Author: Equity Estates

Equity Estates Top Investment Considerations for Purchasing a Vacation Home

Are you considering buying a vacation home? Let us help. Equity Estates has purchased dozens of vacation homes around the globe over the last decade. We have learned through experience exactly what to consider when scouting luxury real estate that will appreciate and be appreciated.

TOP 8 INVESTMENT CONSIDERATIONS FOR PURCHASING A VACATION HOME

1. SEASONALITY OF DESTINATION

From a value standpoint, how many days per year can be enjoyed in this destination? We try to purchase residences which present ideal conditions for at least 3 out of 4 seasons. Year round appeal is king when it comes to long term value.

2. RESIDENCE LOCATION

You’ve picked a destination—now how do you choose the right residence? Look for views and access to amenities, whether it be the ocean, ski trail or main street of restaurants. Sometimes it’s worth paying a little more for a prime location. There are a finite number of top-tier homes, and these homes are easier to sell in any market.

3. LONG-TERM APPEAL

Will this destination and residence appeal to you ten years from now? Are there activities you and your loved ones would enjoy as you and your family age?

4. GETTING THERE

Airlift is another key factor we assess. How many airlines service the market, and from where do they originate? Airlines dropping and changing plane schedules can kill a resort destination. As important to consider is the ease of getting to the residence, unless you intentionally want to be off the beaten path and potentially off the grid.

5. AMENITY AND RESORT ACCESS

The homes which appreciate the most have an increasingly attractive draw of activities and amenities. If you buy outside a community, you will need to establish relationships to replace what you get inside a community – and safety should be considered first.

6. COST TO LEASE

Buy the home which costs the most to lease. This typically correlates with home values, so when it’s time to sell you will garner the most appreciation.

7. PROMOTIONAL INVESTMENT

This often overlooked and sometimes difficult to ascertain key metric could make or break your future investment. How much money is being invested in marketing the area by the local government, chamber of commerce or resort real estate developers. The more activity, the better.

8. LAYOUT AND SIZE OF RESIDENCE

It’s important to find a home which can comfortably accommodate your family and the extended family and friends who undoubtedly will want to join when invited. Entertaining and media spaces are essential for marketability down the line. This will ensure the home is appealing to a wide range of people, and maintain its resale value

ARE YOU READY FOR THE HASSLES THAT COME WITH OWNING A SECOND/VACATION HOME?

  • Maintenance surprises, especially on arrival
  • Property management
  • Utilities
  • Property taxes
  • Property insurance
  • HOA fees
  • Storm preparations
  • Repairs
  • Remodeling
  • Furnishing
  • Landscaping
  • Vendor management
  • Liability and property casualty
  • SOLE RESPONSIBILITY

Consider this smart vacation home alternative.

Equity Estates offers an alternative for your dream vacations while presenting a sound financial investment in real estate. We deliver all the perks of vacation home ownership without any of the hassles—just like you’d expect at a luxury hotel.

Our portfolio spans the globe, featuring 60+ luxury residences, each valued at $1.5 to $4 million in the most desirable destinations. ‘Appreciating Luxury Residences’ is a tagline we are proud to have earned over the last ten years.

Don’t just take a vacation—Own it. Invest where you play in exclusive travel destinations from Paris to Park City to the gorgeous islands of Turks and Caicos.

Home to some of the best beaches on earth

Our residence in Grand Cayman perfectly combines the intimacy of a private vacation home with the exclusive amenities of a five-star resort.

Grand Cayman is the largest of the three Cayman Islands. A haven for snorkelers and scuba enthusiasts, Grand Cayman also offers a more relaxing experience at its many world-class resorts lining Seven Mile Beach- named one of the ‘Best Beaches on Earth’ by Travel + Leisure. Our residence is located at the Beachcomber and is nestled along the perfect stretch of this famous beach. This three bedroom residence sleeps a maximum of eight and boasts ample covered patio space overlooking beautiful turquoise waters. A large infinity pool located just steps from the shores of the Caribbean Sea is also available for owners to enjoy.

Our residence in Grand Cayman perfectly combines the privacy and intimacy of a private vacation home with the exclusive amenities of a five-star resort.

But don’t just take our word for it! 

“The Beach Comber is the best location and residence on the island, right in the middle of Seven Mile Beach. The residence is a great layout with a spectacular view.  The restaurants were all wonderful with excellent service.  This is now our favorite destination and have booked again for the summer.  My wife refers to it as her “happy place.” Owner Member Mark A, who just returned from his vacation in Grand Cayman.

Top 3 Must-Do Activities:

  1. Stingray City
    A 45-minute boat trip from Grand Cayman, Stingray City is a submerged sandbar located on the North Sound where tourists can experience close encounters while feeding hordes of majestic stingrays.
  2. Cayman Spirits Co. Distillery
    Come taste small-batch spirits on the Georgetown waterfront in what has quickly become a Grand Cayman staple. Spirits are concocted by hand in a single column still using local ingredients and traditional West Indies techniques. Be sure to try the award-winning Seven Fathoms Rum.
  3. Atlantis Submarine
    Board the Atlantis Submarine and dive into the deep blue. This sub descends to depths of over 100 feet and boasts unrivaled views of the world underneath the water.

Dining Favorites:

Grand Cayman is know for its incredible dining, ranging from extravagant and upscale to more casual, outdoor options. Check out some of our favorites below-

  1. Blue
    Started by world-renowed French chef Eric Ripert, Blue cannot be missed. Our residence’s extremely close proximity to the Ritz Carlton, where Blue is located, makes this restaurant even more appealing.
  2. Brasserie
    A local favorite, Brasserie is a boat to table restaurant serving the freshest local fish around. Helpful tip- this restaurant is closed on weekends, so be sure to stop in during the week!
  3. Cracked Conch
    With an amazing waterfront deck and unbeatable panoramic views, Cracked Conch is the perfect place to soak in your surroundings while enjoying a tasty lunch or sipping cocktails.

Cook like a local:

Cayman Islands Coconut Pie
Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons of flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup of coconut flakes
  • 3 tablespoons of vanilla
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons of margarine
  • 5 tablespoons of cornstarch
  • 3 cups of 2% milk or whole milk

Instructions:

  • Add eggs, milk, corn starch, sugar, salt and flour to pot, mixing together over low heat. Bring ingredients to a full boil; boil constantly, stirring until thick.
  • Add the remaining ingredients. Pour the mixture into a 9″ prebaked pie crust.
  • Transfer the pie into the fridge and let chill.
  • When ready, serve with whip cream topping and sprinkle toasted shaved coconut on top.

From Arizona to Hawaii, we have a bevy of destinations just a short drive or flight away from our West Coast investors.

San Diego – This five bedroom residence is located right on Mission Beach, just steps from the sand and private surf lessons. Ideally located with easy access to La Jolla and Torrey Pines, this residence allows you to experience the California coast in style.

Lake Tahoe, Northstar – Enjoy this ski-in/ski-out four bedroom residence at Tahoe’s premiere luxury resort. We also have full access to Ritz Carlton’s year around amenities, including outdoor heated pools and a beautiful spa.

Los Cabos – Pick from two incredible residences within Puerto Los Cabos’ gates. Just steps from a beautiful beach club with incredible pools, work out facilities and spa treatments, both homes also come equipped with their own private pool and daily breakfast prepared in home.

Napa Valley – Enjoy a relaxing weekend in wine country at Calistoga Ranch, an Auberge Resort. This bungalow allows up to six guests to take advantage of the region and unwind at one of America’s top ranked resort.

Hawaii, The Kohala Coast – This brand new five bedroom residence is targeted to open later this year when construction is completed. Located between the Mauna Lani and the Fairmont Orchid, the home is perfectly positioned and allows visitors to seamlessly enjoy resort amenities.

Scottsdale – While overlooking the 14th hole of Troon North’s Pinnacle Peak course, enjoy the spectacular outdoor living space that boasts lounge areas, pool, fire pit, hot tub and dining areas. This large home offers easy access to championship golf, spas, shopping, horseback riding and hiking.

Equity Estates homes are well-equipped to play host to extended family or group vacations

For most travelers, the idea of taking all the branches of a family tree on a trip together is daunting. Visions of arguments over where to stay, where to eat and what to do are surely swimming through your head. But fear not–the concierge staff at Equity Estates destination club are experts in seamlessly creating inspired vacations for your family, accommodating the toddlers to the grandparents and everyone in between.

According to The Wall Street Journal and Travel + Leisure, multigenerational and group travel are two of the biggest travel trends this year. In fact, it has been deemed the fasted growing segment in the $7.5 trillion travel industry. From extended families to groups of friends or coworkers, traveling in large groups is on the rise. Proponents of this type of travel say taking trips together creates life-long memories, allows them to spend quality time with loved ones and fosters an ideal environment for celebrating milestones.

In a travel survey conducted by Preferred Hotel Group, 77% of respondents agreed that taking a multigenerational vacation “is something they try to do every year.” This sentiment is especially evident among Millennials and grandparents– presumably a reflection of their desires to spend more time together.

Equity Estates’ private luxury residences are well equipped to play host for this type of travel, featuring gourmet kitchens, very spacious living and dining areas with plenty of seating and even resort-style private pools. Often seen as a second home alternative, the residences in Equity Estates’ portfolio offer all the comforts and intimacies of a private vacation home while also providing the perks and amenities that come with a stay at a five-star resort.

Traveling with a large group can come with many hassles, especially if you’re in charge of the planning. Equity Estates will handle all the details, from transportation to and from the airport to daily housekeeping to pre-stocking the fridge with your favorite goodies—no task is too big for too small.

The logistics of traveling with small children can be even more overwhelming. Equity Estates properties are built for families, and our concierge staff will help make your vacation worry-free every step of the way.  Each of the homes in our impressive portfolio comes fully equipped with everything from Pack ‘N Plays to high chairs, and our staff can make arrangements for any specialty item to be waiting for you upon your arrival. Our local hosts even vet highly qualified babysitters in each of our destinations, providing you with the perfect excuse for an adults-only night out.

 

Second to none, our destinations boast blue-ribbons

With Equity Estates destination club, you’ll enjoy access to top-rated locations around the globe. Here’s a selection of residences in our highly awarded portfolio. Consider these options as a second home alternative.

World’s Best Beach  by CNN Traveler’s Choice Awards
TURKS AND CAICOS

Best City in the World to Visit – by Condé  Nast Traveler’s Reader’s Choice Awards
FLORENCE, ITALY

America’s Most Cultured City  by Travel + Leisure
NEW YORK, NEW YORK

World’s Best Food City  by Food & Wine
PARIS, FRANCE

Best Islands in the World  by Condé  Nast Traveler’s Reader’s Choice Awards
ST. JOHN, U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS

Best Adventure Vacations in the U.S. – by U.S. News
LAKE TAHOE, CALIFORNIA

Best Beach in the World  by U.S. News
GRAND CAYMAN ISLAND

Top Ski Resorts in North America  by Forbes
TELLURIDE, COLORADO

Most Beautiful Cities in the World  by Condé Nast Traveler’s Reader’s Choice Awards
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA

With warmer days on the rise, employees are cashing in their vacation time, packing their suitcases, and undoubtedly regretting their passport photos. Items that are not making it into the suitcase? Laptops, tablets, and even cell phones.

Just five years ago a resort could not expect to stay open without Wi-Fi. The opposite is now the case.

According to Forbes, in an age where media constantly surrounds us, travelers are now choosing more secluded spots and retreating to the hidden corners of the globe for some much needed R&R.

Vacation doesn’t just mean getting away from your job, but also the buzz of a text message, those pesky Facebook notifications and yet another voicemail for a wrong number. Better yet, vacation is now seen as a time to block out the digital noise and spend some quality time with mother nature and the people right in front of you– what an antiquated concept!

What’s more, overtly touristy activities and hot spots have cooled. Today’s traveler no longer wants to be herded on a tour with hundreds of other foreigners—they long to delve into the local scene and walk away with a culturally enriching experience signature to the destination they chose to visit.

Thailand and Costa Rica are just two of the many locations Equity Estates investors escape to to truly leave the tourist grid. Read on for our recommendations and expert tips from our local hosts.

THAILAND: If you’re overworked and overstressed, balance out at this underrated, underdeveloped paradise.

  • Explore the surrounding islands – The Phang Nga Bay island group has 67 islands and is located between the island of Phucket and the mainland of the Malay peninsula of southern Thailand. One of the most famous islands is Khao Phing Kan, which many call the “James Bond Island” because the James Bond movie The Man with the Golden Gun was shot there. Home to the protected Ao Phang Nga National Park, beautiful scenery abounds in every direction. The park also safeguards the largest area of the native mangrove forest in Thailand.
  • Ride through the jungle – Rent a motorbike or a scooter for as little as 200 Baht (that’s just under $6.00) and blaze your own trail! Head to Koh Lanta and stroll down the main roads, or, venture further out for a grand adventure. Since the area is largely underdeveloped, the mountains and forests are free to thrive and provide a challenge for those biking and hiking—but the captivating scenery is worth the burn!
  • PRO TIP from an Equity Estates Local Host – “In the past, some Equity Estates members have really enjoyed the Gibbon sanctuary. Guests get the opportunity to volunteer for the sanctuary where they get to care for rescued gibbons. Additionally, the area is jam-packed with Thailand’s cultural heritage and visitors can explore local temples, village markets, and learn about Buddhist history and philosophy. When finished, feel free to mosey down to the coast for some snorkeling fun over the coral reefs where turtles and sparkling reef fish flourish. Other Equity Estates members have had a blast on John Gray Hong’s starlight sea canoe trip. They saw fantastic limestone scenery, monkeys, mud skippers, hornbills, and – well you’ll just have to see the rest for yourself!”

COSTA RICA: If you need to recharge, consider this your outlet!

  • Explore the Nicoya Peninsula – Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula is one of the world’s Blue Zones. Visitors will find breathtaking beaches, bright sunshine, and residents who live longer and happier lives than the average. The land is rich with unique, nutrient-filled fruits, which may attribute to the fact that the cancer rate is the lowest in the country. The area is not heavily populated and thus remains largely untouched – perfect for exploring! Monkeys, sloths, marine turtles, iguanas, dolphins, and manta rays are just a few of the critters found in this region. The Nicoyan towns are also celebrated among wellness and yoga devotees. They are called “digital detox” spots because the remote location allows people to unplug themselves from their devices and get in touch with their inner selves.
  • Drive to Cabuya Island – While the natives who are most familiar with Cabuya are supposedly dead, their spirits live on in the island. The island is also a cemetery that can only be reached at low tide. Legend says the island is haunted by ghosts and those who are brave enough will light a candle and take a walk along the shore. Want to know more about this local legend and others? Each Equity Estates member has access to a local host wherever they go. They are local, long term residents who can help find hidden gems and off the beaten path activities.
  • PRO TIP from an Equity Estates Local Host – “The hike to the top of the active Rincón de la Vieja volcano is strenuous and challenging, but extremely rewarding. I consider it to be one of the best hikes in Central America. On the way up, you’ll see plenty of classic Costa Rican vegetation and wildlife- monkeys are often very active along this trail and it is marked with several beautiful waterfalls. There’s a ton of geothermic activity here, including boiling mud pots, hot springs and steam vents.”

*Heading into its 10th successful year, Equity Estates is the first and largest equity destination club in the U.S. Equity Estates is a vacation home alternative, offering all of the benefits of home ownership without any of the hassles. Its investors enjoy years of concierge supported travel before they divest. A globetrotter’s dream with more than 60 private luxury homes spanning 25 countries, Equity Estates’ mission is to deliver measurable and memorable returns.