The Post Market Crash Recovery

Sotogrande spent several years in the doldrums after the financial crash in 2008. Market activity and transactions were minimal and the owners of key assets in the resort and the remaining land for development, NH Hotels, were investing nothing. It was a bad time for Sotogrande and it was most fortunate that NH were able to sell the assets mentioned above to Orion Capital Managers, a European investment fund based in London, in 2014.

Orion have invested considerably, for example upgrading the old Almenara Hotel to SO/Sotogrande at a cost of around €40m, creating a new hub through their commercial units in the ‘new’ marina, improving La Reserva golf course as well as refurbishing the Clubhouse, building a tennis and padel centre and creating the inland beach club, The Beach, which has proved very popular. More importantly from a real estate point of view new areas were opened with new infrastructure in La Reserva which are aimed at attracting buyers wishing to invest €8m and upwards.

The Beach in La Reserva Sotogrande

El Mirador: A Luxury Benchmark

One of these areas was El Mirador, in La Reserva, where four houses were built speculatively and then sold for between €8m and €13m. This investment, and much improved marketing which finally started to promote Sotogrande as the finest family and sporting destination in Europe, started to have an effect on the overall Sotogrande market and rather perversely the 2020 pandemic also helped attract second home buyers to Sotogrande precisely for this reason.

The excellent Sotogrande International School, which has attracted children from over forty different countries, has also brought an influx of first home buyers because working from home has allowed executives to base themselves here and travel back to their business rather than the other way round when a home in Sotogrande would only be used for short periods of time.

Sotogrande Costa: The Prime Residential Area

This progress soon filtered through to Sotogrande Costa, and particularly the area known as Kings and Queens, which has always been considered the prime residential area of Sotogrande. Front-line golf land had reached €600/m2 prior to the 2008 crash, dropped to €300/m2 and has now for the very best has touched €1000/m2. Likewise a plot on Paseo del Parque and the Kings and Queens area in general has doubled in price to €600 to €650/m2.

As there are few empty plots, buyers will buy old houses and knock them down, effectively building houses which will have cost a minimum of €3.5m for a 600/m2 property. Developers are also doing the same, pushing prices up to include developers’ profit. There is very little stock available pushing prices ever higher on a pure supply and demand basis.

Panoramah Sotogrande

Sotogrande Alto: The Undervalued Treasure

Perhaps the areas which have been quieter and where the market was slower to react was in Sotogrande Alto, which includes the areas south and north of Valderrama up to the SO/Sotogrande and beyond. This is where, in my opinion, there is better value for money on a m2 basis. I always think that almost whatever you do in Sotogrande, you need to jump in the car and just about everything you might want or need is never more than about ten minutes away.

For this very reason, I have always wondered why Sotogrande Costa has such a heavy premium even though it is closer to the beach. All Sotogrande’s main amenities are certainly not within walking distance.

Conclusion: A Destination of Year-Round Luxury

In summary, Sotogrande remains on an upward trend as it becomes ever more a year round destination with its facilities continually improving. Furthermore, it has become a destination for some of the most expensive properties on the Mediterranean coast with presently six houses for sale at over €15m and record prices being broken.