For years, tourists have heard the expression “It’s Better in the Bahamas” as they flocked to the coral-based archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean consisting of about 700 islands and cays.
Now the popular tourist destination has become a haven for foreign investors wanting to purchase property as an investment, a place to live or a getaway from their regular home.
Buying property in the Bahamas has many advantages for foreign buyers, including Canadians, says Genevieve Conroy, vice-president of residential sales and marketing for the $4.2-billion luxury Baha Mar Residences located in Nassau on Cable Beach. The biggest advantage is the absence of taxes.
“That’s the benefit of investing in the Bahamas. There is no inheritance tax. No estate tax, income tax, capital [gains] tax. That’s another reason why so many Canadians and foreign investors purchase real estate in the Bahamas as well as the option of applying for permanent residency,” she says.
There is a background check for foreign homebuyers but other than that, Conroy says, there are no restrictions.
In the Baha Mar Residences, condos and villas are available for purchase in two acclaimed hotel brands: the SLS Hotel and the Rosewood Hotel.
The SLS has 107 condominium-style residences and the Rosewood has 87 condo-style homes as well as four villas. One of the villas with six bedrooms is priced at US$25-million.
“It’s extremely unique. There’s nothing else like it in the Bahamas,” Conroy says.
Residences at Rosewood start with one-bedroom studios to the six-bedroom villa. There are one-, two- and three-bedroom condos available for purchase. There are also three, three-bedroom villas. One residence, a one-bedroom studio, runs just under the $1-million mark at $995,000. The condos range in price to just over $4-million and the villas start at $6.4-million.
Residences at SLS start in price at $726,500 for a one-bedroom to $4.3-million. There are one-, two- and three-bedroom units.
“Half of our buyers are from the United States. Most of them are from what we call our feeder market – so, the northeast corridor where they have these frigid winters as well as Canada,” Conroy says. “We have a number of Canadian buyers. Canadians love the Bahamas.”
Conroy says the other half of Baha Mar buyers are mostly from Europe, such as from France and London.
“Those people are looking to purchase here primarily not just for lifestyle but as a way of investing offshore,” she says.
For the Baha Mar Residences, Conroy says the alliance the resort has with global brand hotels is a selling factor to potential homebuyers. When people are investing overseas, they want the brand recognition of the hotels.
At the Baha Mar, there are many benefits for homeowners including membership in the private club NEXUS, 24-rounds of complimentary golf every year, which is transferable to friends and family, the ability to put their residence in the hotel rental program, complimentary valet, no resort fee as well as benefits that are recognized at other hotel locations around the world.
There are also no property taxes for homeowners who participate in the hotel rental program.
Conroy says Nassau was basically unscathed from the recent hurricane, Dorian, which caused great devastation in other parts of the Bahamas.
“Baha Mar has completely redefined the lifestyle experience for contemporary homeowners with unique experiences and activities, as well as through a passionate dedication to community, culture and conservation unrivalled anywhere else in the Caribbean,” says Graeme Davis, president of Baha Mar.
This content was produced by The Globe and Mail’s Globe Content Studio, in consultation with an advertiser. The Globe’s editorial department was not involved in its creation.