Buying a house in Mauritius has long been an unattainable dream for foreigners. When the government implemented the Integrated Resort Scheme in 2002, the first specific legal framework to develop luxury real estate this helped to give an international standing to the already upmarket tourism sector. Since then, numerous attractive projects have emerged, the legal framework was adjusted, most notably with a redesign in 2015, allowing everyone including politicians, athletes, artists, businessmen or those retired and in love with Mauritius, to realise their dream of owning a little piece of paradise. In Mauritius, up until today, three schemes have allowed noncitizens to acquire immovable property.
Integrated Resort Scheme (IRS): This applies to luxurious residential complexes of more than 10 hectares, including a certain number of benefits: world-class golf resort, marina, swimming pools, restaurants, hotels, spas, sports complexes, not to mention security services, maintenance, domestic staff, etc. These residences are sold with a starting price of USD 500 000. Anahita, Villas Valriche and La Balise Marina are among the most prestigious Integrated Resort Schemes. The acquisition of a villa under this scheme grants resident status to the investor, his spouse and his dependants. The permit of residence remains valid as long as the investor holds immovable property on the island.
The Real Estate Scheme (RES): based on the same principle as the IRS, the RES applies to luxurious residential complexes not exceeding 10 hectares. The purchase of a villa or an RES apartment does not lead to automatic entitlement to a permit of residence (except in the case where the amount exceeds or is equal to USD 500 000). This does not prevent those who are interested in applying for a permit, as an investor, a retired person, an employed professional or as a self employed individual to do so, as authorised by the law. That being said, it is possible to reside for a period of six months without a permit.
Finally, the Invest Hotel Scheme (IHS) allows you to purchase a room, an apartment or a villa forming part of a hotel complex. The advantage: the investor benefits from all the services offered by the hotel for 45 days per year and earns rental income for the remainder of the year. In fact, the management of his property, governed by a condominium regulation, is entrusted to the company that manages the hotel. There is no prescribed minimum investment for the purchase of a room, suite or another part of the hotel, except if you wish to acquire an independent villa where the minimum price is set at USD 500 000.
Who can purchase?
– An investor (including his spouse and dependants)
– A foreign company under the Companies Act (of Mauritius) 2001
– A company incorporated under the Companies Act (of Mauritius) 2001
– A partnership whose deed of formation is deposited with the Registrar of Companies
– A trust, whereby the trustee is licensed by the Financial Services Commission
– A citizen of Mauritius
In 2015, the IRS and RES concepts have been repealed and replaced by the Property Development Scheme (PDS), in accordance with the Promotion Act 2000 and the Investment Promotion (Property Development Scheme) Regulations 2015 (see on page 94). In fact, for the purchaser of an IRS or RES villa, this changes nothing insofar that the regulations defining the already existing projects remain in force.
For more information on the procedures : www.investmauritius.com