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WHAT-TO-DO - FREEPORT/LUCAYA & GRAND BAHAMA ISLAND - JAN 2003
Buying an island
Paradise for sale
Originally published WHAT-TO-DO - FREEPORT/LUCAYA & GRAND BAHAMA ISLAND - JAN 2003 © Etienne Dupuch Jr Publications Ltd
Buying an island is often more of a dream than a reality, according to most Bahamian realtors. Island living is not for everyone. But it's a dream that many dare to dream.
The steps to buying and developing an island lead up a sometimes dark and winding staircase. It is navigable, but you need a good flashlight. And a good agent who is a member of the Bahamas Real Estate Association (BREA). Some of them specialize in islands.
Following are some of the islands that are available, or have been recently acquired by dreamers.
Tiki hut on the beach
Little Hall's Pond Cay, Exuma, is a 45-acre private island in the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park, with 40-ft elevation, deep-water access, interior lagoon and six private beaches. Accommodations include a thatched roof one-bedroom cottage with living room, kitchen, bathroom, standby generator and reverse osmosis water system, and a Tiki hut on the beach. The island costs $3.5 million, says veteran realtor George Damianos of Damianos Realty.
Over Yonder Cay, Exuma, in the picturesque Pipe Creek area, has five beaches, including a 900-ft white sand cove and a deep water bay beach with two gazebos and a 70-ft wooden dock.
The main hilltop house has wraparound verandas, a modern kitchen, and a "great room" with cathedral ceilings. A separate building includes two apartments, storage and workshops. The main beach is protected by a natural breakwater.
Asking price for the 74-acre island is $8 million and for that you'll also get solar and diesel generators, a 200-ft cement dock/bulkhead, rainwater cisterns, a well, a safe harbour with ample docks, five golf carts, two Boston Whalers and a front end loader with backhoe.
Musha Cay, in the lower Exumas, is a private island resort with seven white sand beaches. Air-conditioned living space includes a 10,000-sq-ft. plantation house, four guest villas with private beaches, a cottage on a half-moon beach, a dock house and villa and staff quarters.
The main gathering spot, known as The Landings, has a waterfront dining room, three bars, state-of-the-art gym, lighted tennis court, pool and a dock. A fleet of pleasure craft is included. This 150-acre resort and rental village that will accommodate up to 25 guests ? at $250,000 a week ? is priced at $56.5 million.
Rudder Cut Cay, Exuma, is on the market for $12.5 million.This 363-acre paradise to the immediate south of Musha Cay has 11 beaches, coral caves, 50-ft cliffs and a natural protected harbour created from a 15-acre inland lake. There are nearly three miles of surfaced roads, a 2,400-ft surfaced airstrip, a large main house and staff housing. Two diesel generators supply power and a water maker can supply 7,000 gallons a day.
Bock Cays archipelago is a collection of eight private islands, including 365-acre Bock Cay, Prime Cay (266 acres), Lignum Vitae Cay, Melvin Cay, Neighbour Cay, Wooby Cay, and two small rock islets. The southwestern side of Bock Cay includes a jetty, two main houses and a storage house with caretaker apartment. The main house, built in 1970, consists of three floors and a 30,000-gal water tank. A smaller guest house, erected in 1997, includes a 20,000-gal water tank. The island also has a caretaker's home, maintenance buildings, docks, gazebo, telephone and television. H G Christie Ltd has the group listed at $11.8 million, and that includes three boats, and two tractors.
Undeveloped islands can be good investments, says Damianos, whose company deals almost exclusively in waterfront properties and islands.
Bonds Cay, two miles northeast of Whale Cay in the Berry Islands, is one of the largest (700 acres) undeveloped islands left in The Bahamas. Ideal for a development or private retreat, the island has white, red, and black soil with a large portion of the cay being virgin forest. There is sufficient shore depth for boats up to five-ft draft. There is ample room for a 4,000-ft airstrip with elevations to 30 ft. It is priced at $7.5 million.
Little Norman's Cay, Exuma, is a 35-acre undeveloped private island with three good beaches, elevations of up to 50 feet, deep water access, and protected anchorage. Asking price is $4.2 million. Norman's Cay with its small airstrip is only one mile away.
Little Ragged Island is a wooded 700 acre island with thousands of lignum vitae and coconut trees, elevations to 40 feet and over 30,000 feet of water frontage. A sheltered harbour, an abundant supply of good fresh water, two fairly large ponds, excellent fishing and good soil make this an ideal investment at $10 million.
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THE ISLANDS OF THE BAHAMAS