Your Chance to Own a Private Island

Have you ever wanted to own a little piece of paradise?

You still can.

A 15-acre private island on the edge of the Bahamas has been on the auction block for more than a month now and hasn't been snatched up yet. Bids were supposed to start at $12 million, but so far, there have been no takers.

The auctioneer, Fisher Auction Co., is still actively marketing the property and there is no talk yet of a price reduction.

"It's still active and we have reason and hope to think we will bring it to fruition," said Louis "Benny" Fisher, chairman of Fisher Auction Co.

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The property was auctioned off June 28, but none of the bids met the sellers' criteria that buyers take the island as is. Fisher said some of the bidders wanted a chance to visit the island before buying, which they had yet to do.

Chris Krolow, CEO of Private Islands Inc., a Toronto company that markets such properties, predicted in early June that the island might not sell at the action, saying that the advertising period was too short.

Fisher now says that while he thought he had provided enough lead time there is "some feeling that we needed another month of exposure."

Since the auction, he said there has been new interest from buyers in Switzerland, California and elsewhere. Some prospects also needed time to make their assets liquid and only wanted to make such a change if they were buying.

"Frankly, I don't care about delays as long as we get it done," Fischer said.

A Little Piece of Paradise

The island has white sand beaches, two homes -- one for you and one for your staff -- a dock, tons of food and living supplies and your own private runway.

"It's not for everybody, but it's a real good place to get away, completely relax," said businessman Jack N. Halcomb who has owned the island for roughly 20 years.

So who plans to buy the island? It could be anyone from a developer looking to build a boutique resort to simply a wealthy individual.


"We have exposed this particular property around the world, primarily targeting celebs and sports figures and super-wealthy business personalities," Fischer said. "It's obviously for the individual who has everything and then some."

Inquires initially came from as far away as Ireland, Spain and China. Even royalty from Dubai has expressed interest, although they make up a small group of shoppers.

"We haven't been deluged because, let's face it, not everyone is of the economic status that they can afford a place like this," said Fisher.

The island has been marketed to celebrities including lovebirds Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, and Hollywood legends Sean Connery and Steven Spielberg.

But Fisher notes that just because he has reached out to these stars, it doesn't mean they are interested or that he'll know if they make a bid.

"Most of these people deal through their agents or their accountants," he said. "Many times, I don't know the name of the buyer until closing."

Halcomb bought the island in 1986 for $650,000 and said he has made $25 million worth of improvements to the property since he first moved in and ran his business sometimes from the Bahamas.

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