Tulum, one of the most important destinations in the world. The time to invest is now
This time, we are pleased to introduce Mr. Alejandro Lopez, Real Estate Consultant for the last 7 years in the Riviera Maya, with experience in International Sales and Property Management.
In this interview we will talk with Mr. Lopez about the importance of Tulum (Mexico) around the world, why the time to invest in this beautiful place is today and about the most important projects currently.
HalloCasa: “Good afternoon Mr. López, let us first of all welcome you to HalloCasa. We are sure that this will be a very pleasant and, above all, very valuable interview for investors and the general audience of our portal.”
Alejandro López: “Good afternoon, it is a pleasure and I am happy to accept the invitation for this interview and to talk about the international tourist destination in which I reside: Riviera Maya.”
HalloCasa: “To begin our interview, would you please be so kind and tell our audience how you started your real estate career and tell us the most representative aspects of the profession as a real estate consultant.”
Alejandro López: “My name is Alejandro López R., a lawyer by profession and passionate about travel, tourism and real estate. I studied Law at the Universidad del Valle de México and obtained then a Business English diploma in the City of London in England. So, when I returned to Mexico, I decided to change my residence to Playa del Carmen 10 years ago.
For me the most representative aspects of this beautiful profession of real estate consulting are empathy, honesty and having a broad knowledge of the respective area. In order to be able to guide clients to an intelligent investment, it is necessary to have deep knowledge of the area in particular.”
HalloCasa: “You have been living in the Mayan Riviera for more than 10 years (Playa del Carmen, Tulum). Please tell us what significant changes have occurred in this last decade in this beautiful region and please describe the beautiful Tulum.”
Alejandro López: “In my beginnings, the first place I came to reside within the Riviera Maya was the city of Playa del Carmen, known as the heart of the Mayan Riviera. Since it is located in a strategic commercial point (40 minutes from the international airport of Cancun, 30 minutes by boat from the Island of Cozumel, 30 minutes from Tulum and 90 minutes from the island of Holbox) it makes it a very attractive city in terms of commercial location.
Tulum is a very young municipality. It has been formed only about 10 years ago. It was a very quiet town. The few tourists who came to this area were looking for the beautiful turquoise sea, its quiet beaches and spectacular sunrises. However, six years ago it started to become famous among the world of celebrities and the global jet setters who sought that tranquility, that “rustic luxury” style and who began to create the trend which is now called “hippie chic”.”
HalloCasa: “Thanks not only to the beauty of this area but to the importance of the projects which are being built Tulum is an area where supply and demand are very strong. Please tell our audience, what should be taken into account when investing in real estate for subsequent vacation rental. It is said that this alternative leaves high residual income to investors.”
Alejandro López: “One of the fundamental aspects to invest in Tulum is that investors approach serious, professional, and dedicated consultants. In this moment, in which Tulum is turning to a worldwide hot-spot, most of the available areas in the desired locations are being sold. Concerning return-on-investment, it is difficult to generalize since there are differences depending on the respective project and its terms, though. Therefore, it is important to have an intelligent investment consultant who helps to classify the area, the type of development in which you want to invest, square meters and the budget you want to invest.
Vacation rentals have had an important growth in this area. With globalization and digital platforms, such as Airbnb, homeaway, etc., they offer real estate units as condo-hotels with concierge service and all the common hotel facilities, which makes it attractive to domestic and foreign tourists since they can travel the world while having the feeling that they are at home.”
Playa del Carmen and Tulum in the Riviera Maya, two of the most attractive destinations to invest in real estate in Mexico
HalloCasa: “Currently, Tulum is experiencing various investment projects in luxury infrastructure like high-class hotels, restaurants, bars, and clubs which undoubtedly positions it as a destination of luxury and glamor. From your point of view: what have been the strongest drivers contributing to the re-positioning of Tulum to become a destination of great appetite for large investors in that luxury segment?”
Alejandro López: “Entering hotels and gastronomic facilities in Tulum is like entering an energetic place that catches you between the thick Caribbean jungle and the spectacular natural spots of its beaches. Tulum is a place famous for yoga, vegan food and vegetarian restaurants, fashion shootings. Additionally, it has become famous because well-known luxury magazines and publishers have done reports about this special spot in their travel editions. Tulum is a place where people use the bicycle to go from A to B. It’s simply a place worth knowing in all its aspects.”
HalloCasa: “Sounds, great! How was this beautiful area hit by the crisis of 2008-2011, which hit the international real estate market? Was there stability in the price of land or were there significant fluctuations and, if so, to what extent?”
Alejandro López: “The price of land hardly fell in this area. Generally, it might stagnate towards a price level, but in itself the square meter did not depreciate as much as in other states of Mexico. We always know that the crises are temporary, and in terms of tourism, the Riviera Maya, despite its ups and downs, remains one of the most important destinations in Latin America.”
HalloCasa: “The Riviera Maya is a world-class destination for both local and foreign investors looking to develop homes for themselves, for local and foreign tourists and to carry out all kinds of real estate business that includes single-family homes, condominiums and commercial projects. What advice would you give as an experienced real estate consultant to new investors who see in the Mayan Riviera (Puerto Morelos, Punta Allen, Playa del Carmen, Puerto Aventuras, Akumal and Tulum) an ideal destination to invest?”
Alejandro López: “There are many international investors who merge first world structural concepts with the jungle and spectacular landscapes that exist in Tulum. That combination of the first world with the rustic elements, is what led to the creation of the boho-chic concept, also called hippie-chic. People also buy square meters and jungle views of landscapes and then create a lifestyle and a concept which is created around that combination in each development.”
HalloCasa: “Tulum is one of the cities currently with great development and growth of the Mexican Caribbean. Tell us please the 10 main aspects why Tulum is such a special beach.”
Alejandro López: “I do not know if I can mention 10 in particular, but I will mention the main elements because not only the beach but all of Tulum is being a worldwide hot-spot. From my point of view obviously:
- Destination of celebrities and global jet-setters.
- Creation of the hippie-chic trend.
- The hotels are all built along a European plan.
- Gastronomic tourism is impressive: Editors of Count Nast, GQ, Vogue, Bazaar, travel leisure, among others, have visited Tulum. That’s what attracted one of the most famous restaurants in the world, Noma, to decide to bring their restaurant with all its infrastructure to Tulum.
- Developers try to keep 40% and 50% of the land they buy unbuilt and only put constructions on the remaining squares.
- The beaches are calm.
- The use of large boats on the beaches of Tulum is not allowed, which makes it less polluted.
- Every year the loggerhead turtles choose Tulum´s beaches as a destination to make their nests. To see them giving birth after 60 days is a natural spectacle.
- Since Tulum has low construction density, nights are spectacular, since there is not much light, generally. This makes one person appreciate it more and on full moons its views are spectacular, which is why many event productions are looking for Tulum as its location for well-known parties such as Full Moon, such as those being held in Thailand.
- Tulum is very expensive at the moment. So, there is a natural filter and it makes tourism and the people who visit it care about quality and not quantity.
HalloCasa: “It is said that the same thing happened to Tulum as to Playa del Carmen, meaning that after being a small fishing village, they ended up being one of the most desirable cities not only to invest but to be one of the main tourist centers. How have investments increased during this year 2018 and what can be expected for next year 2019 thanks to the potential that both areas have shown?”
Alejandro López: “Tulum is still very rustic. It still lacks a few years of development. Many services are still missing, which makes it interesting for new investors. Tulum is trying to take care of its growth. The government and the developers have already understood that it shall not become a Cancún or Playa del Carmen, where they only arrived, devastated the jungle and built projects. The same investor who comes to Tulum already comes with the awareness of developing in harmony with the nature. Investors who come to acquire real estate in this region, they come seeking more contact with nature and a more relaxed life.”
Tulum: virgin coasts, white sand, history, ecology and glamor
HalloCasa: “Tulum is an important pre-Columbian Mayan city which is only an hour and a half from Cancun and just over half an hour from Playa del Carmen. What impact does its great historical content have on choosing it to invest in it?”
Alejandro López: “Every year, new archaeological settlements, cenotes and others are discovered, which makes it even more interesting. In historical matters the Riviera Maya is very rich, and above all it is very important that local people continue to transmit their uses and customs to the new generations. Through various festivals that are organized through different civil associations in conjunction with the state government.”
HalloCasa: “What recommendations would you give to retirees who want to retire in an area such as La Riviera Maya? What are those qualities that will benefit foreign retirees investors who choose it?”
Alejandro López: “Riviera Maya has been a place for retirees for more than 20 years, even when the Mexicans themselves did not know that this area existed.
By then, Americans, Canadians and Germans were already living mostly in this area, which is why the community of Puerto Aventuras is created, which has its own golf course, marina, cenotes and green paths, among which the retired ones lead a very relaxed life.
Next to Puerto Aventuras, the community of Playacar is created near the city of Playa del Carmen, which has almost the same amenities with the only difference that there is no Marina. However, it does have some spectacular beaches, which makes it very attractive to investors who are looking to acquire retirement properties in this area.”
HalloCasa: “The value of the land in Tulum will undoubtedly continue to grow in the coming years. It is said that approximately the square meter oscillates between 150 and 350 USD. Is this the case today and in what range can the price per square meter vary?”
Alejandro López: “At present I would say that the minimum would be 180 USD to about 550 USD while in the beach area of 900 to 1,200 USD per square meter. And it varies between the zone of Veleta, Zama village and the beach.”
HalloCasa: “Between housing offers and corporate offers (offices and commercial complexes) which one has the greatest demand nowadays and why?”
Alejandro López: “Currently, demand exists for all types of investment, whether housing, commercial and development. All types of investments are booming so far in Tulum. As I mentioned earlier it is one of the youngest municipalities in the state of Quintana Roo, which makes it lacking in a lot of commercial offers and services, but a great opportunity area for business people investing in this beautiful place.”
HalloCasa: “Please tell us about the projects that are in full swing at the moment and which are about to be officially announced.”
Alejandro López: “At this moment I can comment on three developments that will impact a lot by design, location and concept. As I mentioned earlier, in Tulum you do not only buy square meters, you buy a concept and a lifestyle. It is a place where it is full of beautiful beaches, different Yoga studios and meditation locations together with bike paths where you can ride a bike everywhere. Additionally, Tulum is becoming one of the most pet-friendly cities in the area. But to answer your question, at the moment following projects are being finished: AMELIA By Sordo Madaleno, NAJKIIN, KASA, UNITED, BOHO.”
HalloCasa: “How has the accelerated tourist development of the Riviera Maya affected the environment? How does this affect both foreign and local real estate investments? Are there actions being taken with regards to the design and the promotion of eco-projects?”
Alejandro López: “In reality, the environmental impact has been stronger in Cancun and Playa del Carmen. Those who have taken the most care in the matter is the civil society itself, which are the ones we have watched and monitored that matter the most. Through different actions and campaigns they have stopped some mega constructions that would affect mangroves, waterholes and cenotes. I hope the government will take more actions in this area and will be more involved in the orderly development of this area. It affects investors who buy land which is not of very good origin and those who do not have the necessary documentation. The potentially great risk is real.”
HalloCasa: “Just as there are high, medium and low seasons for tourism, are there also seasons in which investment grows or decreases drastically? What could be the aspects that affect these investments positively and negatively?”
Alejandro López: “The low season hits a bit on all commercial areas. This season is derived from the hurricane season which begins in the last days of August, September, October, and lasts until mid November. The good news is that every year the number of flights which arrive at the Cancun International Airport increases. The low season definitely negatively affects ROI and local revenue turnover. From the positive point of view, the low seasons serve to give corrective and preventive maintenance to homes, hotels, developments, etc. to prepare for the high season.”
Tulum for investors: growing rates without a stop
HalloCasa: “Tulum is not only beautiful and paradisiacal. It is multicultural and this has given rise to it being an attractive destination for real estate investors. It is said that in 2017 the rate of growth of the value of the properties ranged between 8% and 10% per year. On what do these figures depend?”
Alejandro López: “These figures depend on good property management, commercialization and commercial alliances with other agencies. The growth of airbnb, homeaway and booking have impacted more on the growth of the number of apartments and houses which are rented in this area. Clearly, Generation Y and the forthcoming ones use these digital platforms to travel and therefore contribute to the growth of this business model remarkably. This ensures an aggregate annual ROI between 8% and 10% for owners, developers and property managers.”
HalloCasa: “Finally, we would like you to share information that can guide investors interested in investing in Tulum: the escrow is exclusively an unavoidable requirement for foreigners who want to acquire properties in Mexican restricted areas or apply for any location?”
Alejandro López: “Yes, the escrow is applicable only to foreigners who want to acquire property in the restricted territorial zone described in Mexican laws, but for more information and advice I leave my information. I am happy to discuss details and requirements offline.”
HalloCasa: “Mr. López, herewith, we are already at the end of our interview. We would like to thank you for your disposition and for the valuable information that you shared with us and our audience today. If someone would like to contact you, in which way can they do so?”
Alejandro López: “Interested investors can contact me via my profile on HalloCasa or through LinkedIn: Alejandro López R, Instagram: Alejandrolopezr2, Whatsapp: +52 1 9841814895 and via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.”
HalloCasa: “Thank you very much for your time Mr. López. Always welcome to HalloCasa!”
Alejandro López: ”Thank you very much.”
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