada is public property the developers have chosen to create a landscaped walking and jogging track along the seafront. A protected inner bay provides a calm, if shallow anchorage for boat owners. Egmont Point is intended to be not just a winter haven, but as a year round community. The developers have negotiated special deals to help qualified purchasers finance their chosen lots.

Foreigners are able to buy property in Grenada upon payment of the Alien’s Landholding Tax (currently 10% of the selling price). The procedure is simple, but is usually undertaken by a solicitor. Whilst the formalities are minimal, the process can take up to 3 months to complete. All property owners must pay an annual property tax as well as a transfer tax on the sale of the property.

Swansea Bay
Swansea Bay may not be tropical but it’s a hot spot for property. The new Swansea Point development located in the Maritime quarter next to the marina in an area with many shops, bars and restaurants, has attracted a lot of interest and substantial sales. Some of the properties engage with the town whilst others have spectacular views of the River Tawe and Swansea Bay. Once completed the 5-stage development now in its second phase will offer 600 new homes. All the apartments in St Christopher’s Court the first stage of the development have already been sold, with only 6 town houses remaining. 50% of the apartments in St Catherine’s Court the next stage have already been reserved off-plan even before their prices have been released. St Catherine’s also includes a stylish row of townhouses. “ The number of purchaser buying off-plan and even before they know how much the property will really cost is testament to the unique nature of this development, ”says Sharon Robinson, sales director for Persimmon Homes Wales. “It’s particularly surprising since we don’t have a show home at present so visitors have only been able to view a model of the development.” A show town house will open in January. Prices currently start at £160,500 for a 2 bedroom flat and £242,000 for a four-bed townhouse.

Dartmouth Marina
Those seeking a smaller scale more exclusive development should look at the carefully designed Dart Marina just along the riverside from Dartmouth. This delightful town has terrific restaurants and speciality shops and is a centre for sailing. There is a great variety of day cruising as well as easy access to the Channel Islands and Brittany. Importantly for yachties, Dart Marina has 110 pontoon berths. The development of 10 town houses and a range of apartments overlooks the Dart and its myriad of boats. Whilst the exteriors are designed to blend with local architecture using local slates, flagstones, granite sets and cobbles, the interiors are modern and are Smart Home Enabled, using sophisticated domestic systems to control lighting, telephones, computer and network entertainments, security appliances and heating. A one-bedroom apartment starts at £435,000 and a 2-bed townhouse at £945,000.

No Man’s Land Fort
Cruising World MagazineFor those who seek even more seclusion No Man’s Land Fort in the Solent is once again on the market. One of 4 forts built following the 1859 Royal Commission, it was designed to defend Portsmouth from the French. Made of massive granite blocks, the upper walls are covered in armour plating. In the 1990’s the fort was bought and converted into a private residence, but was then transformed into a 21-bed room hospitality venue of over 65,000 square feet. There is a fully glazed observatory with spectacular views of the Solent, dining areas, indoor swimming pool, Jacuzzi, gym, and a roof garden. The fort is served by its own water supply, generator and 2 heli-pads, as well as a landing stage and a winch for certain scale marine craft. “It could,” says Luke Hawkesbury of the agents Savills, “depending on planning permission once again be transformed into as private home. It is truly a world of its own.” Savills is inviting offers and despite enormous interest it has not yet been sold.

Grenada Egmont Development
www.grenadaegmont.com

For individual properties
www.grenadaexplorer.com

Prickly Bay Waterside Development
Hamptons International
0870 111 0047
www.hamptons.int.com

NonSuch
020 8605 9530
uk@newfoundproperty.com
www.newfoundproperty.com

Swansea Point
Marketing suite 01792 465 002
www.persimmonhomes.com

Dart Marina
Knight Frank
01803 837119
jane.summers@knightfrank.com

No Man’s Land
Savills
020 7499 8644
lhawkesbury@savills.com
www.savills.co.uk