Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Affordable ocean views in a tropical highrise

Situated in the highly desirable neighborhood of Costa del Este, this stunning building boasts 54 floors with spectacular ocean views, and offers formal entrances, master suites with walk-in closets and luxurious bathrooms, 2 additional bedrooms with private baths, comfortable living rooms, quiet dens, large dining rooms, sparkling kitchens, laundry rooms, and maid's quarters. There will be 8 levels of parking for owners strictly monitored 24 hours a day. Arrive in style to your apartment in one of the 4 high speed elevators.  There are two additional elevators for deliveries and service personnel.
The social area is designed for the discriminating visitor and includes a luxurious separate lobby, ballroom for receptions and events, a playground for children, swimming pools for adults and children, 3 jacuzzis, squash and racquetball courts, health center with sauna and steam baths and a gymnasium. All social areas have central air-conditioning.
Costa del Este is just a few minutes from downtown Panama City and the Tocumen International Airport. There are supermakets, restaurants, and all of the amenities one would need in this upscale community within walking distance or a 2 minute drive. The Southern Highway conveniently allows residents easy access to downtown, the mountains and nearby communities.

Key selling points and investment justifications
  • Located in best residential area in Panama
  • Ideal for investment and personal use
  • Multiple amenities with secure location
  • High resale value
  • 15-year property tax exemption
  • Condo system ensures comforts of gated community

Price and Size Range:  EUR 207,000 - 493,000     205 - 205 m²

Consult with your real estate agent.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Beach resort surrounded by mountains

Situated in Panama's first eco-park, with more than half its land dedicated to natural landscape, this exclusive project offers breathtaking views from its modern beach and mountain retreat holiday cottages, surrounded by an abundance of opportunity for recreational activities, beautiful landscapes, gorgeous sunsets, and ocean breezes. With all the natural attributes of Eden: winding river, sandy beach, inspiring mountains, and beckoning ocean, this spectacularly located resort is a mere 1 hour from Panama City ensuring that it will be a preferred destination for locals and foreign investors alike, for years to come.

This resort area offers many local services including a supermarket, hospital clinics, veterinarians, and excellent restaurants. With Panama's best golf courses just minutes away, you'll also find excellent sports facilities including water skiing, horseback riding, and numerous children's attractions. All of this within a relaxed beach and mountain environment just a short drive to the city.

Enjoy the white sand beach and warm waters: a strip of smooth, golden sand results in perfectly rounded waves, optimal conditions for surfers. The nature trails offer a variety of flora and fauna native to Panama. The spectacular mountain views and the natural lakes make this place a true ecological paradise. The resort will amaze you with beautiful nature and incredible panoramic sea views.

Key selling points and investment justifications
  • Surrounded by high-end beach communities
  • Near favorite ecotourism destinations and urban Panama city
  • High resale value due to low density of single-home units and catering to foreign investos
  • Investor-friendly landholding corporation regime and 15-year property tax regime
  • Just 1 hour from Panama City
  • New construction

Price and Size Range:  EUR 125,000 to 143,000    111m² to 174m²

Consult with your real estate agent.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Modern Home in New Neighborhood

This gated residential community is surrounded by spectacular green areas and 55 gorgeous 3-level homes, boasting walking paths, parks, 24 hour surveillance, and a fantastic clubhouse with swimming pools, jacuzzis, exercise room, tennis courts, miniature golf, and many additional services. Choose from 3 or 4 bedrooms, all with private bathrooms, walk in closets in the master suites, comfortable dens and family rooms, spacious dining rooms, sparkling kitchens, charming terraces and patios, covered parking and convenient storage rooms.

The first phase of a larger project, it is ideally situated in the recently developed residential area of Costa Sur and is just a few minutes from downtown Panama City via the South Corridor highway.  In just 5-10 minutes you can reach the best shopping malls, supermarkets, restaurants and other amenities while still enjoying the tranquility of Club Pijao. Costa Sur is an new urban development consisting of eight private gated communities in a 44 hectare setting.  It is ajacent to the very exclusive neighborhood of Costa del Este. 

Key selling points and investment justifications
  • Close to all the amenities of Panama City
  • Condo system ensures comforts gated community
  • Ideal for investment and personal use
  • Close to hub of the Americas airport
  • High resale value
  • 15-year property tax exemption

Price and Size Range:  EUR 313,000 to 395,000    324m² to 431m²

Consult with your real estate agent.

Beautiful Mountain cottage in Boquete

Sip your morning coffee from beans of the trees in your backyard, while feasting your eyes and ears on views of the Baru Volcano and the exotic birds' serenade: this wonderful 2500 sqf, 3 bedroom 2 bath cottage is situated 4500 ft above sea level on over a half acre with the perfect climate for growing oranges, and boasts a comfortable living room, quiet den, lovely kitchen, and even separate quarters for household help. Take advantage of the subdivision's clubhouse amenities.

An enchanting little mountain town in the middle of mother nature, unspoiled, waiting to be discovered, Boquete is a quaint town with healthy year-round average spring-like temperatures of 65-70 degrees, flora and wildlife that will elevate your soul and body to a whole new ecological lifestyle. Emerging in the highlands of Panama, from 3,000 to 11,400 feet above sea level, Boquete stands proud for its endless possibilities: it�s the perfect spot for leisure and excitement: world class hiking, canopy, coffee tours (best coffee in the world is found here, winner of the 4 latest coffee Olympics) rafting, biking, fishing, kayaking, golf, tennis and many more. Also, with over 900 species of birds inhabitants, bird watching is one of Boquete�s main attractions.

This paradisiacal place is considered one of the best destinations for tourism and retirement in the world known as �The valley of the flowers and the eternal spring�. But is its people what makes Boquete a forever place. Mild manners, cordial, quiet and hospitable, the nearly 15,000 residents of Boquete base their economy on the nurturing of flowers (especially orchids) and agriculture (mostly coffee).

Key selling points and investment justifications
  • Surrounded by high-end mountain communities
  • Near favorite ecotourism destinations and city of David
  • High resale value due to low density of single-home units and catering to foreign investors
  • Investor-friendly landholding corporation regime and 15-year property tax regime
  • 20-minute drive from city of David and it's international airport
  • Existing construction

Price and Size Range: EUR 167,000 230 m2 home in 2360 m2 plot

Consult with your real estate agent.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Tales of buying property south of the border: On the cheap in Panama

San Francisco Chronicle

Tales of buying property south of the border

Sunday, November 11, 2007
Ten years ago, Americans who wanted to buy a vacation or retirement home thought of places such as Florida, Arizona or Hawaii. Today, they're just as likely to consider Mexico or Central America.
Last week, in the first part of this two-part series, I cited a number of reasons why more Americans are buying real estate abroad.
Mexico and Central America are attractive, especially for Californians, because they're close and inexpensive.
Some countries are easing restrictions on foreigners owning property and actively courting North Americans.
Each year, International Living magazine rates the best places to retire based on costs, health care, safety, taxes and other factors.
This year, it named Mexico No. 1, citing its "perfect mix of centuries-old traditions and contemporary lifestyles."
Panama, which had been No. 1 for six years, dropped to fourth place, mainly because of rising property prices and new visa restrictions.
Buying property in a developing country is not without risk. Many don't have the same property rights and judicial system we do.
Americans who failed to do their due diligence have bought homes from people who didn't have the right to sell them.
Corruption and bribery are not uncommon. Health care might not be up to U.S. standards. And the infrastructure we take for granted often doesn't exist.
Americans buy oceanfront property "and then find out the roads are bad, there's not a mall five minutes away. Right outside their beautiful complex is a lot of poverty," says Margaret Hussey, supervising producer with "House Hunters International" on HGTV.
Here are stories about Northern Californians who bought property in Mexico and Panama.
On the cheap in Panama
Glenn and Reinhild Gamboa were planning to sell their restaurant, home and cabin near Yosemite in five to eight years and retire somewhere cheaper, perhaps India or Bulgaria. But when they visited Panama last year, they realized they could do it immediately.
Panama had everything they wanted - warm weather year-round, cheap real estate and low living costs. Because Panama's currency is the U.S. dollar, there were no exchange-rate worries.
Finding a place, however, took some sleuthing. "There are no Realtors in Panama," Glenn Gamboa says. "You go through a lawyer or go to the mayor of the village and ask what's for sale."
Driving around, the Gamboas found a half-acre lot with a river on two sides in El Valle de Anton, a village in an extinct volcano.
"We found a lawyer (in Panama). The lawyer called the owner, we got together, made an offer and settled. It took about four days," Glenn Gamboa says.
They flew home and put their properties on the market. They all sold within 90 days.
The Gamboas paid $52,000 for the land and $90,000 to have a 3,400-square-foot cinderblock home constructed. Building in Panama takes patience and a certain inattention to detail. "They don't think it's important to have the tiles line up," Glenn Gamboa says.
Glenn and Reinhild Gamboa's home in El Valle de Anton, Panama, was cheap enough that they could retire early. Photo courtesy of Glenn Gamboa
Americans in Panama have to get used to seeing guards with Uzis in storefronts, and the food "is pretty bad," he says.
But for $430 a month, the Gamboas pay for a gardener; a maid; water; electricity; garbage; Internet; and life, homeowners and car insurance. They don't have health insurance. If they have medical problems, they'll pay out of pocket or, when they're Medicare-eligible, return to the United States.
The Gamboas have opened a cooking school, which brings in about $1,000 a month.
Panama is "safe, clean and the people are generous, amazing," Glenn Gamboa says. "I've been stopped five times (for traffic violations) by the police. But I've never gotten a ticket."
Read the first part of this two-part series at
Net Worth runs Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. E-mail Kathleen Pender at
This article appeared on page F - 1 of the San Francisco Chronicle

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Feb 7: SLAM Argentina conferences in Buenos Aires

Thurs., Feb. 7th is the, Expat Connection "Buying Real Estate in Argentina" Seminar @ Manifesto in Palermo (Humboldt 2160, corner Soler). For the third time, back by popular demand, this time we'll feature 9 speakers presentations and lots of time for questions and answers, from a local attorney to walk you though the buying process to an architect who'll talk about what you can expect if you decide to remodel your purchase. $150 for the seminar and *RSVP REQUIRED* Space limited! rsvp@ Speakers will include:
Local business lawyer,
Javier Canosa, to set the stage and give overview
Juan Kennedy to speak re: local tax implications
Local bank (tentative), to speak re: bank services available to Expats and how to access those services w/out a DNI
Transpack, International movers, to speak re: issues and rules in moving household and personal effects to Arg.
Architect, to speak re: doing renovations to older apartments and houses as it's a typical scenario here in BA.

US Tax attorney, Mike Heimos., to speak about potential US tax implications your real estate investment could have

US Investor and Property Manager, Dr. Christopher Grande, Executive Director of
Street Level Asset Management (SLAM) to speak re: his experiences and services his company offers. His Powerpoint presentation can be downloaded from here.
ReMax Realtors will to speak about the estate market and the role a realtor plays here
Manifesto, contemporary furniture and interior design, will speak their services