Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Got 1 min? The last ‘virgin’ island in the Riviera Maya is for sale

If you’ve ever fantasized about owning a private island in Mexico, now is your big chance. Cayo Culebra, the last untouched island of the Riviera Maya, is up for sale at a reported price of US $68 million, or more than 1.1 billion pesos.

The 36-hectare island is located in Ascensión Bay, off the coast of the Yucatán Peninsula, and is part of the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987. 

It is an uninhabited “natural paradise” with abundant birds and plant life, according to  newspaper El Financiero.

Mexico has designated Cayo Culebra as a Protected Natural Area (ANP) for more than 30 years. IAD Group, the European real estate network selling the property, specifies that the National Commission for Protected Areas (Conanp) will retain control over the island and whoever buys the island can build on only 10% of it and any construction will be limited to cabins, bungalows and palapas.

Still, IAD assures, Cayo Culebra offers potential buyers “great profitability perspectives” by attracting a “high-end clientele looking for a unique and nature-friendly experience.”

Located 12 kilometers off the coast at its nearest point to land — and 56 kilometers south of Tulum, Quintana Roo — the island is reachable by private plane or boat. The shortest boat trip would be from Punta Allen, but it can also be reached via water from Playa del Carmen, Tulum or Bacalar.

In Spanish, culebra refers to a snake, particularly a small, non-venomous one. Cayo means “cay,” often spelled “key,” which is a low-lying island formed on top of a coral reef.

A  listing for the island on IAD’s website calls Cayo Culebra “The mysterious island.”

“If you’ve always dreamed of investing in an ecological tourism project while enjoying the splendors of the Riviera Maya, Cayo Culebra is an opportunity not to be missed!” the site says.

Despite its restrictions, IAD is promoting Cayo Culebra as a golden opportunity for development. 

“With all permits and documentation in order, the island is ready to welcome thousands of tourists annually, as it is possible to build on 10% of the island’s surface, to develop, for example, hotels or bungalows on stilts.”

With reports from El Financiero, Proceso and PorEsto

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