Michael Ryan’s Bio

Mike Ryan Real Estate Developer in the Cayman Islands

Michael Ryan

International Luxury Real Estate Developer

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    FIN Grand Cayman real estate development

    Who is Michael Ryan?

    Michael Ryan is an international real estate developer and entrepreneur. Over a thirty-year career, he has developed luxury resort, residential and commercial projects in North America, Central America, London, Cayman Islands, and the Caribbean. Michael Ryan has developed over three million square feet of hotels, resorts, and residential and commercial properties worldwide, worth more than three billion dollars.

    Young Michael Ryan, real estate developer

    His Early Life

    Michael Ryan has always been a builder from a family of builders. 

    He was born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and attended Hillfield Stratharallen Preparatory School. When Michael Ryan was 14 years old, he began to carve his destiny as an entrepreneur and developer by creating his first construction company during summer breaks, hiring friends to work on easy projects such as house painting and repairs.

    A few years later, he studied medieval literature and philosophy at McGill University and fell in love with extreme sports like hang-gliding, flying, and mountain climbing. He even spent some time on a whale research vessel.

    Before creating his own company and establishing himself as one of the world’s premier luxury real estate developers, he worked in Toronto, Quebec, and Europe on projects such as a marina development, a townhouse project, and as general manager of the famous ski resort Mont Ste Anne. These experiences helped him realize the potential of providing luxury services in resort and residential developments.

    Cacique del mar, real estate development by Michael Ryan

    Beginnings in international real estate development

    After that period of his life, Michael Ryan had the idea of “combining all the services and amenities of a fully-staffed luxury private estate into a master-planned residential development, working with the world’s top brands, without the hassle of managing it, and at a fraction of the expense, would create value and demand for new projects.” This concept has become one of the most relevant tendencies in resort development worldwide.

    So in the late 1980s, Michael Ryan searched the Caribbean, Europe, the Mediterranean, and Southeast Asia for a couple of years to find the ideal location to implement his idea. Finally, he decided Costa Rica offered the best mix of opportunity and risk. There, the first construction by Michael Ryan developed the infrastructure for the first destination resort: the 600-acre Cacique del Mar.

    Michael Ryan Takes The Cayman Islands

    When you work hard and are passionate about your work, the universe occasionally smiles at you. That’s how it was for Michael Ryan. In 1997, he was developing the Cacique del Mar project in Costa Rica when a fortuitous coincidence surfaced: an opportunity to develop a resort in the Cayman Islands with The Ritz-Carlton Hotels LLC. 

    That’s when things got interesting. The Ritz-Carlton, eager to expand in the Caribbean, was looking for someone with offshore development experience. When the company expressed a willingness to financially back a potential resort in Grand Cayman, Michael Ryan signed on as a developer. 

    Pool at FIN Grand Cayman, Michael Ryan development

    He had already moved his entire family to Costa Rica, and now they were coming over to Grand Cayman to become involved on a minute-by-minute basis to bring the project to life.  When asked about his motivation for moving to Costa Rica and then Grand Cayman, he said: “I can’t stand sitting in an office all day answering emails! you to be on-site and involved to make things happen.”

    Despite hurricanes and other headwinds, the Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman and The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman had their Gala opening in December 2005. Thanks substantially to Michael Ryan’s experience and ability to hold on, insist, and persevere, it exceeded even the highest expectations.

    What is so special about the Cayman Islands is evident in Michael Ryan’s decision to take on this project, recognizing its unique opportunities. This renowned destination not only boasts breathtaking natural beauty but also provides a conducive environment for luxury real estate development. Michael Ryan’s initiative underscores the island’s allure as a premier location for visionary ventures, highlighting its status as a coveted destination for those seeking unparalleled experiences in a tropical paradise.

    What is so special about the Cayman Islands?

    The Cayman Islands stand as an unrivaled destination for luxury real estate development. With pristine beaches, a stable government, and a favorable tax environment, it offers an ideal setting for crafting exclusive residences. Developers have the opportunity to create bespoke properties that epitomize opulence, from award-winning architecture to curated lifestyle amenities. 

    Proximity to existing luxury properties and placemaking principles ensure each project seamlessly integrates into the island’s prestigious landscape, offering an unparalleled living experience for discerning clientele. In summary, the Cayman Islands combine natural beauty, investment incentives, and luxurious amenities to establish themselves as a premier destination for luxury real estate ventures.

    The Ritz Carlton a Michael Ryan development

    Silverfin Development Company

    Michael Ryan’s company, Silverfin Development, is a luxury real estate developer that caters to the most discerning clientele. Founded by Michael Ryan himself in 2011, Silverfin Development has grown over the years to include projects in the Cayman Islands, London, and worldwide.

    The company has a reputation for excellence in design and quality of service, as well as an unwavering commitment to excellence and innovation. Silverfin develops and operates projects in the Cayman Islands, and its principals develop and advise on global projects.

    Silverfin principals have partnered in projects with The Ritz-Carlton, Credit Suisse, Royal Bank of Scotland, Mitsui Sumitomo, former United States Secretary of the Treasury John W. Snow, Fosun, Aviva, Eric Ripert, Greg Norman, Nick Bollettieri, La Prairie, and Jean-Michel Cousteau.


    Michael Ryan constructions are known for their innovative approach to luxury real estate development and their dedication to the environment. His team works tirelessly to ensure that every detail of each project is carefully considered and executed with the utmost care.

    Prisma a Michael Ryan luxury real estate development
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    Prisma is Michael Ryan’s latest project in the making. Prisma is set to be a residential, retail, and commercial development that will redefine the Crystal Harbour community.

    FIN Grand Cayman, Michael Ryan development
    FIN Grand Cayman
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    FIN Grand Cayman is a 44-unit private luxury residential development on over two acres of oceanfront land in George Town, Grand Cayman. Michael Ryan partnered with longtime local partner Dale Crighton and other international partners, including Mantis, Linley, SPPARC, and Guy Harvey, to develop this project.

    Lloyds Chambers
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    A 230,000-square-foot office building acquired by Michael Ryan and his partners John Snow and Fosun in 2013, Hermes fully leased it.

    Michael Ryan took this prime site behind the Tower of London. He crafted a redevelopment scheme called The Butterfly, virtually doubling the square footage while maintaining critical historical view lines.

    The Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman Resort
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    The Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman is a luxury hotel located on Seven Mile Beach in the Cayman Islands. It was opened in 2005 and renovated in 2021.

    The hotel comprises 365 rooms/suites and 93 private residences. It consists of two main buildings: the Waterway, which houses the lobby, restaurants, spa, and guest rooms facing the lagoon and golf course, and a separate U-shaped complex of rooms and residential suites overlooking a pool and restaurants facing the ocean.

    The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman Resort
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    The Residences are ninety-three luxury-serviced oceanfront residences on the most expansive stretch of Seven Mile Beach in Georgetown, Cayman Islands.

    Exclusive Island
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    He developed sixteen waterfront residences with private beaches and landing areas for Exclusive Resorts in 2006. It is their number one most requested destination in the world.

    The DeckHouses
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    The DeckHouses are Nineteen private waterfront homes that merge the appeal of a remote island with the comforts of a world-class luxury resort.

    La Costa
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    La Costa is a 101 Villa development project overlooking Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. It was the first stand-alone villa project in Costa Rica to incorporate private plunge pools and hotel services within a destination resort environment.

    Cacique del Mar
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    Cacique Del Mar is a 600-acre master planned destination resort purchased from former Costa Rican President Daniel Odube, following his vision of bringing the benefits of sustainable tourism development to rural areas of Costa Rica. A balanced, environmentally sustainable approach was taken to the master plan and the design process.


    Environmental Stewardship

    Michael Ryan has always lived on and felt connected to the water. His passion for sailing started when he fixed up an old Optimist he found in the woods of Georgian Bay to compete in a regatta when he was seven years old and culminated with his trip around the world in 2007/8 with his family, which won the Super Yacht Voyager’ award in 2010.

    Expanding on his devotion to protecting the ocean environment, he initiated The Ambassadors of the Environment program at The Ritz-Carlton in 2005, subsequently becoming the exclusive partner with Ritz-Carlton globally.

    FIN is also the first real estate development in the region to undertake the funding of a coral reef monitoring and restoration program and the first to create continued long-term funding by contributing 1% of its monthly strata fees. Creating a new model for private-public conservation efforts in coastal environments and establishing a trademark of a Mike Ryan construction.

    Sea lover and adventurous soul

    Michael Ryan might be the founder of a successful real estate development company that has seen him build multiple luxury developments, but he isn’t just a businessman. He’s also an avid adventurer passionate about pushing boundaries and exploring new frontiers.

    He’s made it his mission to explore different cultures, experience new things, and meet interesting people—and he’s done so by traveling around the world on his yacht, climbing Denali (Mount McKinley) in Alaska, surfing in Nazaré, Portugal, and exploring various off-the-beaten-path areas around the world.

    Leading a team up Denali (formerly known as Mount McKinley) in 1990 allowed Michael Ryan’s love of the outdoors to combine with a desire to push boundaries. 

    This adventure was followed by successful trips to Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia in 1992, with summits on Chimborazo at 20,549 feet above sea level (the tallest point in the world when measured from the earth’s center) and on Huayna Potosi at 19,974 feet.

    Michael Ryan is also an avid surfer. He created a surfing team called the Surf3G with international sailor Nick Moloney. Their goal is to tackle the waves in Nazaré, Portugal, explore the limits of aging athletes, and, in an initiative led by Nick Moloney, advocate for a more environmentally balanced surfing industry.