Richard Ashby has built property empire in Zanzibar, partnering with Floton Africa to develop three luxury holiday home complexes. Ashby moved to the Tanzanian island to escape Covid restrictions and discovered a blank canvas that he believes will become the next winter sun paradise.
Richard Ashby, a 41-year-old real estate agent who moved from the UK to Zanzibar to escape Covid restrictions, is creating a $45 million property empire on the paradise island. Escape to Paradise Ashby’s business, Byshivo.com has partnered with Tanzanian developer Floton Africa Company Limited to start three developments in Zanzibar. Three years ago, Ashby sold exclusive apartments in London for $250,000 per year to wealthy investors.
However, the pandemic halted all his lucrative deals and left him feeling isolated during the lockdown in his riverside flat in Chelsea, West London. As a result, he searched for a place to escape from Covid restrictions and build a new business, eventually discovering Zanzibar. With its warm climate and average daytime temperatures of 28 degrees, Paradise Found Zanzibar largely avoided lockdowns and mask-wearing. It was one of the first places to open its borders to tourists in June 2020, making it an ideal location for Ashby’s escape. He praises the “enlightened” Zanzibar government for supporting developers creating luxury holiday homes.
Building the Empire Byshivo.com and Floton Africa Company Limited are working on three tropical village villa holiday complexes on the island. The first project in Paje has already sold 80% of the chalets. The development includes 20 units of two-bedroom and three-bedroom chalets, plus larger villas, each with a private pool. A further 200 units are planned for a beachside plot in Nungwi, north of the island, with similar two and three-bedroom chalets and separate apartments in Paje. Prices off-plan for a holiday apartment start at $70,000, rising to $220,000 for more luxurious three-bed options. Paradise Without the Problems Ashby views Zanzibar as a complete contrast to other winter suns destinations, such as Dubai and the Caribbean, which are overdeveloped or plagued with crime.
Zanzibar is relatively undeveloped, with miles of beachside plots featuring white sand and warm turquoise seas. He describes the island as a blank page with a progressive government encouraging investors to create the next winter sun paradise. No Plans to Return Ashby has no plans to return to the UK, viewing his homeland with rising interest rates, a cost of living crisis, and a Covid debt crippling the economy with horror. He feels lucky to have found a place to build a new life and a fantastic business with wonderful people. Daily flights from Europe, Africa, and Middle Eastern destinations such as Dubai make it easy for Ashby to stay connected to the world. He predicts that everyone will be coming to Zanzibar in a few years, and he feels fortunate to have arrived before the massive growth explosion.