By most measures, the overall U.S. real estate market is clearly rebounding from its recessionary lows of 2007-08. One aspect of the market still trying to regain its firm footing, however, is the upscale fractional real estate market.
Earlier this year, fractional resort consultant Richard Ragatz of Ragatz Associates reported said North American fractional real estate developments increased sales 4 percent in 2011 to $552 million from $530 million the previous year. The positive news was part of Ragatz's annual state of the industry report shared at the firm's annual Ragatz Fractional & Resort Real Estate Conference held in Arizona.
At the time, Ragatz said: "While this (2011 sales) increase is nominal, we also learned that a significant number of developers said that sales were better during the second half of 2011 than in the first half, giving the impression that the bleeding has finally stopped and that we may be turning the corner."
Ragatz is expected to have an industry update next week when he speaks at Interval International's annual Vacation Ownership Investment Conference in Orlando. In the meantime, one organization that remains bullish on the concept of luxury fractional real estate is Kiawah Development Partners.
That partly explains why Kiawah Partners' newest multi-billion master-planned resort-style community in St. Kitts, Christophe Harbour, just announced a fractional real estate component called Windswept Residence Club. The new club homes, located in Bassetterre, St. Kitts, is a collection of nine newly developed turnkey villas, three of which are now available for fractional ownership purchase.
Perhaps the most notable feature of these latest additions to Christophe Harbour's real estate offering on the southeastern peninsula of St. Kitts is the eligibility for citizenship which is included with the purchase of a Windswept Residence Club membership.
Located within the exclusive enclave of Sandy Bank Bay, each private Windswept residence has been designed for maximum enjoyment of harbor and ocean views. In addition to St. Kitts citizenship, purchasing a fractional interest of these villas offers spacious indoor and outdoor living areas, as well as concierge, maintenance and housekeeping services and property management provided by Christophe Harbour.
Located within walking distance to The Pavilion beach club, each Windswept owner will also be a member of the Christophe Harbour Club.
Application for Citizenship by Investment can begin immediately upon contract. Exclusive benefits of this program include visa-free travel to more than 120 countries, dual and lifetime citizenship for buyers and eligible family members, tax exemptions on income, capital gains, gifts, wealth, and inheritance and no residency requirements to obtain citizenship.
These four-bedroom, fully furnished Windswept villas feature one-story and two-story floor plans, with the one-story villas starting at $411,000 per fractional interest and the two-story villas at $415,000 and $419,000 per fractional interest.
Each villa is divided into ten indivisible titles to real estate, with each title representing five weeks per year for personal use or as a rental. An annual rotation schedule ensures that each owner will be able to enjoy high season weeks.
Christophe Harbour Development Company, Limited, a venture led by Kiawah Partners, is the master developer for Christophe Harbour. Located on the more than 2,500-acre southeastern peninsula of St. Kitts, Christophe Harbour is planned to include a super-yacht marina as well as restaurants, shops, boutiques, five-star hotels, oceanfront and hillside homesites, villas, and a championship golf course designed by acclaimed architect Tom Fazio.
Kiawah Partners is best known for being the visionary behind world-renowned Kiawah Island Resort in South Carolina, which hosted this year's 94th PGA Championship, and Doonbeg, a high-end golf resort community in Ireland.
Currently, there are more than 300 high-end fractional interest developments and private residence clubs worldwide, and 5-10 active destination clubs. About one-third of the projects had active sales in 2011.
Although overall sales increased four percent in 2011 for the luxury fractional real estate industry, shared ownership sales volume was still significantly down by 76 percent, or $1.7 billion, since the peak year of 2007, according to Ragatz.
At Christophe Harbour, the latest entry into the fractional world will offer private residences featuring two master suites, each with direct access to outdoor living space, as well as spacious guest rooms that can sleep up to 12 people. Design elements for the homes include vaulted ceilings, concrete construction, natural roof shakes, natural stone flooring throughout, luxurious European-style kitchens, spacious indoor living areas that open to the terrace, outdoor living areas with pool and stone decking, and intimate gardens.
The homes are being designed by Herlong & Associates and built by Bennett Hofford Caribbean Construction Company Limited, both of whom have experience working with Christophe Harbour.