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According to the recent Savills’ report*, French “Cote d’Azur” remains “the world’s most expensive, desirable, and luxury leisure enclave”. The area combines exclusivity, beauty, excellent access through Nice and Monaco and carefully designed properties to maximise privacy. “The most exclusive enclave is Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, a peninsula of 282 acres, and home to 2,100 inhabitants. Only 10 minutes from Nice and Monaco, it boasts 500 luxurious villas, with residents including Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and Andrew Lloyd Webber”. Properties are valued at an incredible Euros 28.5 millions, while in the Italian- Sardaigna  “Costa Esmeralda”, which ranks second, values are lagging behind at only Euros 11.5 millions…However, properties have experienced a little bit of a hard time in 2012, when prices for the top tier fell by 10%, although since then have stabilised “as it has emerged that President Hollande’s tax plans are probably less draconian than originally feared”. Transactions remains “well below peak levels” as property owners “hold on to their homes”. Main buyers are from Europe, North America, with an increasing number from Russia and the Middle East.

French Alps rank second after the Swiss “safe heaven”:

Unsurprisingly, three exclusive Swiss resorts (St Moritz, Verbier, Gstaad) rank first in the world competition for the most expansive mountain resorts. Following, there is a battle between Zermatt and the 3 most elitist French ski areas (Val d’Isere, Courchevel, Megeve) where luxury “chalets” may reach Euros 9 000 to 10 000 /m2*. Surprisingly, Chamonix is absent, while the actual price in the worldwide known “Mont-Blanc” resort, are effectively expansive they are lagging behind to the top 2 “Tarentaise” resorts (Val d’Isere and Courchevel). Chamonix customer base is actually more eclectic with a wider range of price**.

*Savills’ report:


** According to the French “notaires” database (the most reliable as it registers all the transactions) recorded the following average prices in 2012:

  • Val d’Isere: studio Euros 5958 /m2, 1 bed: Euros 6671 /m2,  2 beds 8058 /m2, 3 beds 13108 /m2
  • Courchevel: studios Euros 6059 /m2 (Courchevel 1850: 9048 /m2), 1 bed 7699 /m2 (Courchevel 1850: 15476 /m2) , 2 beds 11195 /m2 (Courchevel 1850: 12789 m2, 3 beds 7497 /m2 (Courchevel 1850: 11039 /m2)
  • Megeve: studio Euros 4269 /m2, 1 bed: Euros 5218 /m2,  2 beds 8174 /m2, 3 beds 10521 /m2
  • Chamonix: studio Euros 4800 /m2, 1 bed: Euros 4898 /m2,  2 beds 5938 /m2, 3 beds 6341 /m2