Algarve Classic Festival: um evento único em Portimão

Algarve Classic Festival: um evento único em Portimão

Algarve Classic Festival: um evento único em Portimão

Decorreu no último fim de semana o Algarve Classic Festival, proclamado como o maior evento de automóveis clássicos do sul da Europa. Integrando diversas corridas no programa, com os seus respetivos campeonatos e categorias, o evento teve como “cabeça de cartaz” a corrida de carros de Fórmula 1 pré-1966, com modelos que fizeram a história do automobilismo e marcas como a Cooper, a Maserati, a Lotus e a Ferrari.

Entre as outras categorias presentes contaram-se:

  • MRL 50’w Sports Cars, para carros de “sport” pré-1960;
  • Formula Junior, com os primeiros carros de competição destinados a pilotos jovens e iniciantes, antepassados das modernas Fórmula 4 e Fórmula 3;
  • HTTC Challenge & CSS, para carros de turismo que competiram nos campeonatos inglês e europeu entre 1972 e 1985;
  • Iberian Historic Endurance, para carros de Turismo e GT até 1976, divididos em três categorias.

Algarve Classic Festival Portimao

Entre outras.

Autódromo de Portimão ao serviço do turismo

Ainda há quem pense que o autódromo de Portimão tem sido um fiasco pelo facto de não ter conseguido trazer a Fórmula 1, a categoria máxima do automobilismo mundial. Mas construir um autódromo de qualidade mundial apenas para receber um grande evento por ano seria não só um erro estratégico como uma oportunidade perdida. O Algarve Classic Festival é a prova de que a pista de corridas é mais um dos pólos de atratividade turística únicos da região. Não são só os pilotos e a sua “entourage” que chegam; é o próprio evento que é mais um ponto de interesse para os turistas, tanto os residentes como os que estiverem só de passagem. E é a notoriedade turística do Algarve, como um todo, que ganha com isso.

Além disso, dadas as mudanças em curso na governação atual da Fórmula 1, quem sabe se os carros mais rápidos do mundo não poderão também vir a correr em Portimão.

Pão por Deus: the Portuguese tradition around Halloween

Pão por Deus: the Portuguese tradition around Halloween

Pão por Deus: the Portuguese tradition around Halloween

Another Halloween just passed by, and it seems Portugal is slowly but firmly adopting this “American” tradition. Throughout the country, but especially in the main cities, night walks and celebrations are set up. But the main Portuguese tradition is still the “Pão por Deus” in All-Saints day, a Catholic-inspired ritual in the morning just after Halloween. November 1st is, of course, a religious holiday in Portugal. But do you think these two celebrations – the Celtic/American and the Catholic/Portuguese – are really so different?

End of Summer

Throughout Portugal, and especially in villages and rural areas, children go knocking doors asking for threats in All-Saints day morning. The youngest may take an adult; the oldest go by themselves. Asking can include verses and rhimes to ask and thank the offer. In return, people buy candies in the supermarket or can offer homemade cookies, like “brindeiras”, chestnuts and others. If one doesn’t offer, children can even reply with negative poems, calling the person a stingy or a niggard. Although happening in daylight (and only until noon), it’s very alike with “trick or treat”.

History says that, throughout the Middle Ages, the Catholic Church tried to absorb the ancient pagan and Celtic rituals in its efforts to build a Christian society. In its remote origins, the All-Saints day and its traditions are a Catholic way of “Christianize” the ancient Celtic “Samhain” that originated modern Halloween.

Halloween e Pão por Deus:

Dia de Finados

Moreover, November 2nd is considered “Dia de Finados”, another expression for “Dia dos Mortos” (Day of the Dead), and Portuguese tradition says people should go to the cemeteries to clean up and honour their passed away, loved ones. (Many people perform this in All-Saints Day because the 2nd isn’t considered bank holiday.) If you’re familiar with the famous Mexican celebration of “Dia de los Muertos”, you’ll quickly conclude that it is exactly the same celebration, practised also in Spain and other Catholic nations. Even if local culture makes the celebration unique in each country and region.

In the end, you might consider that the recent Halloween and the old Pão por Deus are just the two sides of the same coin.

Halloween: tradição importada da América ou renascida em Portugal?

Halloween: tradição importada da América ou renascida em Portugal?

Halloween: tradição importada da América ou renascida em Portugal?

O Halloween parece uma celebração moderna, mas é tudo menos isso. O termo deriva de “All Hallows Eve”, em inglês “Véspera de Todos os Santos”, e mesmo esta expressão é relativamente recente, de há poucos séculos. Antes da Cristianização, os povos celtas da Europa ocidental assinalavam o Samhain, uma festa que marcava o fim do verão e o início dos dias mais pequenos, escuros e frios em que a Natureza parecia adormecida. Invocavam os espíritos dos mortos e acreditavam que nessa festa a fronteira entre o mundo real e o Além se esbatia, e que demónios e fantasmas circulavam entre nós; praticavam excessos em termos de comida e bebida.

Com o advento da Idade Média, a Igreja Católica tentou absorver os antigos hábitos e rituais pagãos e celtas. No século IX, o Papa Gregório IV instituiu o dia de Todos os Santos, enriquecido no século XIII com o dia de Todas as Almas que se transformou, em Portugal, no dia de Finados. A ligação com o mundo dos mortos e a celebração do início do inverno foram assim integradas nos rituais da Igreja, que gradualmente se impuseram aos costumes antigos, especialmente nos países de maior influência católica e menor influência pagã. Não é de admirar que, na maior parte do território português, o “Dia das Bruxas” fosse totalmente desconhecido até há pouco tempo (ou antes, esquecido.)

Contudo, de alguma forma os antigos costumes pagãos foram sobrevivendo na Europa “céltica”. Em Portugal, a região de Trás-os-Montes conserva os maiores vestígios da influência celta (a gaita de foles, os pauliteiros de Miranda, os caretos do Carnaval de Podence) e só aqui sobreviveu o antigo Samhain; a pequena aldeia de Cidões, em Vinhas, organiza anualmente a Festa da Cabra e do Canhoto. Já em Inglaterra e especialmente na Irlanda, nação céltica por excelência, os costumes eram tão arreigados que foram levados para os Estados Unidos pelos colonos e imigrantes, especialmente no século XIX.

Hoje em dia, parece coincidência que as crianças americanas vão de porta a porta a pedir “trick or treat” (doçura ou travessura) na noite de Halloween enquanto as portuguesas fazem o mesmo na manhã de Todos os Santos. Note-se que, embora não ameacem com travessura quem não der o “bolinho” (como é chamado na Estremadura), os meninos portugueses também têm a sua resposta: ”

“Esta casa cheira a alho,

Aqui mora algum espantalho.

Esta casa cheira a unto

Aqui mora algum defunto!”

Halloween e Pão por Deus:

Mas lá no fundo, as origens destes rituais são as mesmas: o antiquíssimo ritual celta e pagão que associa o fim do verão com o Outro Mundo e o Além.

 

Halloween e Pão por Deus: o cruzamento cultural português

Embora esteja a importar a tradição norte-americana, de algum modo Portugal está a cruzá-la com a sua própria. Os rituais do Pão por Deus e da visita aos cemitérios (no dia de Finados ou no próprio feriado de Todos os Santos) não estão a ser esquecidos; misturam-se com a organização de jantares temáticos e caminhadas noturnas na noite das Bruxas. As saídas noturnas em grupos são especialmente procuradas por adolescentes, dos 13 anos à maioridade, para os quais o passeio na escuridão é quase como um ritual de crescimento. Para as crianças até aos 12 anos, prevalece ainda a tradição matinal de ir de porta em porta; afinal, os mais pequenos devem deitar-se cedo.

Portugal was announced the winner of 16th prizes at the Annual World Travel Awards

 

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Winners at the World Travel Awards Europe Gala Ceremony 2014 have been revealed during a night of suspense at the Divani Apollon Palace & Thalasso in Athens, Greece.

Hailed as ‘the Oscars of the travel industry’, World Travel Awards celebrates its 21st anniversary this year and is acknowledged across the globe as the ultimate travel accolade.

The brand aims to celebrate those organisations that are pushing the boundaries of industry excellence.

It is with a great pleasure that after the 9 prizes achieved last year, Portugal was now announce the winner of 16th prizes of the 21st World Travel Awards, voted by travel agents worldwide.

World Travel Awards President Graham Cooke said:”Europe is presently in the middle of a fast paced recovery after a couple of tough years, and the brands that have taken our awards tonight are at the forefront of this. Our voters have recognised these are the key industry players who will be leading the pack over the coming years. This is a springboard to their continued success”

Europe’s Leading Airline to South America TAP Portugal
Europe’s Leading Airline to Africa TAP Portugal
Europe’s Leading All Inclusive Resort Pestana Porto Santo Beach Resort & Spa, Portugal
Europe’s Leading Boutique Hotel Vila Joya, Portugal
Europe’s Leading Boutique Resort Choupana Hills Resort & Spa, Portugal
Europe’s Leading Cruise Destination Lisbon, Portugal
Europe’s Leading Cruise Port Porto de Lisboa, Portugal
Europe’s Leading Design Hotel The Vine Hotel, Portugal
Europe’s Leading Hotel Residences Pine Cliffs Residence, Albufeira, Portugal
Europe’s Leading Landmark Hotel Bairro Alto Hotel, Portugal
Europe’s Leading Island Destination Madeira Islands
Europe’s Leading Luxury Resort Conrad Algarve, Portugal
Europe’s Leading River Cruise Company DouroAzul
Europe’s Leading Tourist Board Turismo de Portugal
Europe’s Leading Villa Resort Martinhal Beach Resort & Hotel, Portugal
Europe’s Most Romantic Resort Vila Vita Parc, Portugal

 

WTA’s global media partner network includes International New York Times, TV5Monde, CNBC Arabiya, Newsweek, Outlook Traveller, Travel & Leisure, Khaleej Times, Trade Arabia, TTN, Trav Talk India, Publituris, ASTA Network, Breaking Travel News, eTurboNews, Travel Daily News International and Focus on Travel News.

 
 

 

Algarve Property Sales start the year strong

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The Algarve has seen a very strong start of the year with property sales returning to a very positive levels,  as well as rentals and hotel occupancy.

After more than three years of house prices decreasing due to the state of the economy, Portugal’s property market is now improving and prices are beginning to escalate.

According to Statistics Portugal (INE) property prices have increased in the first quarter of 2014 and this trend is set to continue over the next 5 years.

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) have also confirmed this fact as highlighted in a recent article in the British newspaper, The Telegraph. The OECD  in their latest study, they highlighted that property markets in Australia and France are overpriced yet Portugal’s properties are undervalued.

New buyers under the golden visa program have boosted the luxury real estate prices. These “new” buyers are creating a fresh perspective and a well needed boost to our market. We have seen many new shops opening up, renovations being done, new building projects being started and sold in a very short time, showing positive signs that the Algarve is recovering.

Anyone looking to buy property in Portugal should act sooner rather than later to take advantage of the improving state of the property market.

If you are still looking for a property in the Algarve, we should advise to start looking seriously at purchasing this year as the market is recovering faster than expected. There are still good deals to be found, but the discount deals are quickly disappearing.

If you have any queries on our properties , please contact one of our Property Advisors such as Teodora Aquino, Georgina, Sofia, James Hobson.

Contact us now  to discuss your current property criteria to find you a dream home under the sun.

  • You can reply to us in English
  • Vous pouvez repondre en Francais
  • Pueden contactarnos en Espanol

 

 

French invaders are welcomed by the taxman

 

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More than 2,200 French national bought house in Portugal last year and 20,000 will live in the country by the end of 2015.

This is the estimate from the Franco-Portuguese Chamber of Commerce & Industry , French retirees are moving to Portugal attracted by the golden retirement package offered by the Portuguese tax man, “there are many migrants who live eight or nine months in Portugal and the rest of the time in France. They already can benefit from new laws and not pay taxes on retirement income or on capital gains or dividends.”

The status of non-habitual resident in Portugal, in force since January 2013, allows any retired EU citizen tax exemption for ten years, provided he or she has not been a tax resident in Portugal in the last five. The laws also cover professionals pursuing a high added value job, which may benefit from an income tax reduction to an attractive 20%, somewhat more attractive than France’s top rate of 75%.

In the first Real Estate and Portuguese Tourism fair, between 70% and 75% of visitors were French, mostly retired, but the tax benefits can also be taken full advantage of by Portuguese immigrants who want to return to the country.

 

Story from: algarvedailynews.com

Holiday pound stretches furthest in Bali and the Algarve

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Swings in the pound and local price changes makes Bali the cheapest destination with the Algarve best value in Europe.

Bali has emerged as the best value holiday destination for British travellers this year, as a strengthening pound helps budgets stretch further in most resorts and cities.

Holiday costs for Britons were down in 70pc of the 44 destinations surveyed in the Post Office Travel Money report, with prices falling by up to 30pc.

Bali is the cheapest holiday destination overall, with a typical basket of holiday goods costing £31.48 compared with £115.06 in New Zealand, the most expensive destination surveyed.

The Portuguese Algarve came out as the cheapest destination in Europe, with a basket of items costing £35.37.

The survey showed that although the pound was slightly weaker against the euro compared to last year (-1.9pc), prices have fallen 18pc in the Algarve. Conversely, Spain was the only country to record a significant price increase, with meal costs rising 22pc on the Costa del Sol. This pushed Spain’s basket of goods to £39.14, pushing Spain into sixth place.

Paul Havenhand, head of travel at Post Office, said: “We urge cost-conscious holidaymakers to include a comparison of exchange rates for all the destinations they are considering before coming to a final decision. This is likely to make a positive difference to the overall cost of a holiday.”

He added: “At the moment sterling is stronger against three quarters of the top Post Office holiday currencies.”

Resorts are cheaper in Cyprus, Greece and Italy, the survey found, although Italy remains the most expensive destination in Europe with a basket costing around £81, twice as much as Portugal.

The basket includes items like an evening meal for two, a cup of coffee and sun cream.

Popular destinations this year are likely to include South Africa, Vietnam, Burma and Qatar, the Post Office said.

Post Office Travel Money Worldwide Holiday Costs Barometer:

Story from: The Telegraphy

Best European countries: Portugal wins Readers’ Choice vote

 

Algarve

Portugal Tops With Readers

USA Today 10Best Readers’ Choice contest for ‘Best European Country,’ voting was heaviest for one nominee in particular.  Portugal has apparently stolen the hearts of our readers as it secured the lion’s share of votes.

Portugal is less iconic than other well-known countries, but it offers a wealth of opportunities to travelers: charming villages, great food, fascinating regional music, cultural opportunities, a beautiful coastline and even world-class surfing.

Italy and Austria landed solid in second and third, while a mere 47 votes separated 4th place finisher Germany from Spain in 6th place.  The (very large) United Kingdom, with no language barriers for Americans and a wealth of well-known landmarks, took 5th place.

The biggest surprise? Iceland, which trumped Greece, Norway, and several other more exotic countries, to land in the top 10.

The full list of winners in the ‘Best European Country’ contest category for 10Best Readers’ Choice is as follows:

  1. PORTUGAL
  2. Italy
  3. Austria
  4. Germany
  5. United Kingdom
  6. Spain
  7. Ireland
  8. France
  9. Iceland
  10. Switzerland

Congratulations to all the winners.  Wondering where to take your next trip?  This list makes a fabulous overseas bucket list.

All nominees were chosen by experts in the Travel Industry. Thus, the other 10 nominees also deserve some consideration. They were  Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Turkey.

Story from : USA TODAY 2014

Dutch squad prepares World Cup in Lagos

 

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The Algarve is once again elected by the Dutch national football team for conducting an internship destination before a big international event, revealed the newspaper “Algemeen Dagblad”. According to the publication, the Oranje team will be in the region from the 20-27 of May, before the start of the World Cup football in Brazil.

The Algarve has many municipal and private practice fields and some of them are within hotels and resorts and provide great conditions for any sport throughout the whole year this fact makes the Algarve an usual destination stages of major European football teams during low season.

The Cascade Resort in Lagos has been chosen to host the Dutch national football team for a week-long training period before this summer’s World Cup in Brazil.

The runners-up of the last edition in South Africa will be fine-tuning their tactics for the competition between May 20 and 27. And Coach Louis van Gaal will feel very much at home in the Algarve as he owns a property in Vale do Lobo.

The Netherlands will face Spain in the first game of the ‘ Worldcup 2014 ‘ on 13 June. The choice of Algarve was due, according to the newspaper”Algemeen Dagblad”, similar climate to that expected in Brazil.

It was already known that the Netherlands national team had chosen the Algarve, but only now was it announced that the Cascade’s Performance Football Academy will be its host.

Algarve tourism chief Desidério Silva had already praised the decision back in December, deeming it “excellent news” for the Algarve.

The resort is delighted, stating that “with this prestigious football team, the Cascade Resort and Performance Football Academy is closing a very successful football season.”

Since its opening in 2011, the resort has received top-class squads from all around the world, such as Zenit St. Petersburg, Bayer Leverkusen and Spartak Moscow.

It will be the second time the Dutch squad practises for a major competition in the Algarve, after having chosen the region to prepare for the Euro 2004 held in Portugal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Infinito Real Portugal Algarve Property Agents

What type of company should you use for buying your Algarve property?

 

Infinito Real : What type of company to use to buy property in the Algarve?

 

With the way the overseas property market works now a days you would be forgiven for not quite knowing who you are dealing with. The simplest way to look at it is too split up companies into types of agents :

 

1) Full broker agents : Infinito Real work as a full broker agent here in the Algarve. What does this mean? Well basically we work with our own portfolio of properties, without being tied to just one area, as well as working with the top traditional real estate agents in each area across the Algarve. The benefit to this is you instantly have access to all the properties available in each area, you have an independent advisor who has knowledge of each different area you are considering and as such can point out the benefits and pit falls of each area without having to worry about losing the sale as we can of course work in any area.  For us this method is much more efficient for client’s which is why we do it, it gives us a greater chance of being able to find our client’s the property they want wherever they are looking and it gives the client the chance to see all the area’s a full range of property without having to to see 5,6,7 or more different agent’s.

2) Traditional real estate agents : Your traditionally agent’s generally cover the area where they are based and only that area, they have their own listing’s and only sell their own listings. A great option if you know exactly where you want to buy a property and want expert knowledge and advice from a company that works and covers that area only. The downside to this is there is no comparisons to other area’s the agents who chose an area and work like this too so as it’s an area they prefer so there is a bias towards it.

3) Overseas Property Agents : A lot of companies (or website nowadays) advertise and offer services in huge numbers of countries. Now on the face of it this looks great offering impartial advice in such a large range of countries is great, however most of the information is taken from other companies who advertise on these sites and, in the majority of cases, aren’t the actual company you’ll be dealing with when you make the appointment. For most buyer’s this is not a sensible way to buy and/or look for property, firstly to cover such a variety of countries without offices in them is impossible. A local agent, or broker agent in the country or area you are looking in would be a most better option than this, you’ll get up to the date information and much more information than dealing via, what’s effectively a property portal service.

 

For us the best and most efficient way to view property is with a Full broker agent especially if you haven’t been to the country very often and are still open to different area’s, you can be guided through different locations different price brackets and filter down your search that way. Of course even if you know the area you want it can be beneficial to work with a broker agent as they will be able to line up a larger range of properties for you with all the main agents of that area rather than having to go find them yourself and arrange different appointments with each one, starting from scratch in terms of requirements and personal taste.

One of the key benefits of a larger broker agent is the option of subsidised viewing trips which are a great way to find a property with the minimal of fuss and hassle.  You can read about Infinito Real inspection trips here if you’re interested.

 

To see a full range of properties for sale in the Algarve take a look at our website, which is constantly updated with new listings and information on buying property in the Algarve.