For some tropical waterfront homeowners, living by the water affords an endless variety of activities and sights to behold-fishing, boating, bird watching, sailing, kayaking, swimming, and surfing.
For others, coastal living equates to a quiet refuge, a place to escape and connect with nature.
Take a quick 40-mile trip south from Florida, and you’ll reach a 700-island country unlike any other: the Bahamas.
“We have a monopoly on our location to the United States,” says Colin Lightbourn of Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty in the Bahamas. “The Bahamas will always have an appealing location because of its proximity to the United States. You don’t have to go too far from home to reach paradise.”
The Bahamas and its capital, Nassau, has become a popular destination for travelers looking for the ultimate island getaway, but recently, many affluent buyers are looking for more than just travel. They’re investing in the island’s undiscovered rural areas for business and the niche luxury real estate markets were the property values are going up, Colin notes. “An investor recently purchased a private island for $100 million. It’s an indication that luxury real estate in the Bahamas is still in high demand, despite what’s going on with the worldwide economy.”
In addition, the Bahamian government has done heavy investing to improve the Bahamas, like putting $400 million into Lynden Pindling International Airport, the largest airport of the island, to create a new terminal. The government has also passed multiple legislative acts, including the Hotels Encouragement Act, which gives tax and development incentives to those who decide to build or restore hotels, like buyers from Europe, South America and Canada who have been purchasing boutique hotels throughout the island. And those who do invest can enjoy a tax friendly environment. The Bahamas doesn’t levy taxes on capital gains, corporate earnings, personal income, sales, inheritance or dividends, making it an ideal location to start a business.
But of all the pros of moving to the Bahamas, Colin believes the quality of life is what makes living in the Bahamas so ideal. “If someone wants a beautiful home with a great location and friendly neighbors, the Bahamas is the place to live.”
Naples has its own downtown municipal airport for private jets, which simplifies travel in and out of the city. Bill Earls of John R. Wood Realtors describes neighborhoods such as Port Royal, with entitlements like the world-class yacht basin and beach club which boast extensive docks and luxurious ships along Naples trend setting coast. The quaint, 1920s charm of Old Naples boasts exquisite shopping, dining and art galleries. Everywhere activity flourishes in this low-density, well-designed community.
It’s no wonder that Naples is a top retirement choice for many captains of industry. With its eclectic mix of beautiful homes-ranging from custom compounds to Mediterranean, French and British Colonial styles-Naples offers one of the most desirable locations in Florida to purchase luxury real estate.
With its beautiful setting, cultural attractions and 300 miles of winding intracoastal waterways, Fort Lauderdale has earned the reputation as the “Venice of America” The south Florida city, acclaimed for its Mediterranean-inspired architecture, clean white beaches and sophistication, has drawn savvy international and domestic investors who appreciate the city as a haven for enjoying friends and family.
Boasting weather in the upper ‘70s to low ‘80s from November to April, Fort Lauderdale is one of the world’s yachting capitals, perfect for fishing and enjoying water sports on the Atlantic Ocean. Fort Lauderdale’s residents also enjoy the convenience of nearby executive and commercial airports, as well as easy access to the Broward Performing Arts center, the Fort Lauderdale Art Museum, and a wealth of fine dining and shopping. Luxury homes within the city often boast distinctive features, such as outdoor summer kitchens and open-air living areas to grace beautiful, custom resort-style pool areas which take full advantage of Fort Lauderdale’s balmy, tropical climate.
As Julie Jones, Associate Broker at Premier Estate Properties, explains, “Fort Lauderdale is truly a stunning city, with the waterways and beaches. It is clean and safe, constantly improving and are-inventing itself even during these recessionary times.” She adds, “just visit and see the mega yachts behind the waterfront mansions, and you can be assured that this is a great place to live!”
South Beach, Miami is best described as having something for everyone, no matter their age or interests. Known to the locals as SoBe, it is located at the southernmost tip of the main barrier island in the beautiful sunshine state, Florida. Whether you’re looking for tranquility, spectacular beaches, or just some excitement, South Beach is the perfect place for you. One of the best aspects of South Beach is that everything you would possibly want is close at hand.
Living in South Beach is like having your own personal looking glass into the different cultures and diverse people of the area. There are multiple emerging districts developing at a rapid pace, yet this changing landscape only adds to the multi-faceted appeal of South Beach, Diane Lieberman of South Beach Investment Realty says, “This is a world-class sophisticated neighborhood and is one of the most exciting places in the world.”
In addition to its famous beaches, South Beach offers exceptional dining, beautiful architecture, an exciting and energetic nightclub scene, relaxing spas, and many fashionable boutiques. It’s also home to the highly acclaimed New World Symphony. Diane adds, “South Beach is a fun place to live and work, and it seems that it just keeps getting better and better!”