Belleza ibéricaIyna Bort Caruso
Portugal is a country best appreciated slowly, like a sip of its vintage port wine.
A founding member of the European Union and euro zone, Portugal has transitioned from an economy based on traditional industries to one based on technology. Leading international companies are investing here. Its infrastructure is strong and establishing a business is fast. For those interested in relocating, the opportunity to settle in this charmed corner of the continent through a burgeoning Portugal luxury real estate market is a powerful incentive.
Portugal is small but astonishingly diverse. On the quality-of-life index, the country offers residents a high work-life balance. That comes as no surprise, if only for its impressive golf courses, long Atlantic coastline and Mediterranean climate. The sun shines more than 200 days a year. It also helps that luxury homeowners get to decide how they want to live with their pick of properties: beachfront chalets, wine estates, historic castles and penthouse apartments.
Urban investors are drawn to the cities of Lisbon and Porto. Lisbon is a metropolis filled with magnificent cathedrals, centuries-old monuments and cobbled streets. The tony Lapa district, perched on a hill, is lauded for its historical residential restorations. The Chiado neighborhood of theaters and galleries attracts the intellectual and cultural elite. Porto is Portugal’s second largest city and the center of finance and fashion. Where the Douro River meets the Atlantic is the city’s most prestigious neighborhood, Foz do Douro. The Douro River flows through Portugal’s premiere wine region, which is fast emerging as an A-list favorite.
Buyers hail from throughout the English-speaking world, as well as Scandinavia and Germany.
The Algarve, at Portugal’s extreme southern tip bordering Spain, is popular as a second-home vacation market particularly with UK buyers. The Golden Triangle of the Algarve is not just an exclusive real estate market by Portuguese standards, but by European standards. Sophisticated waterfront residences dot Costa Azul, the Blue Coast, at Estoril and Cascais. This sun-drenched stretch was once known as the Coast of Kings for its legacy of providing safe heaven to former monarchs during World War II.
The royals may be gone but, in Portugal, the royal treatment remains.