The French Riviera: A Shining Star in the Global Luxury Property Market

The French Riviera: A Shining Star in the Global Luxury Property Market 2024

In recent years, the French Riviera has re-emerged as a beacon of luxury and exclusivity in the global real estate market. A recent survey conducted by our offices on the French Riviera in January 2024 reveals a significant surge in prime residential property values along this iconic coastline. Between 2019 and 2023, these values have soared by an impressive 15% to 20%, driven largely by the influx of international buyers, notably from the USA and Middle East.

The survey meticulously examined the ultra-prime residential property market spanning from St Tropez to St-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, including coveted resorts like Cannes, Mougins, Cap d’Antibes, Cap-d’Ail, and Beaulieu-sur-Mer. The findings are a testament to the enduring allure of the French Riviera, with ultra-prime properties now typically valued between €18 million to €30 million. Remarkably, a large oceanfront villa in this region commands an average value of £20.4 million (€24 million), surpassing equivalent luxury properties in London’s St John’s Wood or Mayfair.

Findings further highlight that the most luxurious homes on the French Riviera, priced above €17.5 million, have seen their values increase by up to 32% over the last five years. This growth outstrips similar luxury properties in London, underscoring the unique appeal of this Mediterranean haven.

Cap Ferrat, in particular, has established itself as the crown jewel of the French Riviera’s ultra-prime market. Here, the finest homes range from €20 million to an astounding €200 million. Notably, many of these properties are sold on an off-market basis, reflecting their exclusivity and the unique demands of high-net-worth buyers.

The French Riviera: A Shining Star in the Global Luxury Property Market 2024
BeauchampEstates Cap Ferrat Team

In the past year, the highest demand among international buyers has been for homes priced over €10 million in ultra-prime resorts like Cap-Ferrat, Cap-d’Ail, Cap d’Antibes, and Beaulieu-sur-Mer. Approximately 70% of buyers in this segment are international, with a significant proportion originating from the USA and Middle East, particularly the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar. Interestingly, buyers from the Middle East are often younger members of the Gulf elite, seeking turn-key homes near their family’s longer-established properties.

American buyers, on the other hand, are drawn to the most famous resorts along the French Riviera, with a preference for locations like St Tropez and Cap Ferrat. The Riviera also continues to attract buyers from the UK, Italy, Switzerland, and Nordic countries.

Our research also sheds light on the changing dynamics of property ownership along the French Riviera. Today, over 70,000 homes in this region are owned by overseas second-home buyers. These international clients seek luxury properties that offer convenient access to shopping, dining, nightlife, and beaches. Most purchases are villas or grand houses, with a preference for properties offering multiple bedrooms, extensive terraces, and sea views.

The COVID-19 pandemic brought significant changes to the market. With international travel restrictions, property stock levels fell sharply. However, post-pandemic, the market is recovering steadily, with rental businesses picking up first and purchase activity gradually returning. The pandemic also altered the seasonality of the French Riviera property market, with many clients now seeking second homes suitable for remote work, transforming locations like Cannes, Mougins, and Cap d’Antibes into year-round destinations.

To cater to this renewed interest and provide enhanced local customer care, Beauchamp Estates (France) has recently opened two new offices in Mougins and St-Jean-Cap-Ferrat. These join the existing network in Cannes and St Tropez and are strategically located to serve the ultra-prime market efficiently.

The French Riviera: A Shining Star in the Global Luxury Property Market 2024
Beauchamp Estates Mougins office

“Since the end of the COVID-19 pandemic we have seen a surge in pent-up-demand and ultra-prime property values along the French Riviera have risen by 15% to 20%. Over the last 12 months we have seen the return of international buyers especially wealthy purchasers from the USA, Middle East, UK, Switzerland and Nordic countries. We have opened the two new offices in order to capitalise on this upturn and enable Beauchamp Estates (France) to provide our clients with even better local customer care.”

– Adrien Willing-Lamy, Managing Director of Beauchamp Estates (France)

“One of the results of the COVID-19 pandemic is that clients learnt to work from anywhere in the world and operate their business interests from home or the office. As a result of this transformation our clients looking at buying or renting luxury homes on the French Riviera are increasingly looking at having second homes rather than purely summer vacation homes, where they can work remotely, whilst enjoying a change of scene and sunshine lifestyle.”

– Gary Hersham, Founding Director of Beauchamp Estates

For more information about our offices in the French Riviera, click here.

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