Home Real Estate San Pedro, Belize, Offers Affordable Luxury and Every Water Sport Under the Sun

San Pedro, Belize, Offers Affordable Luxury and Every Water Sport Under the Sun

by Ozva Admin

Located on a wide stretch of scenic coastline, San Pedro is the main town on Ambergris Caye, the largest island in Belize and located off the northeast coast of the country; it can be reached by a 90-minute ferry ride or a 15-minute flight. San Pedro is the center of tourism on the island and a lively destination where the streets are lined with wooden houses, restaurants and beach bars.

The town has a place in popular culture because of Madonna’s well-known song “La Isla Bonita”. Translated from Spanish to English as “The beautiful island”, it is said to be inspired by San Pedro.

But before Madonna, oceanographer Jacques Cousteau visited Ambergris Caye and San Pedro and explored the Great Blue Hole, a large underwater sinkhole. After he declared it one of the best dive sites in the world, divers from all over the world began descending on San Pedro in droves, according to Mirna Waight, owner and broker of Sandy Point Realty in San Pedro.

“Cousteau put San Pedro on the map and is behind the start of the island’s real estate and tourism industry,” he said. “Visitors were coming in and they needed a place to stay. Some liked it so much that they wanted to invest here in a second home.”

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San Pedro is on the southern part of Ambergris Caye and overlooks the Caribbean Sea and the Barrier Reef to the east and a lagoon to the west. Homes and developments are located to the north and south of the city.

Price range

From a global perspective, Ms. Waight said that San Pedro is an affordable place to invest in a beachfront home. Property prices range from US$295,000 to over US$1 million, with an average of around US$600,000. “For a little over half a million dollars, you can buy a fully furnished 1,500-square-foot condo in a nice, amenity-rich development that has two bedrooms and two bathrooms,” Ms. Waight said. Homes are typically marketed in Belize in US dollars to attract international buyers.

Single-family waterfront homes are a more expensive proposition, costing a minimum of $1.2 million.

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home pantry

Much of the real estate in San Pedro comprises condominium developments with services such as beach clubs, restaurants, gyms, spas, water sports centers, and 24-hour concierges.

Examples include Coco Beach Resorts, a property that is known for its activities such as fishing, diving, paddle boarding, kayaking, and tours of Mayan ruins on the mainland. Other developments include Grand Caribe Belize, Costa Blu, which is opening new condominiums, The Phoenix Belize, and Alaia, a Marriott’s Autograph Collection hotel that has residences for sale.

Single family homes are also an option, although they are not as widely available. “There aren’t too many houses to begin with, and owners stay with their properties for a long time, so there’s not a high turnover rate,” Ms Waight said.

The ones that do come on the market, however, are often beautiful, landscaped estates surrounded by picturesque beaches, said Wendy Miller, real estate agent for RE/MAX VIP in Belize.

what makes it unique

San Pedro is a quiet yet vibrant city with friendly people who are fluent in English, the official language of Belize. They get around town by bicycle, motorcycle or golf cart.

Ms. Waight said that it is a destination for people who like to be active and that the main activities are snorkeling, diving, fishing and boating. Cave tubing, ziplining, hiking, and visits to Mayan sites are other popular diversions, but they’re only available on the mainland. “Locals enjoy these activities just as much as second home owners and tourists,” said Ms. Waight. “It’s ingrained in his blood.”

San Pedro’s many white-sand beaches are also a draw, with Secret Beach being a favorite. However, they are rarely crowded, Waight said, because locals don’t have a tradition of going to the beach. “People are not available. They are adventurers,” he said.

San Pedro’s many white-sand beaches are also a draw, with Secret Beach being a favorite.

Meritt Thomas / Unsplash

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luxury services

San Pedro has a cosmopolitan flavor and a strong infrastructure with well-paved streets, supermarkets and hardware stores, medical clinics, gyms, and local boutiques.

Food is an integral part of the culture, and San Pedro offers numerous restaurants in a variety of cuisines such as Mexican, Japanese, Chinese, East Indian, and Italian. And they vary in style.

“You can find everything from a taco stand that makes amazing Belizean-style tacos to casual family-run restaurants and fancy rooftop restaurants,” Miller said. The latter serves creative cocktails and sophisticated international food, she said. Combine that with the polished service diners can expect, and the restaurant wouldn’t be out of place in a major metropolis like New York.

San Pedro offers numerous restaurants in a variety of cuisines such as Mexican, Japanese, Chinese, East Indian and Italian.

Meritt Thomas / Unsplash

Who lives there

The expat community in San Pedro and Ambergris Caye, in general, comprises mostly Americans who hail from across the United States, including Houston, Seattle, California, New York and Minnesota, Miller said. Locals include families with school-age children, business owners from the East Indies and China, and Belizean entrepreneurs such as real estate agents, hotel owners, and tour operators.

Canadians and Europeans, including people from England and France, are also in the mix, according to Ms Waight. “About half of the island are expats, and they are usually integrated into the social fabric of the community,” she said. “San Pedro is truly a melting pot of cultures and people.”

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Eneida Perera, agent and director of Buy Belize Real Estate LLP, who has lived on Ambergris Caye her entire life, said the coronavirus pandemic has caused a surge in demand for homes in San Pedro and has seen inventory run out. However, property values ​​have not skyrocketed and continue to rise at a steady rate.

Mrs. Miller agreed. “You don’t see the crazy price jumps or bidding wars in San Pedro like there have been in some waterfront markets in North America,” she said. “Prices have gone up 20% in the last decade, but that has nothing to do with the pandemic.”

But Ms. Miller noted that properties are currently selling at a faster rate than in the past, a pattern that is in line with the rest of the country.

“Before the pandemic, properties in Belize used to stay on the market for a year, but now they could be moved out in a matter of months,” he said.

Owners often rent out their properties to tourists for short and long-term stays and generate additional income, a factor that makes buying a home in San Pedro that much more attractive.

Additionally, the city is experiencing rapid growth with at least five condominium projects scheduled to open in the next few years, according to Ms. Waight. “Interest in living and buying a home in San Pedro, even part-time, continues to rise,” she said. “A house is a good investment.”

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