If you are at that stage in your life when you can really start enjoying the fruits of your labours now may be the perfect time to consider buying that vacation home that you have always dreamed of. The following are some points to ponder when making a decision in this regard.
The question arises as to what you are going to do with your vacation home once you have bought it. Are you going to use it exclusively as a vacation home for your family and friends? Or are you going to rent it out part time? Do you plan to eventually make it your retirement home? Or are you going to hold on to it for a while as an investment and then sell it at a profit? The great value of a vacation home in Galle is that it can be used for all these diverse purposes.
When buying a vacation home, as in the case of all types of real estate, there are three well-accepted rules – location, location and location! As a vacation destination Galle offers fantastic value: the spectacular beauty of its coastal areas, its fascinating historical heritage and all the conveniences of modern urban life.
The city’s unique, laid-back ambience is contributed to in no small measure by the charm of the Galle Fort which is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The cobblestone streets inside the Galle Fort are lined with fine examples of colonial Dutch architecture, including churches, museums and residences and also cafes, boutiques, stylish hotels and guest houses which give off a bohemian vibe. Strolling on the windswept ramparts of the Galle Fort of an evening is a popular and exhilarating pastime.
Aesthetic and cultural activities such as the internationally acclaimed Fairway Galle Literary Festival and the Galle Music Festival attract many visitors, both local and foreign. The Galle International Stadium, with the Galle Fort as its backdrop and views of the Indian Ocean, has been frequently described as one of the most beautiful cricket grounds in the world.
All this combined with splendid tropical beaches such as Unawatuna, Thalpe, Ahangama and Koggala located nearby makes Galle one of the most sought after year-round vacation spots in Sri Lanka. Unawatuna beach, stretching for more than a mile, has been classified as one of the 100 best beaches in the world by CNN.
Ease of access
A very important consideration is how far your vacation home will be from your permanent home. You will want to spend as much time in your vacation home as you can, but if it is a five-hour drive away, you are less likely to use it every weekend. For a Colombo resident, Galle has the huge advantage of being a mere one hour’s drive from Kottawa along the Southern Expressway. In fact, you could even commute to work every day in Colombo from your vacation home in Galle!
Another very important consideration is whether the value of your vacation home will appreciate over time. On this score too Galle is a winner. The property market in and around Galle is driven by local and foreign investment in the tourist industry and this trend is likely to continue for many years to come. The increase in all types of tourist accommodation such as resort hotels, boutique hotels, backpackers’ hostels, guest houses and holiday villas has created a sustained demand for land and accordingly, real estate values have increased steadily year on year. According to an article written by Avantika Chilkoti, beachfront land on the coastline south of Galle rose in value from US $ 700 per perch in 2003 to US $ 15,000 per perch in 2015. The most expensive real estate in Galle by far is land within the Galle Fort which now commands the phenomenal price of around Rs 12 million per perch. According to the global property portal Lamudi’s Real Estate Market Report of Sri Lanka for 2017, Galle has been recognised as one of the fastest emerging metropolitan regions in the country for luxury properties. Accordingly, it is likely that the value of a vacation home in Galle will appreciate significantly over the years.
Renting out vacation homes on a part-time basis has become much easier in recent times with more and more tourists preferring home stays to hotels and thereby triggering the rise of online travel agents such as airbnb which presently lists about 4.5 million homes in 81,000 cities around the world. In a year-round vacation destination like Galle the rentability of a comfortable vacation home is likely to be high.
The Fairway Galle option
If you are contemplating the purchase of a vacation home in Galle one option to consider would be an apartment at the Fairway Galle luxury apartment complex which has just been completed and is ready for occupation with only a few choice apartments remaining for sale. The complex is conveniently located on the exit road from Pinnaduwa on the Southern Expressway. From Fairway Galle it is only a 15 minute drive to the Galle Fort and a five minute drive to the Unawatuna beach.
The complex, reflecting Fairway Holdings’ trademark straight-line architecture and minimalistic design, comprises 240 apartments in two towers situated on three and a half acres of landscaped land, thus making it a large scale project with a higher sustainability in terms of maintenance. The two and three bedroom apartments on offer are elegantly designed in order to optimise space and to use natural light wherever possible. The apartments range in size from 750 square feet to 1,150 square feet and are consequently very affordable while being at the same time luxurious.
Every effort has been made to combine comfort and safety with state-of-the-art convenience. All living areas within the apartments are equipped with inverter air conditioners and ceiling fans. Fire rated engineered timber doors have been used for all the main doors and public areas. Each apartment is provided with fully fitted imported kitchen cabinets with a stand-alone oven and hob. Backup generators ensure an uninterrupted power supply.
Within the resort-style complex is a host of amenities to delight homeowners and vacationers including a swimming pool, a gymnasium, tennis and squash courts a roof top terrace, a children’s play area, recreational areas, a function hall, a hair dressing salon and spa, a Cargill’s Food City mini supermarket, provision for electric car charging points at all car ports and the complex’s very own helipad. Significant additional benefits, important to an owner of a vacation home, are free access to the Fairway Beach Club House in Unawatuna, 24 hour security and the provision of maintenance services.
It may be seen therefore that an apartment at Fairway Galle ticks all the boxes listed above as being desirable in a vacation home: location, ease of access, resale value, rentability, an exclusive beach clubhouse, 24 hour security and maintenance services. The feedback obtained from most buyers who have taken over possession is that their finished apartments have far exceeded their expectations. The onsite furnished show apartment gives potential buyers a good idea of the kind of vacation home they could own.
In line with its commitment to Galle, Fairway Holdings has just embarked on its second luxury apartment project in the city, namely Aqua Vista by Fairway which has a beachfront location close to the Galle Fort. Fairway Holdings will also shortly complete construction of a 65 room hotel called Fairway Sunset, a five minute drive from Fairway Galle.
So, if a vacation home in Galle makes sense to you, what makes better sense than buying an apartment at Fairway Galle?