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2020 Kühtai Apartments Now Available to Investors

Venture Plus AG and Kristall Spaces are proud to announce a stunning new build of holiday apartments in Kühtai, Austria’s highest ski resort. This is a unique opportunity to invest in ski property in one of the most snow-sure resorts in Austria.

Kristall-Spaces-Kuhtai-2020

Austria’s highest resort

At 2020 metres above sea-level, Kühtai nestles among the peaks and mountain lakes above the Ötztal valley — yet it’s only 35 minutes from Innsbruck airport. With snow on the higher pistes for most of the year, the resort has invested heavily in tourism, including a planned installation of a 100MB WiFi system, and it was voted by ADAC as Europe’s best value for money ski destination, as well as winning the SkipassIndex for 2013/2014.

2020 Apartments

The new 2020 apartments (named after Kühtai’s altitude) are being designed by one of Austria’s leading architects, with construction due to start in April. Designed for the luxury market, they’ll be ski-in, ski-out properties located centrally in Kühtai, with current prices ranging from €286,000 for a two-bedroom ground floor unit to €641,500 for a large, three-bedroom penthouse apartment.

All the apartments will be luxuriously fitted out, with traditional furnishings and underfloor heating beneath the Swiss parquet floors. Kitchen and bathroom fittings will be by designers such as Hans Grohe, Miele and Siematic, while they’ll be completely up to date with smart TVs and wireless LAN. Triple-glazed, floor-to-ceiling windows will allow you a perfect vista of Kühtai’s breath-taking scenery.

A unique investment opportunity

It isn’t often that this kind of opportunity becomes available in one of Austria’s top resorts. The authorities keep very strict control over holiday homes, and Venture Plus AG and Kristall Spaces have carefully acquired permission for a new build in such a premier location.

Kühtai’s winter sports season starts earlier than most other resorts and lasts a long way into the year.  There’s no shortage of snow at 2020 metres!  Whilst the summer offers visitors the chance to enjoy the breathtaking Alpine scenery with a range of activities suited to all ages, so there’s demand for holiday apartments all year round. Kristall Spaces will not only manage the apartments, but also arrange rentals through renowned tour operators.

With VAT rebates available on the properties and strong annual capital growth rates, they not only guarantee a good return on investment through rentals, but are also almost certain to appreciate in value.

You can reserve an apartment by putting down a deposit, but several have been sold already, and the rest are likely to follow quickly. Check out the details for a wonderful investment opportunity!  Download Brochure.

Channel 4’s The Jump Is Confirmed for Kühtai

davina-the jump

Channel 4’s hit celebrity skiing show, The Jump, will be back on the screens in the new year, and, like the first series last winter, it will be filmed in Kühtai.

This year’s line-up

heather mills 270610The line-up for the new series has now been announced in full. The competitors are:

• Mike Tindall, former England rugby captain and husband of Zara Phillips
• Sally Bercow, wife of the Speaker of the House of Commons
• JB Gill, singer with JLS
• Heather Mills, ex-model, formerly married to Paul McCartney
• Phil Tufnell, former England test cricketer
• Louise Hazel, Commonwealth gold medallist for the heptathlon
• Jon-Allan Butterworth, Paralympian cyclist
• Ola Jordan, from Strictly Come Dancing
• Dom Parker, from the TV show Gogglebox
• Ashley Roberts, former member of the Pussycat Dolls
• Joey Essex, from the reality show The Only Way Is Essex
• Stacey Solomon, contestant on The X Factor
• Steve-O, from Jackass
• Louise Thompson, from Made in Chelsea
• Louie Spence, dancer
• Lady Victoria Hervey, socialite

showbiz-joey-essexDavina McCall, who hosted the first series, will return for the second.

The contest

The Jump consists of a series of challenges between the contestants, using winter sports including ski cross, giant slalom, skeleton, bobsleigh and speed skating, with new events rumoured for this year. The two competitors with the slowest times or speeds on each event must go head-to-head on a ski jump, with the loser eliminated.

The contestants train hard, but the challenges are by no means safe. On the last series, Henry Conway, Melinda Messenger, Sir Steve Redgrave and Marcus Brigstocke were all forced to withdraw with injury — though, thankfully, none of them serious. The overall winner was singer Joe McElderry, who had joined the line-up as a replacement for Conway.

The venue

The various challenges are held in different locations around Austria, but the show’s home is Kühtai, the highest resort in Austria and arguably the most spectacular. Only 35 minutes from Innsbruck, Kühtai lies in a huge snow bowl in the middle of spectacular alpine scenery, with an impressive range of pistes on offer. The mixture of convenience, the quality of the slopes, the scenery — and, of course, the kind of après-ski that only Austria can offer — make it a favourite with everyone from families to professional skiers.

You never know. If you’re holidaying in Kühtai this winter, you might bump into one of The Jump’s celebrities, whether on the slopes or in après-ski. That would be something to make a great holiday even more memorable.

Testing New Skis on Austria’s Highest Mountains

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Early & late season skiing

Some Austrian resorts are high enough to make early season skiing well worth while. Kühtai and Sölden are perhaps the best of these, Kühtai being one of the highest resorts in Europe. Although early and late seasons don’t offer as full a range of skiing as the height of the winter season, it’s far less crowded, and the experience of hurtling down glaciers and high alpine tracks under blue summer skies is not to be missed.

Certainly, with the nearest winter slopes in the southern hemisphere, die-hard skiers flock from as far afield as Moscow to enjoy these locations. Kühtai is 2020 metres up, with slopes towering above the village, making it ideal for out-of-season skiing, and properties for sale in Kühtai are in great demand. Many athletes, such as Bode Miller and Lindsay Vonn, use it for high-altitude training all year-round.

Testing the skis

It’s to these resorts the industry turns to test the equipment they’re planning to sell for the following winter. This year, for instance, Kühtai hosted the Snowsport Industries of Great Britain ski test, while Sölden is popular for events held by individual companies including the Salomon Station on the Rettenbach glacier.

Testing carries on from the tail-end of the winter through to the summer and autumn months, going from determining which designs will be worth selling to familiarising employees with the strengths and quirks of each pair of skis. Typically, testers will be given the chance to try out equipment on the glacier and then fill in a report card, scoring the skis on criteria such as agility, ease of use and stability.

Completely new ski designs are rare, of course, and most of the new products are refinements or improvements of existing models and construction techniques. Manufacturers constantly test their products, so the skis are always evolving, though every so often a ski is produced that remains popular year after year, needing little change.

Different sidecuts, cambers and rockers suit different kinds of skiers and slope conditions. An intermediate who wants to turn more easily won’t want the same design as the dedicated off-piste skier who wants to float in deeper snow, though some models are made to be versatile.

Whatever the specifications, Europe’s leading ski manufacturers have the perfect setting to make sure their improvements work on Austria’s high alpine resorts found in Tirol.

Your Chance to Invest in Premium Austrian Ski Property

The Austrian authorities are careful about granting permits to build ski property in their top resorts, and demand is high when there is an opportunity. But Kristall Spaces has achieved a rare coup by obtaining permits to build in several resorts, including Saalbach, Galtür/Ischgl and Kühtai.

New luxury apartments

These two and three bedroom luxury apartments are brand-new builds, and Kristall Spaces is offering them as excellent chances for investment, since the scarcity caused by planning restrictions ensures that capital growth is high. Our new units are always heavily subscribed even before we start building, and it’s unheard of for any to remain to be sold by the time the project is complete. There are few better investments — with the current exchange rate, even holding sterling is less attractive to UK investors.

Top properties in top Austrian resorts

The resorts earmarked for the new developments are among the most attractive in Austria, chosen for guaranteed long winter sports seasons, together with wonderful golf courses and great opportunities for walking and alpine sports in summer. We offer properties that are central with private parking, and many with ski-in, ski-out locations.

  • Kühtai — only 35 minutes from Innsbruck airport, we offer ski-in, ski-out apartments in this beautiful, high-altitude resort.
  • Galtür — quite apart from the family-friendly skiing in a beautiful, tranquil setting, it’s only 10 minutes on a free bus to the more glamorous Ischgl, from where you can ski over the border into Switzerland.
  • Saalbach — just an hour from Salzburg airport, our properties in Saalbach offer ski-in, ski-out in winter and excellent golf courses in summer, guaranteeing a 5-year rental return of 5%.

A great investment

Our properties in these resorts are built, designed and furnished to exacting standards, each with at least two bedrooms, a large bathroom and a balcony. Kristall Spaces makes all the arrangements through the best tour operators for year-round rental, and the facilities on offer ensure the apartments will be in high demand both summer and winter. And, as if the opportunities weren’t enough, you can even claim a VAT rebate on your property.

Kristall Spaces will soon be announcing new projects in other Austrian resorts. For now, though, you can check out more about our apartments, priced from €280,000 to €334,500, in Kühtai, Galtür/Ischgl and Saalbach.

Snow in Kühtai before lifts open 28 November​

As Kühtai gets ready for the opening of the season on Friday 28 November, there’s already a good covering of snow.

We took a few photos of the awe-inspiring aspects from the 2020 Kühtai​ apartments which are situated right in the middle of the resort.

Most of the sunbathed apartments will have views towards the South and the lifts around the Graf Ferdinandhaus hut on the slopes of the Zwölferkogel.

Kristall-Spaces-2020-Kühtai​-apartments-South-aspect-Zwölferkogel

2020 Kühtai​ apartments view towards the Zwölferkogel

And towards the South West which is essentially the view down the main road and across to the peaks in the distance.

Kristall-Spaces-2020-Kühtai​-apartments-South-West-aspect

2020 Kühtai​ apartments South West view

You can keep an eye on the pistes and the snow as more of it falls thanks to http://www.bergfex.at/kuehtai/webcams/

Cross-Country Skiing in Austria

cross country Austria
It’s hardly surprising that most people who come to the Austrian Alps in winter head straight for the slopes with their skis or snowboard. Hurtling downhill is certainly the most thrilling and fulfilling of all winter sports, but those who like variety might want to try some of the other options on offer, such as cross-country (or Nordic) skiing.

Cross-country skiing is often overlooked, but it has a lot to commend it. A more measured discipline, it combines endurance training and sustained exposure to the clear mountain air with a chance to appreciate the stunning Alpine scenery at high levels. As an added bonus, you can ski across country even when there’s not enough snow for the slopes.

Cross-country trails can be accessed from most resorts, usually with transport available to and from the start and finish, if necessary. Here is a small selection.

Sölden

Sölden has five varied trails of between 1 and 7 km, two rated as easy and the others as intermediate. The routes across Alpine meadows and through picturesque hamlets give great views of the stunning Őtztal scenery. You’ll also find access easy to longer trails of up to 50 km.

St Anton

St Anton has been building up its cross-country network and now has over 40 km of local trails, with individual routes ranging between 1.5 and 22 km. Most are rated as easy, with the St Christoph and Verwall trails as intermediate. The resort also offers floodlit cross-country skiing on a 2 km route between dawn and 8.30 am.

Ischgl

Eight trails wind through the beautiful Tyrolean mountainscapes around Ischgl, ranging from 1 to 18 km and rising as high as 2036 metres. All abilities are catered for, with everything from easy routes to some that are much more demanding.

A_big_1tann_wi_106_langlaufenTirolZell am See

The mountains around Zell am See and Kaprun have 55 km of cross-country trails, some at high levels, catering for all abilities. A special offer here is the chance to ski the 6 km of the Tauern SPA Loipe at night, enjoying the snowscapes under starlight.

On all these routes, you can just turn up and ski them at your own time and pace, but most resorts will offer training courses in cross-country skiing. Some also offer taster sessions for the biathlon (skiing and shooting), whether you want to approach the discipline seriously or just enjoy being James Bond for the day.

You’ll want to spend most of your holiday on the slopes, of course. But perhaps it would be worth taking at least one day off to experience the pleasure of skiing across country.

Events in Kühtai This Winter

The highest ski resort in Austria (sometimes claimed to be the highest in the world), Kühtai has beautiful scenery, excellent slopes and a quiet, laid-back atmosphere that belies the fact its close proximity to Innsbruck.

Kühtai offers wonderful skiing and snowboarding all winter and spectacular mountain hiking in the summer. There are also special events to enjoy during the winter, both in Kühtai itself and in nearby villages.

SAAC Basic CampsSAAC Basic Camps

On the 6th and 7th December, the SAAC offers a free two-day avalanche camp offering advice and practice for skiers and snowboarders wanting to go off-piste. Enthusiasts over 14 can learn how to be safe on the slopes and enjoy a day on the mountain with expert trainers.

MARMOT Women’s Winter Camp

From the 15th to the 18th January, MARMOT runs a winter camp for women only. This event caters for anyone from complete beginners to experienced skiers wanting to expand their skills. Besides practice on the mountain with expert guides, the camp offers training on a range of safety issues, from avalanches to nutrition.

MARMOT Women's Winter Camp

Children's Snow-Festival austria kuhtaiChildren’s Snow-Festival

Just a few miles up the road from Kühtai, Hochoetz holds a snow-festival for children on the 6th February. The day will be packed with colourful carnival events, fun on the slopes and snow animation, to thrill children of all ages.

Guest Ski Competition with Snow-Festival

Even closer than Hochoetz, Ochsengarten offers guest ski competitions on both 27th February and 20th March. Each race starts at 2pm and is followed by an evening snow-festival, featuring the awards ceremony, live music and fireworks.

One to Watch For

In January and February this year, Channel 4’s celebrity ski show The Jump was filmed in the Innsbruck area, with several events held in Kühtai. It was announced last month that Channel 4 has commissioned a second series for this winter. Although no details have yet been given, there could well be a return to Kühtai, allowing visitors to watch celebrities compete and perhaps even meet them. Watch this space for more information.

Channel 4 The Jump

Why Should I Invest in Austrian Ski Property?

kristall-spaces-austrian-property-zell-am-see-1024x677Investment in Austrian ski property has never been such a great deal. With a strong winter and summer tourism industry, rental yields are high and reliable, and ski property averages a 4% per annum capital growth.

In addition to the annual 1% VAT rebate, recent changes in Austria’s coalition government, especially the appointment of Hans Jörg Schelling as finance minister, look set to favour property investment with tax breaks and other incentives.

Austrian banks have shown considerable interest in foreign investment in property over the past year, and now they’re regularly offering finance of up to 55% for such investments. Their position has been strengthened by last month’s cut in interest rates by the European Central Bank, along with an energetic stimulus programme.

Are there any disadvantages?

One law does appear to go against the trend and discourage investment in buy-to-let holiday apartments. This is a recent court ruling which specifies that an apartment can only be let as a holiday home if all other residents in the building give written agreement. If even one objects, you may not be able to let.

This law hasn’t been properly tested, but it does make random investment in holiday apartments risky. On the other hand, the risk doesn’t apply to purpose-built buy-to-let ski apartments, since all units in the building will be specifically sold with the purpose of holiday rental. The answer is simply to make sure you’re investing in the right kind of property.

As with all investments, it’s important to ensure you choose the right scheme. If you invest your money wisely, though, this offers one more route to benefit from the growing market of Austrian ski property.

Tax Breaks and Financial Benefits of Investing in Austrian Ski Resorts

Tax-BreaksThe traditional target for property investment in Austria, Switzerland and Germany has always been student accommodation or buy-to-let residential units. High prices, high management costs and recent tax changes have made this market less attractive, and Austrian investors are showing interest in a different target — ski holiday properties.

In recent years, planning restrictions have created a backlog of building projects in ski resorts, with the result that those which are built attract high demand and strong capital growth. And, at the same time, foreign investment in Austria has never been easier.

So what has happened in Austria to create this boom?

  • Recent governmental changes promise financial stability. In particular, the new finance minister, Hans Jörg Schelling, is likely to favour policies such as tax breaks for investors.
  • The European Central Bank has recently reduced the headline rate of interest, keeping the Euro Libor low.
  • The government is offering a savings loophole with a 1% per annum VAT rebate.
  • A court recently ruled that Austrian property could be bought by an SPV owned by non-EU citizens, which opens up the possibility of a future flight to safety.
  • In the past year, Austrian banks have changed their stance and are showing considerable interest in financing foreign buyers.
  • Austria’s bank secrecy act is stronger than Switzerland’s, giving investors peace of mind.

In spite of this, the price in Val d’Isère, on the other hand, the bottom end of the market for a similar unit would be around €380,000, while most are over €800,000. Switzerland is even more expensive, with few 2-bedroom apartments in Zermatt below €500,000, and Davos even more expensive. Prices of Austrian ski properties are still remarkably low. A 2-bedroom apartment in Sölden, for instance, can currently be bought for as little as €334,995, and similar apartments in Ischgl go as low as €323,400. This rises to only a little over €600,000 for penthouse apartments.

Austrian resorts can match or exceed these for quality, and investors have a unique opportunity to snap up valuable property at such low prices. It won’t be long before everyone else wakes up to this and the prices rise, offering a substantial return on your investment.

European Central Bank reduces rate of interest making Austrian property investment all the more attractive

In an effort to keep low inflation from derailing the Eurozone’s economy, the European Central Bank has surprised financial markets this September with a cut in interest rates and new stimulus plans.

Speaking at a press conference after the announcement of the rate cut, ECB president Mario Draghi said the Bank expected to see “a prolonged period of low inflation” and reiterated a pledge to keep rates low for the foreseeable future.  After the rate cut was announced, the Euro fell against the Dollar and Sterling making a purchase of property in Europe even more attractive.

kristall-spaces-Autrian-property-boost
The European Central Bank cut interest rates and announced a program to pump money into the economy and stimulate lending by buying bundles of bank loans.

It may not be a coincidence that we have seen a change in stance in the last 12 months by Austrian banks which have shown a high interest in financing up to 60% of the purchase price of ski property investments by foreign buyers.

If a potential investor is shrewd, they could secure a property now with Kristall Spaces at Spring 2014 prices with only a 1% fully-refundable reservation fee (no buyer’s commission fee) with the first 15% stage payment not due before the spring of 2015.

Furthermore, we have seen an apartment bought for €300k in our recently completed project in Zell am See be remarketed for €350k within 12 months and the buyer only paid 60% of the price before making the decision to sell.

That equates to a €50k uplift on a €180k capital investment in just 12 months.

Please get in contact with us today and find out how you could earn up to 15% IRR on one of our Austrian ski properties.