The Spanish real estate market has been among the hardest hit in the Eurozone, but the same can’t be said for the country’s Balearic Islands, particularly Ibiza and Mallorca. Wealthy foreigners from the U.S., Russia and China are snapping up properties and driving up prices on the two island vacation destinations, and local realtors say the market performance is the complete opposite of that on the mainland. Properties are selling in gate communities on both islands for anywhere between €2 million and €25 million, and the higher prices are not slowing interest. For more on this continue reading the following article from Property Wire.
The worst appears to be over for the top end of the property market in Spain’s Balearic islands with demand increasing especially from wealthy overseas buyers.
Americans, Russians and Chinese buyers are increasingly attracted to the lifestyle offered on Mallorca and Ibiza, according to Sotheby’s International Realty.
Daniel Chavarria Waschke, the managing director of the firm which has offices in both Ibiza and neighbouring Mallorca, said that the market has already picked up.
‘Ibiza had its recovery year in 2012, light years ahead of faltering markets on the Spanish mainland. Even off plan and in-construction property is selling at remarkable pace, usually the hardest product to sell in a typical holiday home market as buyers tend to want something tangible and finished. This proves Ibiza’s reputation as a safe haven for real estate investment,’ he explained.
He says that an example is the gated condominium resort of Cala Conta on Ibiza’s western coastline where 95% of phase one sold out off plan in less than a year at prices of €1.6 million or more for each villa.
He points out that comparatively high prices are not putting buyers off and that across the island the most substantial homes are in greatest demand for 2013 particularly from celebrities.
Another example is the security conscious gated community of Vista Alegre on Ibiza’s south coast. ‘Here a finished villa may sell for anything between €2 million and €25 million but sales are brisk, with interest from all nationalities including a handful of footballers from the Spanish national team. Nine sales went through in 2011, when the island was supposed to still be in a time of economic adjustment,’ said Waschke.
Mallorca, the largest of the Balearic archipelago, is not quite out of the recovery stage just yet. ‘Mallorca is basically one year behind Ibiza in terms of recovery. At the top end of Mallorca’s property market the worst is over and actually never went through the massive corrections of mainland,’ he explained.
‘Most luxury homes haven’t dropped more than 15% in price and some seafront apartments or villas with panoramic views have even increased in value. Whilst there are currently some great opportunities for buyers, once these have been snapped up Mallorca’s recovery will accelerate in 2013,’ he added.
Throughout the property downturn demand for holiday homes in Mallorca has remained high, largely due to the mix of nationalities involved. The island is two hours flying time from most northern European cities and more than 80% of buyers in Mallorca are not Spanish. Properties on the island are also popular with Germans, Austrians, Swiss and buyers from Scandinavia.
Overseas buyers are attracted by the pretty inland villages, beautiful coves, marinas and beaches, imposing mountain ranges and 24 golf courses. Upmarket design is also helping to attract buyers. The Philippe Starck designed superyacht marina Port Adriano, Nikki Beach and Jumeirah Port Soller Hotel and Spa all opened in 2012.
These kind of venues are proving to be a hit, particularly with the Russians, 200,000 of whom visited Mallorca last year. Almost 23 million passengers used Palma International Airport in 2012 and the airport has been extended and has an increased number of flights for 2013 including London Heathrow, Vienna, Helsinki and Belfast.
Ibiza is also enjoying a surge in flights with British Airways adding a direct London Heathrow service to their hugely popular London Gatwick and London City Flyer timetables.
This article was republished with permission from Property Wire.