By David Hammond, International Living
Did you ever visit a new place and get a good feeling about it right off the bat?
I did, when I recently explored Sabaneta, a municipality just a few miles south of Medellin, Colombia. And in addition to the good feeling, I found the best new-condo deals I know of on the continent…and I’ve investigated property all around South America, from Uruguay to Bolivia to Chile.
As the nearby city of Medellin grows, construction land in popular neighborhoods is harder to find. So, many builders are turning their attention to Sabaneta—a close-by location, attractive to homebuyers, with the land and infrastructure to support new development.
In Sabaneta, you’ll find a year-round warm climate and the opportunity to live a comfortable life—with affordable healthcare—for a fraction of the cost back home. You’ll also find plenty of well-stocked grocery markets, restaurants, and two shopping malls with movie theaters. And Sabaneta is connected to Medellin, and the rest of the metropolitan area, by a modern above-ground metro train.
Sabaneta is a small municipality of about six-square miles with a population of 51,000. Once an agricultural area, some of the nearby farms go back more than 250 years. Today, Sabaneta is a place where you’ll find remnants from times past within blocks of modern development.
In the principal plaza, you’ll find brick planters with gray stone accents, a variety of trees, and a simple three-tiered fountain. At the head of the plaza stands a white church with a steeple. On the side, you’ll see colorful market stalls and sidewalk cafes. On weekends, people from Medellin visit Sabaneta’s plaza area to relax and connect with the area’s heritage.
You can find good real estate deals…even near this picturesque part of town. A two-bedroom, two-bathroom, third-story condo, just two blocks from the plaza, is for sale. Inside, you’ll find white tile floors and a kitchenette with a granite countertop. The list price is $51,605.
Just beyond the cozy tree-lined streets near the plaza, you’ll see residential towers against the skyline. Some stand 20-stories tall, many completed, and others in various stages of construction.
What can your money buy in this area of new development? A new, two-bedroom, two-bathroom unit with a balcony, in a building with a community gym and swimming pool, is listed for $62,900. Inside you’ll find tile floors in the living area and bathroom, laminate flooring in the bedrooms, and modern fixtures in the kitchen and bathrooms. Plus, it comes with a garage space.
On the higher end, you can get a new, three-bedroom, three-bathroom luxury condo that includes sections of floor-to-ceiling glass, a balcony, and a master suite with a walk-in closet. All this, and two garage spaces, will cost you $130,740. And the building amenities here include an infinity-edge pool, gym, squash court, and social area.
Often when I come upon a Latin American spot with so much going for it, I learn that prices have already gone up. I’m used to the familiar story: “You should have been here 10 years ago, it was a bargain, then.” But not this time.
So, if you’re among those considering the Medellin area as a retirement destination, check out Sabaneta.
Then, in 2026, you’ll likely be the one telling newcomers, “You should have been here 10 years ago.”

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