Portuguese real estate promoters invest in Cape Verde tourism

22 March 2007

Lisbon, Portugal, 22 March – Two Portuguese real estate promotion companies, Design Resorts and the Sacramento Campos group, plan to invest 950 million euros in the construction of tourist resorts with golf courses on the island of Santiago in Cape Verde, officials said.

Francisco Mendonça of Design Resorts told Portuguese news agency Lusa that the Ponta Bicuda resort would begin to be built in November in order to be finished by 2009, and the resort had begun to be sold at the end of last year, with a specific focus on the British market.

In the United Kingdom and Ireland, which together account for 40 percent of world sales of second homes, particularly in Southern Europe, “the attraction to Cape Verde has grown,” and the country is now “amongst the main tourist destinations,’ Mendonça said.

Ponta Bicuda, which is close to the new international airport, is not one of the largest to be developed on the archipelago, but “it is positioned above the others, as it is five star,” said the Design Resorts director.

The resort covers an area of 65 hectares and four kilometers of coastline is being promoted by Vilas Oceanicas, which brings together Design Resorts and Cape Verdean businessman José António Teixeira, a former partner of the country’s largest real estate company, Tecnicil.

Total investment at Ponta Bicuda is estimated to be 200 million euros, including six hotel units and three residential areas, totaling 1,300 houses, as well as leisure, services and retail areas.

The project of the Sacramento Campos group, which is one of Portugal’s largest distributors of construction materials, will absorb an investment of 750 million euros over the next seven years.

Carlos Almeida, one of the group’s directors, said that the second phase of the Santiago Golf Resort (SGR) would be launched before the end of April and include 230 house and tourist apartment plots, with an average area of 1,000 square meters each.

Most of the investment will be taken up in the third phase, in 2008, when a Marina for 180 vessels will be built along with a golf course and hotels as well as houses and apartments.

Tourism has been gaining increasing importance for the Cape Verdean economy and is one of the government’s main focuses for development.

A recent report from the Bank of Cape Verde (BCV) showed that in 2005 tourist demand on the archipelago had risen 26 percent, against a 4.7 percent rise in the previous year, reaching revenues of around 87 million euros. (macauhub)