December 2, 2022

Widi Reserve: These uninhabited Indonesian islands are up for auction

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(CNN) — A group of Indonesian islands called Woody Reserve is about to go up for auction in what could be one of the most eye-popping real estate sales ever to take place in Asia.

East Indonesia’s “Coral Triangle” consists of more than 100 islands spread over 10,000 hectares (25,000 acres), roughly the size of Bora Bora.

Indonesian law states that non-Indonesian citizens cannot officially purchase islands in the country. Widi the reserve happens around the time the ultimate owner acquires an interest in PT. Leadership Islands Indonesia (LII), a holding company.

From there, the owner will be free to develop the island as they wish.

The Widi Reserve is located in the Coral Triangle of eastern Indonesia.

The Widi Reserve is located in the Coral Triangle of eastern Indonesia.

Courtesy of Sotheby’s Concierge Auction

However, should they feel a little overwhelmed by the prospect, several experts — selected by Sotheby’s, the auction house overseeing the sale — are already in the Woody Reserve to help build a resort. are waiting The line-up consists of Bill Bensleythe star designer behind some of Asia’s most exclusive hotels and resorts.

Charlie Smith, executive vice president of EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) at Sotheby’s Concierge Auctions, clearly expects bids for the island to be significant.

“Every billionaire can own a private island, but only one can own this exclusive opportunity spread across more than 100 islands,” he said in a press statement.

The Widi Reserve contains several such corals.

The Widi Reserve contains several such corals.

Courtesy of Sotheby’s Concierge Auction

While there is no obligation to work with Bensley on the eventual buyer of the Vidy Reserve, the Thailand-based designer has already worked on some design concepts for the fictitious island resort, and a Sotheby’s representative told CNN. told that the architect is “a lawyer. responsible development of the reserve.”

No matter what happens with the Widi Reserve, it contains some of Indonesia’s most beautiful scenery, including coral reefs, mangroves and some 150 kilometers (93 miles) of beach.

The reserve is only accessible by private aircraft. Bali’s Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport is a 2.5-hour flight away.

The auction begins on December 8 and will run until December 14. There is no reserve price, but bidders are asked to put down $100,000 to prove they are serious.

Widi Reserve offers dramatic views of Indonesia.

Widi Reserve offers dramatic views of Indonesia.

Courtesy of Sotheby’s Concierge Auction

Sales of private islands have increased over the past few years.

Already a popular option for the ultra-wealthy (Shakira and Leonardo DiCaprio each reportedly own one), the desire for privacy and safe distance has made them an even more valuable asset during the pandemic.

Some islands, though, are deceptively cheap.

Stacey Fisher Rosenthal, as president of the high-end travel company Fisher Travel Enterprises; explained to CNN.It is the cost of maintenance and infrastructure that really makes owning an island expensive.

Many islands do not have existing structures, and some owners must not only build houses but install plumbing, electricity and other infrastructure if they want to live there.

Add to that transportation, the cost of getting food and crew in and out, and owning an island can quickly become very expensive.

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