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Portugal’s Golden Visa offer set to boost property market

Last August, looking to stimulate its property market as well as its small-to-medium enterprise sector, Portugal introduced a Golden Residency scheme under which a non-EU person can obtain EU residency in return for an investment of €500,000 in property or €1,000,000 in a business.

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The A22 toll saga and the toll-free “alternative” route

Continuing its protest against the introduction of the A22 tolls, the Algarve’s Left Bloc is taking to the N125 on 25th July to highlight the many “black spots” and to stress the need for urgent improvements, if the N125 is ever to be a viable toll-free alternative to the A22.

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Astrology and the euro crisis

The euro was launched in a blaze of euphoria on 1st January, 1999. We take midday in Frankfurt as the natal moment. You can look at the euro’s natal chart here

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The Aljezur Sweet Potato Festival: worth a visit

Each autumn, Aljezur celebrates the sweet potato and its importance to the community by holding a Festival.

The 2011 event ran from Thursday to Sunday, from midday to midnight, except on the Sunday, when it closed at 9 pm. It takes place in the Espaço Multiusos, a vast, one hundred metre long metal shed set among steep wooded hills with views across the valley to the old town and castle.

 

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A22 tolls a reality: Guide to Payment Options and Charges now available in English

The long-anticipated toll charging system for the Algarve’s A22 motorway came into effect on 8th December 2011. The system covers the length of the A22, but some toll-free, short journeys can be made, particularly between adjacent exits. For example, it is possible to cross the bridge from Spain using the A22 and transfer to the N125, or to travel from Bensafrim to Lagos, without incurring a charge.

 

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Top 10 reasons to relocate to Portugal’s Western Algarve

1. Climate

3,000 hours of sunshine per year, cooling ocean breezes to moderate the summer heat, and seasonal rainfall all contribute to a great climate. No wonder Andalusians have been snapping up holiday homes in the area!

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Boca de Rio Beach
 

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Is there a “value premium” in sustainably built homes?

Quantitative research has been lacking to support this contention. However, as reported in award winning US blog Jetson Green, recent research conducted by the Earth Advantage Institute, an Oregon-based non-profit organization, found that new homes with a green certification (US Green Building Council’s LEED in this instance), sold for 8 per cent more than new homes without a certification. Moreover, existing homes with a green certification sold for 30 per cent more than homes without such a certification. The research was carried out in several districts in Washington, Oregon, and was based on sales between 1 May, 2010 and 30 April, 2011. While there were differences from district to district, the overall results strongly supported the notion that both new and existing homes with a green certification have higher sale values.

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The contribution made by thermal mass is not fully recognised

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Census 2011: the Algarve population has grown by 55,000 in 10 Years

Census 2011: the Algarve population has grown by 55,000 in the past 10 years while depopulation of the interior continues.

According to the preliminary results of the 2011 census, the Algarve and Madeira are the two regions of Portugal showing the largest increase in population over the past decade.

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Despite its beauty, Alcoutim is suffering depopulation

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No shortage of finance for Portuguese property purchases

Despite the general slow-down in the Portuguese property market, there are plenty of lenders ready and able to finance purchases by non-residents. However, the loan-to-value (LTV) ratios are lower and the interest spreads are higher than a couple of years ago, with affordability is a key issue.

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Yours for 25% down

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Onyria Golf Resorts opens its 27-hole Palmares Golf Course

On 11th June, Onyria Golf Resorts opened Onyria Palmares Golf, a 27-hole course conceived by Robert Trent Jones Jr. and situated at Palmares in Lagos.

The works on the new golf course were initiated in January, 2009, and represent an investment of 10 million euros.

The inaugural event, a two day “shotgun” tournament, took place on 11th and 12th June. The first day was dedicated to tour operators and journalists, and the second day to corporate guests of Onyria Golf Resorts. Golfers were able to speak directly to the architect Robert Trent Jones Jr., who was present on both days of the event.

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