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Why You Should Consider Buying Property in Lisbon and Cascais

When deciding where to buy property in Portugal, you’ll need to decide whether you are interested in life by the sea, being in a popular, busy town, or enjoying the tranquil countryside. There will be many types of property available to you in every region, too, which is something else to think about. Thankfully, the country is blessed with a varied landscape, great weather, and a whole range of places to buy property, so I’m confident you’ll find your dream home. To help you narrow down your options before you start looking at property for sale in Portugal, I’ll provide a good overview of its various regions, and feel free to visit our properties available on our website for some great places to look at, and if you’re after something more specific reach out to us and our team can locate the property you are after. On this post I will take you on a tour of Lisbon and Cascais. Property Tip: If you are inspired by either Lisbon or Cascais reach out to me to learn everything you need to know about buying in Portugal. It’s also worth remembering to spend time in the different areas at different times of the year, so think about this when planning a viewing trip. This will give you a well-rounded view of what you will experience throughout the different seasons if you’re living there all year round. Lisbon and Cascais are one of the most popular cities and towns in Portugal. These places are ideal if you’re looking for a more cosmopolitan lifestyle in a bustling area, and they usually have great transport links for easy access on those weekend escapes. Read on to find out if you should consider Lisbon or Cascais or additionally look further afield.

Lisbon Lisbon is Portugal’s capital, and often cited as the ideal spot for a weekend break. Steeped in history, the city is home to impressive architecture in the form of churches and palaces, capturing a blend of eras and cultures within their walls. However, Lisbon is now a high-tech hub, with plenty of work, even for non-Portuguese speakers. Here, you’ll find the perfect blend of old and new in one place. The cobbled streets are home to a range of bars and restaurants, as well as countless museums and galleries, providing a feast for the eyes and a considerable cultural fix. In addition, Lisbon is a great city for shopping, with a mix of local markets, flea markets, antique stalls, shopping malls, and high-end boutiques. Truly something for everyone!!! Lisbon’s property market is booming at the moment. Portugal’s economy has made an incredible comeback after the economic crisis, and development is at a high. Crumbling mansions are being restored to their former glory, while stylish new buildings – complete with modern amenities – are springing up to fill gap sites. This – combined with increased tourism and rental demand – has pushed prices skywards. Both local and international investors are buying property in Lisbon, and planned infrastructure projects are in place to ensure the city can handle the growth. And, although prices are high, you still get more m2 for your buck Lisbon than in London, Madrid and Berlin. Buying property in Lisbon gives you the chance to enjoy the relaxed Portuguese lifestyle combined with the buzz of a cosmopolitan city. It’s easy to get around on foot, and the hilly streets are an excellent alternative to joining a gym. That said, there are plenty of gyms in the city – from the cheap no-contract Fitness Hut to posher full-service options like Holmes Place. While the cost of living is rising, living in Lisbon is still extremely affordable compared to most large cities in Europe. Eating and drinking in local tascas is extremely affordable, and you can often find three-course menu del dia options for under €10. Lisbon also has a thriving fine dining scene composed of Michelin star restaurants with experimental chefs whipping up unique tasting menus based on Portuguese classics. Before you head out to Portugal, make sure to read our guide to living in Europe’s sunniest Country, for advice on what to look out for Although there’s plenty for all ages, Lisbon is particularly attractive to expats under 50. A growing number of networking events and meet-ups designed for networking and friendship-building makes it easy to meet people in the city. Aside from the odd February thunderstorm, the weather in Lisbon is generally warm and pleasant. There aren’t any urban beaches, but the seaside town of Cascais is a 36-minute drive – or one-hour train ride – from the city centre. Lisbon is also perfectly placed for reaching some of Europe’s most beautiful beaches like the Costa da Caparica and the Serra da Arrábida. Like all capital cities, Lisbon has lots of neighbourhoods each with a different feel. Property prices vary across the areas, too. I’ve picked out some of the best spots for overseas buyers below.

Chiado ❖ Average property price: 10,000€ /m2 Located in the heart of Lisbon, Chiado sits between the buzzing Bairro Alto – with its winding alleys and vibrant nightlife and the Baixa Pombalina – Lisbon’s downtown tourism district. In Chiado you’ll find attractions such as the ruins of the Carmo Monastery, which was destroyed in the 1755 earthquake. It’s also home to the Jardim de São Pedro de Alcântara viewpoint, which has sweeping views across the city centre and over to the castle. Fashionable shops, restaurants and bars round out the offering in this elegant neighbourhood.

Príncipe Real ❖ Average property price: 10,000€ /m2 One of Lisbon’s most stylish neighbourhoods, Príncipe Real is a short stroll uphill from the Jardim de São Pedro de Alcântara viewpoint. Although it’s central, it still maintains its local atmosphere as few tourists venture this far. It’s known for its tile-clad 19th Century mansions, many of which have been converted into arty shops like the Embaixada – a shopping mall dedicated to local Portuguese designers. Its central park hosts a Saturday farmer’s market and monthly antique fair. Stylish cafes, restaurants and gay bars round out the offering of this evocative area.

Estrela ❖ Average property price: 8,800€ /m2 Lisbon’s embassy quarter sits at the top of one of the city’s seven hills, with incredible views across the Tagus River and the iconic red Ponte 25 de Abril bridge – a clone of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge. You’ll find young families and elderly locals relaxing and taking in the air at the large, leafy Jardim de Estrela Park. The hub of the neighbourhood is the Basílica da Estrela – you can see its domes from the city centre, and the view from the top is pretty breathtaking. Outside you’ll find the terminus of the famous Tram 28, the vintage yellow streetcar that trundles through some of Lisbon’s most popular touristic areas.

Belém ❖ Average property price: 8,800€ /m2 The waterfront suburb of Belém is 8km west of Lisbon city centre, but still has a lively atmosphere as it’s home to some of the city’s most iconic attractions and museums. These include Mosteiro dos Jeronimos – a huge monastery and one of the few surviving examples of Manueline architecture – and the Pasteis de Belem pastry shop where the Portuguese custard tart is said to have been invented. If you go a few streets inland, away from the museums and open-top tour buses, you’ll find the atmosphere much more peaceful. Although it isn’t connected to the city centre by underground, there are regular trams and buses. Easy access to the waterfront promenade and large leafy parks makes it a choice location for joggers and cyclists.

Parque das Nações ❖ Average property price: 8,100€ /m2 Parque das Nações was built in 2012 and feels more contemporary than the rest of the city. Tourists come for the Lisbon Oceanarium – the largest indoor aquarium in Europe. Leafy parks and a broad promenade are spiced up with public artworks. The area is beside the huge Estação do Oriente, one of Portugal’s main transport hubs. It also has the sprawling Vasco da Gama shopping mall, and numerous waterfront bars and restaurants to enjoy. Choosing the right mortgage is vital to the success of your property purchase. Get in touch today with our trusted partners – they have many years of experience helping foreigners to get the best mortgage possible. The area is also home to the Altice arena, which hosts concerts from international acts like Michael Bublé and conferences including Web Summit, a huge tech event which has been held annually in Lisbon since 2016. This makes Parque das Nações an excellent choice if you want to buy property in Lisbon to rent out.

Campo de Ourique ❖ Average property price: €7,500 /m2 Campo de Ourique is an up-and-coming neighbourhood slightly the west of downtown Lisbon. It has lots of boutique shops and trendy places to eat – at weekends you’ll spot lines of hipsters queuing for brunch outside cafés like Ela Canela and Amélia. One of the top attractions is the area’s food market, which combines stalls selling fresh fish, fruit and charcuterie with places you can grab street food and petiscos (Portuguese tapas). It’s like a smaller version of the famous Time Out Market in Cais do Sodre, and as fewer people know about it, it’s much quieter and easier to sample everything that’s on offer. Feel free to schedule a call at your convenience on our calendar through Calendly, and let’s see where we can add value to your move or additionally investing in Portugal, as our trusted lawyer; loan broker and currency exchange broker will be able to add value to your buying process!!!

Cascais If you like the idea of life by the sea in a stunning and practical location, consider joining the large international community living in Cascais. It’s one of Portugal’s best-known and most desirable areas. Starting out as a fishing port, it became a popular holiday resort back in the 19th Century, with the well-to-do families of Europe. From this influx of European visitors grew impressively grand buildings and beautifully landscaped parks, enjoyed by high society of the time. This glamorous atmosphere continues today, with a lively, yet relaxed feel to the resort. Cascais is located just to the west of thriving Lisbon, so it combines the convenience of living near a large city with the comfort and pace of a smaller town. The capital is just 40 minutes away by road and rail. The sparkling ocean is always close, with a choice of vibrant town beaches and wild, sweeping surf spots. Join me to discover Cascais. Many international residents are happily living in Cascais – an area of Portugal that’s been popular with overseas guests for centuries. Below, I cover ten key points about its many attractions. I also look at the practicalities of settling into the area.

1. Cascais has a rich history Like many places in Portugal, Cascais has a long history of overseas visitors, especially the British. In 1953, the casino in Estoril – part of the Cascais municipality – was the inspiration for Ian Fleming’s first James Bond novel, Casino Royale. Cascais was also home to King Edward VIII in 1940. He was one of many royals from across Europe who found a haven in Portugal during the second world war. However, these royals were following 600 years behind the footsteps of the Portuguese aristocracy, who built the city’s castle back in the 1300s. Cascais continues to attract international residents, and not just the rich and famous. It is popular with people taking up employment at Lisbon’s multinational companies and tech start-ups. It’s also a great choice for retirees who want to enjoy the sun and sand but want easy access to city culture. 2. Cascais is a perfect balance of village and city I describe Cascais as a small fishing village, that retains its traditional features, and doesn’t feel overpopulated. Cascais is particularly popular with international residents due to its safe feel, proximity to Lisbon, and wealth of international schools. These include American, German and Swedish schools. The local public schools are excellent quality also. Cascais can undoubtedly get busy, especially when the town centre is thronged with day-trippers from Lisbon, or attendees from events at the upscale marina. However, much of the time the pace is calm and relaxed, giving residents the best of both worlds. 3. Lisbon is your playground Travelling between Cascais and Lisbon is an experience in itself. You have the choice of taking the oceanfront road (the marginal) or relaxing on the train. The train tracks hug the coast for most of the way, making for a wonderfully scenic journey (sit on the left of the train facing Cascais for the best views). Trains between Cascais and Portugal’s capital are frequent and inexpensive. You can also get a train back to Cascais as late as 1.30am, making nights out in Lisbon completely feasible. 4. The weather is warm and reliable While it’s important to remember that Cascais isn’t as far south as Portugal’s Algarve, the area still delivers warm weather for much of the year. The long summer runs from May to October, with average highs between 22 and 28 Celsius. Higher temperatures than that are far from unusual, but the Atlantic breeze does much to increase the comfort factor. Winters are mild too, with average highs of 15 degrees Celsius, even in the coldest months of December and January. 5. Cascais is extremely popular with overseas residents Cascais attracts residents from far beyond Europe, with many of them moving to the area for work. This is mainly because Lisbon has emerged as a major hub for start-ups and tech firms since the financial crisis, with companies like Google, Uber and Mercedes all making it their home. Some people have even gone as far as describing Lisbon as “the California of Europe” due to its flourishing start-up scene. As a result, many people look to Cascais as a nice balance between the city and coast.

6. Cascais is great for food Cascais excels in its choice of restaurants. As well as traditional Portuguese options, there are places that reflect the area’s cosmopolitan clientele. Some stand-out choices include: ❖ Jardim dos Frangos: A piri piri chicken restaurant with a rapid turnover of simple, tasty food. The atmosphere is buzzing, and the place is packed in the summer, with people enjoying churrasco chicken, chips and cold beer. If the queue’s too big, takeaway is always an option. ❖ Fortaleza de Guincho: A short drive out of Cascais town centre, and right at the other end of the scale! This Michelin-starred restaurant is part of a stunning historic hotel, overlooking the crashing waves of the Atlantic. The menu changes daily, and local seafood features heavily. ❖ Bangkok Thai Moods: A Thai restaurant with several outdoor tables. You’ll find it on a cobbled street in central Cascais. Perfect when you fancy a change from Portuguese fayre, this restaurant offers authentic and spicy Thai food. It enjoys a solid local reputation. 7. There are plenty of markets Cascais’ municipal market opens six days per week. It’s at its busiest in the mornings, but there’s still some activity until mid-afternoon. This is perfect if you’re a late riser!!!The main town market offers everything from meat and fish to snacks and baked goods. In addition, there’s a “traditional market” offering crafts, artisan products and bric-a-brac every Wednesday and Saturday. Beyond Cascais itself, there are plenty of other markets in the municipality. These include regular events in Carcavelos, Parede and Estoril. All of them offer an enticing glimpse of day to day Portuguese life.

8. You may struggle to choose a single favourite beach While plenty of people choose to flop down on the sands of Cascais’ golden town beaches, many locals have a favourite that’s a little more out of the way. It only takes a ten-minute journey to find solitude, especially outside of peak season. Popular choices include: ❖ Guincho – a wild and dramatic Atlantic beach that’s hugely popular with surfers. ❖ Praia de A Draga – a stunning cove complete with Instagrammable rock formations, just up the coast towards Sintra. This beach is a bit of a poorly kept “secret,” and very popular with locals. ❖ Praia do Tamarix – a family-friendly beach, complete with lifeguards and all the practical facilities you need for a day out with the family. It’s located near to Estoril casino. 9. There’s plenty of choice in the property market I can paint a very positive picture of the property market for those thinking about living in Cascais. There are currently several new developments under construction and being finished to be available on the market. This is increasing the choice of property in the area. If you’re interested in investing in the area, the rental market is thriving too. This applies to both long-term and short-term rental properties. The popularity of Airbnb has led to a dearth of long-term rental properties, making such homes a great potential investment. There’s certainly no shortage of demand. 10. Living in Cascais is an option, regardless of your budget I single out the Cascais areas of Bairro do Rosário and Guia for particular praise. These neighbourhoods have everything foreign residents typically look for – such as plenty of shops and cafés, wide pavements for jogging and cycling, and easy access to schools and other amenities. They are also particularly great for growing families. These more traditional areas are very convenient and offer apartments starting at just 150,000€. Those seeking bargains could consider up and coming areas, such as Torre and Amoreira. These more traditional areas are very convenient and offer homes starting at just 150,000€. These are also areas earmarked for regeneration, which could make them a great investment for the future. Feel free to schedule a call at your convenience on our calendar through Calendly, and let’s see where we can add value to your move or additionally investing in Portugal, as our trusted lawyer; loan broker and currency exchange broker will be able to add value to your buying process!!! Link to schedule call on Calendly

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