Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

BODRUM, A PLACE TO FLOAT YOUR BOAT; Bodrum Is the Fashionable Turkish Resort for Buyers Who Want High Rental Income, Says Cathy Hawker

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

BODRUM, A PLACE TO FLOAT YOUR BOAT; Bodrum Is the Fashionable Turkish Resort for Buyers Who Want High Rental Income, Says Cathy Hawker

Article excerpt

Byline: Cathy Hawker

TURKEY has high hopes for 2010. While the Spanish costas struggle to escape the gloomy outlook for their overdeveloped resorts, it is Turkey that could be the main beneficiary, with 28 million visitors expected. New flights from the UK to Turkey, including 17 from Pegasus Airlines and three from easyJet, could boost UK visitors alone by 25 per cent.

Bodrum is where tourism started in south-west Turkey and it remains fashionable with Istanbul's elite. Elegant wooden gullets moor in the marina beside the 15th-century castle, and in town, nightclubs compete for attention with historic ruins. London-trained lawyer Gulay Cagli moved from England to Bodrum three years ago and lives in exclusive Bitez.

"Bodrum is the place for wealthy Turks to have a holiday home," says Cagli, 36. "Boating is big business with three marinas. Bodrum has some exclusive and expensive villas but it can be noisy and busy, so many British buyers prefer to live either out on the Bodrum peninsula or closer to the airport, around Gulluk."

PRICES UP BY 44 PER CENT It's not the bargain destination it once was. The Post Office worldwide holiday costs barometer claimed that prices for visitors rose 44 per cent in the past year and property prices in Bodrum belie Turkey's cheap and cheerful reputation. Regnum is selling 25 comfortable villas overlooking the marina with a [pounds sterling]1.34 million price tag, while Spot Blue has a [pounds sterling]5 million villa in Yalikavak. Buyers seeking value should look away from Bodrum, where prices tumble.

Apartments on the Bodrum peninsula cost from [pounds sterling]80,000 and three-bedroom villas from [pounds sterling]130,000. Prices peak around Gumusluk and Yalikavak, where deep-water anchorages and exclusive bars hang over the Aegean Sea. Be careful where you buy if you want peace: Gumbet and Turgutreis are popular package-tour destinations, noisy and crowded in peak season.

Golf courses and low prices have encouraged buyers to Tuzla, 40 minutes from Bodrum, where two-bedroom apartments cost [pounds sterling]65,000, but this area has no sea views, little local colour and many owners are struggling to sell. Gulluk, close to Bodrum airport, has more life, with a handful of restaurants around its charming harbour.

Nearby in Iasos, a small fishing village 50 minutes' drive from Bodrum airport or 25 minutes by boat across the Bay of Gulluk, land is up to 40 per cent cheaper than in Bodrum. This is where British developer Galliard Homes has chosen to build its first Turkish resort. Horizon Sky is a development of 600 one- and two-bedroom apartments and threeand four-bedroom villas on a tranquil green hillside overlooking the sea. Half the units are already built and 400 are sold, most to British buyers who appreciate the sea views from the south-facing site and the ease of an English on-site management team. …

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