Costa del Sol property & lifestyle, news, views, advice & information

Five questions to ask yourself if you’re dreaming of moving to Spain

Author: Ian Clover  |  April 23rd, 2015

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Spain's attractions are obvious, but have you asked yourself whether you're ready to live there?

Upping sticks and jetting off to start a new life in Spain is no longer as easy as it once was. The recent economic crash has put paid – possibly for good – to the idea that a life in the Costa del Sol sun could be anyone’s, provided they had a one-way ticket, a suitcase of summer clothing and a head full of dreams.

That such opportunities were once possible seems astounding now. The Costa del Sol is a very different place to what it was even a decade ago, while the ‘heady days’ of the ‘80s and ‘90s are long gone.

But maybe that is a good thing…

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Brit expats are Spain’s third-largest immigrant bloc

Author: Ian Clover  |  April 22nd, 2015

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On the march: Brits are Spain's third-largest immigrant group, and their numbers are increasing.

That Brits love Spain has never been in question, but the extent to which Brits have made Spain a home from home has been laid bare in recent statistics published by the Permanent Observatory on Immigration (OPI) body. Well, kind of…

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Jorge's images: El Caminito del Rey... a walk on the wild side

Photographer:   |  April 21st, 2015

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Having been closed in 2000 due to its perilous condition, after 3 years of planning, 12 months of renovation and reconstruction, plus a €2.7 million investment, Málaga’s famous Caminito del Rey, or King’s Walkway – once known as ‘the world’s most dangerous footpath’ – has now been tamed… and it reopened to the public on 28 March 2015. Pinned to the near vertical cliffs of the breathtaking Desfiladero de los Gaitanes, a dizzying 100 metres above the swirling waters of the Guadalhorce River, the construction of the original Caminito del Rey took place from 1901 to 1905, when it was built to give access to those working on the Guadalhorce hydroelectric plant. VIVA’s own intrepid in-house photographer traversed the once death-defying path several times before it was closed, and returned only days after its reopening to take these stunning images just for you! His verdict, “Well, while it’s no longer the world’s scariest path, the views are as unforgettable as ever and are guaranteed to take your breath away.” If you’d like to follow in his footsteps, visit to reserve a booking – free of charge until September 2015.

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Life on Marbs? Marbella-based TOWIE spin-off rumoured

Author: Ian Clover  |  April 20th, 2015

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TOWIE loves Marbella, but can Marbella match TOWIE by going it alone?

The Sun newspaper has reported that the producers of smash scripted reality TV show The Only Way is Essex (TOWIE) are planning a Marbella-based spin-off of the franchise

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‘Hip’ Malaga touted as the new Barcelona by British newspaper

Author: Ian Clover  |  April 17th, 2015

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The new Centre Pompidou in Málaga boasts a wonderful location right in the heart of the action.

If you are one of the record 2.2 million people who flew into Málaga airport between January and March this year, then you can safely tick off Málaga on your ‘been there’ mental map… or can you? Despite being home to the third-busiest airport in the Spain, Málaga’s charms are often overlooked by the hordes of Brits who visit the Costa del Sol every year…

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Catalonia hopes to bring working hours in line with rest of Europe

Author: Ian Clover  |  April 16th, 2015

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Spain's long working hours often suit the country's laid-back style, but is that part of the problem?

The Catalan government has vowed this week to bring an end to the long working hours that many Catalans currently endure, seeking to bring the region more in line with the rest of Europe.

Spain’s famously long working day – which for many begins a little after 8am, is interrupted by a long lunch break at around 2pm and then continues between 4pm and 8pm – has often been touted as one of the reasons why the economy has struggled in recent years

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Two-thirds of foreign buyers don’t need a mortgage, reports Spanish daily

Author: Ian Clover  |  April 15th, 2015

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As property in Spain has become more affordable, more and more foreign buyers are snapping up homes with cash.

A recent report by Spanish national newspaper El Mundo has found that as many as two-thirds of non-Spaniards who bought property in Spain over the past six months did so without requiring a mortgage.

El Mundo reports that cash-rich buyers from the UK and Scandinavia have been taking advantage of the favourable exchange rates and snapping up affordable property in Spain with cash…

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Expats expected to hold sway in UK election

Author: Ian Clover  |  April 14th, 2015

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Should the Tories win, David Cameron has promised a referendum on the European Union in 2017.

The millions of Brits living away from the UK but still able to vote could prove pivotal in swinging how the election goes in May – with Spain’s sizeable expat British population intent on having their say

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Last Brit Standing backlash bashes BBC for misrepresentation

Author: Ian Clover  |  April 13th, 2015

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Taking it lying down: the BBC's documentary has attracted criticism from outraged British expats.

The BBC’s one-eyed take on life on the Costa del Sol (Costa del Sol: Last Brit Standing) has been battered with a predictable backlash of indignation from the thousands of Brits living there happily, reports UK newspaper the Guardian

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