Foreigners snapping up luxury condos in Boracay

by Cathy Rose A. Garcia,

Posted at Jan 23 2013 05:31 PM | Updated as of Jan 24 2013 01:35 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Many foreigners flock to Boracay just to enjoy the world-famous beach, and now to invest in luxury residential properties.

Liz Silvestre, CBRE Philippines associate director for investments and capital markets, said there is strong interest from foreigners in the Aqua Boracay by Yoo luxury residential development.

Aqua Boracay Investment Prospectus

"We're due to launch in Singapore and Hong Kong in March. But in two months of pre-launch sales, we have alredy attained 50% sales take-up. It's mostly foreigners, and about 10% are Filipino-Chinese who are residential investor types, not the lifestyle buyer," she said on Wednesday.

Aqua Boracay by yoo, located in the secluded Bulabog Beach, is the first resort residence designed by the world-famous yoo design studio in the Philippines. Yoo is co-founded by top designer Philippe Starck and international property developer John Hitchcox.

With 134 luxury apartments in a beachfront setting,  this is said to be the only branded five-star resort residential project in the island.

The luxury resort offers foreigners a chance to "rest and invest" in Boracay. 

"The international market and local markets are looking at Boracay as investment not just for capital gains but rental prospects," Marco Biggiogero, chairman of Aqua Boracay by yoo, said during a press conference.

For people who use their apartment only a few times a year, Aqua Boracay offers full management and maintenance service so the apartment can be rented out.
Silvestre said Boracay has a high rental income potential, as well as all-year peak season.

"The average daily rate is P7,400. And the average occupancy rate is 70% to 90%... This is very sound income yield potential for the rental market," she said.

A luxury property in Boracay is also much cheaper than similar properties in Phuket, Thailand.

A branded hotel villa in Phuket starts from approximately $750,000 for a 4-star brand, and about $2 million for a 5-star brand.

In comparison, the 5-star Aqua Boracay by Yoo property is approximately priced from $66,700 to $293,000.

Silvestre sees Boracay as the most feasible investment destination for foreigners, compared to Cebu and Palawan.

"Leisure destination properties will be acknowledged for their tourism marketability and investment potential. The country will experience strong global luxury trend from the influx of foreign tourists brought about by the islands' recognitions and more aggressive government campaign," Silvestre said.