Resorts with altitude and easy access remain most sought-after in 2017-18 season

Resorts with altitude and easy access remain most sought-after in 2017-18 season

France United Kingdom World

Access, length of ski season and altitude should be key considerations of international investors choosing a resort for their perfect ski home this season, said new-build ski specialist in October.


“The Savoie region in the French Alps, in particular, is home to established high altitude resorts with excellent skiing and easy access from the UK and Europe,” said director Julian Walker. “These resorts include Tignes, Val d’Isère, Courchevel and Méribel. We also recommend Alpe d’Huez a little further south.”


Tignes Part of the Savoie department’s Espace Killy ski area, with its 300 kilometres of slopes reaching from 1,550m to 3,456m, Tignes is made up of four villages, each at different altitudes. The highest is Val Claret (2,300m), followed by the main village at Le Lac (2,100m) and further down are Tignes Les Boisses (or Tignes 1800) and Tignes Les Brévières. The Grande Motte glacier, which offers summer skiing, is accessed via Val Claret. Transfers to the resort from Geneva and Lyon are around two-and-a-half hours, or two hours from Chambéry. has luxury chalets in Tignes available off-plan from €2.28million.


Val d’Isère

The other half of the Espace Killy ski area, the lively resort of Val d’Isère lies at an altitude of 1,850 metres. The resort is about to benefit from a major €200million regeneration project, which follows the opening last year of a €16-million two-year redevelopment of the Solaise area directly above the resort, which includes a new mid-mountain station at 2,500 metres. Transfers to the resort from Geneva and Lyon are around two-and-a-half hours, or two hours from Chambéry. has luxury three-bedroom apartments in Val d’Isère available off-plan from €923,000.


Méribel Located in Savoie and part of the Les Trois Vallées ski area, the largest in the world, the heart of picturesque Méribel lies at 1,450 metres but its chalet developments rise up the side of the valley to 1,700 metres. There is also a satellite resort, Méribel-Mottaret at 1,750 metres. A favourite with British homeowners, skiers there can be on slopes at well over 2,000 metres in no time, from which they can link into Les Trois Vallées’ 600kms of slopes. Transfers to the resort from Geneva, Grenoble and Lyon are around two hours, or 75 minutes from Chambéry. has off-plan apartments in Méribel available from €1.09million.


Courchevel One of the Alps’ most upmarket resorts and also within Les Trois Vallées, Courchevel is a collection of linked villages at different altitudes. The main village and lift hub is Courchevel 1,850, named after its altitude. A little lower is Courchevel Moriond (1,650), then Courchevel Village (1,550) and then Courchevel Le Praz (1,300). Courchevel has more Michelin-starred restaurants than any other resort in the French Alps and recently opened a £50-million water park. Transfers to the resort from Lyon and Geneva are around two hours, or 75 minutes from Chambéry. has off-plan apartments in Courchevel available from €776,000.


Alpe d’Huez Located in the Isère department, the resort of Alpe d’Huez sits at an altitude of 1,860 metres. Its 250 kilometres of slopes, which comprise France’s fifth largest ski area and include the longest black run in the Alps, range from 1,100 metres up to 3,330 metres. A long ski season, typically from early December until late April, is guaranteed thanks to the glacier there. The nearest airport at Grenoble is just 90 minutes’ drive away. has off-plan apartments in Alpe d’Huez available from €315,000.



For further information or to enquire about properties in the French Alps:

Julian Walker





 About, which is owned and operated by international property specialist Spot Blue International Property, works with developers in the French and Swiss Alps to promote new and off-plan developments to the UK and wider international market. Since its foundation in 2003, Spot Blue International Property has established itself as a leading international property specialist and is a member of the AIPP and NAEA. The company’s high profile in the UK and worldwide means it is regularly quoted in the national press and invited to appear on panels at leading seminars and exhibitions.


China celebrates its prosperity this Golden Week – but are Chinese investors doing the same?

China celebrates its prosperity this Golden Week – but are Chinese investors doing the same?

  • Half of China’s population is due to travel this week (China National Tourism Administration)
  • 57% of Chinese consumers plan to purchase property while overseas for Golden Week (Juwai)
  • Liverpool and Manchester set to benefit from Chinese investment (Properties of the World)
  • Golden Visas in Spain, Portugal and Turkey are drawing in Chinese investors (Spot Blue)


There was nothing subtle about the 17-metre fruit basket sculpture that adorned Tiananmen Square to mark China’s 68th National Day. Huge pomegranates, persimmons, apples, peonies and roses represented the country’s prosperity and strength as Golden Week got underway.

Occurring twice each year, Golden Week is a week-long national holiday that sees business in China grind to a halt as citizens enjoy a week of travelling, feasting and spending time with loved ones. Between 1 and 8 October, the China National Tourism Administration estimates that some 710 million Chinese citizens will be on the move, as a full half of the population makes the most of the holiday period.

While regular business operations all but cease during Golden Week, there are some areas, such as investment, where business booms over the course of the holiday. As this particular holiday coincides with China’s Mid-Autumn Festival, making an eight-day break instead of a seven-day one, the boon to companies and sectors that catch Chinese investors’ eye is expected to be even bigger than usual.

One sector to particularly benefit from Golden Week is the international property sector. According to a Juwai survey, 57% of its Chinese consumers have plans to purchase property while overseas this Golden Week.

 “With nearly half of China’s population on the move during Golden week, obviouslt business slows down.  This gives business owners and the higher end Chinese property buyers the perfect opportunity to visit a number of countries and seek out that ideal property investment. With a weaker sterling since the Brexit result in 2016, the UK will be one of such country being visited. Since June 2016 there has been an increase in Chinese interest in properties in the UK mainly due to the weaker GBP against the RMB. But the UK still remains behind the United States and Australia for countries of choice for Chinese buyers due to concern about what the future holds for the UK once it leaves the EU in 2019.

James Trescothick, Chief Global Strategist, easyMarkets


In terms of the UK, cities such as Manchester and Liverpool remain popular with Chinese investors and look to reap the benefits of the extended Golden Week.

 “With a whole week off for Golden Week, it’s an ideal time for Chinese buyers to scour the planet for enticing investment opportunities and Manchester has all the elements needed to be a big hit. 

“China is such a vast market and interest in UK property is increasing with each passing year. Projects like Herculaneum Quay in Liverpool, where construction is well underway, are particularly attractive as their looming completion dates mean that buy-to-let investors can already see their end goal.”

Jean Liggett, CEO, Properties of the World


Beyond the UK, it is another kind of gold that Chinese investors are seeking – namely, Golden Visas.

 “The introduction of the Golden Visa schemes in Portugal, Spain and Turkey have driven real interest from Chinese buyers. High net worths are particularly attracted to the offer of full residency in Western nations through these Golden Visas and we regularly receive a good number of enquiries for properties priced at €500,000 or more for just this reason. 

“In terms of locations, Chinese buyers still seem keen on prime locations such as Marbella and the Golden Mile on the Costa del Sol, Portugal’s capital Lisbon and cosmopolitan Istanbul in Turkey. Golden Week has traditionally been a busy time for us fielding enquiries from potential “fly and buy” Chinese buyers looking to view properties for sale whilst on their holiday travels.

Julian Walker, Director, Spot Blue International Property

With Golden Week well underway, investment companies of all kinds are dashing around, seeking to satisfy their Chinese investors’ demands over the holiday period, hoping to make this a golden week for the investment sector, as well as for China.


On the market during Golden Week:

Herculaneum Quay – luxury waterfront apartments ranging from one to three bedrooms, starting from £125,000. The development includes a swimming pool and roof garden. Circa 8% rental returns. (Available through Properties of the World.)

Beyoglu Apartments, Istanbul – three bedroom apartments costing from £1,001,940. These off plan apartments feature a communal indoor pool and fitness centre, plus private garden, just a five minute walk from Taksim Square. (Available through Spot Blue.)

River View Apartments, Lisbon – these one and two bedroom apartments offer views over the Tagus River in the sought after Chiado area of Lisbon. Priced from £620,092, the fully renovated apartments are due for delivery in the first quarter of 2018. (Available through Spot Blue.)

Benhavis Apartments, Malaga – priced from £646,484, these superb penthouse apartments come with a communal pool and landscaped gardens in one of the most exclusive areas of Benhavis. (Available through Spot Blue.)


For more information, please contact:

easyMarkets: +44 203 1500 748 or

Properties of the World: +44 (0) 20 7624 5555 or

Spot Blue International Property: +44 (0) 208 339 6036 or


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Property Frontiers reveals key global property market insights for Q3 2017

Property Frontiers reveals key global property market insights for Q3 2017

  • 89% of countries record positive house price change – highest level since financial crisis (Knight Frank)
  • Potential reworking of property taxes makes the Philippines one to watch
  • North Africa is fastest growing region for tourism, with visitor numbers up 17.8% (UN World Tourism Organization)

Global property markets are booming and clued up investors are facing a plethora of new opportunities.

Those are two of the key messages to come out of the latest Property Frontiers Global Market Roundup. The quarterly guide reveals insights into markets around the world, giving investors the intel they need to know where to look next.

“Global property markets are constantly shifting and keeping up with an entire planet’s worth of opportunities is no easy task. That’s why we’re constantly researching and reviewing data, to identify emerging trends and seek out the most promising areas for investment, no matter which country they may be in.”

Ray Withers, CEO, Property Frontiers

The Q3 2017 Global Market Roundup reports that the UK remains an attractive destination for property investors, with annual house price growth picking up to 5.1% in July. London’s residential market continues to decline though, with buy-to-let mortgage numbers half of what they were a year ago and just 37% of listings ending in a sale.

Elsewhere in Europe, Vienna, Zurich, Madrid, Berlin, and Amsterdam are all attracting significant capital when it comes to residential real estate investment.

With European regulators currently considering loosening solvency restrictions on real estate investments by the insurance industry, that capital flow could double to as much as €500bn in the near future.

At the very top of the list in Europe is Iceland. In fact, Iceland is currently the most profitable residential market in the world, with growth of 23.2% in the year to June.

“Europe is alive with opportunity right now. There’s something to suit every budget and risk appetite.”

Ray Withers, CEO, Property Frontiers

Over in the Asia-Pacific region, investment opportunities are equally interesting. The Philippines enjoyed economic expansion of 6.8% last year and a reworking of property taxes may well be on the horizon, making this a country to watch very carefully.

Meanwhile, residential investment levels in China are falling, as regulators introduce a raft of measures to stabilise runaway prices.

South Korea is also falling from favour, with investors instead opting for Hong Kong and India. The former reported the highest house price growth in Asia in the year to June, at 21.1% according to Knight Frank. The latter is enjoying five-year price appreciation of a staggering 69.7%.

The Americas present an equally mixed picture.

Canadian cities are falling from grace, with talk of the bubble deflating, if not bursting entirely. Foreign investors are flocking to the US instead, purchasing 49% more residential property by value this year than last, based on figures from the National Association of Realtors.

Latin America is also holding its own, with Argentina and Brazil both looking promising once more.

Finally, the Middle East and Africa is looking extremely interesting.

“Africa’s population is set to double by 2050. That projection is driving a massive need for housing across the continent and opportunities for investors are rife.”

Ray Withers, CEO, Property Frontiers

In Nigeria, the current housing shortage of 18 million units is widening every year, with urbanisation drawing an estimated 40,000 people per day to the country’s cities. The UN World Tourism Organization reports that North Africa was the fastest growing sub-region in the world in Q1 2017, with an increase of 17.8% in visitor numbers. Meanwhile, business confidence in the global hospitality industry has reached its highest level in a decade, opening up a plethora of new investment opportunities to those who like to stay ahead of the curve.

“Wherever you look, there are some outstanding property investment opportunities available right now, from residential accommodation to hotel rooms. It’s an incredibly exciting time to be a part of the sector.”

Ray Withers, CEO, Property Frontiers

For more information, contact Property Frontiers by visiting or calling +44 1865 202 700.

Alexander James Interior Design voted one of world’s top 100 interior designers in Andrew Martin Awards 2017

Alexander James Interior Design voted one of world’s top 100 interior designers in Andrew Martin Awards 2017


For the second year running, Alexander James Interior Design has been independently voted as one of the world’s top 100 interior designers in the prestigious Andrew Martin International Interior Designer of the Year Awards.

Dubbed “the Oscars of the interior design world” by the Sunday Times, the Andrew Martin Awards recognise the most talented interior design teams from around the world.

Globally respected and renowned, the award attracts entries from across the planet. The world’s very finest interior designers are judged by an esteemed panel, which has in the past included the likes of Jo Malone, Terry O’Neil, A A Gill and the Duchess of York. This prominent award has been won by Kelly Hoppen, Kit Kemp and Martyn Lawrence-Bullard, to name just a few well-loved icons who have been rightfully recognised.

“To be nominated for an Andrew Martin Interior Design Award once is an honour. To be nominated two years in a row is simply outstanding. I am indebted to my incredibly talented team here at Alexander James Interior Design for their skill in blending cutting edge creativity with a timeless sense of style. It’s fantastic to see that their hard work has been so deservedly recognised once more.”

Robert Walker, Managing Director, Alexander James Interior Design

The work of the 100 finalists is featured in the prestigious and highly influential ‘Interior Design Review,’ otherwise known as the bible of the interior design world.

Alexander James Interior Design proudly occupies six pages of images in the 2017 Design Review. Having been recognised again this year as being one of the world’s top 100 interior designers cements the firm’s position as one of the leading players in the industry.

The Interior Design Review has become a cultural catalogue, illustrating social and political movements as well as contemporary lifestyles, much like the awards themselves. With more than 1,000 colour photographs, it is a staple for professional interior designers, architects and anyone with a passion for design.

The 2017 Design Review launched on the 1 September 2017, and is available to purchase here. The winners of the 2017 Andrew Martin Interior Design Awards will be announced on 23 October 2017.

For more information contact Alexander James Interior Design on 020 7887 7604 or visit

Bellis Homes launches Mill Hill’s latest luxury homes – Eleven Trees

Bellis Homes launches Mill Hill’s latest luxury homes – Eleven Trees

United Kingdom World
  • Mill Hill boasts attractive rural living experience with closeness of city life (Bellis Homes)
  • The market in Mill Hill has inclined over past months (Glentree International)
  • Bellis Homes launch their Eleven Trees collection of three homes in Mill Hill on 7th October

Mill Hill, in the London Borough of Barnet, boasts an attractive rural living experience with the closeness of city life through its strong transport links.

The proximity to central London made the area a popular choice for country retreats from the 17th Century onwards but not only this, Mill Hill enjoys a rich history with the village originally named Myllehill in 1547, meaning ‘hill with a windmill’.

450 years on and the village is continuing to attract inhabitants says local estate agent Glentree International.

 “Mill Hill is a very desirable location for families. The village is in the proximity of many high performance and international schools and the area holds magnificent open spaces with secluded gardens, which is another reason why many people are looking to move to this suburb.

 “We have seen the market in Mill Hill inclining over the past six weeks, with a high demand for new builds from families desiring spacious and secure living. We can only predict great things for this up and coming suburb”.

 Karen Morris, Associate Director, New Homes Department, Glentree International

 Meeting this demand for new build family homes, Bellis Homes, a family-run developer itself, is launching their collection of ultra-deluxe, exclusive detached homes, Eleven Trees in Mill Hill on Saturday 7th October.

 The development compromises three homes, two with five bedrooms and one with six. All houses include gyms, dressing rooms and swimming pool and spa areas. The interiors have been finished to the highest specification with Alexander James Interior Design appointed to ensure these homes are perfectly dressed.

 “Alexander James were briefed to create a luxury classic contemporary interior for this property, perfect for ‘family professionals’. We met this brief by using a classic palette of warm greys and blues together with some monochrome designs in the bedrooms. The family and kitchen area has been injected with more vibrant accents of colour on warm linens, connecting with the delightful garden and creating the perfect convivial atmosphere for a family to enjoy. The artwork in the family room acts as a centre piece in the design, influencing the choice of the surrounding fabrics which reinforce the classic contemporary feel of the property.”

Stacey Sibley, Creative Director, Alexander James Interior Design

“Eleven Trees has been designed with families foremost in mind; they really are forever homes and the features included in these properties certainly hold the ‘wow factor’. Here at Bellis Homes we pride ourselves on keeping up to date with the latest property trends, we have found that many families are wanting modern, high tech and luxurious finishes such as spas, swimming pools, latest technology and walk-in wardrobes which we have incorporated in each of the houses in the development.”

Henry Fordham, Director, Bellis Homes

Prices range from £4.5m to £4.75m

To attend the Eleven Trees Open Day on Saturday 7th October or for all other enquiries please contact Bellis Homes or call 01279 424 733 or visit 

Ancoats, from industrial ghost town to hipster hotspot: Surrenden Invest reports

Ancoats, from industrial ghost town to hipster hotspot: Surrenden Invest reports

United Kingdom World
  • Ancoats named ‘hippest’ place to live in the UK (Travel Supermarket)
  • Talented young professionals drawn to Ancoats by its business prospects (Surrenden Invest)
  • Surrenden Invest launches Pop Works complete with Wondrwall smart home tech


According to a recent Hometrack report, Manchester property prices rose by an impressive 8.9% in 2016, the second fastest rate of growth in the UK. A shortage of homes has led to price inflation striking its highest rate in 12 years, marking Manchester out as an admirable investment hotspot.

Apartment prices in the city have skyrocketed, Zoopla figures show a rise of 25.88%, over the past five years yet the average apartment cost in Manchester is still just over a third of the price of a London apartment making a purchase of this stock type extremely attractive to buy-to-let investors.

But where in Manchester are investors looking for such property gems?

Investors are paying attention to Ancoats report leading property investment agency, Surrenden Invest. Home values in this area adjacent to Manchester’s Northern Quarter have risen by 29.54% over the past five years according to Zoopla figures, generating great potential for capital gains as well as healthy yields. Major firms including Deliveroo and Uber already call Ancoats home, along with a variety of local SMEs and creative and tech start-ups creating a vibrant and thriving business community.

Once home to textile mills and manufacturing industries such as newspaper printing, Ancoats is now a hotbed of creative industries and exciting start-ups thriving thanks to the ongoing regeneration in the area.

In 2017 Ancoats was named one of the best places to visit by The San Francisco Chronicle with talented young professionals drawn to the area by its business prospects, in turn driving demand for chic rental accommodation that lives up to their increasingly exacting standards.


“We chose Ancoats as the location of our latest buy-to-let development, Pop Works, because it’s such an up and coming creative hub with a great deal of potential and appeal. The area itself is more affordable than other established parts of Manchester and is now really starting to liven up with shops, bars and businesses – there’s even a ‘Hip Hop’ themed chip shop!.”

Jonathan Stephens, MD, Surrenden Invest


Pop Works, available to invest in through Surrenden Invest, is one of Ancoats most outstanding new developments. The residence has been designed with young professionals and their families firmly in mind and features the latest in “smart home” technology, along with an on-site gym for residents’ exclusive use. With high end, branded appliances and a superb finish, these 28 contemporary apartments showcase the best in urban living.

“With Ancoats being named ‘hippest’ place to live in the UK by Travel Supermarket, it is a no brainer that we had to consider what young hipsters want. We did our research to enable us to deliver exactly that and we integrated a range of features into the apartments to ensure we were meeting these demands. One thing we really wanted to focus on was smart home tech as this is something that today’s tenants demand.”

Jonathan Stephens, MD, Surrenden Invest


Given Ancoats location, surrounded by young businesses and IT start-ups and its appeal to tech-savvy creative individuals, Pop Works has appropriately elevated the bar when it comes to smart home technology.

The residence features the Wondrwall intelligent living system. This pioneering technology permits occupants to adjust their homes to effortlessly suit their needs. Residents can control their heating, lighting and security settings, using voice control technology to make changes at any time.

In addition, the Home Connect functionality and Siemens appliances mean that tenants can manage their home appliances from anywhere. Residents can boil the kettle before getting out of bed, or deal with a load of washing while still at the office. They can even look remotely into the fridge to see if they need to grab some shopping on the way home!

This smart technology aids to future proof Pop Works for investors, creating highly sought after, technologically progressive apartments that will endure to appeal to tech-minded tenants over the coming years.


Prices range from £145,000.

For further details and property investment opportunities, visit, email or call 0203 3726 499.

International estate agent makes buying and selling in Turkey easy for one British couple

International estate agent makes buying and selling in Turkey easy for one British couple

Turkey United Kingdom World

A British couple have been rewarded for their loyalty to Spot Blue International Property after the international estate agent found buyers for their villa in Turkey eight years after finding them the perfect plot for the property.

David and Barbara Barber from Northern Ireland completed the sale of their villa, located in the Calis area of Fethiye, in August 2017, having accepted an offer of just under £400,000 through Spot Blue International Property in May.


“We sold to another British couple,” said Mr Barber, “which meant we could agree a price in Sterling and avoid any exposure to exchange rates. The buyers especially liked the size and design of the property, and the tastefully done interior. We sold fully furnished with lots of bespoke local furniture.”

Back in 2009, Spot Blue International Property helped the Barbers create their dream holiday villa in Turkey by finding and selling them its 1,000-square-metre plot. The couple then employed an award-winning Turkish architect to design the 220-square-metre property. It included five en-suite bedrooms – four with balconies, a spacious open-plan living area with central burner, gallery windows and lots of natural light.

“We went the self-build route because we couldn’t find any existing properties in Calis that we actually liked,” continued Mr Barber. “We chose Spot Blue to help us find a plot as we knew they were an experienced, knowledgeable agency who would guide us through the Turkish buying process. They helped us back then, so it made sense to go back to them when we came to sell.”

“We could tell that Spot Blue’s agent on the ground, who did viewings for us, had been in Turkey for years and really knew the lay of the land and how things work there. He was very helpful, communicating with us throughout the sales process and giving us feedback after each viewing. We took their advice and appointed power of attorney to a local lawyer, who could act on our behalf during the sale. We were in Turkey for the day of completion and found everything happened very smoothly.”

The Barbers’ reason for selling in Turkey was twofold: their two adult children have flown the nest so they visit less as a family and there are now fewer flights to Dalaman from Belfast. However, the couple won’t stop visiting Fethiye.

Concludes Mr Barber: “We love the area and still have friends there, so at some point will return there for holidays. We really enjoyed having a home there but circumstances meant it was time to sell.”

British buyers are especially fond of Calis, where recent infrastructure upgrades include a linking of its beachfront promenade with Fethiye’s promenade. Calis’s location just 50 minutes from Dalaman Airport, 15 minutes from the centre of Fethiye, 25 minutes from the famous Ölüdeniz lagoon and 30 minutes from the upmarket marina resort of Göcek add to its international appeal.


For more information, call +44 (0) 208 339 6036 or visit

What it takes to make a splash when building a new development

What it takes to make a splash when building a new development

United Kingdom World
  • Housebuilding at highest level in nearly 10 years (DCLG)
  • Urban living increases anxiety by 21% and mood disorders by 39% (Dr Jaan Peen)
  • Developers including swimming pools & vitality experiences for enhanced wellbeing (Aqua Platinum)


When it comes to flagship developments in prestigious locations, the premium price tag means that buyers expect top of the range facilities – not just in their individual apartments but in the building as a whole. For locations like central London, buyers are investing in a lifestyle rather than just a home. That’s why significant developments, such as 190 Strand, have to ensure that their facilities are a cut above the rest.


Housebuilding in the UK has reached its highest level in nearly ten years, with 164,960 new homes started in the year to June 2017. That’s an increase of 13% over the previous year, according to Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) data. The increased competition means that developers are having to provide increasingly tempting facilities in addition to the homes themselves.


At 190 Strand, developer St Edward has achieved precisely that by engaging luxury swimming pool design and build company Aqua Platinum.


“We knew that 190 Strand needed something truly marvellous – the building’s prime location and specification demanded it. The bespoke apartments and penthouses on London’s world-famous Strand inspired us to create a stunning pool and vitality area for residents to enjoy as part of their central London lifestyle.”


Dominic Searle, Aqua Platinum



As such, the Aqua Platinum team allows for not one but two pools at 190 Strand.


The first was a fully tiled mosaic pool of 125m³, which serves those who swim to keep in shape as well as those looking to simply relax and enjoy the water. The design team also built in a 30m³ vitality pool, equipped with the latest in air and water jet features, to complete residents’ wellbeing experience. The vitality experience was completed with a traditional sauna and a luxury steam room.


Dutch researcher Dr Jaap Peen was one of a team of scientists who found that urban living raised the risk of anxiety disorders by 21% and the risk of mood disorders by 39%. The need for those living in the heart of urban environments to combat stress has never been better understood.


Swimming for 30 minutes three times per week has been found to increase general life satisfaction, lower stress levels, raise mood, improve sleep patterns, lower incidences of anxiety and depression, according to Swimming can also help to rebuild muscles after injury and to improve memory, concentration and focus in people living with conditions such as dementia.


Residential planners have certainly taken this information on board when it comes to new developments such as 190 Strand. Indeed, the resulting exquisite, deck-level pool and adjacent vitality pool are not only charming residents, but have also been short-listed for the Design & Architectural Awards 2017.




“The facilities at 190 Strand really are something special. We’re delighted that this has been recognised by the short-listing committee of the Design & Architectural Awards.


“The wellbeing area of 190 Strand was no easy feat. The complexity and size of the scheme meant that we had to develop an upper level and lower level complex plant room system, so that it could accommodate the balance tank and high-tech control systems. We paired that with a best-in-class filtration and disinfection system, resulting in outstanding water clarity and purity in both pools. It’s the ultimate addition to the perfect contemporary development.”


Dominic Searle, Aqua Platinum



For more information, call 0203 362 0442 or visit

Zanzibar – the hottest new island paradise for real estate investors

Zanzibar – the hottest new island paradise for real estate investors

World ,
  • Zanzibar visitor numbers doubled from 2015 to 2016 (Zanzibar Commission for Tourism)
  • Unguja Island is attracting investment from well-heeled locals and international jetsetters (Property Frontiers)
  • Tanzanian economy has averaged growth of 6-7% over past decade (World Bank)

Zanzibar – the semi-autonomous string of islands located some 25-50 kilometres off the coast of Tanzania – has long been popular with local divers and snorkelers, thanks to its rich offering of coral, dolphins and tropical fish.

Now, the unspoilt island paradise is also attracting keen interest from residential real estate investors, as an exclusive new gated development springs up on the main island of Unguja.

“We’re delighted to be presenting the Fumba Town Development to investors in the UK, with properties ranging from three-bedroom duplexes with pools to five-bedroom townhouses with roof decks and ground level pools. Unguja is a wonderfully unspoilt island and the development is perfect for well-heeled locals and international tourists looking for a peaceful place to escape to.”

Ray Withers, CEO, Property Frontiers

Fumba Town, sited on the Fumba peninsula on the western side of the island, offers the perfect blend of escapism and modern luxury.

Spectacular sunsets, secluded sandy beaches, local snorkelling and a mangrove forest provide a wonderful sense of isolation, while fibre optic internet, an on-site security team and a host of amenities take care of practical needs.

It’s a combination that has already won the interest of one-time Chelsea centre forward Islam Feroz, who has already purchased his own Fumba Town property.

Just 15 km along the coast from Fumba Town, passing the airport along the way, is Stone Town, the UNESCO World Heritage old town of Zanzibar City (birthplace of Freddie Mercury).

The former seat of the Sultan of Oman, the city has a rich heritage, having been a key 19th century hub of the spice and slave trades. It is home to the best bars and restaurants on the island, as well as fascinating landmarks such as the House of Wonders, an ancient Arab fort and numerous coffee houses and spice bazaars.

 “Zanzibar is one of those wonderful locations that is on the cusp of being ‘discovered’ by international tourism, but currently remains almost untouched. Tourism figures are rising and it enjoys the strong stability of the Tanzanian economy in the background, which adds significant weight to the potential of the investment.”

Ray Withers, CEO, Property Frontiers

The Tanzanian economy has enjoyed growth of 6-7% for the past decade, according to the World Bank. The country is politically stable, as well as economically, with a population of 50 million that is growing at more than 3% per year. The economy enjoys healthy diversity, with agriculture, industry (including non-manufacturing), electricity generation, quarrying, mining and services all playing their part.

In terms of tourism, Zanzibar welcomed 376,000 visitors in 2016, double of the 2015 figure, according to the Zanzibar Commission for Tourism. The growth is an indication of the rise in Zanzibar’s popularity as a tourist haven, as holidaymakers seek out the unspoiled paradise that the islands offer in such abundance.

The first homes at Fumba Town will be completed by mid-2018. Investors looking to get ahead of the curve can purchase them now, with three-bedroom duplexes priced from $159,900 and five-bedroom seafront townhouses starting from $289,900.

For more information, contact Property Frontiers by visiting or calling +44 1865 202 700.

A hot tub on a superyacht? Yes, it’s possible and time to get on board!

A hot tub on a superyacht? Yes, it’s possible and time to get on board!

United Kingdom World
  • Buyers can pick up Lord Sugar’s superyacht, complete with Jacuzzi, for £12.6m
  • “Imagination and budget are the only constraints when it comes to on-board spas” (Aqua Platinum)
  • Pools, hot tubs, swim-up bars, hammams, saunas & balcony showers can all feature on board


The glamour and excitement of the Southampton Boat Show is almost upon us. From 15-24 September, some of the world’s finest sea-faring vessels will moor in Southampton for a celebration of all things maritime.


The show inspires many attendees to pursue their boating dreams, from the smallest rib up to the most luxurious superyacht. Those looking for something exclusive might be interested to know that they can pick up Lord Sugar’s superyacht, complete with Jacuzzi and accommodation for 12 guests, for a cool £12.6 million.


Indeed, it seems that simply owning a superyacht is no longer quite enough – if it doesn’t have an on-board spa, it’s old news, according to luxury swimming pool design and build company Aqua Platinum.


“Celebrities and the super-rich are becoming more exacting when it comes to their boating requirements. Pools, hot tubs, saunas, steam rooms, hammams, outdoor balcony showers and water features can all be built into superyacht structures, if they are implemented at the design stage. Those who own luxury yachts are usually after other elements of the luxury lifestyle – and that includes spa facilities. Why limit those to use on dry land?”


Dominic Searle, Aqua Platinum


Being in the water while on the water is an increasingly sought after experience. According to the Aqua Platinum team, almost anything can be made possible if you apply a little imagination and a sizeable budget.


Hot tubs and pools tend to be a maximum of 8-10 metres long on most yachts, due to size restrictions. Counter current units are used to make up for the smaller pool size, providing an outstanding fitness experience.


When it comes to hot tubs, much consideration is given to fill and heat-up times during the design phase. Most will need to be emptied prior to sailing to prevent spillage, then rapidly filled and brought up to temperature when the yacht docks. Room also needs to be allowed for plant space, while filtration systems and lighting also require consideration.


“Designing pools and hot tubs for luxury yachts certainly presents unique challenges, but that’s part of what makes the process so interesting. There are various technical elements that have to be incorporated, as well as ensuring the facilities are superbly designed and look outstanding. There are some lovely synergies between luxury spa facilities on land and those that can be created on the water.”


Dominic Searle, Aqua Platinum



For those with big budgets, almost anything is possible. The refitted Nomad luxury motor yacht boasts a Jacuzzi spa pool with swim-up bar. The Elixir features a spa pool with panoramic vistas. Legend features a Balinese spa. The superyacht Solandge is home to a chromotherapy spa, complete with sauna, hammam, massage room and beauty salon – plus a generously appointed pool, of course.


“If you’ve got the vision and the budget, the sky’s the limit. Superyacht and luxury spa designers can together achieve great things, so why not test their abilities and see just how exciting your on-board wellness facilities can be?”


Dominic Searle, Aqua Platinum


For more information, call 0203 362 0442 or visit

Image from Dreamstime for illustrative use only.