In Luxury Briefing’s residential property section, a Sotheby’s International Realty expert provides insight into their niche property market. Rae ‘Muffin’ Stollmeyer, manager of sales at Barbados Sotheby’s International Realty, takes a closer look at island life.
Barbados: the rock of tranquillity
As far as the Caribbean goes, Barbados is one of the more popular islands for winter sun and second homeownership. During the pandemic it has remained open to tourism but with its own strict guidelines, meaning there’s been very few cases and deaths from Covid-19. The Barbados Government has introduced the Welcome Stamp, a 12-month visa allowing people who work remotely the chance to escape to the tranquil island.
Barbados has a rich and fascinating history renowned for political and social stability, a thriving local economy and a strong national identity evident in its culture and fascinating, friendly people. The island, only 14 miles wide by 21 miles long, is home to 300,000 people has some of the highest living standards in the Caribbean, according to the UNDP Human Development Index.
The natural beauty of Barbados is characterised by its aquamarine seas, stretches of powdery beaches and a verdant tropical landscape studded by a mixture of modern and more traditional architecture. It’s the most easterly of the Caribbean islands, situated outside of the main hurricane belt, and has year-round sunshine. Barbados, an independent British Commonwealth nation, has a coast peppered with beaches, botanical gardens and the Harrison’s Cave formation.
Cove Spring House offers the epitome of luxurious, oceanfront living
From oceanfront condominiums with unobstructed sea views to expansive country houses with acres of greenery or private residences on a world-class golf course to a prestigious penthouse at Port St. Charles, there’s plenty of choice for those who do decide to choose Barbados as their home.
Since the pandemic, the demand for real estate in Barbados has boomed compared to the same time last year, with many buyers coming from the UK, US and Canada. The most popular homes are those with swimming pools and plenty of natural scenery, offering views when working from home, with prices ranging from US$300,000 to US$50,000,000.
Barbados is known for its many colonial-style homes designed by the great British stage designer, Oliver Messel, famous for his work in the West End, on Broadway, the Royal Ballet and film. Later, when his nephew Lord Snowdon married Princess Margaret, he designed their home in the Grenadines and then retreated to Barbados where he began a new career, designing, building and transforming homes on the island.
In addition to this style of property, Barbados is also known for its impressive sprawling estates such as Cove Spring House, which offers buyers privacy, a wealth of amenities and premium ocean-front living.
With a cliff-top position on the Platinum West Coast, this luxurious 10-bedroom estate sits on approximately 20,000 square feet of living space. Cove Spring’s architecture is complemented by sophisticated interiors and furnishings, arguably creating one of the grandest villas in Barbados.
In a post-Covid world, high-net-worth individuals are seeking homes that offer space, privacy and outdoor living – Cove Spring House offers this and much more.
The rise in luxury homeownership from the foreign market in Barbados could be down to the impressive Welcome Stamp initiative, but it’s also likely due to the growing development of corporate benefits that has enabled the country to capitalise on its appeal as an idyllic holiday destination, creating an auspicious environment for an increasing number of corporate citizens.
As well as its extensive range of social facilities, world-class sports tournaments and cultural offerings including the internationally renowned annual Holder’s Performing Arts Festival and the Barbados Food, Wine & Rum Festival; many international businesses and financial institutions have established regional offices in Barbados, strengthening its appeal as both a tourism destination and favourable environment for businesses.
The luxury property market in Barbados will continue to grow throughout 2021 with the demand for ocean-front homes high on buyers’ wish lists. The new Welcome Stamp allows interested buyers the chance to work remotely without being subject to local taxes. This, coupled with no restrictions for non-citizens in purchasing property on the island, makes it an attractive investment.
This one is a rock to invest in and the significant development in the past decade by both individual homeowners and developers suggests that buyers can have confidence their decision to invest in Barbados is a sound one in a much-desired property location.