Buying property in Fiji

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I recently visited the Coral Coast in Fiji with a view to looking at freehold land for sale next to Nanuku Resort. I found the experience both captivating and rewarding. Not only did we gain a great understanding of what’s involved in buying property in Fiji, we gained a magical insight into the wonders of the Coral Coast and why this region is the place to buy.
The flight with Virgin Australia from Sydney took three and a half hours and flew over some beautiful reefs including Elizabeth Reef. We landed in Nadi and took a road transfer to Nanuku which took around around two and a half hours with a lunch stop. Next time I think I’ll take a flight to Suva and a 45 minute drive to Nanuku or perhaps even a helicopter transfer to mix it up.
Driving into Nanuku Resort was like wondering into a tropical garden paradise. As we approached the port cachere we were greated by three Fijian men in traditional dress and face paint. They blew through a shell horn and drummed away a traditional welcome on a wooden drum. The warm sea breeze was a welcome relief from the heat of the day.
I soon discovered that the Coral Coast is otherwise known as the ‘adventure capital’ of Fiji and offers a fantastic array of outdoor activities including but not limited to white water rafting; hiking (the mountainous backdrop of this region is both dramatic and extensive); caving; zip-lining; watersports – snorkelling, diving (the area is famous for its shark dive); sailing, jet-skiing and island hopping. Surfing one of Fiji’s best reef breaks: Frigates, is a 30 minute boat ride away. Pacific Harbour is where most of these activities originate from and it is less than 15 minutes drive from Nanuku Resort. This waterside hamlet also offers some restaurants, bars and other handy amenities.nanuku_blog 2
Nanuku Resort opened in May of 2014 and offers a wonderfully authentic Fijian holiday experience.  The villas are relxaed yet elegant and remarkably spacious and feature vaulted ceilings with thatched rooves and beautiful Fijian handicrafts and workmanship (note the patterned rope work made of coconut husk on the beams featured below known as ‘Magimagi’ which takes hundreds of hours to create). Each villa has its own pool and private tropical garden surrounds and all are waterfront. Rooms start from USD$750 per night and include all meals, transfers and resort activities. While we were there the menu had been designed by reknowned Australian restaurateur Jacques Raymond and combined international cuisine and Fijian ingredients creatively.
Nanuku Resort owns 450 acres of land and this includes considerable oceanfront land as well as an airstrip, helipad and the tropical mountainous area located behind the main buildings of the resort. The resort has just released 10 oceanfront blocks of freehold land for sale and these beautiful parcels of land open onto a white sandy beach overlooking various surrounding islands including Nanuku Island (owned by the resort and accessible for day trips by boat – stunning and a very worthwhile experience); Benqa and Vatulele islands.
The land faces South and this means you get the sun for most of the day. Thankfully the prevailing winds and more dramatic weather comes from the North and the West and as such the blocks are protected whilst being blessed by the wonderful sea breezes which keep the temperature and the humidity very liveable for a tropical destination.
When it comes to buying land in Fiji there are a few key points to consider.  Firstly only around 9% of land in Fiji is freehold. So if you’re buying leasehold  land it is important to consider the terms of the lease and how that can be changed by the land owners and what is involved in renewing the lease.
If you’re not a Fijian and you’d like to buy land in Fiji new laws introduced in 2014 mean you cant buy in the cities (for me the stunning countryside and waterfront land holds most appeal and so this rule suits me perfectly!).
When you buy a property in Fiji the stamp duty is 10% (but only 3% on special use villa zoning), VAT is 15% but if you buy the property through a company structure you can claim this back. There are no additional property taxes once the property is owned. Settlement usually takes around 60 days.
The freehold Nanuku blocks on offer range in size from around 1452sqm (14520sqft) to 3035sqm (30350sqft)  and start at USD $600,000 per lot. Allow $3500 to $5000 Fiji Dollars per sqm (USD $2760 – $3935 per sqm or per 10.76 square feet). Annual body corporate fees are USD$6500 per annum. They include 24 hour security, maintenance of the common areas (gardens, beach & roads) and also enable access to all Nanuku Resort facilities.
Nanuku Resort have appointed GK Architects from Perth, Australia to design a number of concept villa designs for the land for sale. These architects are internationally renowned for their resort designs and originally designed Nanuku Resort. They are available to assist new land owners at Nanuku in coming up with a unique design for their specific block. Land owners can also employ their own preferred architects to design their homes and are welcome to use the resort’s preferred builders or builders of their own choice.
Nanuku Resort offers a fantastic opportunity to own freehold oceanfront land in Fiji in one of the most beautiful parts of this magical land. To find out more visit www.uniqueestates.com.au/nanukuor email info@uniqueestates.com.au
The Fijian people need a special mention in my words here. I challenge you to find a country with more genuine, heartfelt kindness in its people. For whom smiling and generosity of spirit is a national passtime. The Fijian people is what makes Fiji even more special. They are exceptionally welcoming, pleasant, musical, playful and infectiously happy. I’m really looking forward to my next trip to Fiji for this reason alone.
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Farmer Wants a Wife filmed at Cedar Springs

Magnificent Byron Bay Hinterland mansion, Cedar Springs, featured last night on the opening episode of ‘Farmer Wants a Wife’ which will be shown again this evening on ninemsn. See more at: http://channelnine.ninemsn.com.au/thefarmerwantsawife/

Farmer Wants a Wife episode 1 filmed at Cedar Springs

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Byron Breeze in Myocum

Byron Breeze is an extraordinary combination of a beautifully quiet hilltop location, and a home built in harmony with the environment using world-class engineering, superb finishing and supreme attention to detail.

View from bedroom at Byron Breeze

Surrounded by nature at Byron Breeze

A Feng Shui master was consulted at the early stages of the layout and design and adjustments were made to be more in harmony with the land, location and the period it was built (2006-2010). The advice was invaluable and made a huge difference to the sense of harmony and tranquillity in the home.

Among the exceptional features of Byron Breeze are the breathtaking views from everywhere in the house and the deep sense of privacy, stillness and luxury living. Each window, balcony and room captures a different aspect of the beauty and serenity of the land. The house has 360 degree views and was designed to bring that magnificence inside. From the master bedroom with its east and west facing balconies you see the moon rise out of the ocean. From each of the bedrooms you can step directly outside and be under the stars. The rooms, especially the master suite, kitchen and living rooms, are extremely spacious yet they are romantic, comfortable and cosy in the winter because of the underfloor heating.

View of Byron Bay Lighthouse

See the sunrise and moonrise over the sea and Byron Bay Lighthouse

The property is at the end of a cul-de-sac in a quiet, natural setting inhabited by a variety of wildlife and birds. The location is conveniently central, just a ten minute drive to Byron Bay’s surfing beaches, dolphins, restaurants and music. The historic villages of Bangalow, Mullumbimby and Brunswick Heads are also only ten minutes away.

The Byron Breeze house was designed for privacy with each bedroom suite placed around the courtyard creating its own wing. This feeling is heightened by the ‘bridge’ which joins two of the bedrooms with an exotic daybed area in between that looks out to the mountains.

Beautifully constructed Byron Breeze

Designed by an international bridge builder to Feng Shui principles

The idea for the bridge, the knowledge of how to build it and the commitment to go beyond the required standards, came from one of the owners who has been an engineer for major infrastructure projects around the world including the tunnels and bridges for the new airport motorways in Hong Kong, the Glebe Island Bridge in Sydney, the cross-city tunnel under the CBD of Sydney, motorways in Germany and Austria and the first Metro in Bangkok.

The house was also constructed to withstand any type of extreme weather. It is based on a brick and concrete structure, hardwood roof and rosewood windows and doors – all custom built to surpass the required Australian Standard level.

The house was designed with environmental sustainability in mind so it is cool in summer and warm in winter. The precise placement of windows and doors to optimise the flow of cooling breezes, the thickness of the walls, the use of stacking sliding glass doors and insulation have made this possible. In addition to the solar water heating system, solar panels to generate power have been installed atop the shed’s corrugated roofing sheets. Two large rainwater tanks, a terraced area for the vegetable garden and numerous fruit and nut trees make it possible to live off the land.

Inspired by Balinese outdoor bath designs

A number of Balinese resort style designs were incorporated to create the feeling of a sanctuary: an outdoor bathroom in the guest pavilion, a balcony off the master bath, the courtyard, water features, handmade extra tall Vietnamese doors, hardwood stairs and balconies, the extensive outdoor dining and entertaining areas and the upper-level spa with 38 high-powered jets.
A number of Balinese resort style designs were incorporated to create the feeling of a sanctuary: an outdoor bathroom in the guest pavilion, a balcony off the master bath, the courtyard, water features, handmade extra tall Vietnamese doors, hardwood stairs and balconies, the extensive outdoor dining and entertaining areas and the upper-level spa with 38 high-powered jets.

Imported granite benchtops throughout the kitchen and bathrooms

Gorgeous granite benchtops in the kitchen and bathrooms

The extremely spacious kitchen is an oasis for people who love to cook. In the middle is a large island with gas Teppanaki cook top, plus all the necessary European style kitchen accessories and a walk-in pantry. Large bi-fold windows open onto one of the many outdoor dining areas and stunning views of Byron Bay’s lighthouse and ocean. There is an extensive amount of Indian granite and the kitchen and bathroom bench tops were all individually designed and manufactured.

Byron Breeze is an extremely versatile house and it works well for many different lifestyles: as a family home, an entertainer’s dream, a holiday paradise (including the option of producing rental income) or as a private peaceful sanctuary.

To learn more, see the Byron Breeze listing on the Unique Estates website or call Nicolette van Wijngaarden on 0411 144 877 or +612 6684 8266.

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