Transportation and new developments drive global hotspots.
Global residential hotspots continue to emerge, ranging from emerging technology centers to areas of significant new developments and those transformed by new faster transport links.
We have seen many of these areas in North America. Delray Beach, Florida, situated close to two airports and recently serviced by the new $1 billion Brightline train, is a good example. Detached family homes around 3,500 square feet with a pool start at around $3 million with similar-sized townhouses starting at $2 million. Boston's Seaport District, near the Financial District, is popular with young professionals and older residents alike.
With over 11,000 residents, the area is well serviced by cinemas, restaurants, and bars, serving local fare. Two-bedroom apartments start at about $1,800 per square foot with developments commanding the best views close around $3,000 per square foot. Knight Frank, in their 2019 Wealth Report, has also identified several global hotspots—areas that are predicted to outperform the rest this year.
Lucca, Italy is a scenic, walled city in Tuscany. The historic center comprised cobbled streets, shaded piazzas, art galleries, restaurants and many churches situated within the old city walls. Lucca offers a great lifestyle and sense of community close to the town of Pisa and the Mediterranean coast. It provides an alternative to the more tourist-filled, and a renovated three-bedroom apartment starts at $900,000 with larger apartments starting at $1.6 million.
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Kowloon in Hong Kong is in the Hung Hom area situated close to the exit of The Cross Harbour tunnel from Hong Kong Island. The city has traditionally been home to blue- and white-collared workers, but now has a large, new metro station to add to the road and ferry links to Hong Kong Island. The impact of the massive rail link is being felt in the nearby real estate with prices rising steadily. Two- and three-bedroom apartments are now priced between $2,300 and $2,500 per square foot. Hung Hom is also an area of delicious, authentic Chinese food.
The third hotspot that Knight Frank lists in Geneva, Switzerland, a sophisticated lake city that I also visited recently. Steady development and price growth are happening in the Trois Chênes area, east of the city, which has been transformed into a new transport hub. A new rail link with the French Alps will provide fast connections to Evian and other cities in France as well to the Geneva Airport. Freehold two-bedroom apartments in Trois Chênes start at $900,000 while four-bedroom homes are selling for $1.6 million and upwards.
Other hotspots in the Knight Frank report are the Wynyard Quarter, Auckland; Chelsea, London; St. Kilda Road Precinct, Melbourne; Applecross. Perth and the Pasadena area of Los Angeles, California, among others. These areas are all demonstrating strong price appreciation and are likely to attract savvy home buyers and investors in 2019.