It is an oft-repeated complaint that there is a dearth of Mediterranean marinas that offer the right location with the facilities and service owners deserve. The gap in the market and popularity of marina communities has been growing over the last few years, showing that owners are ready for something different. Following four years of construction, Cyprus has finally opened the doors to its own alternative. At a gathering in London yesterday, Limassol Marina, the country’s first full-service superyacht marina with residential, commercial and cultural facilities, celebrated being open for business.

Limassol Marina and the Island

Considering the devastating Cypriut banking crisis that struck in 2013, which called for €10 billion international bailout, the fact that this marina has emerged out the other side is fairly remarkable. “Cyprus went through some tough times in 2013,” admitted Michalis Hadjipanayiotou, CEO of property development at Cybarco, one of the shareholder companies in the project. “The good news is that we are doing well-above expectations, the ratings are up and the market is performing better. We were stuck with the project in the middle of the crisis but we really believed in it and finished it. It has been a long but very rewarding journey.”

The 350M euro project sees Cyprus put itself in a similar league to other marina communities such as Porto Montenegro, Palmarina Bodrum and Marina Port Vell, with 650 berths for yachts up to 115m, as well as 236 residences and 54 commercial units. Managed by Camper & Nicholson’s Marinas along with local partners F&S Marinas, Limassol Marina has been designed by Xavier Bohl, who has been working on the project for 11 years and is the mind behind places like Port Grimaud near St Tropez, a small lakeside town where houses are linked with their boats.

Connecting the residences to the sea is at the heart of the concept.

Connecting residences with the sea is something that seems to be at the core of Limassol’s design philosophy. All of the property has a sea view and the Peninsula and Island villas come with a private berth attached to the property where owners can moor their boats. Possibly the most intriguing and exciting example of this is the two villas at the end of the Island, Ianassa and Neso, which have already sold for 15M and 13M euros respectively (the highest prices ever paid for property on Cyprus). Ianassa has a 60m and a 20m berth attached to it, while Neso 35m and 40m berths, with 125-year leases. Could this be a new type of homeport? A home and spot for your superyacht? Or even the possibility of owning a villa with a berth that you rent out?

Ianassa Villa

Speaking to a couple agents from Knight Frank, the selling agents on the project, general consensus from those at the event was that UHNWI looking for property abroad are increasingly looking for something different. The same can be said for superyacht owners specifically. Overcrowding in traditional marinas combined with subpar service has triggered owners to look further afield. Time will tell if this concept of shore-to-yacht living is the answer to what they are looking for.

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