Century 21 Aruba

Leading the Way in Real Estate with Innovation and Diversity


Leveraging technology, embracing diversity and building strategic partnerships to dominate the island’s real estate market.

Century 21 Aruba, a premier name in the island’s real estate sector, has grown into a formidable player over the past two decades. The company, initially founded by a previous owner with a partner, has expanded significantly under the leadership of Roger Schimmel and Douglas Rey, both managing directors and co-owners of the company. With a team of around ten dedicated employees, Century 21 Aruba approaches the competitive real estate market with agility and strategic foresight.

Roger Schimmel, Broker/Owner

Roger Schimmel recounts, “I took over shares from the former owner who established the company about 22 years ago. Over the years, the company grew steadily. Douglas has been with the company a year and a half longer than I have, and together, we’ve been very involved, especially over the last five years.”

In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, Century 21 Aruba faced unique challenges and opportunities. Rey describes this period as transformative: “For the past few years, especially after Covid, it has been very successful. The market saw significant changes, and demand increased. We had to adapt our strategies and face more competition from other brokers on the island. But we adapted well. We are one of the largest real estate companies here, leveraging the opportunities that arose post-Covid to our advantage and continuing to expand.”

Despite being part of a global franchise, Century 21, Aruba maintains significant autonomy. Rey explains, “We have certain guidelines as a franchisee, but we’ve enhanced them by tailoring our approach to the local market. Our marketing and client service are very aggressive, which sets us apart from many competitors.”

He elaborates on their marketing tactics: “Our agents are easily recognizable with their branded logo uniforms. We have prominent billboards and signs at most of our listings. A couple of years ago, we completely rebranded and remodeled our office to meet new standards, ensuring our brand is highly visible on the island.”

Schimmel adds to this, emphasizing their franchise relationship’s supportive yet flexible nature: “The philosophy with Century 21 is that they are there if we need them. We can run our business in a way that works best for the Aruba environment. It’s a relationship that works very well for us.”

Navigating the Unique Aruba Market

Century 21 Aruba thrives by understanding and adapting to the distinctive aspects of the local real estate market. This agility has been crucial, particularly in the post-COVID era, when new opportunities emerged and market dynamics shifted dramatically.

Schimmel explains, “After Covid, we saw a huge increase in demand, especially from clients in the US and Canada. They were confined to small apartments or houses, and coming to Aruba allowed them to enjoy the beach or a backyard pool. This created a massive demand in the market.” The pandemic also highlighted the potential of remote work, encouraging longer stays and different approaches to client engagement.

Rey highlights the accessibility and attractiveness of the Aruban market to foreign buyers: “The ease of daily flights from North America and Canada attracts many clients. As a foreigner, you can own property here without major restrictions. Once you own a property, you’re legally allowed to stay up to 180 days a year, which is very appealing.” Aruba being outside the hurricane belt also offers a significant advantage, providing stable, sunny weather year-round.

Tais Schimmel, Marketing Coordinator

Rey continues, emphasizing the investment potential: “Aruba is a highly touristic island, which creates excellent opportunities for investors. Properties can be rented out, generating a substantial rental income.” The island’s tourism-driven economy ensures a steady stream of potential renters, making real estate investment particularly lucrative.

Schimmel adds a broader perspective, noting Aruba’s unique political and economic context: “We have our government, central bank, and currency, but we’re also part of the Dutch Kingdom. This connection proved crucial during COVID-19 when tourism, our main economic driver, stopped. The Dutch government provided financial assistance, ensuring economic stability. This aspect is reassuring for our investors, highlighting the island’s resilience and economic backing.”

The Array of Properties and Client Relationships

Century 21 Aruba offers an extensive selection of properties for both local and international buyers. This diversity reflects the company’s commitment to meeting varied client needs and preferences, ranging from luxurious oceanfront condos to more affordable inland homes.

Schimmel details, “We cater to local and international markets. The international market is more interested in oceanfront properties, especially condos with famous million-dollar views and the ocean’s multiple shades of blue. We offer everything from exclusive penthouses to smaller condos for those with a modest budget.”

Additionally, Century 21 Aruba serves the local market with properties that are generally more inland and less extravagant but still of high quality. The variety also extends to high-end properties in renowned gated communities like Tierra del Sol, a golf course community with luxurious homes. “Our portfolio includes everything from high-end estates to budget-friendly condos, ensuring something for everyone,” Schimmel states.

Building Strong Client Relationships

Century 21 Aruba’s real estate process transcends mere transactions. It’s about forging meaningful connections with clients, which the company views as central to its approach. Rey explains how this has impacted their business.

“Generally, it’s a mix of transactional and relational approaches. Some clients are very business-minded, viewing their purchases purely as investments. Others are families with whom we develop a more familiar bond through the property purchasing process. While some clients make quick decisions, others may take months or even years to find the right property. Our service, friendliness, and company philosophy aim to foster both types of relationships, depending on the client.”

Schimmel echoes this sentiment, emphasizing the importance of client relationships over sheer business volume. “We don’t focus on being the largest company where the bottom line is the main objective. We prefer to be a smaller company with professional agents who build client relationships. I’ve been in sales for many years, and maintaining good relationships is beneficial even if they don’t immediately lead to sales. A client who trusts you may refer you to friends or family. Being transparent and honest with our advice is key, as well as building trust and leading to long-term relationships.”

Embracing Technology in Real Estate

Douglas Rey, Broker/Owner

Century 21 Aruba has recognized the crucial role of technology in the ever-evolving real estate market. Integrating advanced tech tools has revolutionized how properties are marketed and sold, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Taís Schimmel, marketing coordinator at the company, reveals, “Before Covid, we didn’t feel the need to incorporate much technology into how we promoted our properties or conducted sales. But during Covid, with travel restrictions, we started incorporating video calls, property videos, and virtual tours.” This shift allowed clients to view and even purchase properties remotely, a trend that has continued to grow. “We’ve noticed that virtual tours and 3D property showcases have succeeded. Many clients have purchased properties just from seeing a video or through video call,” she adds, highlighting the ongoing improvements in their digital strategies.

The adoption of drones and AI has further enhanced their marketing efforts. Taís explains, “We invest in high-quality imagery and videos, including drone pictures. This helps clients clearly understand the property’s location and surroundings.” These visual tools showcase properties and provide a comprehensive view of the area, enhancing the buying experience.

“We have a robust marketing approach, leveraging the international Century 21 brand while also focusing on local strategies,” Taís says. The company utilizes social media, online advertising, email marketing, and website optimization. The company also maintains a visible presence with billboards and signage across the island. “We try not to overwhelm clients but focus on quality marketing strategies,” she notes, emphasizing the importance of a balanced approach in a competitive market.

Promoting Sustainability

In line with global trends, Century 21 Aruba is also promoting intelligent and sustainable properties. Schimmel notes, “It’s one of the trends we see and follow. We are privileged in Aruba, which has abundant wind and sun, which helps with sustainability and green energy.” Solar panels are a growing trend, and the company collaborates with experienced partners to offer clients the best options for building or renovating properties with sustainable features. “This is a very nice development, and we ensure our clients have access to the best options for incorporating green energy into their homes,” he adds, highlighting the importance of sustainability in modern real estate.

Embracing Diversity and Innovation

The company also excels in its real estate offerings and in creating an inclusive and forward-thinking work environment through its commitment to diversity and innovation, which is evident in its workforce composition and future strategic plans.

Rey elaborates on their inclusive approach: “There is no specific direction we strive for at the office, but we aim for diversity. Currently, it’s about 60% women and 40% men. This mix creates a pleasant work environment for all our employees and agents. The real estate industry benefits from having a variety of agents, as different clients may prefer different types of agents.” He emphasizes the importance of human connection in fostering positive client relationships, a central tenet of their business philosophy.

Schimmel highlights this diversity: “Aruba is home to around 80 nationalities, and our company reflects that societal mix. At this table, we have three nationalities—I’m Dutch, Taís is Aruban-born, and Douglas is from the US. Diversity is not a heavily weighted issue when filling vacancies; we prioritize communication skills and experience. Whether the candidate is a man, woman, or from any background, it doesn’t matter, and this approach works very well for us.”

Future-Focused Strategy

Looking ahead, Century 21 Aruba is keen on leveraging technology and forming strategic alliances to stay competitive and enhance its services.

Taís highlights the role of technology in its vision: “Technology is advancing rapidly, and we aim to innovate and adapt by incorporating it into our marketing strategy. Staying ahead of the competition is crucial.”

Schimmel further explains the company’s strategic priorities: “Our priority right now is not to grow in terms of employee numbers but to focus on developing the knowledge and experience of our current team. We’re also working on strategic alliances with partners to expand our reach into other areas, which can benefit both companies and diversify our portfolio.”

Rey adds that their community involvement is also a key focus: “In the next 18 months, we’re not necessarily looking to expand internally but to go more strategic with the local community. We aim to create more awareness about Century 21 as a top real estate company and community supporter.”

These efforts demonstrate Century 21 Aruba’s commitment to excellence in its professional services and workplace environment. By embracing diversity, focusing on technology, and staying engaged with the community, Century 21 Aruba continues to solidify its position as a leading real estate company in Aruba.


Century 21 Aruba

What: A premier real estate agency specializing in Aruba’s diverse property offerings and innovative market strategies.

Where: Aruba

Website: https://century21aruba.com/en/


ENNIA – www.ennia.com

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