Jeremy Hurst, owner of International Realty Group Ltd., attended Knight Frank’s International Residential Property Conference at the Westbury Hotel in Mayfair, London 5-7 December.
Knight Frank has the world largest network of property professionals outside the United States with 5300 affiliates from 36 countries including China, Hong Kong, UK, Caribbean, Europe, Africa, Australia and New Zealand. Also attending were the sales agents and brokers from Knight Frank’s office in Moscow and Dublin.
Mr. Hurst spoke to the conference about the Cayman Islands’ success in general and recent developments such as anti money laundering regulations and the growth in the economy and resilience to tax harmonisation threats and physical recovery from Hurricane Ivan.
He updated Knight Franks affiliates and associates on the opportunities in the property market here, including recently developed properties such as the Ritz Carlton’s Residences and properties new to the marker such as the Deckhouses, Caribbean Club, Renaissance. Also discussed were commercial investment opportunities, which are now particularly attractive to UK buyers due to the weak dollar, which has recently peaked at a 26 year high over two to one against sterling.
Other topics covered included Knight Frank’s research department’s Global Residential Property Index, with which Knight Frank track the world’s most desirable residential property markets with a property value index. Data collected for this index has been compiled and published in its Wealth Report, which interestingly shows the Cayman Islands to be of the best value markets with property values between US$500-$1,000 per square foot, which compares favourably to Barbados and Bermuda’s upper limits of US$1,500 – US$2,000 per square foot.
Mr. Hurst visited the show office for the world’s most expensive residential property development, One Hyde Park while he was in London, whose sales are being exclusively handled by Knight Frank. The residences, to be managed by the Mandarin Oriental Resort chain, directly overlook Hyde Park one side and Knightsbridge on the other.
‘Having had the opportunity to listen to other delegate’s market reviews it is clear that Cayman’s property market represents tremendous value at this point and believe that our presence at an international conference such as this, along with our continued global marketing efforts will increase the number of high net worth individual and investors we are able to attract,’ Mr. Hurst said.
‘It is concerning, however that compared to other high end destinations we do not appear to be marketing ourselves that effectively on an international basis as a country, especially since we have so much to offer here.’
IRG has been the Cayman affiliate of Knight Frank since 1999 and is its longest standing office in the Caribbean.
Copies of the Knight Frank Annual Wealth Report can be obtained from International Realty Group Ltd., Knight Frank’s affiliate office in Cayman by contacting Sophie Miles on 623-1111 or downloaded from their website www.irg.ky.