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Do you like beaches, or lying by a swimming pool? Do you enjoy being surrounded by stunning scenery and historic buildings? Or are you a lover of good wines and fresh food produce? These are all good reasons to consider retiring to Spain and here are eight of the reasons we’d give for choosing Spain as the place to buy a retirement or holiday home.

 

 

 

A lower cost of living

Your money really can go further here. Spain has the lowest cost of living in Western Europe.

Great healthcare

The World Health Organisation puts Spain’s healthcare system in the Top 10 worldwide, plus there are plenty of private clinics in addition to the public hospitals.

It’s a diverse country

Spain is one of the largest countries in Europe in terms of its land mass and that also means that it has a wildly diverse landscape. There is something for everyone here: from the seaside to the mountains to vibrant cities, you’re sure to find a place that strikes a chord with you.

Great travel hub

It’s pretty easy to get anywhere else in Europe, as well as other parts of the world, when you live in Spain, and travelling within the country is simple as well thanks to its great train service and its motorways.

A choice of climates

Like the scenery, Spain also offers a variety of climates. The sun seekers gravitate to the south and the eastern Costas, but if you prefer something a bit cooler, there’s always Spain’s beautiful north.

It’s filled with culture

Spain’s historical past has been well preserved in its architecture and cultural events. It is packed to the brim with places to explore from north to south, including the majestic Alhambra palace, the Camino de Santiago, Toledo and Segovia, just to mention a very small handful of what you will find here.

Great wines

Sadly, Spain has not marketed its wine to the same extent as the French and Italians, therefore many expats have only heard of ‘rioja’. Spain produces an enormous number of wines that can easily compete with those of its nearest neighbours and spending time here will give you an opportunity to discover them.

Great food and friendly people

Spain’s cuisine is not limited to paella; there are many more dishes to try that all use local ingredients. And on top of that, the Spanish people are known for their generous hospitality, friendliness and respect for people from other countries. Which Spanish region would you choose to live in? At Umuzee we cover most Spanish regions and have some spectacular properties for you to look at. Just do a few searches in the various Spanish regions on our site and you’ll see what we mean!

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The Sotogrande community may be exclusive and it remains the biggest, privately owned residential development in Andalucia, but it also has a reputation for being a community where the values of friendship and neighbourliness are held in high regard.

 

 

It has always had an air of tranquillity thanks to its well-planned layout that pays particular attention to preserving large areas of lush greenery and trees. The fact that it also has a marina and beaches, gives the Sotogrande community residents the best of both worlds and a very enviable lifestyle, and an airport in Gibraltar less than 30 minutes from the door.

Sotogrande community is great for families

Grand mansions sit in private gardens with sparkling pools, but there are also apartments and townhouses in the various gated communities. It feels safe, and that is why so many overseas families are attracted to the area, with the fact that it is also home to one of the biggest and most successful schools on the coast – Sotogrande International School –often being a deal clincher for parents with school age children.

Celebrities, sport and a King

The Sotogrande story began in 1962 when millionaire Joseph McMicking thought it would be interesting to build something similar to the Forbes Park estate in Manila, Philippines, and after a search, bought the Finca Paniagua estate and created what is now the Sotogrande community. The new venture brought in the internationally famous, such as Maria Callas and Aristotle Onassis, on visits and it continues to attract visitors of similar status who prefer to keep a low profile. The only occasion when this changes is during the summer polo season when royalty and celebrities plus the world’s top polo players and their strings of ponies descend on the resort for a month of this exclusive sport. Marbella doesn’t have a monopoly on the ‘jet set’, and the Sotogrande community provides a more relaxed ambience with less media glare.

It is also home to some of the best golf courses in Spain: Valderrama is famous worldwide and reputedly the best in Spain, and there are at least four other courses here, all of a high quality. King Juan Carlos is the patron of the Sotogrande Yacht Club, and a regular visitor for the polo. His love of sailing is well known and the Yacht Club and marina have hosted a number of major sailing events over the years.

There are restaurants, shops, bars and much more in Sotogrande to enjoy , but above all it is a place where you will be made to feel at home when you move there.

Umuzee has some fantastic Sotogrande properties for sale – with prices starting at an amazing €99,995.

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Malaga, the Gateway to the Costa del Sol

 

It is the birthplace of Picasso and Antonio Banderas, it holds some of the most spectacular Semana Santa (Easter) parades, has amazing beachside restaurants serving seafood cooked in the local manner and an ever–growing number of fine museums and art galleries, including a Pompidou Centre, yet for many years it has been ignored in favour of Granada, Sevilla and Córdoba. The city is Málaga, and it is the gateway to the Costa del Sol.

 

 

Malaga, the Gateway to the Costa del Sol

In some ways the Costa del Sol has been the thorn in Málaga’s side: flights arrive at the expanded and modernised international airport that is only a matter of minutes from the city centre, and once out of departures the crowds head to the beach resorts arranged along the famous southern coast, with Marbella in its centre drawing the tourists like bees to honey.

Now that is thankfully changing as an increasing number of visitors realise that this charming, lively and friendly city is just fabulous for a weekend getaway with sun. With so many direct flights from all over Europe, travellers can arrive her within a matter of a few hours and be sitting on a beach within minutes.

Costa del Sol residents are also realising that they have a gem on their doorstep and that a 45-minute drive, or less depending on where you live on the coast, brings them to a superb array of shopping opportunities, plus theatre, art and of course Málaga’s wonderful restaurants and tapas bars, such as the landmark El Pimpi, Los Gatos and the Michelin-starred José Carlos Garcia (JCG) on the harbour’s Muelle Uno.

Málaga is remarkably easy to get around: taxis are inexpensive and there is a new metro, as well as ample buses. Plus, its centre is easily walkable and a pleasure to stroll around. You can spend hours discovering what is hidden off the main thoroughfares like Calle Larios, a spacious shopping street with echoes of Barcelona’s Las Ramblas.

Accommodation is plentiful and ranges from five-star hotels to wonderfully stylish apartments in the centre that cost around €60-70 per night. There are few cities in Europe where you will find similar for that price. Its hostels are also typically a cut above others, and would be consider three-star hotels at least elsewhere.

If you’re buying a property on the Costa del Sol, don’t miss out on Málaga while you’re searching – you’ll discover another reason to live in Andalucia.

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