In Riccione the spotlight is on glamour

Apartments that are to be built in seafront condo hotels are being sold off plan. These are the luxury projects in the pipeline
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Riccione has not seen so many construction sites for years. The luxury property market has been growing since 2019, in no small part thanks to the provisions introduced by the mayor Renata Tosi who, since taking office in 2014, has overseen a change to urban planning legislation and amended the Chicchi regional law. A local strategic plan that has promoted the renovation of old building stock and has given the green light to the construction of several condo hotels: new tourist accommodation comprising a mixture of hotel rooms and larger apartments that may only be purchased as second homes or rented. If rented, it is mandatory to ask the hotel owner if he/she wishes to manage them, as this is the hotel owner’s right. “The tourist property market reserved for wealthier families grew by 20% in 2020”, confirmed Francesco Quintavalla, License Partner of Engel & Völkers Riccione . “We have sold 21 properties for an average price of 700,000 euros each, and tourist rentals have also seen the same increase since April last year: many professionals from Bologna and Milan are moving here to work from home for five or six months of the year”. In short, interest in second homes continues to be strong, even though it is currently difficult to use the properties due to the imposed travel restrictions. From the old family-run hotels of the past, new concept properties are emerging in line with a more demanding buyer-investor. Need an example? “The historic 4-storey Mehari hotel at Riccione’s canal harbour was demolished last June and is currently being converted into eight apartments, including a threestorey penthouse with private pool and spa, with units ranging from 75 to 235 square metres to be completed next December”, explains Quintavalla. The harbour Tower, as the development is called, shall be in energy class A4, and buyers have the option of benefitting from the earthquake bonus. Luxury finishes, parquet flooring, air conditioning and underfloor heating. Prices from €380,000 to €1.4 million. 


The buoyancy of the luxury property market is evident by the fact that the development has already almost entirely been sold off plan. Professionals from Emilia and Lombardy are among the most prevalent investors. “70% to 80% of new developments currently under construction have already been sold off plan, with prices ranging from 6,000 to 7,000 euro/m2 on the beach side of the railway line, and 4,000 to 5,000 euro/m2 on the other side”, explains Luciangela Paiano, Vice President of the Romagna Italian Federation of Professional Estate Agents (Fiaip). And there is more. According to Nico Gaddi, owner of the property advisory office Galleria, a historical estate agents founded 32 years ago, interest in a second home of a certain standard has also grown among Umbrians who visit the Romagna coastline. “Both the number and value of sales have increased”, he confirms. “I have sold a lot more apartments in the €700,000 price range”. One of the most highly anticipated “gems” are the San Martino residences, a development of the Gilardoni Group of Milan comprising the purchase of two seafront hotels covering some 3,000 square metres and around 100 rooms. An investment in the region of 10 million euros, with demolition set to begin at the end of the upcoming summer season”, recounts Filippo Angelini of the Angelini estate agents and advisory service of Cattolica. “Work is scheduled to begin in October, with completion of a new glass and steel 5 star hotel, boasting 50 rooms and a spa on the fifth floor, set for the summer of 2023 (Riccione’s third after Des Bains and the conversion of the Promenade). Above the hotel will be at least another five floors housing 12-13 luxury 100-120-square metre apartments boasting sea views, luxury finishes, whirlpool and home automation, available from €7,000 per square metre. From there you will be able to enjoy spectacular views stretching from Gabicce to Ravenna”. The San Martino complex is also vital in terms of urban regeneration, as it will involve the redevelopment of an important part of the city that has direct links with the thermal baths and shopping streets. 


 Published on Ville&Casali May 2021

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