Navy Auctions Multimillion Dollar Puerto Rico Properties Online

Want to own a piece of Puerto Rico? The U.S. Navy might be able to help – if you have at least $10 million.

The Navy is trying to find buyers for more than 2,000 acres overlooking the Caribbean in Puerto Rico.

The land was part of the former Naval Station Roosevelt Roads, once the hub of U.S. military operations in the Caribbean. Roosevelt Roads closed in 2004, shortly after the Navy stopped using nearby Vieques as a bombing range.

An online auction started Monday and is expected to take at least three days. The minimum bid was $10 million for one parcel of nearly 500 acres. Another parcel of more than 1,500 acres is selling for a minimum of $30 million.

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The Navy hopes to attract real estate developers interested in taking advantage of the area’s natural beauty and turn it into a tourist resort destination, according to Patrick Remolacio, Managing Director of Colliers International Government Advisory Services, which is advising the Navy on the sale.

“It’s a very unique location,” Remolacio said of the land, which sits about 40 miles southeast of the island’s capital of San Juan. “There isn’t another location like it in the Caribbean basin.”

While it may seem unusual to offer multimillion dollar properties for sale online, Remolacio said the Web offers convenience and makes for more competitive bids.

“This is an auction that will allow people to fight to the death,” Remolacio told Fox News Latino, saying that the online format allows prospective buyers to reevaluate their bids and keep upping the ante for days. “You couldn’t do that in a live auction that takes place in one particular day.”

The area benefits from infrastructure left behind by the military.

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One of the parcels already has a functioning airport capable of landing heavy commercial aircraft, Remolacio said. The bay that once harbored Navy vessels could one day become a port-of-call for cruiseliners.

Puerto Rico's government has acquired surrounding land and has big development plans that include the construction of a casino.

Contains reporting by the Associated Press.

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