100cm of fresh snow in 48 hours

After one of the snowiest Januarys on record in the Alps with ski resorts in Tirol seeing 100cm of snow falling in just 48 hours, the outlook for February and the busiest skiing weeks of the year looks excellent.

Thanks to the snow storms of January which left road and rail access to St Anton, Ischgl and Kühtai cut off, there is a superb base in the ski resorts in Tirol.

The Lawinenwarndienst Tirol (Avalanche Warning Service for Tirol) cannot recall snowfall like this since 1999 and despite some blue skies in recent days, temperatures have dropped and there will be more wintry weather to come.

Current snow depth report in key Austrian resorts:

St Anton  140 / 415 cm
Hochoetz  40 / 220 cm
Fieberbrunn  100 / 200 cm
Sölden  20 / 325 cm
Ischgl  100 / 170 cm

Clearing snow in the Ötztal:

Bellevue Best Property Agents 2018

Kristall Spaces has been awarded the Bellevue magazine Best Property Agents 2018 seal of approval.  Only a select group of international real estate agents are awarded this title.

Branson Atterbury, Marketing Director at Kristall Spaces AG commented: “We had a compelling proposition for the Bellevue panel of judges.  We are the developer, agent and operator and thus provide a rare, end-to-end service: construction, marketing in German, Dutch and English, legal and financial advice to buyers and maintenance and a rental service on behalf of owners. Our key personnel are court sworn experts for the Bundesministerium für Justiz in planning, construction, engineering and property consultancy.”

It is this end-to-end proposition that allows us to understand all parts of the value chain and makes us even more effective at advising customers on acquiring their dream lifestyle investment.

Kristall Spaces AG has a current pipeline of developments worth in excess of €100m and an impressive portfolio of projects including:

  • All-Suite Resort Fieberbrunn (Skicircus Saalbach Hinterglemm Leogang / Kitzbühel Alps) All-Suite Resort Karwendel
  • All-Suite Residence Kühtai
  • Silva Peak Residences, Ischgl
  • All-Suite Resort Paznaun, Ischgl
  • All-Suite Resort Ötztal
  • Residenzen Gasthof Zwieselstein, Sölden
  • Mountain Spa Residences, St Anton
  • Mountain Lake Resort, Zell am See
  • Residenz Zwieselstein, Sölden
  • Residenz Sölden

Buying new build property in Austria

Austria is already the first choice for affordable ski properties, higher rental yields and authentic hospitality when compared to France and Switzerland but how does one decide on the type of property to buy: new-build or resale?

Here are some options to consider:

New-build or off-plan property in Austria normally comes with a higher price tag per m² and will further increase in value as soon as you take ownership.  Typically, we see a 4 to 5% annual growth on our ski apartments and this can be higher in some locations in Tirol thanks to scarcity restrictions to avoid the “cold beds” trends found in France and Switzerland.  According to the UBS Alpine Property Focus 2017, St Anton delivers best growth in the Alps at 8.2%.

So, you might have to increase your budget for a new-build but here’s a few reasons why it’s worthwhile.

New developments present an opportunity to buy into the project early increasing your chances of securing one of the best units at the lowest price and improving capital appreciation.  Note that developers can increase their prices year-on-year and as the project gains interest demand starts to rise.

Importantly, smart new build projects are carefully chosen by a developer for their location and access to ski lifts / pistes and restaurants and can command a rental premium over resale properties.

New property buyers aren’t in a chain and there is less reliance on the current owner / vendor which means less chance of the sale falling through.

Buying off-plan offers attractive payment schemes which don’t exist with resale properties: you pay for your apartment in stages.  The trustee will notify you in good time when each stage payment is due so you have time to prepare the transfer of funds – no need to transfer all at once.  This can be particularly advantageous when using a currency service.

There is also flexibility when dealing with the developer over factors such as parking spaces and choice of furniture packs and when there is joint ownership of the operating company for your apartments, it is possible for the developer to guarantee rental returns for a period during the operating agreement e.g. guaranteed 4% return on net purchase price for first 5 years.

When you buy off-plan in Austria, you get a certain amount of control over the interior of the apartment.  There is range of interior themes and styles to choose from and because you are dealing with the developer it is possible to make minor changes to the floor plans in the early stages of the project.

All new properties built in Austria use state-of-the-art, energy efficient methods and materials that you will simply not find in resale buildings.  Greener energy solutions, more efficient heating systems and some of the highest recycling standards in Europe not only reduce your carbon footprint but lower bills.

All Kristall Spaces’ developments use automatic central heating systems with air or water sourced heat pumps.  Energy is also captured from the spa and bathrooms areas to generate warmth in the underfloor heating systems via heat exchangers and our ventilation systems use the same heat recovery principles to pump fresh air into the apartments at the correct room temperature.  All this results in monthly heating cost savings for owners when compared to oil or gas and delivers a greener, more sustainable solution.

New properties in prime Austrian ski resort locations that come with a rental obligation when owners are not staying there themselves are exempt from VAT.  You can save a whopping 20% on the sales price when you opt for one of these apartments.

New properties come with building guarantees.  For example, we negotiate with tradesmen and suppliers for the following:

  • 10 years for the roof covering
  • 5 years for the mechanical systems (heating, electrics, lifts)
  • 5 years for the remaining works including the shell of the building
  • 2 years for electrical goods

Furthermore, Austrian Building Law allows for a 30-year Statute of Limitations for all hidden defects.

Please see our generic FAQ about buying and owning property in Austria or why not Contact us for advice on your Austrian property search.

Kristall Spaces Projects Update – Ski Properties in Tirol Winter 2017/18

Please click the links below for more information on each project.

St Anton – completion date December 2017.  Ready to occupy.  Over 70% sold out.  Award-winning ski-out apartments.   Some of the best views in the valley.  St Anton delivers best growth (8.2%) in UBS Alpine Property Focus 2017.

Kühtai – 2 apartments left. Ready to occupy now. Highest customer satisfaction in Kühtai on Booking.com: 9.6 Exceptional.  Ski in and out.  Highest ski apartments in Austria – 2,020 metres.  35 minutes from Innsbruck airport.

Ötztal – dual season resort. 100 metres to the ski lift. Full pricing and availability. 8% return on capital invested when taking out a 55% mortgage or a guaranteed 4% return on net purchase price for first 5 years.  25 minutes from Innsbruck airport.   Prices from 215.000€.  19 apartments sold.

Sölden – revised pricing post tendering.  Adjacent to family-run Gasthof Zwieselstein.   Guaranteed 4% return for the first 5 years.   Sölden and Obergurgl-Hochgurgl now offer a joint lift pass for 3+ days. 4 apartments left.

Fieberbrunn – 270km of pistes – will soon connect with Zell am See. Prices from 225.000€. Up to 8% return on capital invested when taking out a 55% mortgage or a guaranteed 4% return on net purchase price for first 5 years.  Some of the highest snowfall in Tirol.  Excellent off-piste skiing.  10 apartments reserved.

Ischgl – prices start at 5,000EUR per sq metre.  Full pricing available in April 2018.  Contact us today for a preview of the plans.  Already taking unbinding reservations.

Karwendel – pricing available in April 2018.  Contact us today for plans.  No rental obligation.  One of the most beautiful places you will ever visit.

Kristall Spaces develops and sells ski property in Tirol and now we manage and rent apartments on behalf our owners through our operator business, All-Suite Resorts.

Fieberbrunn to invest 7million Euros in snow making technology

In 2018, the Fieberbrunn lift company will expand the capacity of the Streuböden-Alm reservoir ten fold to enhance the early season snow making operations.

From Spring 2018, the reservoir will extended to capture more melt water than ever before and provide a more efficient and greener solution to snow-making in the run-up to Christmas.

fiebers s alm

The plan involves being able to store melt water in the reservoir at a rate of 60 litres per second and then recycle it for snow-making via higher capacity pipes and 35 propeller snow-makers which will result in the entire ski area being covered and ready for skiing in 1 week.

Full story here in the Tiroler Tagezeitung (11 July 2017) http://www.tt.com/wirtschaft/standorttirol/13198041-91/bergbahnen-fieberbrunn-planen-gr%C3%B6%C3%9Feren-speichersee.csp

Der Standard (Wien): Buy to let property in Austria is a “win-win”

A good analysis of the current buy-to-let model in the Austrian Alps and how many British, Germans, Austrians, Dutch and Belgian buyers are investing in Tourism Residences in Austria encouraged by returns of 4 to 4.5% and freedom to use their apartment and sell it in a market offering price growth.  (Knight Frank says property prices grew 4.6% in Q1 in Austria and Immodex is reporting a 34% increase in prices since 2010).

It’s becoming increasingly difficult to buy Leisure Residences in dual season resorts in Tirol and the buy to let model favours investors in these locations (Oetz and Fieberbrunn receive 45% of all their visitors in Summer) as well as the local councils.

Der Standard - 27 Juni 2017

Der Standard – 27 Juni 2017

According to the author, it is crucial that apartment owners and the Gemeinde (council) have an operator in place for at least 5 years to ensure year-round visitor numbers continue to grow and support continual investment in infrastructure and amenities.

According to Statistik Austria, professionally rented apartments are also the fastest growing category of accommodation sought by tourists at 9.4% growth year on year.

The management of Kristall Spaces has launched its own operator All Suite Resorts all-suite.com to provide an end-to-end management and rental service for buyers of our apartments.

All Suite Resorts is planning to offer guaranteed returns across all its project locations going forward.

Please contact us today for more information.

36 apartments for sale in Fieberbrunn – Kristall Spaces collaborates with Fieberbrunn council

The market town of Fieberbrunn is fairy tale pretty – with a stunningly beautiful Church in the centre. Legend has it that hundreds of years ago a Tyrolean princess drank from its fountain and was cured of her fever.

This prompted the local residents to change its name from Pramau to Fieberbrunn which means ‘fever fountain’.

While we can’t vouch for the palliative properties of the fountain, the fresh mountain air will certainly cure many maladies.

The town, with its 4,000 inhabitants, is situated on the mountain range between Kitzbühel and Saalbach, and dates back to pre-Roman times.

But these days it combines old world prettiness with a cutting edge high speed gondola that takes you to the pistes of Saalbach-Hinterglemm, meaning you have access to 347km of pistes in total to ski down – making it one of the world’s biggest ski areas.

And now Kristall Spaces is building 36 luxury apartments there too, in the centre of the town, close to the Church.

They will be freehold apartments, with a wellness centre and a bar/restaurant onsite and will be ready by Autumn 2018.  Prices as follows:

  • 1 double bedroom apartment from € 208,000 Net Sales Price excl. parking
  • 2 double bedroom apartment from € 279,000 Net Sales Price excl. parking
  • 3 double bedroom apartment from € 411,000 Net Sales Price excl. parking

So why are we so excited about these new Fieberbrunn apartments ?

Apart from anything, we are building the apartments in close collaboration with the council, so we are assured a smooth process as we move from planning into construction and ultimately how the apartments are managed for rental by our newly formed operator, All Suite Resorts all-suite.com

allsuite_resorts_logo

In its own right, Fieberbrunn offers a huge range of skiing for all abilities and enjoys an excellent reputation for quality snow conditions. There’s 105 km of easy skiing, 112 km of intermediate, 21km of difficult and 45km of ski routes.

And its off piste skiing is world renowned – it’s an established venue for one of the events on the Freeride World Tour, the premier big mountain freeskiing and snowboarding tour in the world.

With its own micro-climate and predominantly north-facing slopes, top to bottom skiing lasts well into April and about 50% more snow falls there than in neighbouring Kitzbühel, 10 km away.

And the already extensive and varied ski area is now a gateway to an extra 270km of pistes with its link to the Saalbach-Hinterglemm Leogang ski circus – meaning that skiers are now treated to one of the most modern, lift-linked extensive ski areas in the world.

skicircus-winterpanorama-2015-2016-1

And after you’ve enjoyed your skiing, there’s an excellent après ski scene too, with all manner of bars and restaurants serving competitively priced food and drinks. Should you want to try out some other activities there’s snow biking, a floodlit toboggan run, snow shoe walking and sleigh rides.

But Austria is an all-round holiday destination, interestingly 51% of tourists actually come in the summer.

Fieberbrunn (like Oetz) has a particularly strong and well developed summer tourism season with 45% of all annual visits taking place in the summer months. Impressive for one of the best-known free skiing destinations in Austria.

The lift company and tourist board is currently getting ready for the official opening of the summer season when the lifts start running on 25 May until 26 October 2017.

It’s not surprising that Fieberbrunn has such a strong summer tourist season as it offers excellent hiking and mountaineering – with 400 km of hiking trails and mountain biking and swimming in the beautiful nearby 4.3m deep Lake Lauchsee.

And for families with younger children, there’s Timoks Coaster, woodland rope gardens, wildlife parks and various open air swimming pools and playgrounds.

Freizeitpark Familienland Pillerseetal is a must for amusement park lovers. No queues, great rides and a fraction of the price you would expect in similar parks outside Austria.

Austria is ploughing money into its ski resorts – they’ve spent 4.5billion Euros in the last 15 years, so they are becoming increasingly popular with visitors, in the first six months of 2016 there was a 10% increase in tourist visits to the Tirol, outpacing all international alpine holiday resorts – meaning there is an ever increasing need for extra beds to rent.

And the fastest growing category of accommodation booked by tourists to Austria in 2016 was commercial apartment bookings – like those built by Kristall Spaces – which grew by 9.4% year on year.

So an investment in one of our Fieberbrunn apartments means that renting it out and yielding a good return while you’re not there is an excellent proposition. Added to that is the fact that we have seen a 34% increase in the value of our properties since 2010 (source: Immodex).

As far as buyer interest goes right now, we are mainly receiving enquiries from the EU for these Fieberbrunn apartments.

UK buyers have a spring in their step right now with the General Election announcement. As investors buy Sterling, its value is rising giving overseas property investors more buying power when converted to Euros. Quite a few of our buyers use a Foreign exchange partner to buy Euros at a better rate now so they can make the stage payments at a locked in rate.

Uncertainty in the French alpine market, means buyers are looking for more stable alternatives and Austria has many advantages from upward price movement to more reasonable prices for everyday items on the mountain.

As for German and Dutch-speaking buyers, there is sustained confidence thanks to growing economies and stable political landscape at home.

All in all, our new luxury apartments in Fieberbrunn are a hot prospect and we look forward to hearing from you to register your interest.