Lisbon Real Estate Fair biggest ever in 2006.jpg

Lisbon Real Estate Fair biggest ever in 2006

PORTUGAL’S LARGEST real estate fair, the Salão Imobiliário de Lisboa, promises to exceed all expectations this year. The ninth edition of the five-day event will be held at Lisbon’s FIL, in Parque das Nações, between November 22 and 26, and the fair will be spread out over a 37,000sqm site, in three exhibition halls, with more than 300 exhibitors and over 30,000 visitors, reports The Resident’s Chris Graeme.

The property event, which showcases some of the biggest and best real estate projects in the country, will have an increasingly international flavour. The planned event was officially announced last week, when Lisbon Câmara President, Carmona Rodrigues, was on hand to witness the signing of a protocol between Lisbon Câmara and the Portuguese Industrial Association. The protocol means that the co-operation between the two entities will continue until 2009, reinforcing the success and importance of this public-private initiative.

The real estate fair is the event of the year for property and property-related companies in Portugal and abroad, working in tourism, urban planning and regeneration, office and commercial developments.

The 2006 event will see floor space devoted to stands increase by 28 per cent, 21 per cent more registered exhibitors than in 2005 (310 as opposed to 253), and the expectation of an increase by 30 per cent in visitor numbers.

Already, the participation of international entities has risen by 25 per cent on 2005, with the Spanish presence up by 20 per cent, while the floor space occupied by Brazil alone will reach 3,500sqm. Residential tourism will receive particular attention this year, reflecting the tendency for a growth in property investment by both Portuguese and foreigners in this area.

Among other events, which will take place alongside this year’s Salão Imobiliário, is a conference dedicated to international investment in residential tourism, the second InBrazil Conference focusing on tourism and property in the north west of the country, the SIL Property Awards, property auctions and the sixth Lisbon Real Estate Fair Golf Tournament.

During his speech to movers and shakers in the Lisbon real estate business, the president of the Portuguese Industrial Association, Rocha de Matos, expressed the importance of the increased internationalisation of the fair, as a way of promoting foreign real estate and tourism investment in both the city and Portugal as a whole, in what has been a difficult economic period for the real estate sector in recent years.

“The economic crisis forces us to come up with new business models to stimulate growth and competitiveness in the real estate sector. Lisbon, today, attracts some of the major European fairs, and it is important to continue to reinforce this international presence,” he said.

Carmona Rodrigues said the fair was important for the “economic wellbeing of Lisbon, the country, and was vital for urban development”. Other factors were also important: the new rent law, the Lisbon Strategic Urban Development Plan and new rules affecting town planning, the success of the Expo Parque development as well as renewed vigour in urban regeneration projects slated for former rundown industrial and port areas.

“The year 2004 marked a turning point, away from the traditional lack of attention to urban regeneration, to more dynamic projects of urban renovation. Lisbon Câmara, together with other strategic partners, has facilitated the creation of 100 new companies whose aim was the regeneration of the city. Lisbon offered a number of great possibilities for investment in the property sector, with quality projects on abandoned and rundown former industrial sites,” he concluded.