GDP remains positive

November 19th, 2014

Euros

Portugal’s GDP was up 0.2% this quarter which is good news and 1% over the last year.  Although not a massive increase, compared to previous years this is a continual boost to confidence in the country and shows a determination to turn the economy around.

The reason for this growth was attributed to a large demand in household consumption and an increase in imports, whilst the export business(s) remaining largely unchanged on the previous quarters figures.

Although these are fairly accurate figures, they are only meant as estimates and the official figures will be released at the end of November.  Let’s hope they remain at least the same and if not better.

 

Portugal beat Argentina

November 19th, 2014

Ronaldo v Messi

Last night’s friendly match was hyped around the never ending battle between our beloved (anti) hero Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Neither managed to get on the score sheet yesterday and were replaced at half time, perhaps more of a cautious substitution than tactical. This new look Portugal team was somewhat sluggish throughout the game, relying on a great diving headed effort by new boy Raphael Geurreiro making only his second appearance for the team, near the end of full time to snatch the victory.

In another rather hyped affair the England Scotland game finished with a 3 – 1 victory to the English side. The game was played at a high pace and tackles flying in from all angles, but with a lot less of the theatrics normally associated with some of the players it was a great spectacle although somewhat one sided at times with Scotland on the back foot for large periods of time.

Spain and Germany also played last night and the Germans went away with a 1 – 0 victory to leave a once unbeatable Spanish team looking much more vulnerable than in previous years.

 

 

 

Monchique – some characteristics

November 17th, 2014

Monchique Hills

Monchique. What does it mean for you? If you’re a local, you’ll know all the secret places that make it unique. Imagine you are on holiday though. Where can you find out the best place to drink a medronho, to walk through lush landscapes and to buy quality locally produced gifts?

A group of young Europeans who have been resident in Monchique for the last 3 months invite you to their interactive exhibition which will launch new maps and showcase the work they have done to encourage tourists to stay longer in Monchique. The exhibition will be open from Saturday 10 Dec – Thursday 15 Dec between 2-7pm with a private view on Sat 10 at 5pm

Monchique has a population of 6000

5000 are Portuguese and 1000 are foreigners.

Their current priorities are to:

Attract and keep 200 old people aged over 55 (this will create new jobs for locals)
Attract young people (incentives are paying 500euros for every new child born here)
Create 7 new alojamentos (places to stay for tourists – businesses that bring in new people are prioritised)
Develop the Via Algarviana in its second phase – the walking route between Silves

Estadio Algarve will host the game between Portugal and Armenia

November 10th, 2014

EstadioAlgarve

Estadio Algarve will host the game between Portugal and Armenia on Fri 14 Nov 2014 at 20:45 from another round of fixtures from UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying round – Group I. Faro Portugal is the city which will be the host for this big event

The Estádio Algarve is an association football stadium located between Faro and Loulé, in Portugal and the former home of Farense and Louletano, having received some Olhanense and Portimonense matches during their respective stadiums’ works of renovation. The Estádio Algarve is also the temporary home ground of Gibraltar national football team[2] and it also hosts the final match of the Algarve Cup, a major annual international tournament in women’s football. From 2004 to 2013, Louletano shared the stadium with Sporting Clube Farense.
The stadium has a capacity of 30,002,[3] and was built for the Euro 2004 tournament. Aside from football, it has also hosted music festivals and concerts, and was temporarily converted into a super special stage during the 2007 Rally Portugal (part of the 2007 World Rally Championship season).

The Estádio Algarve was designed in the summer of 2000 to UEFA and FIFA standards by Damon Lavelle of Populous (formerly HOK Sport) London. The design team included WS Atkins engineers and local partners including Marobal. The design is regional in nature, alluding to the maritime traditions of Portugal and harmonising with the distinctive local landscape. The stadium is considered a model small/regional flexible use stadium for European Football and cultural events, being one of the most used stadiums in Portugal, compared to others used for matches in the main Portuguese Football League.

The stadium hosted the inaugural Algarve Challenge Cup tournament on 22 and 24 July 2008 that saw Cardiff City, Celtic, Middlesbrough, and Vitória de Guimarães in action. Cardiff City were the eventual winners of the tournament with victories over Celtic and Vitória.

Britons Ripped Off In Cyprus

November 10th, 2014

During the past decade thousands of Britons purchased off-plan properties in Cyprus but they were faced with numerous problems including:

a) Sales initiated in this country do not appear to be regulated by this country;

b) Properties purchased remain in the name of the developer, and could potentially be re-possessed by the Bank that has financed the development; alternatively purchasers have been tied into loans, often in strong currencies that they have little hope of repaying;

c) In all appearances, Cyprus has the same standards as in the UK but what are accepted practices there would be totally unacceptable here and enforcement of serious breaches by Cypriot authorities is seriously lacking.

Due to these problems thousands of Britons have been ruined financially, many, unable to deal with the pressure, are suffering from ill health and a small number have committed suicide. The British Government has paid lip service to the problem but so far has done little to remedy the situation.

Cyprus has been a British colony since 1878 and despite independence in 1960 it very much remains closely associated to Britain due to the British sovereign bases there and the fact that many thousands of Britons live in Cyprus and visit Cyprus regularly. Its strategic importance to Anglo-American interests may explain why the British Government has taken a very softly-softly approach with the Cypriot authorities to the detriment of Britons who have been badly caught and should have been protected by Cypriot, British and EU Regulations but there was a combined failure to protect them.

Any investigation will reveal a culture of mis-selling that has been allowed to be operated mostly by British sales agents working on behalf of Cypriot developers and banks, serious failures in the regulatory system in this country and apathy by the British authorities. Many victims of these deceptions have made formal complaints to the Financial Conduct Authority, the Financial Ombudsman, Action Fraud, the Office of Fair Trading, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, their local MPs and MEPs, and numerous government ministers. After many years of campaigning, the closest they have been to any action by politicians is the formation in 2012 of an All Party Parliamentary Group for the Defence of the Interests of British Property Owners in Cyprus which, so far, appears to have little influence on the British and the Cypriot Governments.

In 2010, the BBC exposed some of these issues in the Inside Out and You and Yours programmes. Since then the situation has become much more urgent, problems are in greater need of investigation and publicity and the “what is happening out there” approach taken by these programmes could do with a Panorama investigation highlighting “what can happen to you in home ground” and how you will not be protected by the British Government.

Story from: Algarve Portugal News

Wines of Portugal awarded at Ultimate Wine Challenge 2014

November 3rd, 2014

Quinta do Quetzal

The 5th Ultimate Wine Challenge Edition integrated 47 Portuguese wines on the winners list. Among them, six wines were considered excellent, with scores above 90 points.

The Ultimate Wine Challenge is considered one of the most important competition of the USA, being recognized for the quality of the tasting methodology used and for the professionalism/experience of the jury panel.

And at the latest China Wine & Spirits Awards awarded 83 medals to Portuguese wines. This event is amongst the most esteemed wine competitions in China.

Portuguese wines were distinguished with 17 double gold medals (the most important award in competition), 34 gold medals, 22 silver medals and 10 bronze medals. 60 red wines, 15 white wines, 3 fortified wines and 3 rosés obtained the medals.

Several Portuguese wine regions were awarded, with the Lisboa wine region winning first place within the Portuguese ranking with 34 medals. In the Best Value category, featuring wines with the best price-quality ratio, Portuguese wines obtained 100 nominations.

Readers of USA Today and 10 Best and fans of Portugal voted resoundingly to choose Alentejo as best wine region in the world. Alentejo was the only Portuguese wine region competing, one of twenty nominees chosen by an expert panel. Other contenders included Champagne,France, Rioja, Spain and Napa Valley, California.

For USA Today, Alentejo offers “a great wine travel experience”, “terrific wines” and “rustic and authentic” food.

Portugal was also chosen as “best European country” by readers of USA Today and 10Best earlier this year. – See more at:www.winesofportugal.com

Every year, Quinta do Quetzal choose grapes from the vineyards which allow them to make wine which best reflects the spirit of the Quinta do Quetzal.
As a result of their work and dedication, Quinta do Quetzal’s wines have been recognised in Portugal and throughout the world. They have received excellent reviews and the most prestigious awards, as is the case of the Quinta do Quetzal Reserve white 2008 which received the highest praise by being awarded “Best white wine” at the international wine competition “Vinalies 2010″.
As well as this trophy, their white and red wines have received many distinctions in the most highly regarded national and international competitions.

www.quintadoquetzal.com

Quinta da Aveleda’s Estate Bottled Loureiro-Alvarinho is number 1 on Wine Enthusiast’s 2014 Top 100 Best Buys! Described by Roger Voss as:

“This wine remains a benchmark for the Vinho Verde region, even though the producers have now recast it as a Minho wine. It is steely, tight and crisp, with a touch of creaminess that gives it a more rounded aftertaste. Drink now through 2015.”

The Guedes family founded the winery in 1671 and still own it to this day. On the label, you can see the Family House, which is still in use.

Aveleda is one of nine Portuguese wines on this year’s Top 100 list.

www.aveledaportugal.pt

Tourism Rentals

November 3rd, 2014

A new law on tourism rentals makes it mandatory for any individual letting property to register with the Tax Department as a business activity. The law comes into effect on 27th November and also demands that all persons letting property for short term tourism register with their local council for Alojamento Local (“AL”).

AL registration has been in place for some time but the new law alters the procedure for registration and includes the necessity to produce proof of the registration of a business activity by production of an “inicio de actividade” form submitted to the tax department.

For those persons already registered under AL with their local council, there is now the obligation to produce an “inicio de actividade” form as submitted to the tax department within 30 days of the date the law comes into force.

Registration needs to be effected before the end of 2014 and thus we recommend that any person who may need assistance makes contact with us for futher questions, and with a fiscal representative as soon as possible in order to proceed.

www.algarvepropertyrentals.com

World Golf Awards Ceremony at Conrad Algarve

October 7th, 2014

World Golf Awards Gala Ceremony 2014

The World Golf Awards Ceremony, hosted by Conrad Algarve, on the evening of Saturday 15th November will be the climax of an exclusive weekend itinerary. Everything from your own chauffeur driven airport pick-up to a full 18 holes of golf on Friday & Saturday on the famous Quinta do Lago courses, with food and beverages supplied over the full weekends itinerary which will be included in the weekend package.

At present all attentions are focus in the totally revamped North Course – the resorts new number one golf course, predicted to become one of the new stars of European golf. Redesigned by renowed American architect Beau Welling in close collaboration with European Ryder cup captain Paul McGinley, the revamped layout has been built to the highest specifications and is in line to become the new number one course.

So, what are you waiting for to book a visit to Quinta do Lago and enjoy the spectacle of the World Golf Awards Gala Ceremony? While you here give us a call and we will be more than happy to tour you around and take you to view our properties!

VILA VITA Parc Best Beach Hotel in Portugal Award 2014

September 25th, 2014

London, September 2014 – Leading luxury hotel and resort, VILA VITA Parc in the Algarve, has overcome fierce competition to be awarded the “Best Beach Hotel in Portugal 2014” prize by the world’s top hotel price comparison website, Trivago.

Thousands of reviews and opinions were analysed by the experts at Trivago, who whittled the long list of beach hotels down to the three most outstanding, including: 2013’s winner, Grande Real Villa Italia, 2013’s runner-up, Cascais Miragem and VILA VITA Parc. VILA VITA Parc was announced as the winner scoring an impressive 92.38%. Surrounded by 22 acres of subtropical gardens with endless views of the Atlantic Ocean, it is unsurprising that VILA VITA Parc is the global users of Trivago’s favourite.

Escape top the award winning VILA VITA Parc this Septemberand save with the hotel’s exclusive “Endless Summer Offer” (until September 30th) and enjoy its beach location for some last minute summer sun.

SHOWJUMPING EVENTS Vilamoura Champions Tour 2014

September 24th, 2014

Cavalo   Another sunny day in Vilamoura!

Vet check has already started, the competicions start tomorrow!!!

Vilamoura again hosts the 2014 Equestrian Champions tour from the 25th of Sept to 19th October. This is one of the biggest show jumping events in Europe. Here you can experience top riders of the international horse sport with their best horses in the highest classes of jumping.Total prize money this year is € 454,000.

Well known names in the equestrian world competing include Nick Skelton (GB Olympic Gold), Laura Kraut (USA Olympic Gold), Cecilie Hatteland (Norway) and Ben Maher (GB World No 3). Commentary will be led by Eamonn McGowen well known in the media.

Visit the international horse show CSI VILAMOURA 2014 in Portugal and experience the international horse sport live in an exclusive ambiance. CSI VILAMOURA 2014 in Portugal is a horse show of category CSI1* (A), CSI3*, CSIYH1*.

As well as the international horse show, Vilamoura is also famous for its golf courses – and rightly so, with 6 magnificient courses to choose from, enjoying a reputation as the best golf destination in Europe.

With a whole host of well designed golf courses offering different levels of difficulty, Vilamoura hosts some prestigious international tournaments and presents a challenge to golfers of all levels from the experienced golfers to novices ones.

Vilamoura marina has the capacity to berth over 1,000 vessels. The marina is surrounded by large Hotels and Luxury holiday homes as well as a large casino and numerous restaurants and vibrant bars.

At the far corner of the marina, it is possible to charter boats for big game fishing. There are also facilities for jet skiing and parascending. Close by there are also a number of sports clubs, a shooting range and many night clubs.

Besides golf, Vilamoura offers a fabulous choice of sports facilities:

- Tennis

- Squash Courts

- Kart racing

- Mini golf

- Sailing

- Waterskiing

- Big game fishing

- Sea cruises and boat trips some of these specifically designed as dolphin-watching trips

-etc,…

For the jogging lovers there’s a great public running track along the city!

So, what are you waiting for to book a visit to Vilamoura and enjoy the spectacle of the ShowJumping Event? While you here give us a call and we will be more than happy to tour you around and take you to view our properties!

 

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