Ronan McMahon

Beachfront for $800 an Acre
by Ronan McMahon

I've just returned from a seven-day scouting trip to Ecuador's finest stretch of coast. Here, virgin forest covers dramatic hills. The beaches extend ribbon-like along the seashore-pristine, empty, and beautiful.

This time of year, the foliage is lush and green...almost luminous. The water is clear and blue. In some parts...when the sun hits it in a certain almost looks turquoise. In other parts, lone surfers have miles of beach and awesome surf breaks to themselves.

Major development hasn't come here--yet. This has been Ecuador's least accessible stretch of coast. That's changing. Invest here now, and you can position yourself ahead of the Path of Progress.

Inexpensive real estate and an incredibly low cost of living, combined with a great climate and sheer natural beauty, means that Ecuador is on my radar. Baby Boomer retirees are set to come from North America in increasing numbers. Economic, financial, and political uncertainties back home are accentuating this trend.

The most under-developed (and nicest) section of Ecuador's 1,400- mile coast lies between Pedernales and San Vicente. Life is simple, relaxed, and friendly. Locals are as likely to get around on horseback as by car. Poor infrastructure has kept it off investors'radar.

Access to, and along, this stretch of coast is set to improve dramatically. This area is set to become the closest beach area to Quito and its new international airport. Construction on a new highway from Quito to Pedernales is well advanced. Much of it is complete. The remaining stretches are expected to be complete within a year.

This highway links up with the main highway connecting Atacames and Manta. Work on this highway is 90% complete. I saw work crews busily working on the remaining stretches.Work is also progressing ahead of schedule on the bridge from Bahia De Caraquez to San Vicente. It is due for completion in October. It will be the longest bridge in Ecuador.

According to Ecuador's President Rafael Correa, this project is second only to Quito's new airport in importance for Ecuador's tourism industry. With good cause. Sometimes, when traffic is heavy and with certain tides, you could wait up to four hours to catch a ferry. These projects are elements of the overall infrastructure plan which is to connect Manta with Quito via Bahia, with a four- lane highway.

Put simply: this stretch of coast will become accessible.

You can pick up large pieces of land here (with beachfront) for as little as $800 per acre. I saw one piece with 10 kilometers of beach. You'll pay more per acre for smaller pieces of land, but the values are still amazing.

The play here is to buy land and wait for the infrastructure and people to come. Buy a big piece of land now, and a resort developer will cut you a big check for it once this stretch of coast catches on.

Ronan McMahon
A finance graduate, Ronan McMahon worked in the e-business consultancy and dot-com industries before joining International Living as Real Estate Marketing Director in January 2004. Ronan has been an active real estate investor since his early twenties and joining International Living gave him the opportunity to marry his personal and professional interests. Last year Ronan took up the position of Executive Director with Pathfinder.

Pathfinder is International Living's preferred Real Estate advertising partner. Pathfinder scouts the globe to find the most unique and value-oriented real estate opportunities.

Ronan writes International Living's Real Estate Trend Alert and regularly contributes to International Living's print and online publications. Ronan has travelled to 15 countries in the past 12 months alone following real estate trends with the potential for profit. Instinct, experience and an unrivalled black book of contacts give Ronan McMahon access to the inside track to unique profit opportunities.

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