MEDINA PALMS OPENS IN WATAMU AS MORE POSH CONDO COMPLEXES ARE PLANNED
(Posted 22nd August 2013)
From Mombasa’s English Point to Briatore’s Billionaire’s Resort in Malindi, posh condominium, villa and residence complexes are now springing up along the coast, and Watamu’s Medina Palms is only the latest in a string of such developments. The newly found oil wealth in Kenya’s Turkana region, mega infrastructure projects and in particular the new Lamu port and the associated LAPSSET project, which will connect Ethiopia and South Sudan by rail, road and pipeline with the new port in Lamu, have given Kenya the prospect of a new wave of prosperity and economic development, in the wake of which upmarket property developments are now sprouting.
At Medina Palms, a 50 unit development resembling Arabic Mediterranean architectural styles found in North Africa, the 4 billion Kenya Shillings sunk into the project are paying off handsomely for the developers as 40 units have already been sold, and the rumour mill is full of names floated of the international Schickeria who are drawn to such locations as much by the vista and location itself as by the names of their immediate neighbours.
2 bedroom apartments are selling at as low as 30 million, a bargain considering the sunny beach side in Watamu, one of Kenya’s prime beaches but prices are rising to as high as over 260 million for the top end ‘palaces’ – none of which is now left according to a coast based source.
Medina joins such other Watamu based upscale properties like the Blue Bay Cove and similar developments, and the Kilifi based Vipingo Ridge estate and Ol Pejeta’s Living with Wildlife at the fringe of Nanyuki have one added component in common – easy access by air. While Vipingo and Ol Pejeta use ‘ordinary airstrips’ or at best at Ol Pejeta the main Nanyuki field, Watamu has a short access to the expanded Malindi airport, which is in years to come to be upgraded to a full international airport, then permitting owners to fly in on their own jets without the need to stop over in Nairobi to clear customs and immigration.
The source also confirmed that Kenyan authorities are now more than happy to grant foreign owners of such upmarket residences and condominiums residency in the country, all aimed to attract the rich and famous and th glitter glitz and glamour community to come to Kenya, buy real estate and help give the country a good name abroad. Nearby resorts, like Hemingways, too add of course to the attraction as they organize regular fishing tournaments, including an annual championship event, again something this target groups seems to be happy to associate with. Well done for little Watamu, a sleepy little resort area no more for sure but graduated into the big league but the look of it.