Bali’s luxury real estate boom

In the aftermath of the G20 Summit in Bali, and as the island continues to attract an exponential flow of tourists to its main beach resorts, more and more foreigners are taking the plunge and investing in luxury villas, far from the coast.

Samia Tawil

By Samia Tawil26 janvier 2023

The Buahan, Banyan Tree Escap, located near the small village of Buahan and nestled in the heart of the Balinese jungle, near Ubud (Escape Banyan Tree)

Bali is a dream destination. Since the 1980s, the island has been attracting Western tourists in search of exotic experiences. At first mainly Australian, because of its proximity, tourism has expanded to visitors from Europe and the United States. The town of Ubud is rapidly becoming the Mecca of spirituality and natural medicines. An identity that has its roots in the name of the green city, which means "doctors". The town has a indeed reputation for healing bodies and hearts. This is an additional asset for Indonesia, which today generates 10% of total tourist revenue in South-East Asia. While Bali saw its tourism increase by 1000% in one month following the total lifting of restrictions in March 2022, the country expects to welcome 7.4 million visitors in 2023.



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The "Indonesia Spice Up the World" soft power campaign, in which the government has recently invested 2 billion dollars is paving the way for potential investors looking for fruitful opportunities, through the opening of at least 4,000 Indonesian restaurants around the world. This strategy is based on the success of South Korea's soft power campaign launched a decade ago, which aims to increase the country's attractiveness through the ubiquitous presence of its culture in targeted Western countries. The mass opening of restaurants in Europe and the United States, the massive promotion of its K-Pop or the colossal investment in the Netflix series Squid Game has had a significant impact on Korean tourism and its economy. Indonesia, in turn, is hoping for equally profitable long-term benefits from its campaign.

From digital nomad to investor

The Manara villa by Magnitude Construction in Ubud, with a surface of 245m2 (Magnitude Construction)

However, it is a completely different type of investors that is now emerging. Cities such as Canggu and Seminiak have been attracting a community of millennials working online for the past few years, who tend to settle on the island for medium-term. The many coworking cafes just a stone's throw away from the sea, coupled with the affordable rents of pool villas boasting fast Fiber internet, make Bali a comfortable base for these profiles. A visa designed for digital nomads certifying of an "offshore" income will certainly convince those who remain undecided. As a minimum income is required to obtain it, Bali ensures that it only attracts self-employed people who are sufficiently well off for the programme to benefit the island's economy. It is therefore no coincidence that, once seduced by the quality of life on the island and its low cost, this new breed of investors spontaneously consider buying a villa. Design villas aimed for rental purposes, which, over the past few years, have been attracting investors away from the coast. 

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