Longer summers boosting tourism and property market in Costa Blanca

Longer summers boosting tourism and property market in Costa Blanca

  • Alicante airport high season extended to December (Aena)
  • Longer summers impacting tourism & second home ownership (Ideal Homes International)
  • Autumn 2016 to be Spain’s 3rd warmest in 50 years (AEMET)
  • British visitor numbers to Spain up 13% (National Statistics Institute)


As Spain reports both record tourism numbers and positive movement in the property market, the impact of the longer summers experienced as a result of climate change on the country’s real estate is not to be underestimated, Spanish property expert Chris White has revealed.


As Founding Director of leading estate agency Ideal Homes International, White has closely monitored the Spanish property market for a number of years. Over that time, he has seen the high season in the Costa Blanca gradually extended until later and later into the year.


He comments,


“One of the key reasons that British buyers love Spain is the wonderful weather. Being able to pack your flip-flops and escape the UK climate after such a short flight makes Spain perfect as a holiday home destination for those who live in the UK.


“It’s a particularly appealing destination at this time of year, as the weather gets colder back in Blighty and the nights draw in. What’s interesting in terms of recent years is the visible effect longer summers are having when it comes to both tourism and second home ownership in Spain – in short, the high season is getting longer as the world warms up.”


Alicante Airport’s management company, Aena, agrees. The company has announced the extension of its high season to December this year, in recognition of booming passenger demand. The airport has superseded all expectations this summer and is now on track to see more than 3 million passengers pass through from September to December. The figure represents an increase of 15% over the corresponding period last year. Many European airlines are now using larger, transatlantic aircraft on European routes as a result of the increased demand, with the larger jets transporting over 300 passengers per flight.


Figures from the National Statistics Institute reveal that Alicante’s experience is being mirrored across Spain. Visitor numbers increased by 10.1% for January to August 2016 compared with the same period the year before, with a total of 52.5 million tourists enjoying the delights of the Spanish climate.


British numbers in particular were up – by 13% according to the latest data. The figures have also shown that tourist numbers increased by 5.8% in August alone, as the record Spanish season continues.


The property market is also heating up. Ministry of Development figures show all 17 autonomous communities of Spain saw the number of property transactions rise in the second quarter of 2016. They also saw transaction numbers increase in all regions for the full year to June 2016, up 13.2% compared to the year before.


“There is a direct and traceable correlation between visitor numbers and the number of properties bought by overseas buyers in many areas of Spain,” comments Ideal Homes International’s Chris White. “So longer, warmer summers – and autumns –mean more visitors and more interest in property from those visitors. They also mean more enjoyment of Spain’s fabulous beaches and warm coastal waters.”


State meteorological agency AEMET has confirmed this autumn is expected to be the third hottest in over 50 years. Meanwhile figures from the last three years have shown that early September has been the hottest part of the year, with temperatures on average 1.2 degrees above the average for July and August. Temperatures this September were above 40 degrees Celsius.


For those visitors keen to pick up a second home in the Spanish sunshine, Costa Blanca properties offer outstanding value. Architect Ricardo Bofill’s lovely apartments just 50m from the sea in Calpe, which come complete with rooftop pool, are available for €181,000 for a three-bedroom home.


The Costa Blanca also has plenty of luxurious villas to tempt buyers with larger wallets. This outstanding home has six bedrooms, with the master bedroom enjoying a balcony with views to the sea. There’s also a pool, terrace with wood burning stove, fully equipped gymnasium with changing rooms and showers, games room and tennis court.


For further details, call Ideal Homes International on 0800 133 7644, email info@idealhomesinternational.co.uk or visit www.idealhomesinternational.co.uk.

International appeal draws tourists and second home buyers alike to Cyprus

International appeal draws tourists and second home buyers alike to Cyprus

  • Tourist arrivals up 8.5% in July (Cystat)
  • Property sales up 22% in July (Dept of Land and Surveys)
  • Two bedroom house with pool in Paphos just €110k (Ideal Homes International)

The Cyprus tourism sector is booming, with statistical service Cystat reporting an 8.5% increase in arrivals in July, when compared with a year earlier. Flush with the strength of sterling, British visitors were up 22.5%, but arrivals from Greece and Israel also played an important role.

According to the Cystat figures, arrivals from Greece in July were up by a staggering 55.8% year on year. Israeli visitor numbers also shot up, increasing by 65.0% between July 2014 and July 2015. The figures take the total number of tourists to visit Cyprus so far this year to 1,450,427.

In tandem with the rising visitor numbers, local estate agent Ideal Homes International has received a record-breaking number of enquiries so far this year, with sales to UK buyers increasing noticeably.

“Cyprus is attracting keen interest from property buyers right now, as well as from tourists,” comments Ideal Homes International’s Founding Director Chris White. “UK buyers are particularly excited about what they can get for their money, given the strength of the pound so far this year.

“Cyprus’ historical relationship with the UK means that there are many aspects of life there that UK buyers feel comfortable with – everything from similar legal systems to driving on the left. Contracts are written in English and everyone speaks English too, which creates a sense of familiarity for UK buyers.”

As well as its beautiful scenery and glorious sunshine, Cyprus has just been ranked as the world’s 5th safest country by ValuePenguin, after an extensive data-crunching exercise. For countries with populations of fewer than five million, Cyprus took the number one safest country spot.

Cyprus has always been a firm favourite for the British buying overseas with Paphos, on the island’s west coast, proving particularly popular. Now, the exchange rate has meant that buyers are increasingly keen to snap up holiday home bargains, according to the Ideal Homes International team.

“The strength of sterling against the euro this year has definitely furthered British interest in second home ownership in Cyprus,” observes Chris White. “It has also encouraged many buyers to look seriously at Cyprus as somewhere to live fulltime.”

Retirees are encouraged by Cyprus’ many tax incentives and in particular by the fact that private pensions are taxed at just 5%. This can mean serious savings for many families, who can make their money go further as a result of a new life in the Cypriot sunshine. The tax environment is also beneficial to those looking to open a business in Cyprus.

According to official figures from the Department of Lands and Surveys, the number of property sales in Cyprus rose by 22% in July when compared with a year earlier. In Paphos, the number of sales was 30% higher than in July 2014, demonstrating the area’s increasing popularity.

It’s not surprising when you consider what is on offer. €110,000 is sufficient to purchase a semi-detached, modern, two bedroom house with shared pool in Paphos, just seven minutes’ walk from the sea. €179,000 will stretch to a three bedroom penthouse apartment with L-shaped balcony, large shared pool and sea and mountain views.

Those considering taking advantage of the lowest prices in a decade are invited to attend the Overseas Property Show, which will be touring the UK over the coming months. Tickets are free and experts from Ideal Homes International will be on hand to offer advice and guidance at every event.

For further details call Ideal Homes International on 01543 325316 or 07527 301861, or visit www.idealhomesinternational.co.uk

Desert island bricks – luxury, seclusion and sea views prove a winning combination

Desert island bricks – luxury, seclusion and sea views prove a winning combination

Cyprus Spain , ,
  • Private jet flights to islands increase 69% in past 10 years (NetJets)
  • Online island property viewings up 21% in 2014 (Knight Frank)
  • Demand for affordable and luxury properties on a par (Kyero.com)

Island living is on the up. According to the latest Island Report from Knight Frank, luxury, seclusion and sea views are inspiring many buyers to opt for an island second home rather than one on the mainland.

The report challenges the perceptions about island property ownership. It is no longer something enjoyed only by high net worth individuals, though of course they play their part. In fact, data from NetJets has shown a 69% increase in private jet flights to island destinations between 2004 and 2014, with the Balearic Islands of Ibiza and Mallorca each registering an increase of 100%.

But even for those buyers limited to airfares closer to the EasyJet price range, island property ownership is an affordable and exciting prospect. Martin Dell, Founder of Kyero.com, which covers both sales and rentals of Spanish island properties, comments,

“Ibiza is really popular at the moment and presents an interesting case study in terms of property purchases. There’s a really even split between enquiries for luxury properties costing €500k to €1m and those at the more affordable end of the market (€150k to €200k). The figures demonstrate the broadening appeal that island property ownership has – it is increasingly seen as an achievable goal that everyone can aspire to.”

Issue 24 of the quarterly Kyero.com Enquiry Report, covering April to June 2015, shows just how even the split is, with 21% of Ibiza enquiries in the €150k to €200k price range, compared with 20% in the €500k to €1m bracket.

Ibiza was one of the islands highlighted in the Knight Frank Island Report as well, with tourists numbers there reported to have risen 12% in 2014. Prices for luxury residential properties there rose by 5% over the course of last year and Knight Frank’s Ibiza property website viewings shot up by 11% in Q1 2015, compared with the previous quarter.

Mallorca viewings have also risen sharply, with Knight Frank reporting a 31% surge in traffic during Q1 2015. The largest of the Balearics and the setting of ITV’s recent ‘Love Island’ series, Mallorca offers just the right combination of sea, sand and seclusion to tempt holiday home buyers. Marc Pritchard, Sales and Marketing Director of leading Spanish homebuilder Taylor Wimpey España was drawn in by the island’s charms and has now lived there for more than 25 years. He comments,

“Mallorca’s appeal lies not just in its fabulous scenery and pristine beaches, but also in its connectivity. It has year-round flights to the UK and other European destinations, which make it an ideal spot for a second home. It also benefits from some good international schools and top-range facilities, just as Ibiza does. Of course, the exchange rate right now adds to its attractions as well so far as UK buyers are concerned, with purchasers able to get a lot more for their money.”

For €230,000, for example, buyers can pick up a stunning property at Cala Anguila II. With direct beach access, delightful sea views, a sizeable communal pool and prettily designed gardens, the two and three bedroom apartments provide luxurious island homes for buyers looking to escape to the serenity of Mallorca.

Beyond the Balearics, Cyprus is a popular island location for second homes, particularly with UK-based buyers. The third largest and third most populous of the Mediterranean islands, Cyprus has seen some 28% of its property market made up of overseas buyers, according to the June Land Registry figures. Paphos, on the west coast, is one of the most popular areas, with sales there increasing by 20% in June according to the Land Registry data.

Cyprus offers some incredible properties and it is easy to see why so many overseas buyers seek out this island location for their second home. This four bedroom, three bathroom villa with infinity pool at Alexander Heights, in the Aphrodite Hills, is available for a cool €2,797,501. The careful design has ensured that each villa at the development enjoys its own private landscaped garden, with spectacular views out over the sea, affording a high degree of privacy. As well as the heated pool, the villa benefits from a Jacuzzi and a versatile basement area that can be used as an additional bedroom, games room, TV room or even have a sauna installed.

According to Knight Frank, online viewings of its island-based properties increased by 21% in 2014 and the leap in interest looks set to carry through to 2015, as increasing numbers of second home buyers leave the mainland behind in their search for the ultimate island getaway.

For more information please contact:

Kyero.com: www.kyero.com 

Taylor Wimpey España: +44 08000 121 020 or www.taylorwimpeyspain.com. Those residing outside of the UK should call 0034 971 70 69 72.

Ideal Homes International: +44 1543 325316 or www.idealhomesinternational.co.uk

Med Madness! Perfect properties in Europe’s top tourism hotspot

Med Madness! Perfect properties in Europe’s top tourism hotspot

Albania Cyprus Italy Spain , , , ,
  • 1 in 3 tourists goes to the Med (UNWTO)
  • 90% of UK consumers travel to Europe more than they did 10 years ago (European Consumer Network)
  • Med tourists set to hit 500 million by 2030 (UNWTO)

The soft sands and warm waters of the Mediterranean are known around the world, accounting for one of every three international tourist arrivals globally, according to the UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO).

UNTWO’s research projects that the area will attract more than 500 million visitors annually by 2030, while the European Consumer Network has found that 90% of UK consumers are travelling to Europe more than they did 10 years ago. It makes a holiday home on the Med an attractive investment prospect for those looking to own a second home that can be used for holidays but that also has the potential to generate an income.

The classic Mediterranean destinations are all worthy of consideration when it comes to second home ownership. Italy offers abundant choice, while Spain and Cyprus have large expat communities that make retiring there an easy option for the future. Albania is the rising star of the Med locations, with some excellent properties currently attracting attention.

In Spain, the property market in coastal areas is picking up at a promising pace, as buyers look to take advantage of the bottomed out market before prices rise. Prices on the Mediterranean coast have already risen by 1.5% this year, according to valuation firm Tinsa. Upmarket areas such as Marbella and the surrounding towns are benefitting from the uptick, with new build developments such as Jade Beach, from leading Spanish homebuilder Taylor Wimpey España attracting those looking to own a prestigious property within just 100 meters of the seafront promenade leading to Puerto Banus. Prices start at €450,000.

“Previously owned properties are also selling well along Spain’s lengthy Mediterranean coastline,” confirms Martin Dell, Director of property portal Kyero.com, which offers property sales, holiday rentals and long-term rentals across Spain. “Menorca has some fantastic properties for sale right now, like this four bed, four bath villa with pool for €895,000. It’s the ideal second home for someone looking to own a fabulous holiday property that also has great rental potential.”

Taylor Wimpey España is also keyed in to the potential of the Balearic Islands when it comes to holiday home ownership. Sales and Marketing Director Marc Pritchard comments,

“Mallorca is a great play to buy and has everything from key ready apartments at developments like Cala Magrana III to new build seafront houses like those at Cala Magrana Mar. Mallorca has so much to offer in terms of both land and sea-based activities – it is one of the Med’s most enchanting destinations.”

Over in Italy, the Le Marche region’s coastline has been attracting considerable attention. Le Marche is now the area with the third highest number of Blue Flag beaches in Italy and is becoming increasingly known to international visitors for its clean, safe waters and powder-soft sands. Casa Tre Archi, the latest luxury fractional ownership holiday home from family-run company Appassionata, provides the perfect base for exploring the wonders of the Italian coastline. Fractions are available from £75,000.

Across the Adriatic Sea (an arm of the Mediterranean) from Italy is Albania, which is rapidly becoming one of the Eastern Med’s most exciting holiday home destinations. The five star luxury Lalzit Bay Resort and Spa offers everything from apartments with generous balconies to frontline villas with their own pools, with property reservation available for just €500. As well as the resort’s host of features (landscaped gardens, kids’ club, gymnasium, indoor swimming pool, medical centre, shops, library, restaurants and bars), owners can enjoy 300m of prime beach frontage, exclusively for use by Lalzit Bay Resort and Spa residents.

Cyprus is another popular Mediterranean destination for second home ownership, with a wide range of properties to tempt buyers looking for a blend of tasteful style and prime location, whatever their budget. At the higher end of the market, €868,000 is sufficient to purchase a two bedroom, two bathroom semi-detached villa with pool and stunning sea views at the prestigious Aphrodite Hills resort in Pafos. Chris White of Ideal Homes International comments,

“Cyprus is an incredibly popular location on the Med for second home owners. The climate is excellent and the beaches simply fantastic. With several international influences, the island has developed a unique and enticing cuisine and cities such as Pafos have a rich architectural heritage, along with ‘living history’ archaeological sites like the Tombs of the Kings. From quick holidays to longer-term stays, it is a perfect location for those looking to buy property overseas.”

For more information please contact:

Taylor Wimpey España: +44 08000 121 020 or www.taylorwimpeyspain.com. Those residing outside of the UK should call 0034 971 70 69 72.

Kyero: www.kyero.com

Appassionata: +39 33154 13225 or www.appassionata.com

Lalzit Bay Resort & Spa: +44 845 125 8600 or www.lalzitbay.com

Ideal Homes International: +44 1543 326315 or www.idealhomesinternational.co.uk

Overseas Property Show set to take Herts by storm this summer!

Overseas Property Show set to take Herts by storm this summer!

  • Overseas Property Show coming to Watford, 4th & 5th July 2015
  • Cyprus is new addition to list of destinations for this year’s show
  • Free tickets available at theoverseaspropertyshow.com

Hertfordshire residents are gearing up for the arrival of the much-anticipated Overseas Property Show this July, with the Watford show tour dates just announced.

The Overseas Property Show is one of the most respected shows in the industry and has proven itself invaluable over the years as a means of connecting buyers with their dream homes abroad. The first six shows held in 2014 attracted more than 3,000 visitors, while the 2015 tour has already got off to a bumper start with the first show in Surrey at the end of June.

The Hertfordshire Overseas Property Show will take place at the Hilton Watford Hotel on Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th July. The show provides visitors with access to experts on buying and owning property in Portugal, Cyprus, Spain, Italy and the US. It is ideal for everyone, from those dreaming of owning property abroad to those with a string of holiday homes and rental properties, looking to add to their portfolio.

The free-to-attend Overseas Property Show includes everything from holiday apartments to retirement villas and primary residences, with experts on hand to answer questions and discuss the merits of buying in their country of expertise.

Tickets are free and available at www.theoverseaspropertyshow.com.

Chris White, Founding Director of boutique real estate agency Ideal Homes Portugal, will be available with his team to talk buyers through the advantages of property ownership in Portugal and how they can pick up that dream second home in the sunshine. Chris comments,

“Many people dream of owning a home overseas, but aren’t sure where to start. The Overseas Property Show provides the perfect resource for them, as well as an invaluable tool for those who already own overseas but want to purchase further properties or expand their portfolio into a new country.

“People want to own property overseas for all kinds of reasons, from straightforward holiday homes to rental businesses that generate an income. Many also want a dual purpose property, that they can use for holidays or rent out initially, then retire to in the future. At the Overseas Property Show we cater for all these buyers and more, sharing our knowledge and offering top tips and insights into the joys of owning property overseas with confidence.”

The Ideal Homes International team will also be on hand at the show, presenting visitors with a range of stunning properties in Cyprus. From frontline villas to luxurious city apartments, Cypriot property expert Maria McLaren will be available to talk visitors through their property ownership options in this fabulous country.

All are welcome at the Overseas Property Show. The doors at the Hilton Watford Hotel will open at 10.00 am and close at 6.00 pm on both 4th and 5th July.

For further details and to claim your free tickets, visit www.theoverseaspropertyshow.com.

Ideal Homes International launches new Cypriot office as Cyprus reports 25% surge in tourist arrivals

Ideal Homes International launches new Cypriot office as Cyprus reports 25% surge in tourist arrivals

  • New Ideal Homes International Cypriot office presents luxury properties to UK buyers
  • Cyprus tourist arrivals up 25.7% (Cypriot Statistical Service)
  • Citizenship by investment boosts Cypriot economy by €2 billion (Interior Ministry)

The Mediterranean island country of Cyprus, which enjoys some 340 days of sunshine per year, has reported a 25.7% surge in tourist arrivals for the month of March 2015, according to figures from the Republic of Cyprus Statistical Service. Tourism income shot up to €65 million for the month, from €56.5 million for the same month a year earlier.

Cyprus has long been a favourite with British holidaymakers and second home owners thanks to its combination of sunshine, stunning beaches and low cost of living. Now, a new addition to the Ideal Homes International network, local property expert Maria McLaren, is bringing a range of luxury Cypriot homes to UK buyers. Maria has more than a decade’s experience of selling property in southern Cyprus and knows the island inside out.

Ideal Homes International’s founding director, Chris White, comments,

“It is extremely exciting to be able to welcome Maria and her team into the Ideal Homes group. Through this new venture we plan to open up the Cypriot property market to UK buyers who have yet to discover the wonders of Cyprus, both as a second home destination and as an option for permanent residence.”

Permanent residence in Cyprus is certainly a sought after status. An audit services report for 2013, recently announced by Interior Minister Socrates Hasikos, revealed a €2 billion boost to the economy thanks to property sales and investments made through the Cypriot ‘citizenship by investment’ programme.

The programme has resulted in high end villas being snapped up by overseas buyers, but those who haven’t yet bought their dream home in Cyprus need not panic – there are still plenty of luxury properties to choose from. Amorosa Villas in Latzi, for example, offer the exclusivity of one of the island’s most pre-eminent gated estates, with a three bedroom villa available for €1.65 million. Plots sizes are simply huge and the villas are magnificent in their level of sumptuous comfort. Generous living spaces and reception rooms with fireplaces are complemented by saunas, gymnasiums and treatment rooms, along with infinity pools with views that stretch over the verdant countryside, all the way to the sea.

If that’s not large enough, just over €3 million will buy a five bedroom, four bathroom villa located directly on the sand at Latchi, with fine dining restaurants and the marina within easy reach. Considerate design has created a spacious and light-filled interior, while outside the infinity pool has been designed in such a way that it is possible to climb out directly onto the beach. Generously appointed balconies and a lush roof terrace affording stunning sea and mountain views complete this seriously luxurious property.

Over in Polis, another contemporary villa boasts unparalleled sea views from all rooms, along with an open plan living/dining and kitchen area that opens out onto an external BBQ area with expansive deck overlooking the pool and sea. The elevated overflow pool is perfect for bobbing around in while sipping a cocktail and watching the sunset turn the sea and sky from blue to pink to purple over Argaka Bay. For those rare rainy days, the smart house enjoys a home cinema system and glass fronted verandas for watching the rain lash down from the warmth of the cosy interior.

For further details of luxury homes in Cyprus, visit www.idealhomesinternational.co.uk or call Maria and the team on 01543 325316 or 07527 301861.