The second-home resort property market is in the middle of a severe downturn. The prospects for a turnaround are not immediate, and even the most optimistic investors feel that there are many quarters ahead before an uptick in activity. As a result, resort developers are embarking on strategies to minimize capital while maximizing value. Resort developers will need to focus on: lowering risk by lowering upfront investment in infrastructure, high-rise construction, and operations; increasing and maintaining more flexibility and responsiveness to local conditions and the environment; making projects more adaptable so they can be used in multiple ways and for different purposes in the future; remembering that buyers want to feel good about their investment; and bearing in mind that scarcity and differentiation still drive value, more so now than in the past. Truly unique environments, where the experience is defined by the natural setting creating distinctive places with a strong sense of community, still command premiums.
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