- December 4th, 2007
- in Yachting
A Private Paradise – There is a place on Tortola’s North Shore, just ten minutes’ drive from Beef Island Airport and close to the proposed golf course, where such delicious reveries are a reality. The luxuriously verdant hillsides that roll down to the blonde beach of Little Bay are sparsely populated by the opulent few. Their dwellings, where visible, display a wealth of stunning architectural forms. The warm waters, sheltered by the long, rocky headlands on either side of the secluded bay, are always crystal clear and inviting, with dazzling hues of blues and greens. In the third dimension of this idyllic portrait, only bird song and the sweet perfumes of myriad tropical plants fill the pure tranquil air. This public beach with public access is surrounded by private and residential estates, and therefore there will be no hotel or beach bar in the immediate vicinity.
On Tortola’s South Shore, over the hill and just a few minutes away, lie a number of charming marinas where luxury yachts birth, complemented by a scattering of boutique restaurants offering an eclectic array of cuisines.
Until now, such seclusion and privacy have only been available to the fortunate few. The new luxury development at Little Bay, Sandcastle Estates, offers an opportunity for just a few more to join these fortunate inhabitants in this exclusive and exquisite setting. The inspiration behind the project came from Burton Chalwell and Lyle Swanson, who have since gathered investors, including Gigi and Darren Draper, who plan to purchase their own private estate within this new community.
The community concept revolves around a series of discreet yet luxurious estate homes, nestled into and integrated with the natural environment of the Bay. From the outset, the design is unique and grand, aiming above the norm in current resorts on Tortola. Manicured landscaping surrounds the estates which are constructed using autoclaved aerated concrete blocks that offer excellent, energy efficient insulation. Finishes will include quality hardwoods, marble and granite. Luxury amenities will be a standard feature of all the estates. The kitchen, for example, offers granite worktops, stainless steel appliances, and refrigerated drawers. Central air-conditioning and hurricane protection are also part of the design package. Outside, carefully positioned infinity-edge pools offer a cooling sanctuary and therapeutic Jacuzzis offer heated comfort while star-gazing. To maintain the integrity of the environment, and to preserve its natural beauty, power to the area will be assisted by solar panels and a technically independent hybrid generator system.
Sandcastle Estates at Little Bay intends to defy conventional modes of community living, taking the concept several inspired planes the developers hope above any other high-end community development in the BVI. The thirteen lots that range from one-third to one acre occupy the lower slopes and the flat lands of the Bay, and are set to become a planned high end luxury community, privacy completed with an electric gate at the entrance. The focus is on residential rather than commercial amenities. Each of the private homes, comprising a minimum of 4000 square feet and designed to take advantage of the natural amenities of the site, will be afforded access to a fully-equipped beach-side pavilion where privacy, barbecue facilities, shade and sumptuous respite can be found. This area serves the community for special events, picnics and sophisticated socializing. Access to this pavilion will be via paved golf cart trails and a meandering boardwalk through the freshwater gully lined with mangroves, sea grapes and palm trees. After environmental impact studies were completed an improved catchment basin, combined with silt-screening using stepped filtration barriers, were incorporated into the construction designs for erosion control. These improvements will help prevent silt being deposited onto the beautiful blonde beach of Little Bay, which occurs naturally during occasional tropical rainstorms.
Every concept within this unique development exudes stylish convenience, unequalled quality and exceptional comfort; from the detailed landscaping along the paved, street-lit private paths in tropical surrounds that lead to each property, to the managed construction phase. Owners buying into the development can opt for a completed or partially constructed estate with freehold title, depending on the stage of the development at the time of purchase. Ownership comes with membership to the Sandcastle Estates Home Owners Association, which specifies a mutually accepted set of covenants and restrictions which both protects those buying into the Sandcastle Development and determines shared costs of mutually used access roads and recreational areas.
To ensure superior quality of build at Sandcastle Estates, new owners have a choice of three iconic architectural styles for their new home. Each style still allows a considerable degree of customization and includes an abundance of contemporary and traditional features and a plethora of platforms for outdoor living.
For those who dream of sun-drenched villages in the Tuscan hills or the French Riviera, the Mediterranean-style option offers rounded arches and tiled courtyards, frivolous cupolas, vine-draped loggias, louvered shutters, and a multitude of shaded balconies.
For those with a preference for the more open, Latinate architecture of southern Europe and America, then the Hacienda style includes references to the iconic features of Spanish Colonial adobe architecture. Protruding beam ends, pan tiles, and gable ends imitate the facades of Spanish Colonial churches, whilst water features add panache and flair at the ground level.
Of course, you may feel that in the West Indies one should stick to the vernacular when building one’s dream residence. If this is the case, then the third option, the Caribbean style, with its ginger breaded pavilions, hipped roofs and multiple, traditional wooden verandahs, should fulfill all your qualifying criteria and evoke the elegant and grand impression of the late plantation era.
The developers are currently constructing a model, 4,500 square foot home on one of the lots. This sumptuous example of a Sandcastle luxury estate will demonstrate the aesthetics and versatility of the Mediterranean style, and computer renderings will demonstrate the other two styles. This model residence will also incorporate the available choices of finishing materials, including top-grade appliances, granite work surfaces, and an array of South American hardwoods proposed for exposed internal structures such as beams and sills. With construction imminent and an estimated completion date (including all landscaping) of June 2008, the model home will demonstrate one of the infinity-edge swimming pools available to complete the tropical paradise experience. The model home is currently available at a pre-construction price upon application.
During the purchasing process, owners are invited to work closely with renowned architect, Aristides Ramirez, amongst whose portfolio you will find the critically acclaimed Cap Cana in the Dominican Republic, to design their ultimate luxury home. When a final style has been agreed, owners can sit back and relax as the development team takes over and carefully manage the construction of their Caribbean retreat through to its completion. Landscaping design is also included in the build budget. Furnishing and interior design packages are optional. For anyone who has attempted to build in foreign lands and has encountered firsthand the frustrations of doing so, this very concept comes as a breath of fresh air. Imagine simply being kept abreast of progress, either with site visits or via emailed video updates, and then picking up the keys when everything has been set beautifully in its place.
Prior to completion, the team at one of the BVI’s most successful and respected real estate agencies, Caribbean Realty Limited, will ensure, for those that require it, that there is minimal hassle during the Non-Belonger Landholding License application process. Upon completion of your purchase, this full service company offers supervision of groundskeepers, maids, utilities, rentals, inspection reports and quarterly accounting. They will be on hand to ensure that the living experience is one with as few inconveniences as possible.
The development team has carefully selected contractors, engineers and financiers to bring together this private paradise from dream to reality. Key members of this team have already built to critical acclaim on a global basis. The team is proud to point out that their priorities are to ensure the preservation of the beautiful BVI through the use of environmentally friendly materials and energy-efficient systems whilst delivering a community development unrivalled in privacy, luxury and prestige.
For those seeking exclusivity seldom found in the average luxury community development, Sandcastle Estates offers one of the last opportunities that Tortola has to offer for seclusion coupled with a privileged lifestyle. Rarely does the BVI offer such a high standard on such a grand scale. Sandcastle Estates at Little Bay – a very private paradise!
Caribbean Realty Ltd: [email protected] – www.caribbeanrealtybvi.com – 284 494 3999