January 2009 Archive

Honey Shop Jalon

Honey Shop Jalon Valley

Honey Shop Jalon Valley

If you like honey this shop sells just about every flavour of honey you can think of, for example, rosemary, flowers, euclyptus, lavender, and many others.
They also sell small ornamental gifts and many health and facial products from Aloe Vera.

To find the shop, drive through the main small street of Jalon, continue for about 200 metres and the shop is on the left hand side.

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Posted by on Wednesday 28th January 2009

Moraira and Javea Property Investments

The recent financial collapse of some of the leading investment banks, ongoing business failures, rising unemployment, stocks and shares rendered worthless overnight to what they once were and the credit crunch that is starting to kick in, it’s no wonder that the once highly inflated property prices have been affected. The value of sterling has diminished almost one for one against the euro having a dramatic effect on the once strong buying power of the UK pound.

Even the recent cut in interest rates by the central European bank did little to rally sterling other than a few points. As the UK economy slides deeper into recession, the threat of further interest rate cuts by the bank of England will again weaken the pound. What does the future hold for property owners in Moraira and Javea?

As Far as the Moraira & Javea property market is concerned, I think we are witnessing a market shift as people respond to the current crisis. More and more people will reduce overheads and find safer and more manageable ground. This will mean scaling down and selling off assets, for those that have to sell, at knockdown prices to realise some liquid cash whilst reducing outgoings. Even though Moraira and Javea property prices have been far more insulated from the massive devaluation seen in other areas, it has still been affected, more so, to those people that simply have no option other than to sell.

I think it’s going to be some time before we see any recovery and unfortunately more people are yet to feel the pinch. Historically, only 10% of property stock in Moraira and Javea would be up for sale at any one time. Due to the ongoing crisis I predict an increase this year of up to 15% as the full effects of a bad situation are felt. Consequently, buying property at knockdown prices is on the increase as investors and other people with savings capitalize on a dire situation.

Thankfully for most of the property owners, they don’t have to sell and let go of their dream but as the situation worsens many will have little alternative.

As professional property finders, finding a really good bargain takes a lot of effort. Sorting through the 10% of property stock takes much time and effort. What may seem a bargain may be fundamentally flawed and probably the reason it has not sold in the first place. There are some highly desirable properties at knockdown prices to be had. To maximize capital growth it is important not to inherit a problem or location that cannot be changed. Buyers beware!

For many years the UK buyers have predominantly driven the Spanish property market. Villas for sale in Moraira and villas for sale in Javea are no exception.

There was once a time when the majority of UK property owners had enough collateral in their UK home to finance a second mortgage for a holiday home in Spain. The increases in Spanish property prices over recent years closed the gap significantly and as this was taking place the property purchase model changed and the calculations included the rental potentials more so than ever before to help with annual cost. Bare in mind this was when sterling was at it’s strongest and Spain was a cheap holiday destination, especially before they joined the euro. Due to the fall in the value of sterling, the holiday rental market that Spanish property owners depend upon is going to be a tough one this year only adding to the problem. If you are depending on renting out your property this year, I recommend advertising within the euro zone and not just the UK.

Recently, interest rates have been reduced to all time lows, but how much the banks pass on to us is a completely different matter, especially if they have you paying 6% plus with an annual review! Therefore banks have an opportunity to make more money out of this situation. They will undoubtedly be reluctant to pass any savings on to us and will stretch it out for as long as they get away with it. If you have a Spanish mortgage, the devaluation of sterling means many property owners are now faced with extremely high monthly mortgage payments.

Many ex-pats living in Spain on a UK pension have seen at least a 30% reduction in their income. Many are now scaling down from their detached villas to smaller more affordable properties and even renting instead of buying realizing a little more liquidity to see them by. Some of the best property deals to be found are with the property owners that bought before the property boom. They can afford to sell at much lower prices than someone that bought during the property boom and still recover some profit. What the seller may lose on the price they have to sell at they can recover this lost value when they negotiate the price on a smaller property.

Mortgage defaults are escalating and consequently property repossessions are increasing. It is therefore important not to get into arrears and speak with your bank manager if you are having difficulties. Some are simply handing the keys and deeds back to the bank and walking away. Providing there is more value in the property than the overall debt, handing the keys back to the bank with no arrears means it then becomes an asset to the banks balance sheet. It’s never simple but handing the keys back could be a more favorable option for you but it means you lose whatever you have put into it but at least they cannot chase you around for the rest of your life or be made bankrupt. If people are in arrears with their mortgage and cannot pay the bank, after four months or so, the bank will issue a repossession order to the courts. A repossession order is a banks last resort as it also means a liability for the banks balance sheet. If the property is repossessed, the banks can auction off the property at a fraction of the market price and then chase you for the remainder of the outstanding debt and that includes any future earnings or inheritance you may one day have! Even if you go back to England, they have English lawyers in place to track you down. It is paramount that you speak with your bank manager before you fall into arrears.

As already mentioned, more recently we have seen much interest from property hunters /investors that are looking for highly distressed property sales, something that we specialize in finding for our clients. Some people do have money and those that have, at this moment, don’t trust stocks and shares and can’t earn hardly any interest on it from the banks without tying it up for a given period. And as for the rest of the alternative investment plans and schemes, just how are they going to be managed? Other than for some more specialized investments that you may have a role in managing, you have to be a rather brave investor to trust any institute again. Anyone for roulette!

Tying money up with the banks, in my opinion, is also a risky proposition right now, regardless of promises from the government to underwrite it.
I think cash is king and we all need some liquidity that’s totally accessible just in case governments declare a financial state of emergency. What if?

Having too much cash is also risky and a tangible asset makes perfect sense. If we take note of our boom and bust history, property seems to be a good choice right now and probably the only thing worthwhile. Unfortunately, we don’t have a crystal ball, so much for timing! I am afraid to say for those that have to sell, needs must but it’s a golden opportunity for an investor or simply someone whom has always wanted a place in the sun at the right price. That said, you have to realise a distressed sale when you see one.

Written by Anthony Bloom For more information www.spanish-property-sales.net

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Posted by on Tuesday 20th January 2009

Cookery Courses, Platinum Restaurant, Denia

Platinum Restaurant Denia

Platinum Restaurant Denia

This very delightful restaurant will be running cookery courses in January. These will be held on Tuesday and Thursday lunchtimes and will be for one day each week and will run for six weeks. The cost will be €210. The groups will be small and the course will include 6 first course lunches with wine, 6 cookery sessions and one safety, knife skills. All materials will be supplied. A deposit of €50 will be required when booking.
For more information telephone Karin or Stuart on 96 6433472. The restaurant is located just past the Marina Alta Hospital, on the right.

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Posted by on Sunday 11th January 2009

Strelitizia Reginae plant

Strelitizia (bird of Paradise plant)

Strelitizia (bird of Paradise plant)

This plant is a must for any garden on the Costa Blanca and will be ideal in any Moraira or Javea garden. It has very distinctive spiky yellow and orange flowers which give the appearance of bird crests, they are very unusual and if cut last a long time in water.
They are excellent grown in pots or in the garden and the foliage is evergreen and has large spear like leaves in a grey-green.

The plant is a member of the banana family so will only tolerate a light frost and temperatures below -2 degrees Centograde coluld damage the flowers and leaves. They need rich soil and frequent feeding. The plant flowers during spring and autumn and winter.

They are readily available in garden centres throughout the Costa Blanca. Many Moraira villas and Javea properties enjoy this plant.

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Posted by on Sunday 11th January 2009

Mahonia (Oregon Grape)

Plants for Moraira Properties

Plants for Moraira Properties

This is very distinctive plant and gives a beautiful splash of colour in the winter with bunches of yellow flowers in spikes on the tops of the branches. The plant has dark prickly leaves similar to holly but not quite so prickly and when the flowers have finished, produces blue-black berries which are popular with birds.
It makes a beautiful ornamental plant in any moraira or javea garden and is available at most garden centres.

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Posted by on Sunday 11th January 2009

Ambulance Service Red Cross

Red Cross

Red Cross

If you become a member of the Red Cross Association it will entitle you to a free ambulance to the hospital. The staff are extremely kind, courteous and careful and if necessary will provide oxygen en route and any other medical help.

To join the Association you can either visit the Red Cross Office which is on the N332 just north of the Eurogarden Centre in Teulada or you can visit the Red Cross shop in Teulada on Wednesday mornings. Take with your either your Residencia, passport and NIE number and the cost is €36.0 per year. You will also need your bank details. This fee entitles your family and any person staying in your house.

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Posted by on Friday 9th January 2009

Alleluja Bar Jalon

Alleluja bar Jalon

Alleluja bar Jalon

Alleluja bar products

Alleluja bar products

Alleluja bar courtyard

Alleluja bar courtyard

This bar is full of atmosphere and is run by “Holy Joe”, a very interesting and flamboyant guy.
The bar is situated opposite the main car park in Jalon.

At mid-day they serve salads and entremeses, wines, beers and other drinks and if you are lucky you may be there when there is music by Spanish guitarists and singers.

The bar also sells fruit in season, nuts, dried fruits, wines, local pottery and other products.

The prices are very reasonable.

In summer there is a pleasant vine covered terrace at the back where it is most enjoyable to sit and have a drink and/or lunch.

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Posted by on Monday 5th January 2009

Co-operativa Virgen Pobre de Jalon

Jalon Valley Wine

Jalon Valley Wine

Jalon valley bodega

Jalon valley bodega

For anyone interested in wines the Co-operativa in Jalon is well worth a visit.
It was built 60 years ago; since then has been refurbished and in 2007 obtained silver and bronze medals. Two wines were recently recognised as on a national level with the city of Cordoba. It is very famous for moscatel.

The wine growers from Jalon, Llíber and Alcalali take their grapes to be processed here and they use as much as 2,200,000 kilos of grapes.

If you visit the Co-operative you can taste many of the wines

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Posted by on Monday 5th January 2009

Benissa Dog Club

Benissa Dog Club

Benissa Dog Club

For anyone with a puppy or a disobedient dog there are training classes in English. These classes are held every Friday morning between 10.30 and 11.30, also on Sunday and Wednesday mornings.
For further details telephone Eileen on 96 558 7565 or Sheila on 96 640 8235.

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Young Calpe Night

Every Friday, at 22.00 hours anyone between 12 and 35 years can join in the activities organised at the Pabellón Municipal. There are all sorts of activities, including Body Combat, Salsa, dancing lessons, table tennis competitions and lots more.

More details are available at the Tourist Office in Calpe

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Vergel Car Boot Sale

Every Saturday from 9.0 a.m. until 2.0 p.m. there is a car boot sale at the Vergel Safari Park.

The Safari Park is situated just past Ondara – turn left on the N 332 driving north.

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Bridge Winter Club Calpe

For anyone interested in playing bridge there is a bridge club in Calpe. Meetings are held during the winter on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 13.25 – 14.00 hours. The club also hold whist sessions on Mondays and Fridays from 14.00 hours. There is a library open on Wednesdays from 10.30 . 12.00, and tombola on Tuesdays from 20.00 – 20.30 hours. The club is situated at the rear of Rte Flandes.

There are many other functions, including dinner dance on Fridays, this at their HQ El Bolero. To book dinner dance telephone 626 359 071. There is a choice of meal.

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Arbutus Unedo (Strawberry tree)

Moraira Strawberry Tree

Moraira Strawberry Tree

This is a beautiful evergreen tree which bears small clusters of very pretty bell like white flowers in late autumn and at the same time has very bright ornamental yellow strawberries which turn a very bright red.

These strawberries are edible but are very dry and do not have much flavour.

This tree looks extremely attractive in any garden and the leaves are attractive in the winter as they are dark and quite shiny. They do not transplant well, so always buy a container grown one.

These plants are readily available in most garden centres.

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Security in Spain

If you are visiting or live on the Costa Blanca, it is worth spending some time on the subject of security. As is the case in most places now, it is advantageous to be vigilant.

Gas Inspection: If anyone comes to your door informing you they have come to inspect your gas pipes they are bogus. This does not happen with the authentic gas manufacturers.

Another area where you should be vigilant are the beaches. It is best not to take anything of value on to the beach, just take the minimum amount of cash you require should you need a drink or food and do not leave anything unattended.

Airports: This is another area where you should be vigilant. On arrival at the airport, do not accept help from any strangers, especially if you are hiring a car and are putting your luggage in the boot.

In your home it also is sensible to keep the back doors locked if you are in the front of the house and vice versa. Sometimes someone will come to the house asking for a drink of water. This is usually a ruse to get into the house.

Should you be unfortunate to have a robbery you should inform the Guardia immediately. If you lose any credit cards cancel them immediately with the appropriate companies or banks.

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Moraira Poinsettia

Moraira Poinsettia

Moraira Poinsettia

This is a beautifully dramatic red plant which is very popular at Christmas. The red plant is the most common but there are similar varieties with very pale green and white leaves, or pink leaves which are also very attractive. They make good house or naya plants and need feeding during their flowering season. The poinsettia likes plenty of light and warm temperatures. Once it has produced its coloured leaves it is happy with temperatures around 10 degrees centigrade.
If the plant is kept indoors it likes plenty of light but total darkness at night.

There is also an outdoor poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima) which grows into quite a large tree of up to 10 feet.

These plants are readily available in most garden centres.

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Line Dancing Calpe

There is a group who call themselves the Rodeo Stompers Line dancing Club which meet every Wednesday at El Bolero, Play La Fossa from 20.00 – 23.00 hours. There are also classes for beginners every Friday at El Bolero from 14.00 – 15.00 hours and improvers at 15.00 – 16.00 hours, also intermediate from 16.00 – 17.00 hours.

For further information telephone Barbara on 630 113 649.

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Keep fit classes for over 60's

The Social Services council in Teulada has opened registration for keep fit and tai-chi classes for the over 60´s, This has been introduced for the over 60´s to keep fit and mix with other people.

The classes will be held on Tuesdays from 4.0 p.m. to 5.0 p.m. and on Fridays from 3.45 to 4.45 p.m. in the Social Centre in Teulada and in Moraira in the Espai la Senieta building on Wednesdays and Fridays between 5.0 and 6.0p.m.

Register at the SIT Information and Transaction Service in Teulada and Moraira.

The tai-chi classes for the over 60´s will be held every Saturday in Moraira between 10.0 and 11.0 a.m.

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Craft Clubs in Calpe and Denia

There is a craft club in Calpe every Monday from 15.00 – 17.00 hours. For further details telephone Dilys on 650 312 555.

The craft club in Denia is held every Thursday from 14.0 – l6.30 hours.
This is held at the Hostal Loreto, Calle Loreto. For further details telephone 96 62 07 23

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009

Denia Car Boot Sale

Every Friday morning there is a car boot sale in Denia. This is situated in Calle Parque which is next to the Palacia de Justicia.

There are always plenty of stalls, selling bric-a-brac, clothes, carpets, pottery, jewellery, and many other articles.

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Posted by on Saturday 3rd January 2009