|Baha Mar homes hit local market|
Guardian Business Editor
Published: Aug 08, 2012
Five real estate companies have been selected by Baha Mar to market its 307 elite residences to local and international clients.
Following a workshop with the property firms, the up-and-coming mega resort has officially launched residential sales here in Nassau, with prices starting at $1.5 million. According to multiple property sources, Baha Mar has sold approximately 50 of the residences since executives unveiled the product in June during an exclusive London soiree.
Damianos Sotheby's International Realty, H.G. Christie Ltd., Mario Carey Real Estate, Cross & Mosko Real Estate and Development Company and ERA Dupuch Real Estate will now bring their resources to bear in the sales push.
"It's an exciting product," said George Damianos, president of Damianos Sotheby's International Realty.
"I believe the market will definitely respond. The fact you actually own it and there are no condo fees and user fees is quite attractive, and you also get a chance to get points if you don't want to use it, for other hotels. It offers a good return on your investment."
The top property firm, routinely dealing in multi-million-dollar transactions, is rolling out a specific marketing campaign to reach clients. Damianos said his agents were "inspired and excited" by the workshops put on by Baha Mar last week.
Richard English, vice president of residential sales at Baha Mar, said initial interest has exceeded expectations.
Baha Mar’s Senior Vice-president of Administration and External Affairs Robert "Sandy" Sands, said sales thus far have been "all over the map". He reported strong interest from the Middle East, the Far East and the UK in particular. And now that the focus has shifted to local realtors, the mega resort hopes to continue that momentum.
"The Bahamas has a tremendous amount of high-net-worth individuals who come to this jurisdiction. So it's important that the project is represented locally," Sands added.
Damianos said the lion's share of sales will not come from Bahamians, but rather international investors in the region.
The offerings include a $1.5 million junior one-bedroom unit, running up to a $6 million four-bedroom villa on the beach. Executives at the 1,000-acre, $3.5 billion development have launched the Baha Mar Collection to further entice international investors and add value to the residences.
As the owner of the property, investors have the option of using the units all year round, renting, or collecting points towards hotel and vacation experiences around the world.
Partners now working with Baha Mar include the Fairmont in Mecca, the Mandarin in Hong Kong and the Burj Al Arab in Dubai.
During last week's session, local realtors enlisted to sell the elite properties were introduced to a Baha Mar sales iPad app, which allows them to tailor their pitch using the popular technology.
Baha Mar, set to open in 2014, includes 2,200 new rooms within five well-known hotel brands, including Rosewood Hotels and Resorts, Mondrian, a Morgan's Hotel Group property, Hyatt Hotels and Resorts and a casino hotel yet to be announced.
The latter is slated to become the largest casino in the Caribbean. A 200,000-square-foot convention center, 200,000 square feet of retail and entertainment space, an eco-water park, 3,000 feet of beach front and an 18-hole Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course round out the list of features and amenities for the Cable Beach resort.