Members of the BU family may be interested to know that Barbados, Anguilla and the Bahamas are the top islands which are favourites with the world’s growing billionaire population. This result was contained in a report conducted by international real estate company, Savills. What does this increasing billionaire population like about Barbados and the other two islands you are asking?
The growing breed of the super-wealthy—in the past decade, the billionaire population has seen a six-fold increase, according to the study—are looking for low-density, pristine settings offering maximum privacy, including the latest technology and security systems. Local infrastructure, from access routes to the availability of good entertainment, sports and leisure facilities are also high on the list of buying priorities—which is why only a handful of select islands, like Anguilla, will catch the eye and attract the purse of the very affluent.
Some Barbadians have criticized the thrust of the tourism marketing programs practiced by the former Barbados Labour Party (BLP) government. We should all still remember the focus which was placed on wooing tourists from the high-end tourist markets. Whether we agree with strategy of the former tourism minister Barney Lynch or not, the report quoted seems to suggest that Barbados has become a destination of choice by the rich.
Watch as the West Coast turns into a bad imitation of the already over-ruined South Coast. Don’t believe me? Just stop and look at the abortion built across the road from C&W at the old Coach House. The architect, builder and developer should be arrested. And the new “luxury mall” in Holetown? Just what an island full of “maids, chauffeurs and security guards with ferocious dogs” needs. And “access to the sea?” What access to what sea? Which you no longer can see from the highway between Esso Black Rock and Chefette Holetown. Stop the rape of this beautiful island before it’s too late. Or before every beachfront building is high-walled and patrolled by security guards with dogs.
The real problem with these developments is that they remain empty for the best part of the year. They provide income for the real estate managers, but they do not have permanent housekeepers or gardeners, just those supplied to maintain the premises by the estate managers. Do these developments really make sense for the country? Honestly, how much of the foreign investment concerned really stays in Barbados? I suspect that even the land sale in some cases takes place overseas. “Killing the goose” is what it is, and we will pay the price very shortly, as the privacy and “low density” so eagerly sought turns into a rich man’s ghetto.
I heard that Chefette in Holetown has been sold and a condo development will be taking place there later this year.
In many cases the proceeds for sale of the land does indeed pass hand offshore, and the money does not come into Barbados.
Most of the foreign currency that comes into Barbados in relation to these West Coast developments is to pay the construction companies. We will have to find out how much of this goes back out of the country to purchase building materials and expensive furniture and fittings.
Apart from the construction companies, the main beneficiaries are the realtors and the lawyers who earn big fees each time the properties change hands. Many of these rich folk hold the property for a few months and then resell it at a profit – they have no real interest in the development of Barbados.
I too am saddened by the state of the West Coast where there is hardly an open window to the sea and where the development has been forced to spill over from the sea side to the land side.
We need to slow down and take stock and decide if all this development makes sense or not. There was talk under the last government of a condominium study so hopefully we will soon get some answers.
I am pleased to see the slant that contributors have brought to their comments on this story. This development issue is in dire need of critical examination. The West Coast undoubtedly is already a corridor of Condos.
Indeed I have heard the mouthing of a coming condo study way back in 2007. Still no sign of it in sight. The condo study will however not be the answer either conclusion indeed like many environment impact studies, all to often seem to depends on who pays the piper.
Let us now use this opputunity to bring in he focus where our tourism development model will take us. “Peldownwoman” your comments are on the ball. What types of jobs are being created in a condo complex? What type of jobs are being lost from hotels?
We cannot blame investors for using any means they can to get an immediate and secure return on investment. We however must reconcised that we did not come thus far to continue to be only an economy. Indeed we need to live not just in an economy but in a society. What combination of incentive sand disincentives can be brought to the table at this late stage to influence this development madness? I an anxious to see futher discuss on this issue brought to the fore here and then taken to the national level.
I am not anti rich nor against development I am also aware that “kick backs” have not being foreign to much of what has been done so far.
Bajanboy… are you serious?
Not that I am surprised. I do recall the talk about the relatively new court and police facility at Oistins. Money talks and men walk. If only money could talk.
Bajanboy is correct about Chefette, which having originally destroyed the magnificent mahogany trees on that site, will now no doubt move on to putting an eyesore somewhere else. So now the whole of the beachfront from Divi Heritage right through to the Beach House, somehere in the region of half a kilometre, will be boarded-up for well over a year. Add to that the grossly ugly hoarding put up around Lime Grove. Is this really progress? Nope, it’s just plain greed.
These money grubbing developers like they never heard about killing the goose that laid the golden egg.
We are a “now” society. Must have it “now”! Like sea eggs, we won’t miss our land or our sea views until they’re gone forever – along with the tourists.
It’s kind for sad that the responses on this story has been slow and limited. I think the whole development model of
“the “CONDO-nisation” of our landscape requires more attention. Barbados Underground, what can you do? This can be hot topic but our submissions are hidden under a headline that may not be inviting for this type of input by many who are visiting your site.
PI View what do you recommend we change the topic to read?
David, I do not recommend that you change this topic, as such. I would suggest that that you put up an article on the upside and down of the condo development that currently taking place particularly along our limited coastline. There are issues on the best use of space. The economic potential versus the hotel rooms being lost. We can examine the pros and cons of employment opportunities etc. In addition, we need to consider that during the campaign we were told of numerous approvals already issued. New developments will extend even around to the east coast side of the island (not necessarily on the water). With all the approvals for new development that have already been vulgarly pushed through, what influence can a change in policy incentives or disincentives now have? Have our government officials sold us out in terms of this issue? Long term impact on tourism could be critical. Many of these resort condos, not just here but also abroad, remain empty for long periods each year.
I sent you an email yesterday, with an article published by a local firm. I don’t necessarily agree with its conclusions but it did mention in its body that the fact that condos can potentially turn a large areas of your economic landscape into ‘ghost towns’
We did not get the article PI.
Please resend, firstname.lastname@example.org
Almost everyone (except the idiot Tourism minister we had before January 15) knows that the whole condo thing is a big scam that ruins the landscape, the economy, the society and the image of the country.
This is well documented for example, in the south of Spain where it has reached ridiculous proportions.
The problem is that there is a LOT of money to be made by :
*Politicians who take bribes
… at the expense of idiots across the world who fall for glossy idyllic brochures and invest their life savings in these ‘condos in paradise’
… and to the eternal demise of the rest of the ‘host’ country.
CONDOS SHOULD BE TAXED OUT OF EXISTENCE IN BARBADOS before it is too late….
I will be SO disappointed if Hon David Thompson do not LOCK UP some of these traitors to this country….
Action Plan for the PM
1 – Fire the ‘consultants’
2 – Fire 3S and Prison Management
3 – Forensic Audit of critical areas of operation such as – World Cup spending, Hard wood, 3S contracts and consultations, VECO contracts, ‘whoever let St Joseph Hospital rot’ etc
4 – Publicize /Prosecute as needed
5 – LOCK UP…
6 – Pass Integrity Legislation
7 – LET US DEVELOP A SENSIBLE NATIONAL STRATEGIC PLAN-one that puts Barbados first.
Just a brief diversion from the current topic, but following from Bush Tea above, I am beginning to wonder just how serious our new government is about bringing about meaningful change.
If they WERE serious about integrity legislation and freedom of information legislation they could by now have made a lot of noise about their plans and released draft legislation for public comment.
We have heard about investigating Hardwood Housing and firing consultants, etc, but all of this links back to integrity and FOI legislation.
I have sent the email with the attachements again