Pam Golding Properties now marketing ski resort properties in France

Traditionally, South Africans tend to be drawn to warm climes when it comes to acquiring leisure property. However, says Pam Golding Properties, a growing number of South African tourists are spending their vacations on skiing holidays in destinations such as France, Switzerland and Austria.

“While specific statistics are not available, it seems that outbound tour operators have noticed this trend, says Fabrice Orengo de Lamazière , consultant for Pam Golding Properties’ International & Projects Division. “Recognising this, and in catering for those planning to take regular or annual trips to such destinations, we see an opportunity to bring to the local market products which offer the opportunity for South Africans to acquire a stake in luxury ski resorts in sought after locations.

“In so doing we have partnered with Athena Advisors, a company specialising over the past 10 years in marketing French ski resort properties to the UK market as well as other European countries. Interestingly, in addition to the prime winter season between December and April, these resorts are also becoming popular for adventure sports activities during the summer months between June and September. We have handpicked some of the best properties in prime locations, and these brand new developments are sold on a sectional title ownership basis,” he says.  There are no restrictions on foreigners acquiring residential property in France.
Through its mortgage origination company, French Private Finance, Athena also provides finance solutions up to 70 percent of the value of the property - depending on lending criteria. Orengo de Lamazière says the developers of these resorts have established agreements with reputable management companies which offer rental income through renting the apartments to tourists.

“Depending on the number of weeks’ personal usage required by the owner (which varies per development but is usually up to four weeks), these returns can be up to four percent per annum, particularly as growing interest in adventure sports, such as mounting biking, climbing and rafting, is extending the rental season into the summer months,” he says.

In Flaine in the "Grand Massif" area - and within sight of the Mont-Blanc-peak, which is the fourth largest winter sports region of the French Alps - Les Neiges d’Orion is one of the best value-for-money ski developments in France.  Here prices start from €158 000 for a one bedroom apartment with rental returns of 4.1 percent. This brand new development, which will blend traditional architecture with modern, high quality fixtures and fittings, also includes an indoor swimming pool and a spa. The development is scheduled for completion towards the end of 2014.

In Chatel, alongside Avoriaz 1800 in the "Porte du Soleil" area - the world's largest internationally connected skiing region (with 650km of slopes) which connects the skiing regions of France and Switzerland, Grand Hermitage offers 33 luxury one, two and three bedroom apartments. This development is located only one hour’s drive from Geneva and 600m from the heart of the village. Priced from €220 000 the development offers rental income returns of 3.7 percent. This development will also be completed in the last quarter of 2014.

In Tignes, one of the ski resorts of Espace Killy, with 300km of pistes (ski runs) shared with Val d’Isère, Village Kalinga offers sound value with prices starting from €208 000. Comprising a total of 250 one to five bedroom units, to date 78 units have been launched into the market. The units are priced up to €631 000 and phase one of the development, including the swimming pool, reception and other common facilities, is due for completion at the end of 2013.

Says Orengo de Lamazière: “Village Kalinga is an entire new super village which is rapidly taking shape, and which will consist of luxury residences, restaurants and shops. In regard to the residential units, the developer offers a guaranteed rental yield for 11 years in this appealing four star resort, which has extended ski lifts and pistes.”

In Méribel, acknowledged by the Daily Telegraph as one of the best ski resorts in France, which forms part of the renowned 3 Valleys - with 600km of pistes and popular after-ski entertainment activities, Balcons de la Chapelle is the only new development in the heart of this year-round resort. Here six apartments (with two, three or four bedrooms) and two chalets (three and four bedrooms) are currently marketed with bespoke interior design and fittings to the highest standards. Priced from to €594 000, this development is situated in close proximity to a 5000sqm water sports arena, 18 hole golf course – the highest in Europe, endurance trail and numerous other leisure activities and service facilities. Balcons de la Chapelle will be completed by the end of 2013.

Orengo de Lamazière adds that Pam Golding Properties has access to other ski properties handled by Athena Advisors, ranging from apartments in developments to luxury freehold chalets.

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