A YEAR OF GROWTH FOR BAHAMAS REAL ESTATE
Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty expanded its Bahama-base in 2006 with the opening of two new offices – one in Long Island Bahamas and the other in George Town, Exuma.
A new representative was appointed in Cherokee, Abaco. Lightbourn Realty already has offices in Marsh Harbour and Green Turtle Cay, Abaco, Bahamas.
Dale Kemp, a well-known local businessman, is the new agent in Exuma. His wife, Lisa, manages the office.
Mike Lightbourn, president of Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty, said the Exumas provide perhaps the most beautiful setting in the Bahamas.
‘Our main focus will be to attract Bahamians to invest in the Exumas while, at the same time, we will play our part in bringing foreign investors to the islands to help provide economic benefits to all Exumians,” he said.
Jeannette Knowles, who has a background in the hotel industry, is the new agent in Mangrove Bush, Long Island Bahamas.Long Island.
Mike has always had a personal interest in Long Island, starting with his parliamentary representation of the Clarence Town constituency from 1972 to 1977. He has maintained a close contact with many friends and has not missed a regatta since he first attended in 1972.
“Long Island, in my opinion, has the finest and most industrious people in the Bahamas. The island is without doubt one of the most beautiful in the Bahamas. We hope to bring in the type of investors (both Bahamian and foreign) who will assist in the growth of the island through strategic development.”
Lee Pinder, a former executive bank secretary, is based in Cherokee Sound, Abaco, where she is very active in community affairs.
Mike, a second home owner in Abaco, which he also represented in Parliament, said The Abaco Club on Winding Bay set the stage for a continued economic boom in this area. The Ritz-Carlton marked its debut in the Bahamas by partnering with British entrepreneur Peter de Savary in the 520 acre international private members' golf club and sporting retreat.
COLDWELL BANKER HOSTS ISLAND AFFILIATES CONFERENCE
COLDWELL Banker Lightbourn Realty hosted the prestigious 2006 Coldwell Banker Island Affiliates Conference at the world class Atlantis Resort and Casino on Paradise Island in the Bahamas.
The event coincided with Coldwell Banker Corporation’s 100th anniversary celebration.
Coldwell Banker Corporation, the parent company of Lightbourn Realty, is the largest real estate franchise network in the U.S.
‘This was an important event, not just for our company, but for the Bahamas,’ said Mike Lightbourn, president of Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty.
The real estate spotlight was on the Bahamas when Jim Gillespie, president of Coldwell Banker Corporation, praised the 12 island affiliates for their contribution to the growth of the Coldwell Banker brand.
The island affiliates will discuss real estate matters peculiar to the Caribbean, Bahamas and Bermuda.
Coldwell Banker was founded in San Francisco in 1906.
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REAL ESTATE AGENT SCORES ‘THREE STRAIGHT’
ROBERT Arthur of Harbour Island, Bahamas, has grabbed Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty’s 2005 "Top Real Estate Producer’ award for the third year in a row.
Arthur, a former TV producer and one of Prince Charles’s favourite baker’s, was one of five Lightbourn Realty agents to receive special awards at Coldwell Banker Corporation’s recent International Business Conference in San Francisco.
The conference, which celebrated Coldwell Banker’s 100th anniversary, attracted more than 10,000 brokers, agents and managers.
Also receiving a special award was Katherine Weech of Bimini. Weech captured Coldwell Banker Island Affiliates Most Improved Agent award for 2005. There are 12 affiliates in the Bahamas and Caribbean.
Weech, who also works at her husband’s of Booze and Screws Hardware and Liquor Store in south Bimini, was involved in the sale of Brown’s Hotel and Marina.
Three agents received the prestigious President’s Circle Award - Arthur, Chris Farrington of Green Turtle Cay, Abaco, and Heather Lightbourn Peterson of Nassau.
This puts them in the top seven percent of the 126,000 Coldwell Banker sales agents worldwide.
Receiving the International Diamond Society Award were Mailin Sands of Marsh Harbour. Sands and Massoni ranked among the top 13 percent of total Coldwell Banker agents in 2005.
‘I am extremely proud of my agents,’ said Mike Lightbourn president of Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty.
‘They have worked very hard and their efforts have paid off. Last year - 2005 - was a strong year. Business written so far in 2006 is up significantly over the corresponding period last year.’
Arthur is the popular proprietor of Arthur’s Bakery and Café in Harbour Island.
"His drive, work ethic and relaxed charm are the perfect ingredients for a real estate agent,’ Lightbourn said.
He’s as enthusiastic about selling real estate as he is baking the best jalapeno bread Prince Charles has ever tasted.
Born in Nassau, Robert lived in Miami most of his young adulthood, before relocating to ‘Briland 13 years ago with his wife, Anna, and two sons.
In his former, fast paced life, he was a producer/director for a CBS affiliate in Miami and numerous TV and film projects.
Weech, a former art gallery operator, lives in the tiny fishing capital of Bimini made famous by Ernest Hemingway. When she’s not showing property, Weech is working with her husband, Marty, a liquor and hardware merchant. Between real estate, the hardware store, and her pets - a Weimaraner called Slick, Buddy, a terrier, and a cat, Yurtle, Katherine’s kept very busy.
Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty is part of a tremendous network driven group of more than 3,900 residential and commercial real estate offices and 126,000 sales associates in 29 countries and territories.
Coldwell Banker Scores 'Four Straight'
Coldwell Banker was the first national real estate company to offer a comprehensive national web site
The web site http://www.coldwellbanker.com/ has been recognised by Forbes Magazine for its easy navigation and industry for the fourth consecutive year.
'We are delighted to be a part of this award winning web site,' Mike Lightbourn, president of Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty, said today.
Lightbourn Realty's web site, www.coldwellbankerbahamas.com, appears on the Coldwell Banker master site.
Lightbourn said his company presently has a number of sales under contract as a result of web site generated leads.
During its early days, most of these leads sprang from non-Bahamians.
'Today, an increasing number of Bahamians are visiting our web site. They find it easy to steer through. Local web site generated business will only grow as Bahamians become more Internet savvy,' Lightborn said . . . [read more]
A SAND CASTLE FOR SALE IN THE BAHAMAS?
Yes, Cliff Castle, a nine bedroom, 10 bathroom castle, is on the market. The new castle is perched on a cliff and has sweeping views of the Atlantic Ocean. It’s located in Whale Point, Eleuthera and is about a 10 minute boat ride from Harbour Island. The 3 storey residence replicates a sand castle with a lighthouse and fort. It comprises four buildings, each connected by breezeway, and has a pool, balconies, upper decks & garage.
Built by an American furniture magnate, the castle may be viewed on this website by searching mls # 5571.
INDIA HICK’S HOTEL FOR SALE IN THE BAHAMAS
A POPULAR hotel in which Prince Charles’ goddaughter, India Hicks, has a minority stake, is for sale in the Bahamas, for $11,750,000.
The historic 10-room Landing hotel and restaurant – a traditional Colonial-style hotel built as a residence in 1800 – is located on tiny, picture pretty Harbour Island in the Central Bahamas.
Second home owners there include Wayne Hizuenga, Ron Pearlman, Elle McPherson and Daryll Hall.
Ms. Hicks, model for Ralph Lauren’s Safari perfume and grand daughter of Lord Mountbatten, has a 25 percent holding in the venture.
The majority owners - a prominent Bahamian family with ties to Australia – include Brenda Barry, a former Ms. Bahamas.
‘This is no ordinary property,’ said Robert Arthur of Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty (Harbour Island), exclusive agents.
Arthur, who’s no stranger to high end properties, says The Landing’s one of the most exciting listings he’s worked on.
It’s come through category four hurricanes with flying colours.
Its ownership has embraced some of the island’s most prominent families and it’s a magnet for the rich and famous.
The Duke and Duchess of York are among the list of celebrities who’ve stopped in to enjoy The Landing’s gourmet meals and sample their fine wines and cigars.
Prince Pavalos and Princess Marie Chantal of Greece, Mick Jaggar, Richard Gere, Elle McPherson, Diane Von Furstenberg, Barry Diller, Christianne Amannpour (CNN), Ed Bradley (60 minutes), Bette Midler, Collin Farrell, George Hamilton, Daryll Hall (Hall & Oates), Jack Nicholson, lines of super models and many more have enjoyed the ambiance of The Landing.
"We have owned and operated The Landing for the past 10 years. We have worked all day every day in the business and are looking for a change of pace,’ Brenda Barry’s daughter, Tracy Barry, said.
Ms Barry’s husband, Toby Tyler, also is a partner.
Located off the mainland of Eleuthera, Harbour Island’s ranked ‘Best Island in The Bahamas, Caribbean and Bermuda’ by Travel and Leisure Magazine.
It was settled more than 300 years ago by English Adventurers in search of religious freedom. Eleuthera is the Western World’s first true seat of democracy – ‘Eleuthera’ is the Greek word for ‘freedom.’
The Landing’s been showered with accolades from Conde Nast Traveller, Travel and Leisure, Harpers Bazaar, The New York Times, Elle, Vogue, Australian Home and Garden, Hello!, The Boston Globe, Wine Spectator and many other publications.
Praise and Awards range from "Top 100 Hotels in The World" to "Best Beach Chic" and "Award of Excellence." The Landing also appears in numerous books such as "Hip Hotels" and "Island Life."
The property comprises two buildings – The Landing and Captain’s House.
The Landing’s main building was built in 1800. The Captain's House followed in 1820.
The architecture is traditional Colonial and typical of the wealthy landowners of that time.
‘It’s an architectural treasure,’ Arthur says.
Captain's House sits on the site of one of the original quarries on the island. The limestone foundation stones used in the construction of both houses as well as many historic homes on the island originated from this quarry.
‘You can still see the saw marks from the old hand saws used to cut the stones at the back of The Captain's House,’ Ms. Barry said.
One of two cellars is housed in a hand cut, underground tunnel.
Architects marvel at the old design and construction.
The beams in the main house resemble the ribs of a boat. There are long expanses of beam without any support that are ‘as solid as a rock.’ That’s not surprising since both buildings frames are constructed from pine from the island of Abaco in the northern Bahamas.
This was an amazing wood, resistant to termites and becoming harder with age.
‘We learned just how hard the wood was after Hurricane Floyd when we were ankle deep in water on the ground floor. We tried to drill a hole in the floor so the water could drain out to the basement and it was literally not possible,’ Ms Barry recalls.
‘We burnt the motor of three drills in our attempt to drill through the wood. Likewise, when we sustained major damage in Hurricane Floyd, the structural integrity was not compromised in the slightest.’
‘This is a gorgeous property," Lightbourn Realty’s Robert Arthur said. ‘It’s just a short walk to town and the three mile pink sands beach. Yet it’s on the protected harbour side and has beautiful views.’
Harbour Island’s famous for its 3.5 mile pink sand beach.
‘The sand is truly pink, the water is truly aquamarine and there are so few people around that it feels like its yours alone,’ Conde Nast raves.
Forbes ranks the beach as ‘one of the world’s most luxurious.’
RITZ-CARLTON ANNOUNCES BAHAMIAN RESORT
A new Ritz-Carlton hotel will be built on Rose Island, an 11-mile long beach studded island four miles off New Providence and Paradise Island.
The boutique hotel will be sited on a 230-acre area and include homes, condos and a marina. Located at the western tip of Rose Island, it will offer a high level of privacy and luxury.
Rose Island has several weekend homes and tourist excursion facilities, but is mostly uninhabited.
Hotel guests and homeowners will arrive by helicopter or water taxi. The guestrooms will average 500 square feet and will have large balconies. A spa and gourmet restaurant is included in the plan. The resort is scheduled to open in 2009.
NEW HOTEL FOR BAHAMIAN RIVIERA
CABLE Beach in Nassau, Bahamas, often referred to as the ‘Bahamian Riviera, will play host to a $1.6 billion mega-resort.
The developer, Baha Mar, says it will build more than 3,500 hotel rooms, a 95,000-square-foot Harrah's casino with a 1,000-room Caesars Resort Hotel and an 18-hole Jack Nicklaus golf course, along with a retail village, luxury spas and many other amenities covering 1,000 acres.
And Starwood will offer four of its top brands: a 300-room W, including 100 condo units; a 300-room St. Regis, including 100 condo units; a 700-room Westin; and a 700-room Sheraton.
And plans call for an eco-water park with a "show-lake" for live events. For conventions, 175,000 square feet of meeting space and a 50,000-square-foot village with upscale shops, chef-branded restaurants and more. The existing 550-room Wyndham Nassau Resort is to be renovated, making a total of 3,550 guest rooms.
CASINO FOR EXUMA
THE U.S.-based Pinnacle Entertainment plans to open a casino in Exuma, Bahamas, in the first half of 2006.
Pinnacle, which operates and owns casinos in Nevada, Mississippi, Louisiana, Indiana and Argentina, received permission from the Bahamas Gaming Board in December, 2005.
It said it would make a $5 million investment to operate the Exuma casino. The casino will be situated next to the Four Seasons Emerald Bay Resort on Great Exuma.
It will be approximately 5,000 sq ft in size. The casino premises will be sublet from the resort.
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