Page 1

VIRGIN ISLANDS

PROPERTY&YACHT

T H E L I F E S T Y L E G U I D E TO PA R A D I S E

LANDSCAPING

DELISH

STYLE & BEAUTY

1 0 T H IN GS TO CONSID ER FOR YO U R OUTDOOR P ROJEC T

B U I L D YO U R OW N DELICIOUS BURGERS

SW E E T CO N F E C TI ONARY I S TH E TH E ME TH I S M O NT H

A CHANGE IN DIREC TION T H E E X PE RTS VO ICE THEI R O PINIO NS O N THE BVI PRO PE RT Y MAR KET!

a n Ele

A unique charter experience that can be as adventurous or relaxing as one chooses! F E B/MARCH 2 01 8

B V I P R O P E R T Y YA C H T. C O M


You don’t need a lot of experts. Just the right ones. The more complex banking gets, the more clients appreciate our clear, direct style. We make sure that everything goes quickly and smoothly for you. Thanks to our fast response times and direct contacts with key decision-makers. Ensuring that communication channels are rapid and reliable. That, too, is what we call performance.

VP Bank (BVI) Ltd · VP Bank House · 156 Main Street · PO Box 2341 Road Town · Tortola VG1110 · British Virgin Islands T +1 284 494 11 00 · F +1 284 494 11 44 · info.bvi@vpbank.com VP Bank Group is based in Liechtenstein and has offices in Vaduz, Zurich, Luxembourg, Tortola/BVI, Singapore, Hong Kong and Moscow.


TOWER HOUSE & FRENCHMAN’S CHALET Frenchman's Cay, Tortola US$6,500,000

JASMINE VILLA Long Bay, Tortola US$ 2,500,000

COHOBA HOUSE
 Belmont, Tortola US$2,500,000

SHANNON HEIGHTS
 Shannon, Tortola $1,295,000

THE ART OF LIVING Living in the British Virgin Islands means having an intimate relationship with the ocean and our tropical climate; they permeate our daily activities. Beach day or forest hike? North shore surfing or South shore marina? Tortola or Virgin Gorda? The choices are many and varied. Choosing to eat out could take you to one of numerous restaurants on several different islands with countless beaches and hidden coves, all an easy boat ride away ‐ power boat or sailing yacht ‐ you choose!

INTERNATIONAL CONNECTIONS, LOCAL INSIGHTS

BVISIR.COM

TORTOLA OFFICE +1 284 340 5555 (Maritha Keil)
 Mill Mall, Road Town
 +1 284 494 5700

Each office is independently owned and operated

maritha@bvisir.com


Specializing in Foreign Investment | Property and Yacht Residential | Commercial | Admiralty | Aquisition | Construction | Disposal

Willa Tavernier wtavernier@onealwebster.com +1 (284) 494-5808 Commerce House, 2nd Floor, Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands


OWN YOUR PIECE OF PARADISE O’Neal Webster attorneys have over a quarter century of success representing BVI property and yacht transactions in all legal phases of acquisition, land use, planning, design, construction, financing, and coroprate structuring for individuals, companies, and trusts.

onealwebster.com


EDITOR’S NOTE

hello

Sign up to our monthly e-newsletter at bvipropertyyacht.com Like us on Facebook Facebook.com/ virginislandspropertyyacht Follow us on Twitter Twitter.com/vipropertyyacht Read our publications on issuu issuu.com/alookingglass/docs

CON TACT US Advertising Enquiries erin@alookingglass.com General Enquiries vipy@alookingglass.com Editorial Submissions stephen@alookingglass.com

on the cover

WE HOPE THAT YOUR new year is going well. We recognise that despite entering the second month of 2018, the highly unique stamp of 2017 is still prevalent in mind and the physical surroundings of the Virgin Islands. Hurricane Irma literally embodied the epitome of the phrase “freak-ofnature” and was a shock to the entire world; however, we must advance in restoration and future prosperity… Slowly but surely returning to our normal roster in VIPY, in this issue we have a few articles that were postponed from our October Reconstruction and Renovation special in the line-up. We open with an update about the property market, interviewing several real estate agents about the reality and prospects of the islands. OBMI offer a professional perspective on progressing with architecture in 2018, following the Atlantic storm that shook us all. Coldwell Banker provide information about how to find the right home and advice about property purchase. There is no doubt that we’re entering a new arena regarding property purchase and development, so we hope this offers insight to those building or even rebuilding their properties. We hold a Q & A with VP Bank, presenting a beginner’s guide to investment. When contemplating a property purchase, a stable foundation of funding is crucial and knowing how to navigate the world of investing can form an easy path. Harneys—the renowned international offshore law firm—tackles residency in the British Virgin Islands for those seeking to experience island life for longer than just vacation time. We also present 10 things to consider when starting a landscaping project —a good landscape makes a property look spectacular as a fantastic presentation piece that’s not only aesthetically pleasing but adds value. We happily welcome back our monthly feature Yacht Spotlight, shining on a very different kind of charter yacht this month—Elena. Delish shares recipes for constructing your own burgers and concluding, Style & Beauty unveil a ‘sweet’ inspired apparel from all the fashionable outlets. Wishing you enjoyment of the LAND, SEA, and LIFE in the Virgin Islands.

Stephen L France

PS – Let’s keep moving forward as the Virgin Islands returns, greatly improved #BVIStrong

Elena – a phenomenal, classic sailing experience for avid-yachties Photography by Alexis Andrews

6 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

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CTL HOME CENTER

IS YOUR PARTNER IN THE REBUILD CTL Home Center is committed to the BVI’s post-hurricane rebuilding needs, offering lower prices and free consultations.

ctlbvi.com

Get accurate estimates for building requirements from our experts. We provide onsite visits and personal consultations.

E-mail your queries to info@ctlbvi.com or message us via facebook.com/ctlbvi

CTL Home Center is passing on tax-exempt savings to the whole community on building materials, lumber, plumbing and electrical supplies, household furniture, appliances and cleaning products.

Post-Hurricane Hours: Mon–Sat 8.00am to 4.00pm Sunday 9.00am to 2.00pm

CTL Home Center is Your Home Of Savings! The Best Products at the Lowest Prices Period!

#CTLCares

#YourHomeOfSavings

#CTLBVI

#BVIStrong


OUR TEAM / CREDITS

contributors Kayleigh Driver

Paul Mellor

Food Editor Kayleigh is the Coldwell Banker/BVI Villa Rental Property Manager and Villa Chef. She loves to work with fresh island produce and looks forward to sharing fun recipes with you in Delish.

Paul is a Senior Associate at Harneys’ Private Client Department. He advises corporate and private clients as well as financial institutions on a range of commercial and residential property matters.

Marvin E. Flax

Sara Sherman

Marvin is the Managing Director of OBM International, leading the global master planning, architecture, and design firm in its Tortola office. Creative by nature, Marvin uses the beauty of the BVI for inspiration.

Sara Sherman is a freelance writer, yogi, and accidental island girl living in St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. SaraMSherman.com and IslandersFromIowa.com is where she resides.

Stephen L. France

Chris Smith

Stephen is a freelance editor, working with VIPY for six years. He can be found at stephenlesliefrance.com

aLookingGlass Team Erin Paviour-Smith

Sales Director & Project Manager Originally from New Zealand with a background in brand management for three of New Zealand’s top-selling lifestyle magazines, Erin has strong understanding of sales and marketing within publishing. She brings a fresh approach to advertising in magazines and digital media.

FOUNDING PUBLISHER Colin Rathbun CREATIVE DIRECTOR Nick Cunha

nick@alookingglass.com

DESIGN & LAYOUT Sally Fullam sallyfullam@gmail.com

8 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

WEB DEVELOPER Maros Pristas

maros@alookingglass.com

DISTRIBUTION Francoise Frank

francoise@alookingglass.com

ADVERTISING ENQUIRIES Erin Paviour-Smith erin@alookingglass.com

Chris arrived in the BVI in 1992 to work for Sir Richard Branson on Necker Island. Following, Chris moved into real estate to become Managing Broker of Coldwell Banker.

VIRGIN ISLANDS PROPERTY & YACHT is usually published eleven times a year (February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November & December/January), however, due to Hurricanes Irma and Maria, the magazine will temporarily be published bi-monthly (January, March & May 2018) and reviewed thereafter, by aLookingGlass Limited, Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands. © Copyright 2018 by aLookingGlass Ltd. All pieces reproduced in this issue are under prior copyright by the creators or by the contractual arrangements with their clients. Nothing shown may be reproduced in any form without obtaining the permission of the creators and any other person or company who may have copyright ownership.

The publisher of VI Property & Yacht, assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of the content placed in its publications. For the avoidance of doubt, aLookingGlass gives no warranty or guarantee in regards to any information placed in its publications. PLEASE DIRECT ALL ENQUIRIES TO: EMAIL: info@alookingglass.com PHONE: 284 494 7788 MAIL: alookingGlass Limited, PO Box 3895, Sea Cow’s Bay, Tortola, British Virgin Islands VG1110 alookingglass.com bvipropertyyacht.com

bvipropertyyacht.com


BRING GREAT DESIGN HOME

To discuss your Project, contact Roy Keegan: Office: 284 494 5240 Cell: 284 541 7483 roy@arawakvi.com Arawak Interiors, Road Reef Plaza #9, Road Town

Arawak Interiors offers home interior design advice, custom designs and sourcing from Asia, Mexico and USA. We also offer an extensive range of furniture, fixtures and fittings to choose from at our interior store and warehouse located in Road Town. Arawak Interiors manages all the shipping and logistics to deliver to your door anywhere in the BVI. Overseeing projects for Private villas, Private Islands, Resorts & Restaurants.


contents FEB/MARCH 2018

44 18

40

12

A CHANGE IN DIRECTION Three renowned property agents present their opinions on the BVI property market

30

44

VB Bank lay the steps for your first investment

Elena uniquely combines racing prowess with contemporary charter yacht comfort

BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO INVESTMENT

YACHT SPOTLIGHT

18

34

50

OBMI MD Marvin Flax provides introspection on the continuing BVI rebuild and restoration

Harneys explain the ways of residency in the British Virgin Islands

Recipes to build your own tasty burgers have us salivating

PROGRESSING RESTORATION

A HELPING HAND

DELISH

40

FINDING THE RIGHT HOME

LANDSCAPING MADE BEAUTIFUL

56

A comprehensive guide to finding the right property

A ten-point plan to create the best landscape

Sweets are the theme inspiring the products on exhibition this month

24

10 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

STYLE & BEAUTY

bvipropertyyacht.com


GROUNDWORKS BVI Horticultural Craftsmen in the BVI since 1991 • Landscaping consultations and installations • Plant nursery • Irrigation design and installation • Hardscaping and landscape design • Heavy equipment rentals and contracting • Estate and property maintenance

Call (284) 494 0814 or 494 6199 info@groundworksbvi.com groundworksbvi.com


LAND / A CHANGE IN DIRECTION

A Change n o i t c e r i D in The BVI property mar

ket post-Irma

E PHEN L FRANC WO R DS BY ST E SMITHS GORE COURTESY OF P H OTO G R A P H Y


THE CATASTROPHIC EFFECTS of hurricane Irma have made their imprint on BVI history. With an estimated 70 – 80 percent of buildings damaged by the Atlantic’s most fierce storm to hit the islands, there has been an understandable shift in the property market’s buying and selling projections for 2018. VIPY sought to grasp the latest information from property agents in the BVI by interviewing Principal Broker of REMAX Bonnie Dougall, Managing Director of BVI Sotheby’s International Realty Maritha Keil, and Lucienne Smith and Bernadette George of Smiths Gore BVI Ltd.

bvipropertyyacht.com

In the aftermath of 2017’s winter anomaly that shook the Territory, the islands are still recovering with the wider economic ramifications under evaluation. Nevertheless, there are some observations formed by the property industry professionals that are significant for residents and potential habitants wishing to gauge the long-term impacts of Irma. For the most part, BVI realty companies are acknowledging the uniqueness of the event, maintaining an optimism stemming from their individual records and continued liaisons with their client bases.

F E B / M A R C H 2 0 1 8 | 13


LAND / A CHANGE IN DIRECTION

The Property Market Speaking to Lucienne and Bernadette of Smith’s Gore Residential they relayed the prediction that purchasers will increase in number once vendors—including the banks— rationalise their position and properties become available on the market. At the moment, a number of owners are still waiting for their insurance claims to be finalised before they decide to renovate or sell “as is.” Lucienne’s assessment emerges from a series of factors that the BVI property market needs to overcome. The appeal of renovating and/ or rebuilding is dependent on the availability of contractors, labour, and materials. Recent challenges include shared demand for supplies with other regions hit by the storms— Puerto Rico and Florida—and the

14 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

The appeal of renovating and/or rebuilding is dependent on the availability of contractors, labour, and materials.

volume of deliveries waiting to clear through the port. “Land Registry and government departments are functioning, sometimes on a limited basis, but the buying cycle could be shortened to encourage a greater number of transactions,” said Lucienne proceeding to explain that some owners who haven’t sustained damage, and who aren’t anxious to sell, have withdrawn their properties from the market while the industry stabilises. Despite the challenges, Lucienne’s

forecasts are optimistic: “There are a number of purchasers currently exploring their options; local residents who have been renting are hopeful of finding a deal and international purchasers are also looking for development opportunities.” Smiths Gore recorded that the BVI, pre-Irma, had approximately 200 villas for sale (over $500,000), but generated on average 20 sales per year (also for sale over $500,000). Lucienne summarised saying, “The lack of

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OPPOSITE Hurricane Irma left many properties without roofs CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT Walls and

doors were blown through

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F E B / M A R C H 2 0 1 8 | 15


LAND / A CHANGE IN DIRECTION

RIGHT Doors and windows

were completely demolished by the storm

sales in the BVI is a combination of properties being over-priced and the lengthy sales cycle. The storms may adjust both and the market could become much more dynamic going forwards.”

The Buyers and the Sellers “From what my company has experienced over the past number of months after the storm, the…interest in purchasing…remains strong and many properties are taking sale offers,” said Bonnie of REMAX when reviewing the industry for her company following Irma. “It currently appears that the average volume of [residential] sales could still be consistent in the overall number of yearly sales,” said Maritha in light of Sotheby’s business since the hurricane. “Previously overpriced homes are becoming more affordable,” she continued, explaining that some properties were on the market for an excessive period after the real estate boom 10 years prior. These homes required renovations to attract buyers at the high prices that they sought and with many property owners awaiting payments from insurance, it’s likely that the

16 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

astute sellers will use the finance to refurbish, bringing their residence up to a realistic, competitive price-point. In cases where properties are enduring light repairs, the owners are retaining their asking-price with a number of sale offers taken prior to the storm, continuing for the same price and terms post Irma. Following insurance claim settlements, some owners will sell their severely damaged properties “as-is” for an exceptionally-reduced price once their insurance settlement has been determined. “Cash buyers will be favoured in this market as banking institutions will be cautious about financing properties that are too damaged,” added Bonnie. “However, if the buyer can pay cash for the damaged property, most banks will be open to financing reconstruction loans to rebuild the home with the property held as security.”

The BVI Lifestyle Maritha Keil of Sotheby’s has observed that many patrons of the BVI are entering or re-entering to either rent or buy, because of their continued loyalty for the country and its people. The residents of the BVI have

united to rebuild stronger pumping a heartbeat throughout the land and leaving a positive influence over many. “People all over the world are planning on returning as soon as they can find a place to stay, because they have never felt more at home, more a part of the community and at one with nature, as they do in the BVI,” continued Maritha. The rate of recovery for the BVI largely depends on the amount of money invested back into repairing and rebuilding the physical infrastructure. “Jobs have already increased for the various builders and contractors who had been struggling with consistent work before Irma,” said the Sotheby’s Managing Director. “Truckers, machine operators, marine technicians, engineers, glass cutters, welders, painters, wood shops and architects are all busy, which is currently bringing a huge boost to the general economy. Those tradesmen and women are now beginning to buy homes again, because they expect years of rebuilding and job security. Predictions on the timing of full recovery seems dependent on the continual and much needed efficient arrival of supplies and materials.” Maritha emphasised that island residents are proactive, industrious, and sincerely intent on building things sooner than later and better than before. The resilient familyminded culture of the BVI is what will continue to make it a success. “The underlying problems we had before the storm for tourism must still be addressed, such as better connecting flights, upgraded renovations to some of the outdated resorts, and improved customer services,” said Maritha, but the undeniable fact is the BVI remains beautiful, special, and welcoming to all visitors. ■

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Residential Sales

Palm Ridge, HODGES CREEK, TORTOLA

Suffered storm damage – reduced to $3.4M

4

5

2

2

On the Rocks, LITTLE TRUNK BAY, VIRGIN GORDA Eternity, WEST END, TORTOLA

$3.5m Some damage, repairs underway

4

4

Bay Watch, SOLDIER HILL, TORTOLA

$1.285m Some damage, repairs underway

$950,000 Storm survivor – no damage!

Bay House, CROOKS BAY, VIRGIN GORDA 2

4

5

$3.6m Storm survivor – no damage!

For more information on these listings or additional offerings, call 284494 2446 or email info@smithsgore.com

www.smithsgore.com

TORTOLA Britannic Hall

3

4

VIRGIN GORDA Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour


PROGRESSING RESTORATION

OBMI’s Managing Director provides his professional view on moving forward in 2018 following September 2017’s Irma WO R D S BY M A RV I N E F L AX , M A N AG I N G D I R E C TO R — O B M I

18 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

bvipropertyyacht.com


Bayhouse – photo by Stefan Radtke

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F E B / M A R C H 2 0 1 8 | 19


The most common contributing factor to roof failures was the prevalent use of nails as a fastener for roofing materials. HURRICANE IRMA WAS the largest and most powerful hurricane to form and make landfall in the Atlantic Ocean. Sustained winds of 185 mph and gusts upward of 215 mph created a perfect storm, of the likes we have never experienced. Progressing with the rebuilding process and having reviewed where structures failed, we’ve uncovered some commonalities as to what things attributed to the mass destruction.

20 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

Nails served as weak points in a roof ’s installation The most common contributing factor to roof failures was the prevalent use of nails as a fastener for roofing materials. Unfortunately, this far too common construction material resulted in significant failures stemming in thousands of damaged roofs. A proper roof structure should utilise screws to attach the heavy

timber wood, framing members together. As the weakest point in the roof’s structure, the fascia requires additional reinforcement with multiple screws directly connecting the fascia to the heavy timber battens and galvanising roof cladding. Improperly installing roofs with nails, diminishes the strength needed to resist hurricane force winds.

Wind finds weaknesses through compromised openings For homes where roofs appeared to have been lifted off, it was frequently due to the wind finding entrance into the home through compromised openings, like windows or doors that were cracked or not airtight.

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L A N D / P R O G R E S S I N G R E S TO R AT I O N

LEFT Tonic Waters - Photo

by Chris Norton, SkyVision VI

A strong BVI roof should have a combined concrete, wood, and steel reinforced assembly. This means that wood rafters leading to the primary roof structure are cast into reinforced concrete ring beams along with both vertically and horizontally connected reinforcement-bars tied together. A monolithic concrete pour will sufficiently lock these elements into place. Try to avoid making multiple pours to achieve this connection. This hooking effect secures the roof and gives it a far better chance of surviving a hurricane, and resists the uplift created from the hurricane force winds.

The survivors

In many cases, the hurricane pried open windows and doors that did have shutters. Once the wind and rain entered the structure, they created a tornado-like effect, thus causing the pressure within the home to build to the point where the only escape was through the weakest structure, the roof, doors and windows. Impact-resistant Miami-Dade approved windows performed better than others. Two 1/4” thick panes of glass should be sandwiched together with a clear laminated sheet. This creates a bond so that if a wind-borne object were to hit it, the glass may crack, but not shatter and disintegrate. How the entire window is attached to the concrete opening is also very important.

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With category five hurricanes come a myriad of other environmental challenges including tidal surge, heavy rainfall, and tornadic activity. Although safeguards can be made to reduce tidal surge and flood damage, tornadoes are indiscriminate and wreak havoc on everything in their path. This was seen throughout the BVI where one structure was left untouched when a neighbouring property was severely damaged. It’s a widely held belief that hurricane Irma spawned dozens of tornadoes which resulted in a great deal more damage than attributed to any other cause. Some buildings in the BVI that were spared substantial damage include: • Commerce House • Fireproof Building (now hurricane proof as well) • Ritter House • Peebles Hospital • OBMI designed residences: Bayhouse Villa, Tonic Waters, and Nora Hazel Point, as well as Nanny Cay Condominiums

Why did these buildings survive? • Location was a huge factor; some buildings weren’t directly battling the winds as the storm approached the BVI. This could have been due to a protected hill side or valley • The direction the winds were moving before and after the eye passed was also a factor • An elevated structure on an open slab reduced the risk of damage from flooding and storm-driven water • A home with a square floor plan (or better a hexagonal or octagonal plan) with a multiple-panel roof (four or more panels) was found to have reduced wind loads • Roofs with multiple slopes such as a hip roof (four slopes) perform better under wind forces than gable roofs (two slopes)

The future? OBMI is working with AIA Miami to review the 2017 hurricane season and identify what design, engineering, and built structures fared better than others, and what commonalities are shared in those structures that sustained major damage. The team is not just reviewing what design and engineering features are critical to a building’s strength, but also how code regulations and enforcement play a role in maintaining a structure’s integrity. Following hurricane Andrew, much of the northern hemisphere has adopted the stronger building codes of Miami-Dade County (Florida), which require buildings to be able to withstand winds of 130 mph. It is clear given this year’s unprecedented storms and devastation that building codes need to be not just implemented, but continually reviewed and strengthened for the safety of BVI citizens and security of our structures. As teams of professionals identify

F E B / M A R C H 2 0 1 8 | 21


L A N D / P R O G R E S S I N G R E S TO R AT I O N

...there are things that individuals can do during the building and rebuilding stages to help strengthen their property... Investing in secure building materials Investing in hurricane windows and doors and installing storm shutters over all exposed windows and glass surfaces are easy and effective ways to prevent debris from entering a building. Hurricane windows and shutters also aid in the prevention of your roof being lifted off by not allowing airflow to penetrate the home through blown out windows and doors.

ABOVE Light damage to Bayhouse following hurricane Irma

island-wide best practices, there are things that individuals can do during the building and rebuilding stages to help strengthen their property to mitigate against storms of the future.

Self-sufficiency amenities As we experienced in the BVI, although a major hurricane has passed, the process of getting life back to normal takes much longer. Natural disasters frequently damage and weaken public infrastructure including electricity, water flow, and roadways. As we rebuild our island, it’s important to keep self-sufficiency features in our plans from underground water cisterns to solar panels and back-up generators; these amenities can improve quality of life during times of natural disasters. Discuss these features with your architect as you rebuild, as these self-sufficient amenities can add value to your home and peace-of-mind when needed.

22 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

Minimising damage due to large shade canopies One of the things that makes islandliving unique and the homes and architecture distinct for the Caribbean is the use of large overhangs. Functionally, they provide shade and allow a home to receive ventilation from the trade-winds. However, in times of extreme weather, these overhangs can capture the wind and cause damage to the connecting roof structures. In light of this year’s hurricanes, OBMI has a team of architects assessing damage to roofs with these large overhangs and are looking into potential design alternatives that would prevent substantial roof damage due to these overhangs. Concepts currently being reviewed include designs that incorporate a natural breaking point between the overhang and roof structures, allowing for the sacrificial overhang to be lost in the event of severe weather, while minimising or eliminating damage to the primary roof structure. A design concept that OBMI has utilised for years is the use of a continuous concrete gutter that

hides the eave and fascia. This concept shields what is considered to be the weakest point in a roof and by design, the wind is naturally directed above it.

Utilise alternative roof styles Choosing the right type of roof for a structure is more difficult than most people imagine and some clients simply allow the designer or contractor do it, however, being informed during the building and rebuilding process can add to your home’s value. Roofs do a lot more than provide shelter. They also define a structure’s look, as well as a level of security during a hurricane. As you embark in building or rebuilding, review options for roofs with your architect to determine the alternative styles that are traditionally stronger in the tropics. In the immediate aftermath of the hurricane, the concept of a concrete roof was discussed often—consulting a structural engineer prior to making that decision is most important because the home needs to be structurally designed for it. Hip roofs have slopes on all four sides and assuming the aforementioned factors outlined are accommodated in the design, the inward slopes make it more sturdy and durable. Flat roofs are typical in the Caribbean as they are cost-effective and provide a surface to install solar panels or have an elevated living space. Flat roofs can also be turned into green roofs, which use the space to add vegetation providing another layer of insulation and beauty to a structure. ■

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One piece of paradise at a time

OBMI is working hard with the BVI and its people. During this especially trying time, we are aiding with rebuilding efforts, donating time and expertise, and working alongside the government. We’ve also assembled a list of resources to help our paradise get back together, become stronger, and shine brighter than ever before. www.obmi.com/bvistrong | 284.346.1128 Architecture | Master Planning | Design


CA L ON ND S T/R U PR CO T IPOENR T&Y RPEUNROCVHAA T SI O E N G U I D E / E XC L U S I V E F E AT U R E P R O P E R T Y

FINDING THE RIGHT HOME AND PROPERTY PURCHASE Brought to you by O’Neal Webster

P H OTO G R A P H Y CO U R T E SY O F CO L DW E L L B A N K E R BV I

IN THE BVI, property purchase has a procedure which can be quite daunting on first glance, but like any process, it’s straight forward once you understand the stages. The first part of the property purchase scenario is finding that specific abode that meets your preferences. One aspect that’s almost guaranteed with any property in the BVI is a great view, but there are a multitude of variables that you may wish to consider in your home selection. Here is our checklist of items to consider when finding and buying the right home in the BVI.

24 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

Finding the Right Home Information provided by Chris Smith, Managing Broker – Coldwell Banker

1

LOCATION Don’t narrow

down a specific search area – be open to different ideas. The best way to define your search parameters is to bear in mind factors that will be fixed such as your work and schools. Maybe decide how long you would be willing to commute for – would it be ten minutes? Half an hour? This will determine the radius from work within which you should be looking.

2

THE STEEP HILLS

Everyone finds them shocking at first, but most people adjust to them. New arrivals often say they only want houses with easy driveways on the flat, but try not to let the scary steepness put you off. You’ll soon get used to the gradients and find yourself doing three-point turns on a precipice without batting an eyelid.

3

MOSQUITOES AND OTHER NASTIES Check

that there are mosquito screens on the windows of the property you are reviewing. Sometimes these may be


The beautiful villa Coral Hill

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F E B / M A R C H 2 0 1 8 | 25


LAND / PROPERTY PURCHASE

absent in a kitchen or sitting room. Do the bedrooms have screens? If you are looking at a property where rooms are more indoor/outdoor, then try to visualise where you will be able to sit in the evening if the bugs are swarming and you need refuge. Note whether there are screens on the balcony doors. If the windows are large then you may be able to get adequate breeze inside without the doors being open, but make sure there is enough air flow, otherwise you will be hot as well as itchy. Properties with plenty of breeze are generally less buggy, as are light properties and sealed modern ones with no cracks and good windows and screens. That said, you may find a mosquito in even the most high-end of establishments, so you will have to accept that they’re part of life here. Regular pest control service is essential to keep your property pest-free.

4

‘POD’ HOMES Homes that

are made up of more than one building are common in the BVI, in part because of the steep hillsides and because some owners like the idea of having large areas of outdoor space for entertaining in between bedrooms. Whilst these houses are often very attractive, they mean that different members of your household may not be under one roof at night. If you have young children, this might be awkward – think nightmares, ill kids, power cuts, or rainstorms. Many families have made these houses work for them with baby monitors, walkie talkies, and even just by accepting that life here is a bit safer and more relaxed than in other places.

5

WATER Most expats don’t

drink tap water in the BVI unless they have a UV filter. Many households purchase an office-style water cooler machine and refill the bottles from conveniently located and reasonably priced water machines.

26 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

Mains water is not available in every house on the island, so we’re very reliant on catching and storing rainwater. Rain runs off the roof into guttering and into a catchment container under the house called a cistern.

6

HURRICANES Take note if there are shutters on the doors and windows. It would be prudent to enquire whether the property is built to the Dade County building code—able to withstand a major catastrophic event.

7

POWER OUTAGES

The frequency and length of outages vary, but Murphy’s Law dictates that they usually occur just as you have started watching a movie, put the baby to sleep, or sat down to dinner. Some properties have generators, many of which switch on automatically.

8

POOLS AND GARDENS

The idea of a pool is often a part of the Caribbean dream when moving here, but there are some practical things to bear in mind:

• Is it child proofed or is it possible to make it so? Even if you personally don’t have kids, is there a way to shut it off if you have guests that do? • It costs about $250 per month to pay for a pool service. • Look at the position of the pool relative to the breeze and nearby trees. Steady winds will cool the water considerably, and an abundance of leaves can be a maintenance headache. • Gardens here can vary from concrete yards to lush tropical fruit trees and colourful flowers. If there are fruit trees nearby, then this can attract vermin so it is important that they are trimmed back from the house and tended to regularly.

9

AIR-CONDITIONING AND CEILING FANS Generally,

you need fans in all rooms, unless a property is very high up and therefore cool. AC can be helpful in the bedrooms, but don’t forget you can buy window units yourself and install them.

10

LAUNDRY, DISHWASHERS AND THE LIKE Many properties don’t

include laundry facilities, but there are numerous laundromats and launderettes around the island, some of which offer a serviced wash option. More and more properties come with dishwashers, but don’t forget that if you’re relying just on rainwater, you may not use it as much.

12

MOULD Some of the areas that are high up on the island are prone to mould. If you have asthma or an amazing collection of handbags and leather shoes, then this may not be the area for you. Conditions are almost rainforest-like, so if you don’t enjoy a warm, damp, jungle climate, then don’t choose that area.

13

CHILDPROOFING

Many properties, due to steep balconies, pools, etc. may initially seem unsuitable if you have small children, but making properties safer through the installation of stair gates, balcony netting, and furniture latches can take care of this. Many childproofing materials can be bought on-island or ordered on the internet.

Property Purchase Information provided by Chris Smith, Managing Broker – Coldwell Banker and Willa Tavernier, Head of Property Department – O’Neal Webster The process of buying a property has some significant steps that are useful

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The many villas of the BVI are stunning and unique in varying ways

to know for your own comfort and security. Here are the major phases that one must journey through to make that dream home their own.

OFFER AND DEPOSIT

We will ask you to submit a written offer along with a 10% deposit, which we will hold in an escrow account and return to you if you do not enter into an ‘Agreement for Sale’ with the Seller. If you do enter into such an Agreement, the deposit becomes subject to the terms of the Agreement.

NON BELONGER’S LAND HOLDING LICENSE (NBLHL)

If you are not a Belonger, you will need to apply to the BVI Government for a Non Belonger’s Land Holding License. The License gives you permission to

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own the specific property you are interested in. You will need to submit a police certificate or background check to show you do not have a criminal record, bank statements to show you can afford to purchase, and some personal references. You can buy the property in your own name, in a trust, or as a company. An experienced BVI real estate lawyer can explain the advantages or disadvantages of the different holding structures.

THE PURCHASE It’s very

important to have a recent survey of the property, or if none is available to have your own survey done early in the process. This is so that you’re clear on what you’re purchasing and that there are no issues with neighbouring properties. We can recommend several highly skilled surveyors who

can do this for you. If you are buying a condominium or villa, you can get an ‘as-built survey.’ If you are buying a vacant lot, you will need to describe in your License application what you intend to build—for example, a three-bedroom villa with a pool—and approximately how much you intend to spend. Your licence will contain the amount you submit as a minimum development commitment, so care should be taken in determining this figure. If you’re buying a property that has already been built or is in the process of being built, you’ll need to describe in your License application exactly what is on the site, any plans that you have for renovation, and approximately how much you intend to spend on any improvements. We have some very competent

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LAND / PROPERTY PURCHASE

architects, contractors and construction managers in the BVI and we’ll introduce you to them at an early stage so that you have a good sense of what is possible and how much it will cost. You can always apply to make amendments later on if your plans change.

LEGAL ADVICE It’s really

important to use a lawyer who handles BVI real estate matters on a daily basis and has the relationship with the relevant Government ministries. We’ll recommend a BVI lawyer to advise you, help with the ‘Agreement for Sale,’ assist your application for the License, and aid you with the closing. The NBLHL application fee costs $200.00 for each person named in the application and $300.00 for companies. The NBLHL cost to collect final documentation is $600.00 for each person, or company, or director, or shareholder. Legal fees are typically 2% of the first $50k of the property value and 1 to 1.5% of everything over that.

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APPRAISAL You will need an

appraisal to accompany the License application and that costs approx. 0.1% of the purchase price.

STAMP DUTY Stamp duty, paid by the buyer at closing, is 12% of the higher of the sale price or appraised value. So along with the legal fees, appraisal and surveys (if purchasing a villa), you can estimate that closing costs will be in the region of 14% in total. CLOSING Typically closing occurs within 30 days of the Governor of the BVI signing your License. Ensure that after closing you receive a ‘closing binder’ of original stamped documents as your proof of title. This should include your NonBelonger Licences, Instrument of Transfer, and a certified copy of the land register in relation to the property. Currently, the entire process is taking around six months. We are, of course, in the Caribbean and the pace of life is a little slower so don’t panic if it takes

longer; after all, isn’t that the whole point of wanting to spend more time in the islands? If you’re purchasing land, that time can be used engaging with architects and starting work on the plans for your dream home.

TOP TIPS • L OCATION is one of the most significant points for your BVI lifestyle. Dedicate your time here when seeking a property! • A IR-CONDITIONING is another area you want to keep at the forefront of your mind when property searching. The BVI is on the equator and the heat barely changes! • H URRICANE SEASON and MOULD are areas to do your best by being prepared, unless you have the power to change the weather and climate! ■

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Competence is our global language. Always with a local accent. The qualities our local clients value are to be found in VP Bank the world over. For you we are present in select locations, whose many benefits open up new perspectives. Working with partners who are familiar with the markets and the specific concerns of our clients.

VP Bank (BVI) Ltd · VP Bank House · 156 Main Street · PO Box 2341 Road Town · Tortola VG1110 · British Virgin Islands T +1 284 494 11 00 · F +1 284 494 11 44 · info.bvi@vpbank.com VP Bank Group is based in Liechtenstein and has offices in Vaduz, Zurich, Luxembourg, Tortola/BVI, Singapore, Hong Kong and Moscow.


LAND / BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO INVESTMENT

. . . o t e d i u G s ’ r e n Begin

INVESTMENT

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WHEN CONSIDERING buying a property, maintaining a stable position of funding is prudent. A wise place to begin this journey is with learning how to invest correctly, ensuring greater financial security in your present and for your future. In making a decision to invest, the options and information available may appear daunting. We talked to VP Bank’s BVI team —who bring together a wealth of experience in all areas of finance— to gain a concise understanding of the investment game.

Q & A with VP Bank’s President Sjoerd Koster, Elizabeth Harper, and Joanna Vass INTERVIEW BY STEPHEN L FRANCE P H OTO G R A P H Y BY R A I N B OW V I S I O N S BV I

Stowaway Villa

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WE HEAR THE WORD INVESTMENT A LOT – WHAT IS VP BANK’S DEFINITION? Investment is the outlay of time, capital, or effort with the expectation of a positive outcome over time. At VP Bank, we take a methodical approach to meeting our clients’ desired outcomes over the relevant time horizon, along with understanding their risk tolerance and constraints that apply to their situation.   WHY WOULD AN INDIVIDUAL INVEST? Motivations for investment are varied and often change depending on the life stage of an individual. Investors generally sit somewhere along the spectrum of seeking capital preservation or capital appreciation. Holding investments can be a useful tool to mitigate uncertainty in the future, as well as deliver returns and accrue wealth. At VP Bank, clients can use their investments as collateral for borrowing. Each client is individual and has his or her own aspirations. This could be long term estate planning (for inheritance), liquidity planning (for retirement, or education), or even hedonistic tendencies for those hoping to exploit opportunities in the market.

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LAND / BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO INVESTMENT

Villa Ventana

We develop an individual investment strategy with our clients on a step-by-step basis, offering the option of a discretionary managed account where the management of their assets are delegated to VP Bank, or a self-directed account if the client has some knowledge of investing. In this case, they feel confident in making their own investment decisions. Even a mix of these options is available.    HOW MUCH SHOULD BE INVESTED? This depends on the client’s financial situation, their aspirations for return, and their risk appetite. With 50,000USD (or currency equivalent), clients can open a current account with VP Bank and begin their investment journey. This amount is suitable for investments in time deposits, currencies, or a modest portfolio of self-directed investments into single securities or unit funds. With 250,000 – 500,000 USD, clients can benefit from our classic managed portfolios comprised of either funds or direct investments

32 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

which meet their risk profile. Bespoke managed accounts with enhancements can be tailor-made for clients with balances above two million USD. WHAT ARE THE TYPICAL TYPES OF INVESTMENT AVAILABLE? VP Bank offers investment and custody across all asset classes— equities, commodities, bonds, currencies, alternative investments, funds, structured products and derivatives. One of our goals is to cover as many asset classes as possible by adopting an open architecture approach. This allows our clients to have exposure to a much wider investment universe. We offer three levels of investment service to our clients, dependent on their preference. Execution only: You make your own personal investment decisions and your client advisory team executes these. Investment advisory: You make your own personal investment decisions on the foundation of our strategybased investment publications

and market information. Managed Portfolio Mandates: You delegate your investment decisions to our specialists, who manage your assets professionally in accordance with your requirements. METHODS OF INVESTING INCLUDE ‘ACTIVE’ AND ‘PASSIVE’ – WHAT DOES THIS MEAN TO VP BANK AND HOW THEY CAN ASSIST A CLIENT? Active management refers to the approach whereby a portfolio manager will make specific investments in order to outperform a benchmark or performance target without assuming inappropriate levels of risk. At VP Bank, the risk exposure is kept in line with the risk profile of our clients. This is managed before the event and monitored after the event. All of our Active Management Mandates are systematically hedged, thus assisting our clients with offsetting adverse price movements  in currencies. Passive management refers to

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S E A / YA C H T S P OT L I G H T

the approach whereby investors will seek to track the performance of a market, an index, or a theme. This can be delivered through Exchange Traded Funds and offers a cost-efficient means of investing in a diversified portfolio without incurring additional costs from trading and holding individual securities if these aren’t required.

Satellite Television

HOW WOULD VP BANK HELP THEIR CLIENT IN CHOOSING THE RIGHT INVESTMENT OPTIONS? Developing a comprehensive understanding of our clients’ wealth situation and objectives, marks the starting point for ensuring we enjoy a successful working relationship with our clients. Getting to know a client and understanding them as a person provides the basis for the provision of a professional and comprehensive advisory service. When working together with corporate clients and intermediaries, establishing an understanding of the respective business model is also of key importance. Our client advisors will define the necessary steps for achieving the client’s objectives and will implement the strategy in a systematic manner.    WHY OPEN AN ACCOUNT WITH VP BANK? WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS? We specifically compare our clients’ investor profile with the chosen solution and provide our clients with information on an ongoing basis in desired form. Our personal client advisory ensures our clients always have a committed contact person at side who will offer a first-class service and the highest level of reliability. We attach the utmost value to these very aspects, which is why we repeatedly receive industry accolades for the quality of our advisory services.   Our clients receive access to our global network. Here, we select the right solution for each client with the best products from around the world.       With our publications and in personal discussions, our clients receive a clear overview at a pace of their choice.               Our clients deserve the very best; an unquestionably stable banking partner, professional service, and topnotch solutions. As an independent banking group with outstanding financial strength and top marks for the quality of our advisory services, we have the optimal conditions in place to meet investment and lending requirements. ■   CONTACT VP BANK Elizabeth Harper      Elizabeth.Harper@vpbank.com Joanna Vass               joanna.vass@vpbank.com Telephone: +1284 394 1100

Call for satellite internet services via VSAT, Inmarsat, Iridium, Globalstar & 4G.

BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS t +1 284 494 2400 f +1 284 494 5389 caybvi@candwbvi.net

www.cayelectronics.com


LAND / A HELPING HAND

A helping hand Residing in the British Virgin Islands

W O R D S B Y PA U L M E L L O R , S E N I O R A S S O C I AT E — H A R N E Y S P H OTO G R A P H Y BY R A I N B OW V I S I O N S BV I

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This article was written prior to hurricane Irma and while it reflects the current law and policy, it’s possible there will be some changes to legislation to facilitate the recovery. Readers should get in touch with their usual Harneys contact for advice on the options and requirements for residing in the BVI or any other related matters to acquiring property or a yacht, registering a business, or protecting assets to ensure they are successfully transitioned to the next generation. The British Virgin Islands is a place of great natural beauty and many visitors find themselves sufficiently captivated by the Islands’ charm, wishing to make their stay more permanent.

If you are considering investing in a dream home, desiring to live and work here or perhaps keen to spend your retirement in the BVI, then you will need to give careful thought to the options and requirements for residing here.

Residing Indefinitely in the British Virgin Islands The first important point to bear in mind is that, unless you are a Virgin Islander there are very limited options for residing indefinitely in the BVI. To be able to do so, you must be either: • a Belonger of the BVI • a person to whom a certificate of residence has been issued under the relevant immigration legislation

Each of these options is explored in turn below.

BELONGER

A Belonger is a person deemed to belong to the BVI according to the Constitution of the BVI. The precise definition is a little too involved for the purpose of this article, but in broad terms, a Belonger is a person of BVI ancestry and other persons who have been granted Belonger status under the relevant immigration legislation. While it’s possible for Belonger status to be granted to a person who is a Non-Belonger, the circumstances in which the status may be granted are limited.

Living the dream in the BVI

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LAND / A HELPING HAND

CERTIFICATE OF RESIDENCE A certificate of residence may be granted to any person of good character who—in their application —has stated their intention to reside permanently in the BVI. While the immigration legislation does provide for the certificate of residence to be endorsed so as to relate also to the spouse and dependent children of that person, in practice the immigration authorities prefer for spouses to be independently certified as permanent residents. For that reason a full application is generally required for spouses. While an application for a certificate of residence may be an option for some, it’s unlikely to be of broad appeal because:

• the current immigration policy established a threshold of 20 years of continuous residence in the BVI before a person’s application for permanent residence will be considered • in order for a person’s period of permanent residence to be considered permanent, that person should not have been absent from the BVI for any period greater than 90 days in any calendar year • the current immigration policy provides for a very limited number of applications to be approved in each year Because of the limited availability of options for indefinite residency in the BVI for the vast majority of persons, we shall now explore alternatives, which are in many ways more easily attainable, though as indicated above, will not permit residence on an indefinite basis as a matter of right. Each option has its own particular strengths and weaknesses and whether an option is appropriate or not will depend to a great extent on personal circumstances. These options are as follows:

36 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

• Permission to reside/entry permit • Employment within the BVI following the issue of a work permit • Non-Belongers Land Holding Licence ID Card • Visitor Entry

The economy of the BVI is one of the most prosperous in the Caribbean...

PERMISSION TO RESIDE

A person who does not hold a certificate of residence, may remain in the BVI from year to year pursuant to immigration clearance on the basis of permission to reside. An application for permission to reside may be made to the Chief Immigration Officer, providing evidence to satisfy that the applicant: • does not intend to remain permanently in the BVI • will not engage in or seek to engage in any employment in the BVI • has sufficient funds to support themselves without working for the duration of their stay and can also meet the cost of a return journey to the applicant’s usual place of residence The application for permission to reside typically takes one/two months to be processed. The fee is fairly modest; however, the applicant is likely to be required to post a bond with the Immigration Department to cover the cost of a return journey to the applicant’s usual place of residence in the event that the applicant breaches the terms of the permission to reside and is required to leave the BVI as a consequence. The bond is refundable in the event the applicant does not renew the permission to reside. This is a popular option for homeowners in the BVI who plan to spend significant amounts of time in the Territory. The permission to reside is valid for up to one year and during that time, the recipient may leave and re-enter the BVI at will. For many,

this will be preferable to some of the other, shorter-term options for remaining in the BVI. There are no limits under the relevant immigration legislation on the number of times that the permission to reside may be renewed. Renewal is solely at the discretion of the Chief Immigration Officer or the Minister responsible for Immigration.

Employment within the British Virgin Islands The economy of the BVI is one of the most prosperous in the Caribbean, being based upon the ‘twin pillars’ of financial services, which generates approximately 60% of government revenues. Tourism generates much of the remainder. For persons with the requisite skills in these areas, there’s the potential opportunity to reside and work in the BVI, where employment positions cannot be filled locally. Work permits are required for all those wishing to engage in employment in the BVI (whether paid or unpaid), unless you are: • a Virgin Islander • a Belonger • otherwise exempt from requiring a work permit pursuant to the relevant employment legislation Holders of work permits relating to employment in the BVI may continue to reside in the BVI from year to year while the contract of employment underlying the work permit, and the work permit both remain in effect.

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LAND / A HELPING HAND

One of the many beaches residents have the chance to enjoy daily

The work permit is renewable annually and in this regard the work permit is similar to the permission to reside, but there is of course no prohibition on working. As with the permission to reside, there are no statutory limits on the number of times that a work permit, and the related immigration clearance, may be renewed. Unlike some other countries in the Caribbean (and other parts of the world), there is currently no scheme in the BVI which grants residence status exclusively on the basis of investment in the local economy. However, an increasing number of people are choosing to base their business operations in the BVI. By doing so, those persons have the opportunity to reside in the BVI as holders of a work permit, subject of course to also satisfying the various regulatory requirements to enable the operation of the underlying business.

Non-B elongers Land Holding Licence ID Card The purchase of property in the BVI does not by itself entitle a person

38 | V I P R O P E R T Y & YA C H T

to resident status. A Non-Belonger (a person who is neither a Virgin Islander or a Belonger) wishing to purchase property in the BVI must first apply for and have been granted a Non-Belongers Land Holding Licence, which authorises the holder to own property in the BVI. Once a person holds such a Licence, that person will be entitled to apply for an identification card which may be shown to the immigration officials on arrival to the BVI. This will allow that person to remain in the BVI for up to six months in any twelve-month period, subject to any extension granted by the Chief Immigration Officer.

Visitor Entry In the absence of the identification card referred to above (or the other forms of immigration clearance already discussed), persons may enter and remain in the BVI subject to the usual conditions of entry afforded to visitors. Visitors are usually permitted to remain for one month, subject to any extension granted by the Chief Immigration Officer. While an entry

visa is not required for visitors from many countries—including the United States of America and much of Western Europe—visitors should check the BVI’s visa requirements (if any) applicable to their country of citizenship. Immigration legislation and policy can and does change from time to time and therefore persons interested in exploring their options to reside in the BVI—whether that be on a short or long-term basis—are advised to spend some time at the outset to ensure that they fully understand the rules and requirements, seeking professional advice to help them through the process where required. Harneys Private Client team regularly advises clients on the options and requirements for residing in the BVI. ■ For more information on these solutions or any other related matters relating to acquiring property or a yacht, registering a business, or planning for future generations, please contact Sheila George, Johann Henry, or your usual Harneys contact.

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lose power, lose out... ...at home Authorized dealers

Powering the BVI

...at the office

RTW - Biwater - Scrub Island - Nail Bay BVI Government - banks - trust companies private homes ... and many more

“When it’s mission critical, call Caribbean Technology” Call or email for a quote - T 494 6782/3150 - F 494 5389 robtech@surfbvi.com - cabtech@surfbvi.com - ben@caribbeantechnology.com www.caribbeantechnology.com

FOR SALE

FOR SALE

14 acres of Freehold Waterfront acreage in South Sound, Virgin Gorda could be perfect for golf course, senior housing, eco-resort. Reef-protected bay neighbors tony Biras Creek, the jewel box villas of Oil Nut Bay, and Leverick Bay. This property has been held by the same family for over 100 years. Varied topography offers multiple options for development.

Exceptional parcel of FREEHOLD land located at intersection leading to exclusive Leverick Bay, the Gun Creek jetty, and Oil Nut Bay in South Sound, Virgin Gorda.

PARCEL 29, SOUTH SOUND VIRGIN GORDA PARCEL 11, SOUTH SOUND VIRGIN GORDA

284.547.6142 (BVI) 340.332.9827 (USVI) THE VALLEY, VIRGIN GORDA, BVI


LAND / LANDSCAPING

LANDSCAPING

MADE BEAUTIFUL 10 things to consider when starting a landscaping project Brought to you by Groundworks BVI WO R DS BY SA R A S H E R M A N

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WHEN DEVELOPING A plan for landscaping around your home there are lots of important things to consider. In addition to creating something beautiful, you want your home’s landscaping to be functional for your particular space and a sustainable design that brings natural beauty to your property for years to come.

1

PLANNING When designing

a residential landscape, the most important step is to put a plan on paper. How do you want to use your yard? What kind of time do you want to spend there? Who else will be using the space? These questions can be crucial in planning the perfect outdoor space and getting the results you’re looking for. Developing a masterplan will save you time, money, and is more likely to result in a successful design. It’s critically important to not go into a project like this without some idea of how you want it to end. Not only will it cause frustration during the

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planting process, you may end up with a yard you don’t like or can’t use well.

2

BUDGET With any home project, keeping a budget in mind will help significantly. Try not to think of a budget as a limitation, but rather a practical tool to make your landscaping plan come to life in a realistic and affordable way. Your budget can be the deciding factor on most elements of the project, from which plants to choose to how many features your landscaping design can have. A budget will also keep your project from getting out of hand and becoming overwhelming. If you plan to use a professional crew to do the planting work, make sure to factor this into your costs.

3

KNOWING YOUR LAND

The best way to begin is to take stock of your property. This information will determine what comes next, and how to best choose the plants for your particular yard. Some questions to remember:

• What kind of soil is present? What grows well in that soil? • How does rain and water drain from your property? Are you on a large hill that will get runoff or debris from other properties? • What are your climate conditions in each season? How much sun/ shade does each area of your yard get? • What plants and vegetation already exist? What do you want to keep and what do you want to get rid of?

4

STICK TO A FORM, STYLE, OR THEME Once

your plan is in place, stick to it. Your theme ensures a cohesive design and end product. Even if you like a number of ideas, a solid theme will make sure your yard is beautiful and doesn’t end up looking like a mashup of design styles and random plants. A theme is also useful for organising different spaces of the yard. For example, having a patio seating area that flows well into the barbecue area is useful when determining what kind of path or walkway to choose.

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LAND / LANDSCAPING

5

CREATE SPACES When

you know how you want to use your yard, spend time creating those spaces to reflect your dream design. Love to entertain? Make sure there is enough seating for all your guests. Want a place to relax? Choose plants that provide private coverage and a place for you to spend quiet time with nature. Linking these spaces together with creative pathways and pavers, adds value to your home and functionality to your property.

6

FUNCTIONAL PLANTS ENHANCE SPACES Once

your spaces are determined, choose the right plants appropriate for those spaces. More decorative and flowering plants should go where you will see and enjoy them. Plants that provide good water retention should stay close to the ground to help keep the entire area green. Layering techniques ensure there are no ‘holes’ or dead spaces in your landscaping, encouraging a lush feel and an eyecatching design.

7

HIGHLIGHT BEAUTIFUL AREAS What are the focal

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points of your yard? If you have a breathtaking ocean view, don’t block it with walls of plants and trees that take away the natural beauty of the surrounding area. A lovely gazebo or covered patio should take precedence over plantings that are strictly functional. Details are important, so pay particular attention to colour and texture when choosing plants for highly visible areas.

8

TIMELINE In addition to

having a timeline for when you want your landscaping project to be completed, take into account the time it takes for plants to grow to full maturity. You may not achieve the look you want immediately, as plants take water, sun, and careful maintenance once planted in a new place. Also consider that plants are living things that are always changing. You’ll observe changes over time that can affect how your landscaping adapts to its environment and how you want to use the space.

9

CONSIDER PROFESSIONAL HELP

A professional landscaping team

can help you decide what a realistic timeline and project completion date would be. Someone that specialises in local plants and native vegetation can also be an invaluable resource when planning your outdoor space, as well as being able to have the manpower to assist in any heavy digging or planting endeavours.

10

SUSTAINABILITY One of the most important things to consider when creating a landscape design is being a good steward of your natural resources. Sustainable building and landscaping practices are especially important in the British Virgin Islands, as the land is very steep and sloping; excavation and planting can contribute to unwanted soil erosion and runoff. Staying organised and having a solid plan ensures that earth doesn’t end up in the oceans and damaging delicate reefs. YOUR BEAUTIFUL YARD adds value to your property and brings joy to your daily life. By keeping these tips in mind, your landscaping project will not only succeed, but thrive. ■

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e W s g n i Th Love Mix in some weathered wood lanterns

Decorating with a HUE IQ

Keep it calm and coastal with blue hues. Decorate with inspiration from our surroundings. Whale image painted on glass

Beach glass lamp bases

Weathered cane and blue leather chair

Use cushions that bring the colours together

Raffia floor cushions

Bring it all togther with a jute and wool rug

284.542.1964 | info@housebvi.com | housebvi.com


S E A / YA C H T S P OT L I G H T

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Elena

A phenomenal, classic sailing experience for avid-yachties WO R DS BY ST E P H E N L F R A N C E

P H OTO G R A P H Y BY A L E X I S A N D R E WS

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S E A / YA C H T S P OT L I G H T

Elena is the yacht charter where the guest decides how relaxing or wild their trip will be

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EVOCATIVE IN ITS traditional design aesthetic, unique among the Caribbean charter yacht industry, and an incredible race winner, Elena is a fastidious recreation of the 1928 Trans-Atlantic record-holding boat. The particular vessel that Elena emulates participated in the 1928 King’s Cup Trans-Atlantic race from New York to Santander, completing the regatta in record-breaking time. Built in 2009 to the original 1910 designs by Nathanael G. Herreshoff, boat builders Factoria Naval de Marin fabricated the 180-foot racing schooner with four cabins, accommodating eight guests in beautiful, private ensuite staterooms. Elena also has eight permanent crew members.

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S E A / YA C H T S P OT L I G H T

Escape for a Day on Your Own Private Yacht on the water

U N F O R G E T TA B L E M O M E N T S

Discover the British Virgin Islands from the deck of a private yacht on a Day Sail with The Moorings. You can island hop with a professional skipper or even indulge in a full crew with captain and chef. Find the freedom to swim, snorkel or simply soak in the sun while surrounded by crystalline waters. Phone: 284.393.2417 284.393.2436 Web: moorings.com Email: gosailing@moorings.com

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The average sailing speed for the yacht is between 12 and 15 knots. She has seen 18 knots and is capable of more, but this is weather dependent. Her maximum speed by engine is 13 knots. Combining classic racing purity with contemporary luxury, her velocity under sail is untouched by her opulent, lavish appearance that boasts stately interiors with a mahogany finish and period country-home detailing. One feels completely welcomed by the yacht’s warm, hospitable atmosphere, which is pleasantly juxtaposed by the boisterous nature of her racing finesse. Modern comforts such as WiFi and televisions are equipped throughout the yacht, adding to the relaxing and entertaining surroundings, while not removing from the traditional ambiance. An enticing choice for sailing fanatics, Elena was fitted with a new boom, sail plan, and bowsprit in 2012, based on the original 1911 sail plan— maintaining its authenticity. Expansive deck areas with cockpit for al fresco dining allow creative options for time spent indulging the yacht’s character. Two tenders onboard permit the curious and inquisitive to venture out for enjoyable exploration of

the islands along with kayaks, kite-surfing equipment, waterskis, wakeboard, snorkelling, and fishing gear; all equipped so that guests receive the full Caribbean watersports experience. With the addition of this plethora of activities onboard this excellent racing vessel, an escapade with Elena presents an exclusive vacation to any other charter. Introducing a Captain and crew who hold a profound knowledge about the yacht and her history, Elena’s Captain Steve McLaren spoke of his soulful connection with the vessel: “Elena is a yacht for connoisseurs. An authentic sailing schooner, she offers a completely unique experience that other modern yachts cannot. There is no push button sailing here, her eight sails are hoisted manually by a dedicated crew of skilled sailors. Guests can expect to enjoy a slower pace of life aboard. Step back in time and experience sailing at its best. When Elena is under full sail at 15 knots, she will turn the heads of guests and crew of any other vessel nearby. She must be one of the most photographed yachts afloat.” ■ Elena is available for charter in the Caribbean through early 2018 and in the Mediterranean during the summer.

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GET IN TOUCH WITH DEBI TO REALIZE YOUR VISION

DEBI CARSON, INTERIOR DESIGNER Interior Design & Architecture, Building Design & Project Management * Specification & procurement of luxury architectural products * Furniture & fixture specification and procurement, right through to installation * Artist - mixed media, fine art commissions *

WHEN YOU'RE ON VACATION, SECURITY AT HOME ISN'T

DIGICEL iSEE, THE AFFORDABLE CLOUD-BASED VIDEO SURVEILLANCE SYSTEM FROM ONLY $49/MO.

iSee

Digicel iSee allows you to view live and recorded video that is safely stored in the cloud from your laptop, tablet or smartphone. Let us customise a solution to protect your home. Contact us at (284) 300-BEST or BVIBUSINESS@DIGICELGROUP.COM DIGICELBUSINESS.COM Complete solutions for your needs

Debi Carson, NCIDQ 284 541 0505 debicarson@me.com debicarson.com

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Build your own burgers! R E C I P E S B Y K AY L E I G H D R I V E R

S T Y L I N G B Y E R I N PAV I O U R - S M I T H

P H OTO G R A P H Y B Y R A I N B O W V I S I O N S B V I WHO DOESN’T LOVE A GOOD BURGER? I thought it would be an appropriate time to ‘build your own burgers,’ and change it up from your regular beef burger. This is a great thing to do when you have a crowd over for a Sunday barbeque. The host provides the burger, buns, and usual condiments, and each guest brings a topping. When it’s set out on a buffet table, it’s a great way to experiment with the different flavour combinations and try something new. It’s also really easy preparation, because the burger patties can be made the night before so all you need to do on the day of your barbeque is set up. First up is this Greek inspired burger, which is so different to the traditional beef burger. Lamb, mint, feta, and

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tzatziki are common flavours in Greece and a match made in heaven at that. I thought it would be creative to combine those flavours into an amazing burger and offer a somewhat lighter option for those that find beef burgers too heavy. The tzatziki really offers a refreshing zip to the lamb and the feta just tops it off with a nice salty bite!. Tip: when forming the patties, create a slight indent in the centre so that you have a level-cooked burger and your toppings won’t slide off.   Enjoy! Don’t forget to share your finished dishes with us on Instagram! #delishvipy


LIFE / DELISH

Lamb & mint burger with tzatziki & feta

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LIFE / DELISH

This Greek inspired burger is so different to the traditional beef burger. Lamb, mint, feta, and tzatziki are common flavours in Greece and a match made in heaven at that.

bowl. Sprinkle the salt over the cucumber and gently massage in to cucumber for a few seconds. Set aside for about 15 minutes. After resting the cucumber, place in a clean tea towel or paper towel and squeeze out any excess water. Discard water collected in bowl. In a clean bowl, mix all of the ingredients together until well combined. Set aside in the refrigerator until ready to use.        

Pork & apple burger with tangy apple slaw & cilantro mayo

Lamb & mint burger with tzatziki & feta

L E V E L E A SY ! MAKES 4 BURGERS

L E V E L E A SY ! MAKES 4 BURGERS INGREDIENTS 1.5 lbs minced lamb 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh rosemary 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh mint 1 teaspoon mint sauce 2 cloves crushed garlic 1 egg 1 /4 cup bread crumbs 1 tablespoon fine salt 1 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper   *Method and assembly of Burgers is same as above.  

The pork and apple burger...this takes me back to England when I was away at school. My parents used to come and visit my brother and I; we frequently used to go to a butcher a few miles down the road, and pick up pork and apple burgers for dinner. They were perfection. Pork is quite a fatty meat, so combining it with fresh apple in the burger and a tangy slaw really complements the pork.

Tzatziki

M A K E S 1 1/2 C U P S INGREDIENTS 1 /2 cup grated cucumber 1 teaspoon salt 1 cup whole milk Greek yoghurt 1 teaspoon ground cumin 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint 1 clove crushed garlic METHOD To begin, place the grated cucumber in a fine mesh sieve and place over

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For the apple slaw M A K E S A B O U T 3 1 /2 C U P S INGREDIENTS 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced Granny Smith apple 1 cup red cabbage 1 cup shredded carrot Place these ingredients in a bowl and set aside.   FOR THE DRESSING 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard 1 tablespoon grainy mustard 1 tablespoon honey 1 tablespoon lime 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon pepper

METHOD Put all the dressing ingredients in a jar, seal, and shake until an emulsified dressing has formed. To assemble the apple slaw, pour dressing over the food ingredients and mix together, making sure it is well coated. *Dress the slaw about half an hour before you’re ready to serve.

For the cilantro mayo INGREDIENTS 1 bunch washed cilantro 1 cup mayonnaise

METHOD In a food processor, combine the 2 ingredients and whirl together until cilantro is fine and well chopped. Serve cold.

For the pork & apple burgers

INGREDIENTS 1.5 lbs ground pork 1 cup shredded Granny Smith apple 1 tablespoon grainy mustard 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard 1 garlic clove crushed/minced 1 tablespoon fine salt 1 /2 tablespoon fresh ground pepper Non-stick cooking spray METHOD In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients and mix thoroughly using your hands. Do not over-mix to avoid tough burgers. Form each patty into 6 oz patties and allow to rest on sheet pan with parchment paper. When you’re ready to grill, spray each side with a bit of non-stick cooking spray. Preheat your grill to medium/high heat. Grill on first side for approximately 4-5 minutes, then flip and grill for approximately 4-5 minutes or until cooked to your preference. Allow to rest before serving. TO ASSEMBLE Spread some of the mayo on the bottom bun, followed by the burger, and top with the slaw. 

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Pork & apple burger with tangy apple slaw & cilantro mayo

bvipropertyyacht.com

F E B / M A R C H 2 0 1 8 | 53


LIFE / DELISH

Chicken, brie & bacon burger

Chicken, brie & bacon burger L E V E L : E A SY ! MAKES 4 BURGERS A fellow contributor at VIPY once told me that she had an amazing chicken sandwich in her home country of New Zealand. This was the inspiration behind ‘the CBBB’. The key is not to overcook the chicken, and make sure that the brie is melting. This would go well with a delicious mango chutney or a cranberry chutney of some sort. This takes your regular chicken sandwich to the next level! INGREDIENTS 4/6 oz chicken breasts 1 tablespoon salt 1 tablespoon pepper 1 lb brie 1 lb cooked bacon 1 thinly sliced avocado   METHOD Preheat grill to medium/high heat. Using a meat tenderizer, pound the chicken until it is of equal thickness all over. Season chicken liberally with salt and pepper, and spray with non-stick spray. Place on grill for 4-minutes on the first side, rotate, and continue for a further 3-minutes (approx.). At this point, lower the heat to medium/low and flip the chicken over and repeat. The chicken should feel firm to the touch when it’s cooked all the way through. Remove from the grill and allow to rest for 10 minutes before slicing. TO ASSEMBLE Place the avocado on the bottom of the bun, followed by the sliced chicken, bacon, and finally the brie. If you have a crème brûlée torch, or a blow torch, now would be a great time to use it to melt the brie. ■ 

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Biodegradable Food & Beverage Containers

Fully compostable food and beverage containers available in wholesale and retail quantities. An extensive range of products including soak proof sugar cane food boxes, sturdy cutlery, paper straws and PLA cups.

Call: 284 340 1835 | info@greentechbvi.com | greentechbvi.com #BVIStyrofoamBan


LIFE / STYLE & BEAUTY

s ’ e Sheet as swandy c

Just like sugar candy, for February our inspiration comes from sweet confection – with brightly coloured and patterned hues that give the look of sugar as the principal ingredient. COMPILED BY E R I N PAV I O U R - S M I T H

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1

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O H L O L L Y P O P Brightly coloured recycled leather document pouches, wallets, and cosmetic bags available in a range of delicious sugary colours! AVAILABLE FROM House. Prices start from $35.

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CA N DY TO N E P H O N E. TREFLÉ SYMMETRY SERIES P H O N E CAS ES W I T H OTT E R B OX These colourful and protective phone cases designed by Kristin Frazer for Treflé Designs are the cutest accessory to add a dash of colour. AVAILABLE FROM Taino Boutique & Gifts. $49.00 for iPhone 7 & $59.00 for iPhone 7 Plus

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VA VA V O O M ! K A C I D R E S S BY TREFLÉ DESIGNS This beautiful long chiffon dress is vibrant and full of colour with an original Treflé Caribbean Hues print. Wear it front to back, or back to front! AVAILABLE FROM Taino Boutique & Gifts. $140.00

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get the look VIPY Style & Beauty Retailer Directory Amara Spa Tel: 284 543 3554 The Moorings, Road Town amaraspabvi.com Arawak Interiors Tel: 284 494 5240 Road Reef Plaza, Road Town admin@arawakvi.com House Tel: 284-494-1920 Romasco Building, Road Town, Tortola Wickhams Cay 2, Tortola, Road Town www.housebvi.com Prana Spa Tel: 340 776 7899 5302 Yacht Haven Grande, Charlotte Amalie, USVI spausvi.com

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Serenity Spa Tel: 284 547 7899 Sopers Hole Marina, Frenchman’s Cay serenityspabvi.com

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Stella Maze Designer info@stellahues.com stellahues.com Studio One Salon & Spa Tel: 284 494 9988 130 Main Street, Road Town mystudio1bvi.com Taino Boutique & Gifts Tel: 284-443-0012 Tortola Pier Park, Road Town nfo@tainoboutiques.com

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F LU T T E R I N G FA N F I Z Z Original hand painted wood fans by Salvadorian Artist Tatiana Cañas. No two are the same. Each one is autographed by the artist. Many different colours to choose from. AVAILABLE FROM Taino Boutique & Gifts. $25.

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CHERRY BLOSSOM. STELLA HUES COLLECTION BY DESIGNER STELLA MAZE Ooh la la! Marsala pumps in cherry blossom patent leather. These have to be the hottest shoes in town! AVAILABLE FROM stellahues.com. $650

Treflé@ Taino Boutique & Gifts Tel: 284-443-0012 Tortola Pier Park, Road Town info@tainoboutiques.com

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P R ETT Y P E E P TO ES. STELLA HUES COLLECTION BY DESIGNER STELLA MAZE. K E R R Y S A N D A L S – K E L L Y G R E E N  These Asiago suede and gold nappa strappy leather sandals will make your feet super sexy. AVAILABLE FROM stellahues.com. $998

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Ocean Modern by

Beachside Lighting

Lifestyle Protection

Unobtrusive Durability Made from Solid Brass

From happy beginnings to happy ever after, we intended to make our mark. And we did. Colonial Insurance has been providing the best insurance cover at the best possible price in the British Virgin Islands since 2005. Our intention was to make our mark as member of our local business community, offering the support and resources of Colonial Group International (CGI). CGI companies manage $430 million in premium income and pension contributions and have settled over $400 million in hurricane related claims since 2000. Colonial Insurance (BVI) Limited is rated A- excellent by A.M. Best. That’s an internationally recognised rating for financial strength. For you, it means more cover and security for your lifestyle. For us, it means we’ve made our mark.

Call 494-8450/495-6403 or visit cgigroup.com

Kailua, Hawaii BeachsideLighting.com Rosie Nichols, USVI & BVI Rep. (340) 642-8981 Local installations include: Cooper Island, Peter Island, Saba Rock, Oil Nut Bay, and residences on St. Thomas, St. John, Tortola, and Virgin Gorda.

COLONIAL INSURANCE (BVI) LIMITED Palm Grove House, P.O. Box 2377, Road Town,Tortola VG1110 Tel. 494-8450 Valley,Virgin Gorda,VG1150 Tel: 495-6403

www.cgigroup.com

A member of Colonial Group International Ltd. insurance, health, pensions, life

Colonial Insurance (BVI) Limited is rated A-(Excellent) by AM Best.


SOL Y SOMBRA VIRGIN GORDA, BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS STEPS AWAY FROM Little Trunk Bay, this classic and timeless British colonial beachfront villa has five suites, each furnished with custom-made teak furniture. A great room, office/library, dining room and fully-outfitted kitchen offer spacious and elegant entertainment areas. A 45-foot ocean-front infinity pool, observation deck and lighted tennis court are set within over an acre of tropical gardens. The property is proximate to The Baths, Virgin Gorda’s famous destination, and two unspoiled beaches, Little Trunk Bay and Valley Trunk Bay. A private movie theater, daily maid service, exercise equipment and gym and a chef (upon request) complete the villa’s offerings.

Smiths Gore (BVI) Limited T 284.494.2446 E bernadette.george@smithsgore.com W solysombrabvi.com


Enduring Beauty, Resilient Community

Join Us This Season REOPENING DECEMBER 2017

In a community like Virgin Gorda, people display compassion and perseverance during times of recovery. Our commitment is to the people who call Virgin Gorda home as we offer continued support to restore our beautiful islands. Oil Nut Bay’s home ownership opportunities are available to showcase a distinct combination of quality, art and science—displaying the Caribbean’s natural beauty that will last for generations to come.

Contact us to make a dining reservation or to schedule a tour. VIRGIN GORDA, BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS |

bvi

1 284 393 1000 | oilnutbay.com

Virgin Islands Property & Yacht - February / March 2018  

Editor-in-Chief – Stephen L France. Design and Layout – Sally Fullam. Sales Director & Project Manager – Erin Paviour-Smith

Virgin Islands Property & Yacht - February / March 2018  

Editor-in-Chief – Stephen L France. Design and Layout – Sally Fullam. Sales Director & Project Manager – Erin Paviour-Smith

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