Blog contributions are provided exclusively from Luxury Real Estate members throughout the world.
Courtesy of Michel Cruz, Rimontgo Real Estate
The luxury sector is booming. Why? Because in addition to a solid traditional base in the developed economies of Western Europe, North America, Australasia and Japan there is now also a veritable explosion in the numbers of people from emerging markets who are euphemistically called ‘emerging classes’, but might more accurately be referred to as the New Rich.
Though just a tiny demographic within their home countries, they tend to come from countries with such large populations that their sudden growth in real terms over the past ten years has been phenomenal. Hailing from countries such as China, South Korea, India, Malaysia, Brazil, Mexico and Russia, they have swelled the ranks of the world’s wealthy significantly within a very short space of time.
New spending power
Each region naturally brings its own cultural background and consumer characteristics to the table, but one thing that all these people have in common is a hunger for luxury, both in the tangible and the symbolic sense of the word. Money provides access to travel, information, refinement, luxury goods and services, and the ability to mix in circles that could be described as an international elite.
While the majority of these new industrialists, technocrats, innovators, entrepreneurs and socialites do not come from the heartland of Europe, this is very much the region at the heart of their attention, as it is above all European luxury and tradition that they seek in the form of the continent’s many luxury brands and products ranging from jewellery, fashion and cosmetics to cars, watches and yachts.
Europe’s unique position in this field is based upon a rich cultural tradition that dates back to the times of kings and aristocrats, and the exquisite works created for them by the finest craftsmen. The latter form the foundation of many of the legendary brands that everybody wants to have a piece of – and which are driving the current boom in the luxury sector.
Naturally Asia and North America also have rich traditions of craftsmanship and quality products, but somehow Europe’s history has endowed it with an iconography that is not only hard to emulate but also very highly desired because it is the very embodiment of what people the world over continue to regard as ‘luxury’. For this reason, those who have ‘arrived’ waste no time in acquiring their share of it.
Implications for European real estate
Though there is a natural time lag between spending on European luxury brands and real estate on the continent, the desire to acquire signature properties in Europe is the ultimate culmination of the same process. After building up private, residential and commercial residential property portfolios within their own regions many of the new wealthy people invariably turn their focus on classic locations in Europe and the USA.
The most famous of these are naturally New York, Paris, London and Monaco – and they continue to top most wish lists – but more and more people are spreading their horizons to also include the likes of Florida, California, Hawaii, the Caribbean and also iconic locations across Europe. In this, Europe’s rich cultural and geographical diversity within a relatively compact area once again puts it in a unique position.
In addition to city pads in Madrid, Barcelona, Vienna and Rome there are the country estates of France, England and Switzerland, historical properties and wineries in Italy and Spain, and of course the classic Riviera appeal of the Mediterranean, in such places as the Côte d’Azur, Sardinia, Portofino, Mallorca and the luxury Spanish coastal resorts on the Costa Blanca and Costa del Sol.
It is these areas, but also other parts of Europe, that affluent and increasingly well-informed buyers from regions across the globe take a keen interest in, opening up a highly diverse but ever more important new market especially in the luxury segments. Where good air links, communication facilities, security and services meet spots of exclusivity married to cultural refinement and/or natural beauty, demand is at a premium.
European uniqueness as a prime commodity
Though price is often not a primary consideration, value and prestige are. Apart from England, France and Switzerland, the main geographical emphasis of this real estate demand is along the Mediterranean coastlines of Italy, France and Spain, with regions such as Valencia and Jávea experiencing a surge in interest from especially Russian and Chinese buyers, along with a very steady level of demand from Northern Europe.
Rimontgó’s clients in this field are usually successful businesspeople who wish to spend part of the year in a safe, warm environment with good services, exclusivity and a very high quality of life. The fact that the rest of Europe is seldom more than two hours away is another key element in this formula, as is a broad choice of exclusive properties and residential areas.
Asian, Russian and South American clients tend to purchase a home for their own use, but always as a sound investment, and quite frequently they widen the playing field by also investing in commercial properties with a certain prestige, such as wineries, resort hotels, land and also prime offices and retail outlets. In all of this a sense of uniqueness simply adds value to the very special position that European luxury currently holds.
Maui—the Valley Isle is featured in the latest article on the Language of Luxury blog. Luxury Real Estate member Betty Sakamoto of Sakamoto Properties was interviewed.
“Sure, Oprah and many other celebs own homes here. But, top celebrity status on Maui belongs to Laird Hamilton, often referred to as the “greatest big wave surfer to have lived”. He is also credited for igniting the popularity of stand up paddling (SUP), a sport that Hamilton says is a return to the traditional Hawaiian way of surfing, as practiced by King Kamehameha almost three hundred years ago.”
As Fall continues to bring colder weather for some, we take a look at a warmer part of the world—Kauai, Hawaii. Luxury Real Estate member Yvonne Summerfield of Premier Kauai Real Estate is interviewed.
“Elvis was married here in Blue Hawaii. Spielberg filmed Jurassic Park here. The magnificent scenery of the Garden Island of Kauai has been the backdrop for countless other famous films including South Pacific, King Kong and even Avatar. We asked the top luxury real estate marketing professionals who live and work here what is most beautiful about their island. Invariably, they said that the scenery was breathtaking, but it is the people of Kauai and the strong sense of community they create together, that is the true beauty of the island.”
Each year in January the best golfers in the world converge on the Maui to compete in the PGA season-opening event at Kapalua Resort's Plantation Course. Only champions from the previous year's PGA Tour are eligible to play, so this tournament features golfing's elite. Kapalua's par 73 Plantation course, designed by Ben Crenshaw and Bill Coore, spreads across luxuriant terrain and offers breath-taking ocean views. The record for this 7,411-yard course of 62, was set by K.J. Choi in 2003 at the Mercedes-Benz Championship. In 2012 the winner will walk away with a purse of over $1 million. Come to Kapalua and see whether last year's tournament winner, Jonathan Byrd, will succeed in defending his title in 2012.
Luxurious Destinations specializes in deluxe vacation rental homes in gorgeous locations from Hawaii to Mexico and other tropical destinations, like Belize, we have a superb location for you. We provide the ultimate luxury in private vacation home rentals and enhance your stay with professional personal concierge services. Let us know how we can assist you.
Courtesy of Michael Edlund, Director of Technology at Luxury Real Estate
Here at Luxury Real Estate, we are constantly updating our website to make it more useful for you, our members. We like to hear what features you like and could use, so due to popular member feedback, we recently added new functionality in the Luxury Lounge.
Each second home market has feeder markets—the areas that buyers most often come from. For example, Seattle is a feeder market for second homes in Idaho. It's of great value for brokers in a market to network well with brokers from their feeder markets so that they can pass referrals to people they know and trust. Previously as an agent in the Luxury Lounge, you could only display your particular service areas, but you can also now add your Feeder Markets. If you’re an agent in Hawaii, you may wish to add Seattle as one of your feeder markets—or if you’re in Brazil, Florida may be a lucrative feeder market for you.
When you log into the Luxury Lounge, click on the blue “My Lounge” button in the top right hand corner. Then click “Profile” to edit your personal profile. From this page, you will notice a horizontal line of tabs, one of which says “Feeder Markets”. We’d like you to be among the first to take advantage of this new tool in the Luxury Lounge—so go ahead, fill it out. I’ll wait.
Done? Good. Very soon, we will make it possible to match service areas and feeder markets between different members and suggest who you ought to network with based on this information. We are excited for the new business opportunities within the LRE® network this will enable!
So please, keep trying out all the features in the Luxury Lounge, and as always, let us know what you think—we are here to work for you!
Now it’s the Big Island’s turn to praise their many features. Luxury Real Estate members interviewed in this article include Rebecca Keliihoomalu and Brodie Callender of MacArthur & Company Sotheby’s International Realty, Rob Kildow of Hualalai Realty.
“On the West Coast you have the Beverly Hills “Golden Triangle” with Rodeo Drive running through it. Across the Pacific Ocean, on Hawaii’s largest and geologically youngest island, you can find the Kohala Coast, also known as the “Gold Coast”. You may not find extensive high-end shopping there, but you can find an active, luxurious lifestyle that is defined first and foremost by its sun-drenched climate, tempered by soothing, tranquil trade winds. With temperatures that vary only slightly between 70-85 degrees the Gold Coast has only 8 inches of rain all year, on average.”
Hawaii knows 'Luxury'. Luxury Real Estate members Patricia Choi of Choi International, Patricia Case of Case Properties, International, and Sachi Braden of Sachi Hawaii were all interviewed for an article extolling the riches and appeal of Hawaii's island of Oahu.
“Many people associate luxury real estate with the extravagant lifestyles of the rich and famous, with conspicuous consumption, creature comforts and sheer opulence. Although, this side of luxury can definitely be found on the Hawaiian Islands, there is a deeper, transcendent story of affluence to be discovered here. It can be found in the richness of cultural diversity that is honored and championed on the Islands combined with a true sense of community, sharing and giving that is expressed in the Aloha spirit.”
If you’re a regular Private Trade Winds blog reader or if you follow us on Facebook and Twitter, then you’re probably already aware of our new “Spotlight Destination” promotion. The promotion launched in June with our Spotlight shining on Hawaii where we featured villas on the Big Island, Oahu, Maui and Kauai. The weeks following brought us to the coastal communities and wine country of South Africa; the desert, mountains and beaches of California; and lastly the laid-back beauty of Mexico! It’s been a blast, and I’m happy to report that people are loving it!
Each week we’re shining our Spotlight on a new destination which will be announced on our blog, facebook and Twitter. Don’t worry, if social media isn’t your thing you can also email firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know that you would like to receive our weekly Spotlight Destination announcement in your email.
So, what’s it all about? In the interest of full disclosure – we want to spoil you! We’re giving you the opportunity to travel like a Private Trade Winds client. It’s our version of a try before you buy program. Just book any villa featured in our weekly Spotlight Destination and you will receive all the value added inclusions normally reserved for clients of Private Trade Winds. That would be services like daily housekeeping and roundtrip airport transportation; the personal assistance of our dedicated Travel Advisors and Concierge for all your air and ground transportation, and a welcome gift will be waiting for you at your chosen destination, along with something special from Private Trade Winds to make your trip more enjoyable. It could be a decadent spa treatment, a round of golf or perhaps a personal chef credit. Each destination has its own unique offering which is gifted to you by Private Trade Winds. Other amenities await your arrival like luxurious spa robes, high-end bath amenities, and bottled water and coffee replenished daily.
Why are we doing this? We’re giving you the opportunity to try before you buy. We’re confident that once you take your first Private Trade Winds Villa Vacation you won’t want to travel any other way. So be sure to check in daily on our blog, and follow us on facebook and twitter to see where our Spotlight will be shining next. Remember you can also email Judy Sweetland at email@example.com or call 866.PTW.4LUX Ext. 804 to receive your announcements and updates. Spoiler Alert - this week . . . Costa Rica!
Hualalai Realty and Rob Kildow has sold Tim Boyle of Columbia Sportswear a $8.3 million dollar golf course home in the Four Seasons' Hualalai Resort on the Big Island of Hawaii. The 5,900 square feet home has spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean, immaculate fairways, and mountains. The home is located in the Hualalai Resort which offers residents the five star luxury services of the the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai.
More about Hualalai Resort:
On the Big Island of Hawaii's Kona-Kohala Coast, Hualalai recaptures the spirit of another time. Swaying palms hide the rooftops of the beachfront bungalows and authentic Hawaiian homes. Dramatic green fairways cut through the lava and drop to the coast to hug the sea.
Pathways wind through open dunes, by ancient Hawaiian fishponds, through flowering gardens that perfume the air. Gentle hosts welcome all to their ‘ohana, family, with a heightened level of hospitality that is called ho‘okipa. Experience the Hualalai lifestyle from the comfort of a private villa, residence or homesite. Welcome to Hualalai. In this serene paradise, the dream of Hawai‘i that everyone holds in their hearts is fulfilled.
More about Hualalai Realty:
Hualalai Realty has been part of Hualalai Resort’s development team since 1995 and is committed exclusively to property transactions at what continues to be one of the most sought after residential resort communities in the world. We are the only on-site real estate office at Hualalai, and are uniquely positioned to share the “Hualalai Story” in an insightful and comprehensive manner. Rob Kildow and his expert luxury real estate team have been selected to exclusively represent the Luxury Real Estate Board of Regents for the Island of Hawaii also known as the Big Island.
Courtesy of Whalers Realty Inc.
When the bell rings from the shadows light springs forth to spark hearts and minds. The set changes, the eternal dance renews. 2011 marks the 33rd Annual ART MAUI exhibit at the Schaefer International Gallery located at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center, Kahului, Maui. The juror for the show this year was Hiroki Morinoue, a native of Holualoa, Hawaii. Morinoue holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts from the California College of Arts and Crafts. He studied Sumi-e (Japanese Brush Painting) from K. Ito sensei and Moku-hanga (Japanese Woodblock printing) from T. Okubo sensei in Japan. Morinoue made his selections from the 377 Maui artists who submitted 592 works. 139 works by 126 artists were chosen to be featured in the exhibit. Tess Cartwright’s ‘Mediation In Green’, (measures approximately 14’ X 14”) sculptured from plastic saved to bring more joy to the world, shares the honor with those selected. Be sure to visit the Schaefer Gallery March 6th to April 2nd. You will delight in what your Maui neighbors are doing with their precious moments. Visit artmaui.com for more details.
Tess discovered her art of plastic container sculpturing in 1994 as she sat at her desk writing her joyful musical fantasy, The Garden of BE. She dreamed of what the set design would look like as she lifted a clear plastic water bottle to take a sip of water. The shimmering convolutions of a daisy in the bottom of the container seemed to speak to her, ‘ I’ll be your Garden’. Tess lifted the shears from a cup on her desk to release the flower she saw locked within the bottle. She says, I suppose you might say, I am addicted to conversations with plastic jugs and jars!
The Garden of BE started at the Kahana Gateway Professional Building when Tess invited neighborhood children to join the free art classes she offered there in the 1990s. The Garden is now growing with plans for a gala opening at the historic Iao Theater September 23rd and will also play September 24, 25, 30 and October 1 and 2. Kahana music teacher, Joe DeRose, has written the musical score. The energetic Maui OnStage membership and staff are bringing their talents to breathe life into the work. All proceeds from BE will go for the benefit of Maui OnStage and the Iao Theater. Tess’ husband and business partner, Robert Cartwright, and the crew at Whalers Realty Inc. and Whalers Realty Management Co. Inc. have helped Tess grow her garden. You contributions to Maui OnStage help keep live theater alive on Maui. You my learn more at mauionstage.com.
Photo Title: ‘Meditation In Green’ medium sculptured plastic containers
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