I set out yesterday with James Lindzey, an American from Tallahassee who is one of the many younger expat entrepreneurs I have met on this trip. He was accompanied by his lovely Colombian wife, Adriana. Our mission: to view 3 apartments in the Poblado area.
This enormously popular rental ($2500/month) was featured on “House Hunters International” last year and is within walking distance of Poblado Avenue. It’s a three level penthouse/bachelor’s pad with about 1300 square feet. Floor one features a half bath and living/laundry/kitchen area. The flors are a beautiful dark rosewood, the kitchen features granite and modern wood cabinets, and the living area is outfitted with surround sound, an overhead projector for big screen viewing, and expansive city views. Upstairs to the second floor is the enormous master suite with huge view windows to the city below and the mountains beyond. Charcoal slate floors in the bath wrap up the walls and the master closet has furniture grade built-ins. The last set of stairs brings you to an office area (which could easily become a second bedroom) with a kitchenette that opens onto a killer terrace featuring an outdoor shower fashioned into a slate wall that shields the whole open space from prying eyes. The central feature here is the two person Jacuzzi. Or is it the view, which extends 270 degrees across the valley? This place is just perfect. And pricey. $230,000, no furniture included. But James says the American owner is eager to generate cash for mining equipment and is negotiable.
A little further up the mountainside is a whopping 2800 square foot, four bedroom, three and a half bath penthouse on two levels featuring maid’s quarters, ceramic flooring, three open terraces, and a bulletproof door and safe room in the master closet worthy of a bank vault. Just the place to stash your, uh, stash. The very open floor plan has lots of nice touches like crown molding, acrylic wall paint, wood spiral staircase, and luxury baths. The unfurnished price? About $275,000, but again, the price is negotiable.
This is in a large complex of 5 buildings on park-like grounds featuring 3 swimming pools, a putt-putt course, basketball courts, gym, sauna, spa, winding trails through lush jungle foliage, and even roaming bunny rabbits. There are lots of kids playing in all of the common areas. The apartment is on the third floor and has some very nice hardwood doors and cabinet built-ins as well as a large kitchen and maid’s quarters. There are two other bedrooms plus an office area that allow access to a very large terrace with some city views which are partially blocked by one of the other large buildings in the complex. The view is more of the gardens and grounds, but it is still a nice large covered area for entertaining. The rest of the apartment is comfortable and cozy, with the obligatory granite in the kitchen (the granite is mined locally so it is in all of the kitchens and even baths), but it is somewhat dated and in need of freshening up. The 1700 square feet are all on one level. The price? About $200,000.
Keep in mind, all of these units have some common amenities. All are guard gated, and one even has an electric fence! All have assigned private parking and visitors parking. As a minimum, there is a pool and sauna area. All feature granite in the kitchens and baths.
As you might have guessed, especially if you read my first installment, I like apartment one best. It has the sybaritic luxury, it has the view, it has the Jacuzzi, and it doesn’t need anything except furniture to make it the perfect bachelor pad. If you don’t mind taking a cab, or if you have your own car, apartments two or three would be ideal for a family or even a couple that just needed a lot of space.
So that’s my recap of real estate deals in Medellin. John says that there is a HUGE disparity between new and older apartments like the ones I looked at. Newer costs are more like 60% more. In my mind that price difference won’t last. Prices for older apartments have seen some 6% appreciation in the last couple of years. I think they’ll catch up to the new ones eventually. John can also help you out with property management and visa issues. I highly recommend him. Contact:
John Lindzey, Paradise realty
USA 4152404698, cell (57) 3216231707
As for the rest of my trip, it’s still cloudy and raining almost every day, though it’s clearing a little now. I’ve moved from the Diez Hotel to the Holiday Inn Express. For about the same price ($100) as the Diez, you get an (estimated) 600 square foot suite featuring a massage couch, room safe, desk, and small kitchenette with good city views, not to mention a complimentary package of three condoms in the event of a romantic encounter. It’s also quiet, in sharp contrast to the Diez, though the breakfast is more what you’d expect at an American Holiday Inn. A pretty bland, self-service affair, but plenty of food.
Today, since the weather seems to be clearing, I’m taking a tour of the city on the Turibus, which leaves from Parque Poblado in an hour. I’ll have plenty of pictures of that tomorrow. Hasta manana!