As the six-month mark of the coronavirus global pandemic nears and much of the world remains in lockdown, there’s an increased interest in the desire for dual citizenship. The Residences at Secret Bay, the six-star all-villa resort in Dominica, the Caribbean’s “Nature Island,” is reporting a 66% increase in enquiries from Americans who are now seeking second citizenship.
The catalysts driving this new interest include: The United States’ inability to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the strict travel limitations imposed on U.S. travelers by nearly all countries — except for Caribbean nations — and the overall economic uncertainty and instability related to both the pandemic and the upcoming U.S. Presidential elections.
With Citizenship by Investment programmes, like that of Dominica, offering visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to 140 countries, Americans now have access to the luxury of a Golden Passport or Plan B. Obtaining citizenship through investment in approved real estate, like Secret Bay, is an increasingly popular path to dual citizenship as it’s attractive to high-end buyers who, in addition to obtaining a second passport for their entire family, gain an ownership interest in a luxury property that can serve both as a place to escape to and an astute investment.
“We’ve had success selling amid the pandemic primarily to buyers from across the Middle East, North Africa and Asia, and most recently reached near sell out of our Phase 1 of built product,” said Gregor Nassief, proprietor of Secret Bay and Chairman and CEO of GEMS Holdings Limited.
“And now, we are seeing American’s discovering this path to second citizenship. Dominica’s Citizenship by Investment Programme was recognized by the Financial Times as the ‘World’s Best Country for Second Citizenship’ three years in a row and Secret Bay is Dominica’s only Citizenship opportunity where the investment is always in completed villas, making our offering unmatched and a perfect fit for this new wave of interested buyers.”
With the secret out, expect to see more Americans acquiring second passports through CBI programmes like COVID-resilient Dominica, and specifically through real estate investments like Secret Bay.
To date, The Residences at Secret Bay has nearly sold out Phase 1 and is set to release Phase 2, which includes four new villas to be completed this November with a fifth by January 2021. The awarding-winning Green Globe certified resort and residences, which was recently named the #1 Resort Hotel in the Caribbean, Bermuda and the Bahamas and #6 Hotel in the World in Travel + Leisure’s 2020 World’s Best Awards, has also recently been recognised by such global publications as Architectural Digest, CNN, Fortune, National Geographic, Outside, the cover of Travel + Leisure, and The Telegraph.
The Residences at Secret Bay is the only government-approved real estate project in Dominica offering purchase options to both vacation home buyers and citizenship investors. With strong demand for ownership by vacation home buyers, The Residences at Secret Bay grants citizenship investors unmatched access to the vacation home market for resale.
Dominica was recently recognized as among the top 15 COVID-19 recovering countries in the world, achieved by maintaining the confirmed case numbers below 20, with zero deaths and full recovery, and reopened its borders to international travellers on August 7 with clear entry protocols.
Further, Roosevelt Skerrit, Dominica’s prime minister, reported that in addition to the modernization of the country’s main hospitals, construction is underway on the New Marigot Hospital Project, which will result in the construction of a 40,000 square-foot, two-floor hospital to be fully funded by CBI. The hospital will add capacity of 75 beds, and will provide important services including emergency care, intensive care (ICU), laboratory and radiology services and a trauma centre, among others. CBI funds have also contributed to the construction of polyclinics in 14 communities and the restoration of six health centres, thereby expanding the island’s healthcare infrastructure.
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