We’re all familiar with the trademarks of traditional Caribbean architecture. Wrap around verandahs, louvered windows, stone walls, arched doorways and colourful shutters functioning as both embellishment and protection. These homes have long served as staples of our history, peppering the shorelines and hilltops of Providenciales, from the original settlements, to the first wave of foreigner migration to T&C’s shores, with builds pioneered by the Ward family.
With development now taking on more of a steady rolling swell, rather than a crest with peaks and troughs, the last decade of T&C’s home design has seen the emergence of a more contemporary aesthetic. As a personal example I (FINALLY) made the transition from an open air home with louvered windows and gorgeous breezes through most of the year, to hurricane rated glass windows and an eco-friendly air condition system 🙂 As an avid lover of traditional Caribbean design, I never thought I’d say this, but I haven’t looked back since.
My example is a humble residential perspective of someone who feels deep roots to this timeless aesthetic, but with a steady influx of international buyers, I’m not alone in my pursuit of home design with an increasingly modern tilt. Below are 3 architectural firms that are truly transforming the landscape of Providenciales and redefining how we think about Caribbean design:
London and TCI based firm Blee Halligan Architects cut their teeth as development partner to Windward on the Blue Cay project and have continued this partnership on the South Bank project and The Peninsula at Emerald Estate, four standalone contemporary Beach Houses on the exclusive northeastern tip of Leeward, which are undeniably the showpiece properties of the collection. Blee also works on private projects throughout Providenciales, building on their design ethos of building in nature; designing for specific geographic, climatic and cultural nuances of the locale.
Beach Enclave is known for outside the box thinking, enter stage left, the first ever South American architectural firm to design in the Turks and Caicos. Hired to create minimalist low impact designs for the Beach Enclave Long Bay expansion and Beach Enclave North Shore second phase, Jacobsen Arquitetura successfully provided integrated designs to two seemingly varying sites. Linear design using natural materials, space and light, combine to create comforting ordered spaces with zero distractions to evoke a feeling of calm, provided by both the clean interiors and tropical views the designs overlook.
With over 20 years’ experience designing homes in Turks & Caicos as well as an international presence in Ireland and Great Britain, James Hamilton Architectspride themselves on empathetic design, with their clients needs at the heart of their process. A browse through their website will illustrate the numerous projects they’ve been involved in, and the varied nature of the homes they can produce. A personal favourite is Villa Fred, which marries the softness of cedar shingled roofing, order of symmetry and more modern linear elements like planked roofing, recessed lighting and pocket sliding doors opening to expansive views.
You may have heard the term “disruptor” being thrown around over the last few years. Uber Eats would be a well known example, as a company that caused radical change to an existing industry or market by means of innovation, in this case to the F&B industry. Air B&B would be another example of a disruptor company for the Hospitality industry. Though we technically can’t categorise COVID-19 as a company, the virus’s advancement worldwide, has caused radical change, not only to the way we do business in all private sectors, but also to the way we live. The term disruptor is somewhat misleading, in that it implies a negative interference with the norm. Though change on any level can be unsettling, the Uber Eats and Air B&B’s of the world have brought positive improvements to the F&B and Hospitality industries, by widening the traditional net of employment and consumer base through convenience and accessibility.
In 2020 the COVID-19 virus has been the disruptor of the Real Estate industry. Our process for selling homes still relies ultimately on the guiding principles of trust and connection with our buyers and sellers, but we have had to pivot quickly to replace what has traditionally been a face to face industry, marked by in person viewings and showings. With the help of the Sotheby’s International Realty brand and the importance placed on the use of technology, thankfully we’ve been in a position to make the most of our new reality and cater to our clients needs by hosting virtual spotlights, creating 3D virtual Matter-ports, and taking buyers on Facetime walk throughs. Below is a list of 6 properties sold, either wholly, or with the assistance of technology.
The Wright House
The Wright House in Chalk Sound, overlooks Silly Creek with waterfront vistas abounding. A perfect example of the power of technology to affect a sale and purchaser. The Wright House was listed in July 2020 and sold after 37 days on market, all, wait for it…virtually. The purchasers were familiar with Turks & Caicos and made contact with the listing agent who toured them through the property on Face time and found a connection for them – a perfect fit of homeowner with home – they loved the decor, the layout, the views, the location, and the property had signed contracts for its purchase within two weeks of the list date for $1.1M.
Just across the way from The Wright House, in private Silly Creek estate, Villa Rocco, a 4 bedroom waterfront home sold after 65 days on market for $1.5M. In the case of Rocco, both the listing and selling agent were within the Turks and Caicos Sotheby’s International Realty family. Again, Face time walk through was the technology of choice for the selling agent to familiarise the purchaser with the property, which was beyond their expectations.
An oceanfront classically Caribbean home sits just on the Water’s Edge, as its moniker describes, with south facing views. Charming and idyllic, this 3 bedroom home on .6 of an acre was sold through a combination of the Turks and Caicos Real Estate Association network and technology. At $1.125M, the home sold after approximately 5 months, with a simple Face time walk through via iPhone, but with those views it’s easy to see why.
Sensing a theme emerging? Homes between $1-2M located in the area of Chalk Sound/Silly Creek are trending in the last few months. Haven House sold after 85 days on market for $1.1M. The three bedroom home was introduced to the buyers through a physical walk through once the islands opened up officially in July. Matter-ports were the technology of choice for these buyers, who reviewed multiple homes and dollhouse views before they were able to fly in for 48 hours. Once the scope had been narrowed, a Face time walk through was used to reaffirm their love for the property.
The Grandview 302
One of the prettiest little spots on the beach, the Grandview has long been an unimposing gentle residential resort with lots of appeal. Even so, the average time between listing and sale for condominiums usually runs between 12 – 18 months. This little beaut sold after 48 days on market from within the Turks and Caicos Sotheby’s International Realty family with the aid of a Face time walk through, for $1.5M.
A Balinese dream and the second highest sale price in Silly Creek’s history – Villa Alamandra deviates slightly from the trends above, in that it has been on market a little longer than its neighbouring sales. What makes this story so unique is not the technology employed, Face time walk through was used here as well, but the fact the purchaser was a first time buyer in Turks & Caicos. At a sale price of $2.95M, that is a significant level of trust and investment in the country and the agents brokering this sale, and a reflection of the certainty the buyer had in this property being right for them. The confidence required to bring together the sale could only be achieved through the professionalism of the agents involved and the purchasers ability to see the property live.
In summary, we’re seeing an overall shortening of the length of time properties are sitting on market and a more focused view from buyers looking for the perfect home to ride out the remainder of the pandemic. COVID-19 has disrupted not just our way of doing business for the better, it’s provided buyers with the motivation to take the step(s) they have been dreaming about. For some that means the purchase of a larger home, for others it means investing in the Turks and Caicos real estate market for the first time.
At Turks & Caicos Sotheby’s International Realty we remain at the forefront of brokerage leadership with the use of technology. Whether it’s the importance we place on digital listing assets through the use of high resolution photography and video, 3D virtual reality tours and Matter-ports (special shout out to our amazing Marketing Director Denise Douglas for putting these together), our apple TV app, streaming and syndication capabilities, our use of augmented reality through CURATE and Ro0omy, or simple Face time walk throughs to ensure we’ve found the right fit for our buyers and sellers. At Turks and Caicos Sotheby’s International Realty we believe in pivoting and staying ahead of the curve. No not that curve…which has now been flattened in the Turks & Caicos. Special acknowledgment to the Turks & Caicos Government for a job well done on flattening the curve, and providing the country with the Stamp Duty Tax reduction during this difficult time.
p.s. The Stamp Duty Tax reduction is still in place until 30th December 2020 on land and properties up to $2M.
November 26th, 2019, Providenciales, Turks & Caicos Islands. Beach Enclave Turks and Caicos, the private villa resort brand behind Beach Enclave North Shore , Beach Enclave Grace Bay and Beach Enclave Long Bay is proud to announce the further expansion of the successful Beach Enclave brand with the Official Groundbreaking of Phase 2 Beach Enclave Long Bay, the first true luxury boutique resort in the Turks and Caicos Islands. “We could not be happier with the three resort locations we have – eachone peacefully nestled on the best beaches Turks & Caicos has to offer,from the north shore to the south shore of Long Bay in Providenciales. Phase 2 at Beach Enclave Long Bay is perhaps our most ambitious project yet.Our ethos for low density private beachfront living and our signature personalized touch is established and our guests love us for it.Our goal now is to continuously improve the owner and guest experience by growing our resort amenities to provide everything they may needwhere they need it, right there, a short beach stroll away.- Vasco Borges, CEO, Beach Enclave
The Turks & Caicos Islands community of businessmen, agents and Government Officials showed up to support the Groundbreaking of Phase 2 Beach Enclave Long Bay, which consists of four 3 – 4 bedroom standalone Beach Houses and The Club, a 24 key boutique hotel with 7 select Club Residences available for private ownership (Phase 1 villas are sold out, resort is open to owners and guests).
“With 16 completed villas, a further 11 under construction,and another 10 planned, along with additional hotel keys and a host of amenities, Beach Enclave has quickly developed into a desired luxuryvilla and hospitality brand under the direction of CEO Vasco Borges.With three beachfront location options offering the best in luxury villa living and services, BE is an industry leader with over a 50% share in its real estate market segment and a #1 Trip Advisor rating from its highly satisfied guests.We love representing this awesome and emerging brand.”- Joe Zahm, President, Turks & Caicos Sotheby’s International Realty.
With the Beach Houses taking shape over the next year, The Club Boutique Hotel,a four-story soft-contemporary building, designed by acclaimed architects Jacobsen Arquitetura , will add further on-site resort facilities including one-of-a-kind rooftop Wellness Spa & Lounge, a beachfront restaurant, Club Pool, fitness centre, lighted tennis, full water sports and children’s area on 8 acres over 800 feet of white sand beach. With 24 hotel keys and 7 select Club Residences, all of the Residences will enjoy beachfront positions with wide frontage, full kitchen and indoor/outdoor living spaces.Private ownership opportunities range from a Junior Suite(with 34 ft. of frontage and 878 sq. ft.) to a Three Bedroom Club Penthouse(with 56 ft. of frontage and 3,240 sq. ft.) The Club brings an exciting, modern, tropical design to Turks and Caicos,enhancing the Beach Enclave ethos of low density living amidst a boutique environment. An offering for the few, allowing owners beachfront family living within the security of Beach Enclave’s proven rental and management program.
Beach Enclave Grace Bay in Leeward is also under development, with only one beachfront lot remaining. Be on the lookout for our official update coming soon.
Turks & Caicos Sotheby’s International Realty, Venture House, Grace Bay, Providenciales
Over the past few years we have been predicting that the market trend was to continue upward based on all of Pending transactions on our TCREA MLS system. We are pleased to display this year end report that exceeded our expectations and still with $175M+ Pending deals to close out throughout this coming year.
SECOND QUARTER SHOWS SOLID GROWTH THROUGH FIRST HALF OF 2018
Turks & Caicos real estate continues to outperform most other countries in our jurisdiction. Visitors and owners from the US, Canada and beyond have discovered and coveted our award-winning beaches and island community, with many echoing the sentiment that they have found in the Turks & Caicos Islands a unique and highly accessible blend of compelling lifestyle, quality homes and properties, services and
amenities unlike any other island chain in the region. There are several investment and lifestyle benefits that many have now discovered adding to the growth and development of the islands. Click here to read more . .