“I have projects all over the world,” she says, “and Panama is one of the strongest, if not the strongest, real estate market. Our biggest problem is not having enough inventory. We only have a small percent of the building left.” She attributes the success to “a great government that really supports developers... I’m impressed with their forward thinking in bringing in new potential residents. I’m in New York and see this as ‘escape to Panama’. I never saw that five years ago.”
Trump Ocean Club is scheduled to open next year, offering a combination of condominiums, hotel, yacht club, restaurants, stores and a casino. “Given the global downturn, the fact that sales remain so robust is a testament to the product, the brand and Panama,” Trump says. The buyers are a mix of American, Canadian and Latin Americans, she says.
The Trump Ocean is being constructed in a market with plenty of luxury condominium offers, but Ivanka Trump believes it has been able to stand out thanks to its unique design and amenities, which include a private beach club at Isla Saboga in the Pearl Islands.
But the uniquely designed building is the main draw. “In terms of quality of construction it’s unlike anything Central America has seen,” she says. “It’s a beautiful building.” She especially singles out the pools and the large rooms and suites with all fixtures and amenities. “It’s a product that meets five star standard international levels,” Trump says.
Panama also offers important tax incentives. “Some of the tax incentives are incredibly luring to international [investors], especially as we in America are being taxed to the hilt,” Trump says.
And then there’s Panama’s combination of urban modernity and rural beauty. “Panama is an exceptionally diverse and beautiful country, with an urban and well-established city in addition to gorgeous resort-type destinations,” she says.
The three-year old Punta Pacifica Hospital, affiliated with Johns Hopkins Medicine International, is also a big draw, Trump points out. It is located only a few minutes away from the Trump Ocean Club. And it doesn’t have the hurricanes of South Florida, while offering prices that are less expensive. “Panama is attracting a lot of baby boomers priced out of South Florida,” she says.
The Trump Ocean Club will be managed by the Trump Organization. “We’ll be in Panama for many years after the building is ready,” she says.
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