Friday, March 09, 2007

Who wants the Hamptons, when Israel is home?

Nothing like a refreshing investment message from the New York Times; just in time for my trip to the US, the following appears in the NY Times, "Choosing Israel, Not the Hamptons"

AS an associate professor of clinical surgery and chief of high risk programs at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, Dr. Freya Schnabel is an unlikely international real estate pioneer. But as one of the first buyers in Eden Hills — a planned community 15 minutes southwest of Jerusalem — Dr. Schnabel, who is 49, is emblematic of a new breed of visitor to Israel: the foreign vacation-home buyer.

Tel Aviv's Manhattan Makeover Indeed, from downtown Tel Aviv to the heart of Jerusalem, foreigners — especially Americans — searching for second homes are redefining Israel’s high-end real estate market. Part of Tel Aviv is, in fact, in the midst of a mini-Manhattan makeover with the recent arrival of New York-style residential projects designed by the likes of Philippe Starck and Richard Meier. Even Donald Trump has entered the Tel Aviv marketplace with plans for a 70-story residential and commercial tower — Israel’s highest — in the suburb of Ramat Gan.

Granted, the article isn't pushing aliya, but investing in homes in Israel is a great first step towards moving there. This positive mindset is apparent, by the end of the article:

For buyers like Dr. Schnabel and Dr. Josephs — who expect to move to Eden Hills by 2009 — rising prices and edged-out locals seem a world away from their still-pristine slice of ancient Judea. With homes ranging from $400,000 to well over a million, Eden Hills is priced to appeal to buyers accustomed to living among the parks, tennis courts, artificial lakes, bike trails and tree-lined pedestrian malls typical of high-end American subdivisions. Such attributes, along with numerous synagogues, are designed to lure Eden Hills’s wealthy, Orthodox American target audience — and keep them there.

Dr. Schnabel is already practicing for her new, part-time life in Israel with monthlong stays in Jerusalem apartments to gain a sense of the country off the typical tourist track. And Dr. Josephs is so bullish on Israel that he has bought four separate Eden Hills lots for himself and his children.

“I am actually thinking of Eden Hills as my primary residence,” Dr. Josephs said, adding that, eventually, “I will live in Israel, and then visit my second home — in New Jersey.”

hat-tip; CG

Wherever I am, my blog turns towards Eretz Yisrael


Anonymous said...

Hopefully it will be a community of primary residences, because we have enough ghost towns jacking up prices in the prime areas.

FrumWithQuestions said...

Naomi Regan wrote an email criticizing these people saying that projects like these are preventing locals from becoming home owners. These have escalated prices and have priced many out and will cause many to leave and cause many not to come.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Frumwithquestions: These projects are not the sort of projects your average Israeli would move to; the cost of the homes are outrageous and not even targeted for the local Israeli market.

On the other hand, Amana, the building "arm" of the Yesha Council is encouraging Americans to buy homes in Yehuda and Shomron and rent them out to Israelis who can't afford to buy the homes.

Anonymous said...

JoeSettler said...

Hopefully it will be a community of primary residences, because we have enough ghost towns jacking up prices in the prime areas.

Name some ghost towns please.

YMedad said...

Almost 30 of those Amana houses have been sold I've been told.

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