“Growing appeal” for Oman luxury property market
How would you describe the tourism industry in 2016 considering the economic factors?
Over the years, Oman has witnessed a growth in inbound tourism. The country has always positioned itself as a special place and, although we do expect global economic factors to have an impact on tourism in 2016, Oman will continue to attract those visitors who are looking to discover something truly unique and special.
What are the challenges arising in the industry and what are your plans to face them?
It goes without saying that the current economic climate poses a challenge for all countries in the region; however Oman’s luxury property market continues to maintain a growing appeal. The country has resisted rapid development, offering a more stable capital market and less risk to its investors in comparison with some of its Gulf neighbours. Oman is also internationally outward-looking and politically stable, allowing for strong links across the world.
Now more than ever, buyers across the world expect a straightforward and stress-free buying experience. At Barr Al Jissah, we ensure this, offering a personalised and direct service to our buyers. A further advantage of investing here is that you are buying the freehold and with that, homeowners qualify for permanent family residents’ visas, allowing seamless travel into and out of the country.
Looking at Oman’s offerings, the country doesn’t have major attractions, so how do you get your guests to stay for longer holidays and to come back again?
Oman’s offering is different from other tourism destinations as it presents a unique blend of culture, authenticity, nature, serenity and luxury. Its historical heritage and distinct natural surroundings, where the mountains seem to merge with the sea, combined with its cultural aspect, which has evolved over the years, creates a destination that captures all the senses and makes you feel like you want to come back for more.
The 1,000-seat Royal Opera House Muscat was the first of its kind in the region and plays host to internationally renowned performances of opera, ballet and musical concerts all year round.
Our discerning guests are attracted by the wonderful year-round climate, relaxed lifestyle of the country and its stunning landscape, and the ease of short flights from across the region and Central Europe. In fact, a lot of our guests in the hotel have been coming back for more than ten years and hopefully will continue to do so.
Our coves are home to endangered hawksbill and green turtle species native to the beaches of Oman. Barr Al Jissah is the perfect base from which to discover Oman’s 1,700km pristine coastline, as well as diving hotspots such as the Daymaniyat Islands, Bandar Khiran and Fahal Islands.
How was your performance in 2015 and what are your expectations for 2016?
Last year, we completely sold out of our latest releases, the Luxury Cliff-top villas, defying regional trends. Our buyers are united in their love for the lifestyle of Oman and our destination, and there is a clear appetite for the high-quality residential property and integrated lifestyle experiences on offer for residents at Barr Al Jissah. We have already received a significant amount of interest, both locally and globally, in the new homes planned for the coming months and years at the destination; and we are looking forward to further expanding our community in 2016.
What new projects do you have in the pipeline and how will the delivery be affected by the current economic situation?
We have recently announced an exclusive partnership with one of the most famous names in luxury yacht design, Bannenberg & Rowell, to design the interiors of the town-homes and we are excited to unveil the world’s first Bannenberg & Rowell Limited Edition Town-homes. The homes will draw inspiration from the destination’s spectacular ocean setting and Omani architecture, creating something truly outstanding and unique for our buyers. We have finalised the concepts with a view to delivering the first town-homes later this year.
Looking further ahead, exciting plans are underway for the Barr Al Jissah private marina and proposed Marina apartments, with construction anticipated to begin in 2016, bringing a vibrant Riviera lifestyle option to the destination.
Technology and experiences are major trends in the travel industry. How do you fit that in your resort and adapt it to your luxury costumer needs?
We have thought about what our residents are looking to get out of their homes at Barr Al Jissah. Our goal is to deliver more than just a home, but an all-encompassing lifestyle experience. We differentiate our properties by offering something unique through our exclusive partnerships with luxury brands to provide concierge and transportation services, luxury amenities provided by Shangri-La and marina facilities; as well as privileged banking services through Oman Arab Bank.
We are also committed to investing in the newest technologies, which all contribute to the considered elegance and functionality of the homes at Barr Al Jissah. For example, we installed Smart mood lighting and hidden, silent ducted air conditioning throughout the villas and town-homes, ensuring maximum comfort for our homeowners and their guests.