The five most enticing global destinations for luxury real estate

Let me start by making a confession: I’m biased. For me, when it comes to ultra-luxury real estate, Dubai – and the UAE in general – tick all my boxes as an investor.

Our nation boasts a wide array of advantages for high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs), including, but not limiting to, a mature legal system, a range of residence visa options, tax-free living and – let’s not forget – year-round sunshine.

That’s why I chose Dubai as the launchpad for AHS Properties; because when you’re focusing on real estate units with values in excess of AED 80 million, it’s vital you select a market with the capital to match.

However, despite my strong preference for Dubai, there are a handful of other wonderful locations around the world that offer similarly tantalising properties with the ability to gain the attention of HNWIs.

So, without further ado, here are my top five overseas locations for ultra-luxury real estate, but be warned – only those with deep pockets need apply…

Monte Carlo, Monaco

What uber-luxury real estate list would be complete without mentioning the jewel in the Monégasque crown? Situated on the French Riviera at the base of the Maritime Alps, Monte Carlo is home to stunning sea views, beautiful weather and Monaco’s only public beach.

As you’d expect, property in the playground of the rich and famous doesn’t come cheap, but prices begin to get particularly eye-watering when you venture into the area’s ultra-premium segment. With ‘average’ units costing at least a million dollars, the sky really is the limit when it comes to Monte Carlo real estate.

For context, Le Tour Odéon penthouse in Monte Carlo’s La Rousse neighbourhood boasts an estimated value of $335 million (AED 1.23 billion).

So yes… This certainly isn’t a location for house hunters operating on a budget.

Los Angeles, CA, United States

Financial commentators are fond of pointing out that if California were its own country, it would rank among the biggest economies in the world (the fifth largest as of 2021). It’s hardly surprising, therefore, that the US’ ‘Golden State’ boasts enough high-end real estate to rival most sovereign nations.

From San Diego and Atherton to San Francisco Bay and Santa Barbara, there’s no shortage of locations for anyone on the hunt for premium property. However, if you’re talking uber-luxury, there’s one city that stands out from the rest.

A magnet for the entertainment industry’s rich and famous, Los Angeles is home to more than its fair share of enviable real estate, with high-end properties regularly selling for tens of millions of dollars.

If you want to tap into the ultra-premium segment, the city’s most expensive property is valued at approximately $250 million (AED 918.2 million).

London, United Kingdom

A perennial favourite for UAE investors, it wouldn’t feel right to discuss uber-luxury real estate without mentioning London.

Of course, the UK’s capital is not exactly renowned for its spacious villas or sprawling mansions, but don’t let the city’s unassuming façades fool you. Some of these homes need to be seen (on the inside) to be believed.

With expansive living spaces, unparalleled interior designs, and ‘mega basements’ sporting everything from swimming pools to artificial beaches, there’s just no telling what may await you when you step inside the ultra-luxury properties of neighbourhoods such as Kensington, Chelsea and Belgravia.

As you might expect, this kind of densely-packed opulence comes with a hefty price tag, so make sure you have upwards of $200 million (AED 735 million) at your disposal if you’re interested in buying one of London’s most expensive properties.

Hong Kong, China

Interested in uber-luxury city living but worried London might be a little westerly for your tastes? If so, it might be worth checking out Hong Kong’s premium property scene.

Naturally, living in one of Asia’s most vibrant cities doesn’t come cheap at the best of times, with valuations for ‘entry-level’ units starting at approximately $500,000 (AED 1.84 million).

Those looking to secure a home in one of the city’s more upmarket neighbourhoods, such as The Peak, can expect to pay anywhere from $15 million (AED 55.1 million) to more than $300 million (AED 1.1 billion).

Saint James, Barbados

If, on the other hand, you’d prefer your uber-luxury property to benefit from a chilled-out beachside location, look no further than the Saint James parish of Barbados.

The international transport links may not be what you’d call ‘rapid’ (we’re talking about a flight time of more than four hours just to reach Florida), but the island nation’s remoteness may well strike you as a plus point.

Barbados’s record real estate sale – the Palazzate in St Peter – fetched $125 million (AED 459.1 million). If, on the other hand, you’re looking for uber-luxury an uber-luxury property below the hundred-million-dollar mark, you can currently get your hands on a 10-bedroom coastal villa for around $40 million (AED 146.9 million).

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