And that’s great news because without the “free money” motor which artificially kept the market running, good advertising can resume its rightful role in selling everything from downtown condos to South Pacific islands.
This ad is from 42 years ago for luxury land plots on the Island of Montserrat. It masterfully uses scarcity and social proof and is an ad that can be successfully modeled for as long as exotic plots of land are bought and sold.
There Are Precisely 104 Custom Villa Sites
On These Lovely Wooded Slopes
Framed By Mountain And Caribbean Sea With A Golf Course For A Floor
You May Own One In ISLES BAY of MONTSERRAT
This is a reproduction of a reproduction-a printing of black and white photograph. We’re depending heavily on it to begin the job of capturing you. But it’s not truthful. I can’t be …
Because, on Montserrat itself, the land is green, the Caribbean soft and blue. Come to life for you-there in the Montserrat-are the mountains thick with forest; the far puffs of white fleece against the infinite sky: the pure, sweet air of this most superb of island climates.
Extravagance? Are we reaching? It might seem so. but for this solid truth: MONTSERRAT IS THE MOST BEAUTIFUL ISLAND IN ‘THE BRITISH WEST INDIES!
This secret is already known to some-to those who have flown out of the damp and the cold and in a few hours come to a climate that is in truth the gentlest and least humid in the Caribbean, where the winters are balmier than in southern Spain and the summers cooler than in parts of Alaska. These people have been to other islands which offer only the fiat monotony of low-growing shrub and now come gladly to the lofty mountains and green-topped cliffs of Montserrat where gleaming beaches soften the coastline in crescent arcs and where the sea is always in their view. Always in their view! This is, perhaps, the most fascinating thing about Montserrat: to be always able to look out and away, constantly to have an incomparable scene of Nature meet the eye, like an enormous masterpiece.
Montserrat has been described as a lavishly endowed island of astonishing changes. A turn in the road may bring you suddenly to a tropical ravine along which a stream tumbles on its way to the sea. Or you will pass from cultivated fields Montserrat supplies larger islands with its garden products) to the riotous beauty of wild orchid and Poinciana. Flamboyant splash scarlet dabs against the hills; mango, coconut, lime, banana hang heavy with fruit in season. You’ve never tasted such pineapple or eaten such tomatoes. Nor have you probably ever seen so many mahogany trees or knelt in such grass. And it is certain that on very few islands, if any. have you drunk such water-the fabled Montserrat water, pumped not from man-made catchments (like islands in the Virgins, for instance) but from springs high in the cool mountain forests. Unless you know the islands, it’s hard to appreci¬ate how unique is Montserrat pure, abundant water.
Those who discover Montserrat are enchanted at its sight-then made captive by its people. There is no resisting them, native or recently-arrived. One learns to drive with one arm; the other is needed to wave return greetings. It’s a little island-32 sq. miles. the size of St. Thomas. Of its 13.000 people (there’s an Irish flavor to their English) 3000 live in Plymouth, the capital, thought by the TORONTO GLOBE a MAIL to be “… the cleanest town in the British West Indies …” You’ll love going into Plymouth, to watch the bustle at the harbor, to walk its neat, narrow streets lined with balconied houses, to say hello to everyone around you, to shop. You can buy virtually anything you need in Plymouth-from newspapers to frozen foods-and you’ll pick up bargains along the way: good beef at 594 a lb., Scotch or Canadian at $2.25 a fifth. American cigarettes at $2.20 a carton. At the price, $1350 you’ll want a new foreign car for Montserrat’s rather narrow but excellently-paved roads. Royal Bank and Barclay’s have put up new buildings and there is discussion of a shopping center as well as another cinema. We have public and private schools. doctors, churches, and are getting a new hospital. And here’s something that is exciting everybody on the island: the Government has slashed all income taxes, personal and corporate, to a very low figure.
There’s a style, such a grace to this island that we are almost tempted to say: “That’s Why we chose Montserrat.” But the fact is that ISLES BAY OF MONTSERRAT could not have been created on any other island!
The main reason, right off, is price. Let’s ascribe a beauty, equaling Montserrat, to Puerto Rico, or Antigua. or Jamaica. or to St. Thomas. Let’s scour their coasts for a lovely tract of 125 acres with every spot of it having an unobstructed view of the sea. Top the land with luxuriant trees and plants, fashion a steady gentle breeze to eliminate the need for air-conditioning, and place a lush golf course in a valley directly alongside it. Bring in paved roads to each site, underground power to each site, piped mountain spring water to each site. See that it overlooks a Yacht Club and Marina site and gild the lily by giving your buy¬ers a 2 year free membership in the golf course; and, if they own boats and are invited to join, pay their membership fees in the proposed private Yacht Club, also for 2 years.
And then set your architects to work to custom those 125 acres into just 104 villa sites. each with an estate privacy, each with a superb view. Then finally-with moun¬tains, sea, and golf course forming unencroachable borders-guarantee your property buyers that “Isles Bay” of Puerto Rico or of Antigua or of any island will be set off in perpetual privacy from any other community.
If you could find such land on these islands and improve it as we’ve written-because all of these improvements will he yours at ISLES BAY OF MONTSERRAT-the prices you would have to charge your site-buyers would be frighten¬ing. In Jamaica. where elevated sites with a view are a considerable distance from the ocean (due to a wide band of fronting flat land), prices for quality lots are 60C a sq. ft. and higher; an acre (40.000 sq. ft.) would cost at least $24.000. In Barbados, with no soaring views to speak of, prime lots are being quoted at 80 cents to 51.00. And we estimate that in Puerto Rico a one acre site equivalent to what we are offering in ISLES BAY OF MONTSERRAT would cost $50,000! In ISLES BAY OF MONTSERRAT the average price per sq. ft. is about 32 cents. Since the average lot measures about one acre (40,000 sq. ft.) the average price
is $12,800. And yet pay only 3% down and 1% a month! Perhaps you’ll say that swift transportation is the chief reason for the sky-climbing prices elsewhere. And you’ll probably be right. Puerto Rico. Jamaica. Barbados. Antigua -they’re all jet-strip islands, quickly reached. So … here is remote Montserrat, light years from the jangle and artificiality of these popular resorts, yet only 27 miles from Antigua. Yon reach Antigua in 3 hours and 50 minutes by non-stop jet from New York and in about 4 hours from Toronto. Daily shuttle flights get you from Antigua to Mont¬serrat in 15 minutes. The complete round-trip fare from New York to Antigua is $161, every month of the year.
Please read the headline of this advertisement once again: ‘THERE ARE PRECISELY 104 VILLA SITES …” That’s all there are-104 precious lots. We couldn’t add any more if we wanted to; Nature has seen to that. And because there are only 104, and because they are all indescribably lovely. they will all soon be gone. You may count on it.
At this moment, as you read this, thousands of others are doing the same. We have released our advertising simultaneously in the United States, Canada and Great Britain to give an equal opportunity to wide audiences. And we have chosen the mail method because we know that most of you can’t pick up right off and fly to Montserrat.
Here is what we urgently advise that you do: fill out the coupon and rush it to us. We’ll immediately mail you-free and with utterly no obligation-a thick and informative portfolio which will contain a large color brochure of ISLES BAY OF MONTSERRAT and a color booklet of the Belham River Valley Golf Course: a Question and Answer fact-book covering in depth virtually every point which may occur to you (e.g. domestic help is competent and plentiful-salaries about $5 a week): even architects’ plans in color and a list of builders (the cost of a house 510-315 a sq. ft.). And in this portfolio you will find photographs from ground and sky and an immense architectural aerial plus a huge surveyor’s plat of all of ISLES BAY OF MONTSERRAT. This architectural photograph is almost precise. It will show you every one of the 104 villa sites and fully describe each one-its size, elevation, landscape, views. price. By referring to both the painting and to the plat you’ll be able to pick out and reserve the lot of your choice, almost as though you were there.
Notice the word reserve. You’ll not be asked to commit yourself. Your reservation will hold your site for 60 days. You may cancel for any reason during that period and get immediate refund of your deposit of $100. But during that time you and only you will have a tight hold on the lot of your choice.
Our portfolio will also tell you of a further guarantee: even after you’ve decided to purchase and have. begun payments you have a full year to visit Montserrat. to see your land, and request and get complete refund of every penny you’ve paid in if then you don’t like what you see.
Thank you for having read through this message. You have been privy to an instance without precedence: the offering of a limited number of villa sites of the highest order of quality-by mail. If you are an island-lover carrying around a dream of the perfect island, here it is. Have a go at it. Send at once. please, for our free portfolio. You won’t be annoyed by salesmen. we promise you.
But don’t wait. There are just 104….