Number of Chinese tourists up 69 percent on year; Ronaldo fronts campaign
The number of Chinese tourists who visited Portugal in the first half of 2014 was up 69 percent on the same period of 2013 at some 55,000, and they spent more than twice as much, at €33 million, according to an official study whose findings were published by Lusa News Agency.
The study was commissioned in the run-up to the major tourism fair which took place in Shanghai from 14 to 16 November, which Portugal’s Secretary of State for Tourism, Adolfo Mesquita Nunes, attended. The visit included the launch of a new marketing campaign for China, fronted by Cristiano Ronaldo or ‘C Luo’, as the Real Madrid star is known in China, where he is by far the best known Portuguese.
The first permanent representative of Portugal’s national tourist board, Inês Cunha Alves, also started work this week. Alves has worked in and with China for almost a decade, and was among those responsible for Portugal’s pavilion at the 2010 World Fair in Shanghai.
The latest surge in the number of Chinese tourists comes after four years in which it more than tripled, to 74,000 last year – despite there being no direct air link between the two countries. Yet that total was barely 1 percent of the almost 100 million who travelled outside mainland China last year, suggesting that there is still huge potential.
Story from the Portugal News : http://www.theportugalnews.com
The first electric minibus in the country was inaugurated in Faro last week, in the presence of Portugal’s Minister for the Environment, and will be used for regular public transport.
Portugal’s first ‘100 percent electric’ minibus launches in Faro.
Designed and assembled in Portugal the minibus is powered by three rechargeable batteries, which last for eight hours, and can reach speeds of up to 80 kilometres an hour.
The vehicle is seven-and-a-half metres long, can seat fourteen passengers, is adapted for wheelchairs and can run for 100 kilometres without having to be charged.
It was specifically designed to travel the narrow streets of Faro with the body being developed by national company Irmãos Mota, from Vila Nova de Gaia.
Faro and indeed Portugal’s first electric minibus cost in the region of €160,000 and is one of a fleet of 28 vehicles. It was blessed ahead of its maiden voyage by Father Pedro Manuel of the Faro Cathedral.
“With the project, our county has taken yet another step towards sustainable mobility and stepped up its contribution to fulfilling one of the eight objectives for the millennium to which the council subscribed, which include promoting sustainable development, reducing the loss of biological diversity and reducing the size of the population without access to safe water and sanitation” a Faro council spokesperson said.
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.
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:
A Quinta do Lago é conhecida por ser um dos empreendimentos turísticos mais luxuosos de toda a Europa.
Envolvida por cinco campos de golfe, entre os quais, o bem conhecido campo de Golfe de São Lourenço, restauração, atividades desportivas e de um turismo ecológico em desenvolvimento. A observação da fauna natural abraça atividades ao ar livre, equitação, ciclismo, entre outros.
A Praia da Quinta do Lago está ao “atravessar da ponte” – um momento de puro contacto com a natureza e de reflexão.
Aproveite o dia maravilhoso de hoje e faça uma caminhada ao ar livre?
Faro, cidade com história, a capital do Algarve. Está localizada numa paisagem lindíssima, entre o Oceano Atlântico e o Parque Natural da Ria Formosa.
O centro histórico da cidade é um dos destinos de atracão turística cujo alguns dos monumentos visitados são a Catedral (de origem Romano-Gótica), O Convento de Nossa Senhora da Assunção (Renascimento) e a Igreja de São Francisco (séculos 16 e 18), entre muitos outros. Existe um comboio que percorre a cidade.
A Ilha de Faro (também conhecida por Praia de Faro) está a 8 km da cidade e tem todo o esplendor do Parque Natura da Ria Formosa. Poderá disfrutar da praia, com restaurantes e bares mesmo á beira-mar, ou de caminhadas ao longo da Ria Formosa. Existe um trilho que poderá seguir e que orienta informações acerca das espécies protegidas. Este trilho, dependendo da direção, irá dar encontro ao tão conhecido “Golden Triangle”, que engloba Quinta do Lago, Vale do Lobo e Almancil.
Portugal wins best European Beach and also best Golf destination for the second consecutive year at a gala award ceremony in Antalya. Most visitors to the Algarve will be aware of the wonderful beaches and the pristine golf courses and it seems the rest of Europe are playing catch up to us!
Amongst the competitors we managed to beat off, Cannes, Corfu and Marbella to name a few, although in terms of beach quality there really is no competition when you pit Portugal against the rest of Europe.
The World Travel Award for the best golf destination in Europe also went to Portugal, where we best of England, Scotland, France, Germany and Spain.
It’s clear that from the doom and gloom of the last few years Portugal has pulled through and has continued to do what it does well and will be surely heading in the right direction now and hopefully for a long, long time!
With all these awards it’s easy to see why golf property and beach property are prime investment’s here and sure enough they make up a large percentage of property sales over the last 12 months, price’s for prime locations will be climbing over the next 12 month’s and supply will be reduced to resale properties. With rental returns actually increasing as well there will be very few bargains in hot spot area’s in the near future.
As most of you are well aware golf plays a huge role in Portugal’s fame and fortune. The country is renown for its almost fictional courses, with the Algarve boasting most of the high standard courses. The beautiful year round climate combined with diverse entertainment options, make the Algarve a golfers paradise.
The Algarve is home to no less than 35 world class courses many of which are championship quality. Every year there is a Portuguese Open Championship causing people to flock from all over Portugal and abroad to watch or star in this incredible tournament upon one of the picturesque championship courses. Thousands of Golfing enthusiasts visit Portugal throughout every year and this number is only rising. There are courses of all variety of grades for every calibre of player all of which have reasonable green fees putting a smile on everyone’s face. The courses are all unique with there own individual scenic beauty, from the lakes and pine trees of Quinta do Lago to the palm trees and seas vistas of Boavista. The Algarve has been named the ´Best Golfing Destination in the World´ by the international Associations of golf tours which outlines the quality of golf along the Algarve.
If you fancy a round of golf but don’t take it seriously, pay as you go options are available at most courses. You don’t even need your own set of clubs as most courses offer the availability to hire golf clubs/a club and buggies. If your planning on trying out more than one course and still need your own clubs them there are plenty of shops with clubs for hire including Faro airport at competitive rates.
Golfing in Portugal brings sports men and women from all around the world and allows people to socialise without the barrier of language. It is an enjoyable day out for all and is unlike Golf anywhere else in the world.
Among the six marinas nominated for the award “Best Marina in Portugal”, awarded by Publituris, for the second consecutive year, the Marina of Vilamoura won this award.
The improvement of services, both in training their employees both in terms of infrastructure and creating new leisure facilities, was awarded the prize.
“The awards Best Marina in Portugal along with the distinction of five Golden Anchor assigned by the Yacht Harbour Association, ISO 14001 and ISO 9001 and the Blue Flag, proving that the Marina de Vilamoura has managed to adapt to the demands of a market in constant evolution, asserting itself not only as a nautical destination, but also as a major tourist attraction at regional and national levels, “said the administration’s Marina.
Albufeira was among the top 25 beach destinations in Europe, according to a list published on Trip Advisor.
The Algarves holiday hotspot came in 14 in the top 25 Europe Beach Destinations of the Travellers Choice Awards 2012 and was a first at a national level. It was said that “There are lots of beach types, and with 20 very different beaches to choose from, Albufeira delights them all. Hugging the coast in Portugals southern algarve region, this prime vantage point showcases sparking white houses with moorish flair, breathtaking multi-hued cliffs, and old fortress remnants that ground modern amenities with a charming historical flair”.