Algarve recovery at higher speed.jpg

Algarve recovery at higher speed

By Bart van Linden [email protected]

Bart van Linden is a director of Exclusive Algarve Villas, a local real estate company focused on selling high end properties and investment related real estate throughout Portugal.

While the world is on the road to recovery, the Algarve might be on a quicker track.

For the Algarve, being dependent mostly on tourism and real estate, an economic recovery in Europe is vital for a region that depends on foreign cash inflow.

The local markets from mainly Porto and Lisbon still remain important and this year, it seems the Spanish have also stayed close to home and visited the Algarve.

The Algarve is doing its best to remain an attractive quality destination.  Marketing campaigns abroad by the tourism board, special packages for hotels and golf, events and large investment projects maintain people attracted to the sunny south of Portugal.

For example, the West Algarve is getting a big push by some major investments like the Autódromo do Algarve, the future shopping centre in Portimão (AquaPortimão), the future Hollywood like movie theatre, the rumours about a new airstrip to replace the existing one in Alvor, the Ferragudo Marina, the Bensafrim football project (formerly a Sven Goren Erikson project near Lagos), the Meia Praia project (Palmeiras), just to name a few.  

Small projects seem to be taking forever in the local councils, but large investment like the above can now move quicker once the PIN (Project of National Interest) status has been approved.

From a real estate and tourism point of view, projects like these are what keep (future) investors excited. We believe that, for example, the race track will start generating a new type of buyer once people know it is there.

Still fairly unknown worldwide, the race track has been doing very well in the first year and having visited the circuit a few times on VIP invitation, it is a thrill to see something like this come together on our doorstep. Big events like the GP2, which is the class below Formula 1, and the Moto GP bring a new type of tourist to the Algarve.

With locals lobbying for more sound barriers, to have the circuit closed, embargoed, etc., we believe that within 3-8 years things might well be very different than what they are today.

Just focussing on the Portimão area, massive investments have been made and are on the way. These projects will attract more people to the area for work, leisure and business. These people will have to live somewhere and with only so much property and space available, we believe that once we are on the road to recovery in Europe in 2010/2011, growth of property prices is inevitable.

For businesses linked to real estate and tourism, the upcoming year will be another challenging one yet exciting, as there are opportunities for savvy buyers who are looking to snap up good deals.

Bart van Linden can be contact on 282 353 019, 912 826 969 or email at [email protected]