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Recent improvements to the Amador Causeway have led to a resurgence of interest in the area, both from Panamanians and visitors taking advantage of the easier access to the recreational facilities and lively nightlife. At the same time, investors are eagerly analyzing how the upgrades will impact the real estate market in the area.
In an interview with “The Visitor,” Brian Kelly, Punta Pacifica Realty’s expert on the Amador Causeway, discusses the real estate market on Amador, the recent infrastructure improvements and that special Amador lifestyle. Brian has made this beautiful stretch of islands his focus for the past two years. He is project manager for Naos Harbour Island Residences and Marina, one of the premier residential developments on Amador, which is attracting investor interest from around the globe.
Effect of the improvements
“It’s really been like night and day here”, Brian commented. “Amador is still very much a weekend place so it’s full of life on the weekends and the road expansion is a tremendous help with that. Families are out here all day and night enjoying everything that was built. But I think the biggest thing for Amador is that the ‘feel’ of the place is completely different now. There’s a buzz about it as people are seeing the changes and the growth and all the amenities”.
Importance of the Amador cruise ship terminal
“This will be a ‘home port’ which means the ships will dock here and people will fly in from around the world, usually staying for at least a day or two depending on scheduling,” Brian said. “More than 3,000 guests, not including the crew, will disembark to shop and explore the city. This is huge for the economy on Amador. Shops, restaurants and stores will start to upgrade very quickly, as the port comes to life. For investors and owners in Naos, this means thousands of potential short term renters.
According to Brian, “Buyers in Amador are looking either for a different kind of lifestyle or they are purchasing because they are smart investors looking to the future. For that different kind of lifestyle they want the Caribbean feel and a more relaxed ambience. However they know that if they want that city experience, it’s just ten minutes away. From the financial perspective, Amador is really the only place within the city that has tremendous potential for serious increases in value.”
Investment proposition on Amador
“Investing in Amador is similar to the city,” said Brian, “but structurally it is set up a bit differently. We proudly sell titled properties at Naos. This is something very new for the development and Amador as a whole. That’s because, Naos, the island itself [not the development], is part of the reverted land that was given back to Panama from the U.S.”
Who is buying in Naos?
“Buyers in Naos are from all walks of life. These days, it’s predominantly foreigners who are coming to Naos in search of a home to live in, or for a second home for vacations that can make some money with short term rentals,” replied Brian. “Many buyers are looking strictly for an investment. With the issuance of the FINCAS we have had a resurgence of Panamanian buyers as well recently. They come because the property is beautiful and unique, given its location on the Canal and the fact that nothing will ever be built to block their views. Many are starting to see this place as a little slice of heaven tucked away just ten minutes from the center of the city”.
The biggest selling point
“The Canal and the views of the Pacific Ocean which are endless,” he replied. “Taboga is directly in front of us and all the while you get to watch the biggest ships of the world start or end their transit of one of the wonders of the world… the Panama Canal. Where else on the planet can you get these kind of views in this kind of setting?
Brian says he especially enjoys the lifestyle and feeling of Naos. “It’s very special out here. And I love the fact that I can be in Multiplaza shopping mall within 15 minutes and I can be at my favorite spots in Casco in less than 10. Government has taken way too long to get into gear and realize the gem they have out here, but everything seems to be in drive-mode now. I believe that within the next three to five years Amador will become some of the most expensive real estate in Panama… and rightfully so”.