Inclusive new Royal Park development caters for local and international home buyers

Mauritius is acknowledged as an international success story. From its status as a global business hub with a favourable fiscal regime and economic and political stability to its well-established reputation as a prime tourism destination, the tropical island is increasingly viewed by both South African and international investors as a highly desirable location for permanent or part-time residence. This is coupled with the undeniable and obvious fact that Mauritius is extremely easy on the eye, providing a tranquil and spectacularly scenic backdrop for any leisure-seeker.

Since the early 2000s when Mauritius first embarked on its initiative to convert former sugarcane land for development purposes, providing investment and employment spinoffs for the local economy and residents, it has never looked back. Around 2004 legislation was amended to allow foreign ownership of residential property in terms of what is known as IRS (Integrated Resort Schemes) and subsequently RES (Real Estate Schemes), which enabled foreign investors to own property on the island, thereby acquiring a residence permit with unrestricted access as long as the property is purchased at a value of at least USD500 000. (US dollars)

Apart from acquiring property, many investors have established or registered their businesses in Mauritius due to its investor-friendly, low tax base – with personal and corporate income tax of 15 percent and various other tax benefits, says Louis van Niekerk, CEO of Royal Park Mauritius, a brand new mixed-use development recently launched overlooking the bay of Balaclava on the north west coast, which is marketed by Pam Golding Properties International & Projects Division.

“Having been extensively involved in a variety of developments since these IRS and RES schemes were first launched in Mauritius, the success of these projects is also attributable to the fact that investors are additionally protected as they are issued with a completion guarantee by a reputable bank while the development is being built. Once the sales deed is signed the buyer can apply for a residence permit and enjoy the benefits of residency from the outset. Then during the development payments are made in controlled stages, so from a cash flow point of view payments are staggered over a 12 to 15 month period while the building is being completed.”

Well positioned on 90ha of rural parkland 12 minutes from Grand Baie and 15 minutes from Port Louis, the new Royal Park development is unlike the conventional resort model as it is designed for local and international owners alike. “Our initial focus was to sell villa plots earmarked for the local market and the entire tranche of 244 stands has already been sold, with construction well under way and with completion of the first villas anticipated for later this year (2014). The first local villa is in fact almost complete. These units were sold at an average price of four million rupees or the equivalent of approximately R1.2 million,” says van Niekerk.

To be officially launched during Pam Golding Properties (PGP) exhibition at Sandton Shopping Centre, Johannesburg from 17-21 September 2014 with a special pre-launch offer, PGP is marketing the RES project within Royal Park to the international market, with 23 apartments in Mascarene, 25 townhouses in Sandpiper and 19 villas in Savanah. Each enclave of units is fully integrated in the development with the locally owned component of villas.

Adds van Niekerk: “Situated on a prime site, this unique residential resort is designed around a new lifestyle and community philosophy, catering for both local and international owners. Essentially value driven, with accessible prices, this inclusive development connects with the true heritage and personality of Mauritius, while providing all the services and facilities expected of a leading residential resort.”

The prices include a furniture ‘deco’ pack. Mascarene apartments are priced from USD550 000 to USD633 000 for 170sqm, three bedroom units. Three bedroom Sandpiper townhouses of 223sqm range from USD650 000 for three bedrooms to USD950 000 for 300sqm, four bedroom units, while Savanah villas ranging in size from 276 to 384sqm are priced from USD1.1 million to USD1.4 million, on erven ranging from 1290 to 2094sqm.

The design style has created modern, versatile spaces which connect with the outdoors, allowing owners to take full advantage of the tropical climate and the island’s enchanting landscape. The architecture takes inspiration from Eastern influences, while incorporating local materials and the chic modernity of Western design styles.

Features of the estate include a resort clubhouse which is soon to commence construction with tennis courts, fitness rooms, gym and restaurant, boathouse with watersports and moorings, as well as the estate’s own Sunseeker yacht, property management and a rental programme (enabling owners to rent out units while not in use), membership to Tamarina Golf Course, chauffeur service, concierge and 24 hour security.

Apart from the extensive facilities within the estate, Royal Park has created destinations outside the grounds for the benefit of owners, including a beach club in nearby Mont Choisy and a private lodge situated within a 500ha nature reserve in Salazie - a 30 minute drive from Royal Park. Furthermore, adjoining Royal Park is the developer’s activity-filled Sunset Beach development which links the entire development to Mauritius’ famous coastline. This approximately 7.8ha site incorporates a 160m beachfront where a lively restaurant, bar, wellness centre and spa will be for the enjoyment of Royal Park residents.

Acknowledged as an ideal environment in which to conduct business, Mauritius has no inheritance tax, no capital gains tax, tax free dividends and free repatriation of profits, dividends and capital. Double taxation agreements have been concluded with over 34 countries, including France, South Africa, the UK, Indian and China, while similar tax agreements with seven further countries are awaiting ratification.

Finance of an acquisition in Royal Park is available through the developer’s partnership with the Mauritius Commercial Bank.

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