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The independently owned Islandia Real Estate of St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands, has joined the Christie’s International Real Estate global network as Islandia St. John Christie’s International Real Estate, the brokerage announced on Tuesday.
This marks the firm’s third office in St. Thomas.
The firm was founded in 1967 by Finland native Inga Hiilivirta and is based in Cruz Bay. Since then it has had two owners, including Merry Nash, who continues to be an agent at the firm, and today is owned through a local partnership and led by Managing Director Keleigh Rees.
Through its partnership now with Christie’s International Real Estate, Islandia will gain access to the brand’s marketing and technology, national and international network and the Christie’s auction house.
“Partnering with Christie’s International Real Estate, a name known around the world for luxury, will offer tremendous value to our agents and clients as we look to the future,” Rees said in a statement. “This affiliation will provide an important level of familiarity to prospective buyers, while the exposure our listings will receive is unparalleled in the industry.”
The firm’s six agents service all sectors of the St. John market with a focus on luxury properties. In the last five years, Islandia St. John Christie’s International Real Estate has been involved in the majority of the island’s condo sales exceeding $800,000.
“Over five decades, through various market cycles, Islandia Real Estate has always been the most trusted and respected brokerage firm on St. John,” Chris Lim, president of Christie’s International Real Estate, said in a statement. “It’s a testament to their strong local leadership and culture and their ability to adapt to the needs of their clients. They are a great addition to the Christie’s International Real Estate network.”
Danielle Austin, president of Christie’s International Real Estate Caribbean added, “Keleigh and her team bring a wealth of information and expertise to our ever-expanding Caribbean network. We are thrilled to welcome Islandia and look forward to elevating the brokerage on an international level.”
Spanning 28 square miles, St. John is the smallest U.S. Virgin Island and the least developed with 60 percent of the island reserved as national parkland. Stateside buyers have been attracted to the island recently for its natural beauty, slow pace of life, ease of purchasing in a U.S. territory and ability to use 1031 tax-deferred property exchanges.
St. John’s single-family home prices start around $775,000 and exceed $12 million, while condos generally range from $450,000 to $1.6 million.
In addition to St. John, Christie’s International Real Estate has Caribbean affiliates in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands; Turks and Caicos in the British Virgin Islands; the Bahamas, St. Barthélemy; St. Martin; and the Cayman Islands.
Correction: A previous version of this story stated that Islandia was “formerly” independent — the firm continues to be independently owned while being part of the Christie’s International Real Estate network.
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