Spain is packing them in this summer like never before, according to reports from tourism industry leaders who say the “Miracle” growth can help drag the country out of its second recession in recent years.
Beaches, hotels and private rental villas are nicely filled for July and August as record numbers of international tourists congregate on their favourite Costas, many taking advantage of €400M worth of new-look, upmarket offerings in Mallorca and Ibiza; Costa del Sol and Barcelona.
The Balearic Islands, Canary Islands and the Mediterranean coast, from Catalonia down to Andalusia, are hanging out “No Vacancy” signs this summer – thanks to what José Luis Zoreda, director general of tourism body Exceltur, is calling “A miracle turnaround caused by a flood of foreign demand.”
The “Miracle” has spread to Spanish factories, where output and exports are also on a roll and now the Bank of Spain has announced “The worst of the recession is behind us.” There’s a new optimism in the property sector because sales are returning to peak levels of 2007, fuelled by prices discounts of 44% on average.
[infobox]Tourism with real estate are Spain’s main economic drivers and both rely on the excellent climate, best in Europe security, lifestyle and transport. The ongoing unrest in Turkey, Egypt and Cyprus has also boosted arrivals and investment in Spain.[/infobox]
The governor of the Bank of Spain, Luis María Linde has claimed that “the worst phase of the second recession is now behind us,” and forecast the Spanish economy would return to positive growth between July and September. Spain was plunged into its worst downturn in 2009, and after a mild recovery over the following two years, slipped back into recession in 2012.
Juan Molas, president of the Spanish Confederation of Hotels and Tourism Accommodation (CEHAT), told an industry conference: “In 2013 we hope to leave recession behind in the tourism sector.”
Like the real estate sector, Spanish tourism peaked in 2007 with an all-time record of 58.6 million tourists. Now, experts feel that this figure could be exceeded this year, considering that 57.7 million foreigners came to Spain last year and that there has already been a 7.4-percent increase in arrivals to May this year.
Ben Walker of international brokers, Walker Property Spain said: “It’s been the best summer for years for property bargain sales. But many of the special property-with-mortgage deals will be stopped at the end of July and the banks may not have to be this generous again if the economy is recovering so strongly after the summer.”
International property buyers are grabbing bargains offering discounts of 40% to 84% and many come tied to mortgages of 40% to 110% in a series of Summer 2012 promotions.
Author: Kevin Barnett, Walker Property News