Miami has South Beach. Los Angeles has Ocean Drive. And Panama City has Punta Pacifica.
Punta Pacifica sets the benchmark for luxury real estate in Panama City. The aristocratic neighborhood has earned every inch of elite status though its lavish oceanfront towers, world-class amenities and sophisticated residents.
The most distinguished of tastes are satisfied here in Punta Pacifica, and those with their finger on the pulse know that the best is yet to come.
But Punta Pacifica is in a competitive market in Panama City, where there’s no shortage of luxury real estate. Glamorous towers line the streets of many a prestigious neighborhood, and the high-end buyer has his or her fair share of options.
Why, then, do the most discerning of buyers gravitate towards Punta Pacifica?
If you think Punta Pacifica is the same as other luxury neighborhoods in Panama City, think again. This iconic neighborhood boasts a rare combination of advantages that other areas cannot hope to meet nor surpass. There is no sacrificing or “going without” in Punta Pacifica, no matter what your heart may desire.
Panama City’s One “Truly Oceanfront” Community
To live in an oceanfront apartment is a privilege reserved for a select few. In Panama City, those select few must surely be in Punta Pacifica– as it’s the only place in Panama City where buildings are truly oceanfront.
Yes, the towers of Avenida Balboa boast picturesque ocean views, as do a handful of buildings in Costa del Este. However, in those places there will always be something between you and the ocean–-a major highway, the Cinta Costera, or other buildings obstructing your view.
Living in Punta Pacifica, there is nothing between you and the expansive Pacific. You can wake up to the sounds of waves crashing against the shore and peer out from your spacious balcony unto a seemingly endless ocean. No roads, no traffic– just you and the rolling tides of the Pacific.
A Uniquely “Walking Neighborhood”
There’s something to be said for having both convenience and indulgence a mere elevator ride away. In Punta Pacifica, that has become a reality as commercial and recreational amenities continue to multiply– both in the neighborhood as well as within the buildings themselves.
The Trump Ocean Club alone can satisfy many everyday needs of Punta Pacifica residents–decadent restaurants; gourmet cafes; boutique shops; well-stocked convenience stores; and services such as a salon, mailbox, dry cleaners, and more.
Grand Tower and Aqualina also boast their own array of commercial facilities. Along with the Trump, these buildings offer residents of Punta Pacifica the chance to enjoy their own elegant shopping experience without ever having to leave their street.
Should residents desire a more extensive shopping trip, they’re within easy walking distance of more commercial amenities– and more are still to come. An elegant, upscale shopping center – dubbed The Pacific Center Plaza– is due to complete near the end of 2016.
The project, which is poised to be a SOHO-esque shopping experience, will consist of two towers of high-end stores, offices, consulting services and a movie theater. There are even rumors of a new hospital in the future.
A Convenient Commute
Living in Punta Pacifica, you’re within a convenient drive to Panama City’s most central locations. The prominent business and banking districts of Calle 50 and Costa del Este are a short drive away– as is Multiplaza, the city’s finest shopping mall.
Punta Pacifica’s enviable location played a notable part in its becoming the sizzling market it is today. Easy access to dominant zones attracted a populace of upper-level professionals and their families– and the area grew according to those distinguished tastes.
For instance, a recently installed highway in Punta Pacifica grants residents direct access to the Corredor Sur and the fast-growing Costa del Este.
Other upcoming infrastructural projects will take Punta Pacifica to an even higher level of navigability. President Varela recently approved the installment of an elevated highway running from Atlapa to the front of Multicentro Mall; the highway will alleviate much of the “cut-through traffic” that exists in Punta Pacifica today.
Favorable Investment Market
Investors in Panama have developed a notable preference for Punta Pacifica, due to encouraging pricing trends, consistently high demand and a few key developments on the horizon.
Encouraging Pricing Trends
Prices in Punta Pacifica have experienced a healthy appreciation over the last few years.
Since 2014, prices increased from 5% to 7%– an impressive feat when considering the surge of luxury units hitting the Panama City market.
Prices per square meter increased from an average of $2000-2200 to an average of $2500– or, in the case of Trump Ocean Club, as high as $3500 m2 to $5000.
Consistent High Demand
The demand for real estate in Punta Pacifica has kept up with climbing prices, with properties quickly absorbed within both the sales and rental markets.
The rapid absorption of properties in Punta Pacifica was evident upon the release of Trump Ocean Club units and, more recently, Grand Tower. When the latter building was completed in 2014, nearly 400 units hit the market at once. In other communities, you would expect such a surge of availability to work against the market. In Punta Pacifica however, Grand Tower units were snapped up incredibly fast; today the building is nearly sold out.
Today, there is decent availability in Punta Pacifica– however, savvy buyers know to move quickly on desired units, lest someone else snatches them up.
Pre-construction developments are still on the horizon for Punta Pacifica, with two final empty lots in a holding pattern. The lots, both residentially zoned, will someday flourish into new residential buildings.
As far as we’re concerned, these two empty lots achieve the perfect balance of availability for Punta Pacifica. On one hand, two lots represent a limited supply– particularly when compared with the large availability of land still left in other neighborhoods. Investors in Punta Pacifica can rest assured that the future market won’t be flooded and cheapened in the process.
If and when those buildings are announced, pre-construction units will hit the market. When they do, we expect to see Punta Pacifica prices as a whole increase as more investors rush into what is already an incredibly hot space.
The Ladder Effect
One fascinating influence we expect to see in the near future is something we call the “Ladder Effect,” in which market prices gradually rise to meet the prices of nearby buildings.
We saw the Ladder Effect in action in 2006, when the venerable Trump Ocean Club entered the market and began selling at $3,200 square meters – almost double the average asking price of its neighbors.
Despite the price gap, Trump was selling fast. Neighboring buildings were able to raise their prices as much as $500 per square meter– all because that new benchmark had been set.
Now, it’s hard to imagine another building creating such a momentous impact as the iconic Trump. Still, there’s another, larger-scale project that we expect to have a similar effect on pricing in Punta Pacifica — Ocean Reef, two new man-made residential islands and yacht club off the Punta Pacifica waterfront. Both islands are featuring luxury residential property priced considerably higher price than Punta Pacifica. If we can look to the Trump’s effect on Punta Pacifica as an indication, it stands to reason that these islands will gradually pull up Punta Pacifica prices.
Ocean Reef is the type of luxury property that will raise the tide of all the projects around it, drawing high-end patrons from around the world. It will be a valuable addition to the neighborhood and seal Punta Pacifica’s reputation as the luxury community of Panama City.