Oh, we need some exotic in our grim and depressive Greek times. A member of Qatar’s royal family apparently bought a private Greek island located at the Ionian Sea, near Ithaca. Like a modern Odysseus, the Qatar royalty will find its Ithaca with a private island, and we will all live happily ever after…
A member of Qatar’s royal family has purchased a Greek island for €5m, according to a local report.
The 1,236-acre island, named Oxia, was initially advertised by owners the Greek-Australian Stamoulis family for €6.9m ($9.1m), Greek daily Ekathimerini reported, citing unnamed sources.
The island’s new owners are expected to develop part of the island, it added.
The island is located in the Ionian Sea, near Ithaca, and is protected by the Natura 2000 ecological network, the newspaper said.
Greece’s government has been under pressure to privatise the country’s islands in the wake of its sovereign debt crisis.
The sale follows a week after Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund announced it had signed an agreement to acquire Smeralda Holding, owner of luxury hotel resorts on Costa Smeralda in Sardinia.
Qatar Holding said it will acquire a portfolio consisting of four luxury hotels with a total of 372 rooms, the Porto Cervo Marina, the Porto Cervo Shipyard, the Pevero Golf Club, a 51 percent interest in 2,290 hectares of adjacent undeveloped land and various other real estate assets in Costa Smeralda.
“We intend to continue supporting the on-going development programme which will see Costa Smeralda strengthen its position as one of the world’s top resort destinations,” Ahmad Mohamed Al-Sayed, managing director and CEO of Qatar Holding, said in a statement. (source: arabian business)
According to Digital Journal, it has not been revealed if the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, personally bought the Greek island, or if it was a family member. In February Digital Journal reported that the Emir’s daughter, Sheikha Al Mayassa Bint Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, purchased a Cézanne painting for the record breaking price of $2.5 million. Ironically, The Card Players, the purchased painting, previously belonged to Greek shipping magnate George Embiricos.