Monday, 27 April 2009

Holiday Homes in the News

Holiday homes are very much in the news at the moment. It is the time when owners of self catering properties much achieve their booking quotas and especially in 2009 when many prospective holiday renters are searching for bargains.

“The Independent” ran a feature on the 22nd April entitled “If you want your holiday rental to stand out from the crowd, a quirky interior with a local touch is essential”.

The article went on to describe how twenty years ago life was so simple for the holiday home owner. You bought your holiday rental and furnished it with leftover from your own home or local cheap and cheerful furniture from the locality. Then you put an ad in the Sunday newspaper and the enquiries and bookings flood in.

In 2009 it is a different story. Prospective renters want to see photos and details on the Internet so that they can compare holiday rentals. A property owner in Portugal was quoted as saying you need individual furniture, pictures on the walls and leather sofas that are easier to clean rather than cream linen covers that show every stain.

In the April 2009 edition of the ARLA (Association of residential Letting Agents) “Agreement magazine there is a three page feature. The article says that a growing number of letting agents are going into holiday lets. These would be in the UK and don’t have to be by the sea. Cities like Bath, Edinburgh, Oxford and London have a fifty two week a year appeal. Many holiday lets are in fact used by business people who don’t want to stay in a hotel for example.

With the strong euro and dollar against the weak pound sterling, many people will be looking at staying in Britain this year. Advice in the ARLA article for Landlords/property owners is not to skimp on fixtures and fittings and make sure that widescreen televisions, Internet access quality kitchen and bathrooms are supplied. There should be a good heating system and this of course applies to that holiday rental in Spain or Portugal, particularly if you are attracting winter lets.

The provision of a cleaner is essential, after all your guests are on holiday and don’t want to spend the time cleaning. Dishwashers and washing machines should also be supplied.

The Agreement article goes onto to define a “Holiday Home”

A property can be defined as a holiday home for tax reasons:
If it is available for letting to the public for at least 140 days of the year
It is furnished – meaning furnished so that people can live in it without having to bring their own furniture.
It is occupied with paying guests for at least 70 days in the year
If individual lets do not exceed 31days
If the property is not let to the same person for more than 31 days in the year.

Tax benefits are that a holiday home is treated as a business asset unlike a buy-to-let property which is currently not. Thus a holiday home is more favourably treated by the tax authorities – losses can be set against overall income and a Capital Gains Tax exemption means that owners can roll up from selling to go on to buy another holiday home (Source ARLA Agreement Magazine April 2009)

Remember regarding tax on your holiday home income, many countries have tax treaties with the UK, but you should check the situation out carefully so you don’t pay tax in two countries. Many European countries now have methods of finding out who owns a holiday home property and if the owners are paying tax.

Another important area for homeowners to consider is the insurance on the holiday let. Insurance written in English arranged via UK brokers and insurance companies make a lot of sense. To find out more visit

If you want to let that holiday property, you can advertise it at an incredibly reasonable annual cost of £11.75 including VAT at Together with the website has been running since 2001.

Thursday, 9 April 2009

Hot Holidays in Lanzarote

(Photo:©James Mitchell)

The small Canary Island of Lanzarote has long been a hot favourite with sun starved Northern Europeans. As this little speck of Spain, located just off the coast of Saharan Africa, is an ideal sunshine holiday destination all year round. And is just four hours flying time from all major UK airports

Lanzarote was first conquered by the Spanish crown in the early 1400´s. Evolving into an important trading post in centuries to come - as Spain's galleons transported gold and silver from the Inca Empire back to the Old World via the Canaries. A trade which attracted the attentions of some famous privateers, such as Drake and Raleigh.

During the 1730´s Lanzarote was subjected to a six year volcanic eruption. Earning it the epithet of the Island of Fire. An apt title as around one quarter of the terrain here is carpeted in solidified lava.

Tourism first took off on the island during the 1970´s. But despite the fact that the island welcomes around 1.5 million foreign visitors a year Lanzarote remains relatively unspoiled. Thanks to the influence of an island born artist called Cesar Manrique who fought for the controlled development of tourism.

Getting to Lanzarote

The island is serviced by low cost operators such as Monarch and easyJet. As a result fares remain relatively affordable, with return flights to Lanzarote starting at around £200. The main arrival days for tourist from the UK are Mondays and Thursdays.

Accommodation in Lanzarote

The best selection of Lanzarote hotels are located in the south of the island, in the newest resort of Playa Blanca. Which was purpose built back in the 1980´s and is now firmly established as the second most popular holiday destination on Lanzarote
Anyone in search of apartments in Lanzarote should head for the islands oldest resort, Puerto del Carmen. Which boasts the highest concentration of complexes the island. See also in the Canary Islands Islas Canarias

Things to do in Lanzarote

For such a small island Lanzarote offers a surprisingly large amount of attractions and things to do. Boasting a number of natural beauty spots as well as a wide variety of unique tourist sites which were developed by Cesar Manrique.

The Timanfaya Volcano Park remains Lanzarote´s number one attraction. As the scenery here is literally out of this world - and is in fact often likened to the surface of the moon.
For a complete contrast head for the north of the island and the verdant Valley of 1000 Palms. Where locals have been planting a palm tree for each new born girl (and two for a boy) for centuries. Providing a green and lush antidote to the arid and volcanic south of the island.

Best Beaches

Lanzarote boasts over ninety great beaches. Amongst the best is the unspoilt set of coves at Papagayo in the south, close to the resort of Playa Blanca. Along with the huge horseshoe bay at Famara on Lanzarote´s raw north east coast - a popular spot with locals and surfers alike.

Many thanks to Nick Ball at The Lanzarote Guidebook for supplying this most intersting information

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Lakeside Garden Bogazici on the outskirts of Bodrum, Turkey

Thinking of taking a self catering holiday in Turkey? Check this new listing at

Situated at Boğaziçi which is located only 10 minutes from Milas-Bodrum Airport and is home to the resort of Lakeside Garden . It is a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom holiday apartment on the shore of Lake Tuzla.

The apartment is equipped with Dishwasher,
Washing machine, Satellite TV and there is Internet access. This is an upper floor apartment and the roof balcony provides further space for sunbathing etc All rooms are airconditioned and there is fire blanket and smoke alarms are provided for client safety.

There is a large outdoor pool with children’s paddling pool and Lakeside Garden has a central facilities with bar, restaurant and shop. Additional services may be found at the management centre where there is a 24 hour mangement presence. . The gated site has 24 hour security.

Further Information about the area: Play golf at the newly opened Vita Park Golf Club, go swimming at the nearby public beach or relax on the decked area of the private beach club. Tuzla Lake is a birdwatching center famous for its population of flamingoes.

Want more information? Visit here

Monday, 6 April 2009

Cannes Film festival is on next month have you got your accomodation arranged?

The 2009 Cannes film festival the 62nd Festival de Cannes is on between 13th to 24th May 2009. Have you got accommodation arranged or are you thinking of staying in Cannes in the south of France this summer.

There is a superb first floor 2 bedroom apartment with stunning sea view at Royal Palm, Cannes.

It is presented to the highest standards throughout. Royal Palm is on one of the most beautiful bays in the world and it offers privacy and tranquillity with elegant and comfortable interiors and a luxurious terrace with sea views you will never tire of.
Outside the exotic swimming pool is bordered by palm trees and is all set in a fragrant Mediterranean garden. Situated 25 meters from the Baie du Cannes, with stunning panoramic views of the open sea from Theoule to La Croisette. Royal Palm is a very exclusive private domain, with concierge. Just 25 minutes from Nice airport and 5 minutes from Cannes-Mandelieu airport. A short drive along the promenade brings you to the harbour and the Croisette. T
he spacious living area has large patio doors leading to the terrace with uninterrupted sea views. for 09 the owners also have a ground floor one bedroom and a 2nd floor one bedroom apartment at Le Royal Palm. Please contact them for more information here

More Information about the area: Night life, shops, daily market, restaurants within walking distance or short bus ride into Cannes. Private secure parking. We do recommend a car for Le Royal Palm. Supermarket 2 or 3 minutes by car.

Cannes conjures up vibrant images and is a fascinating and flamboyant city, bathed in light is magnificent the whole year around. When the sun goes down and the lights go on and the parade of people along La Croisette continues, enjoying the perfect night life setting. Cannes with it’s mild climate, and glamorous setting will enchant your senses all year round

The beach 25m Watersports, 2 golf courses, sailing school all within walking distance or a short bus ride at La Napoule. Night life, restaurants, shops all 15-20 minutes walk into Cannes or a couple of minutes by one of the regular buses running along the promenade.

This looks like a good place to stay and there are even more at with information on the Film Festival which has French actress Isabelle Huppert who will be the President of the Jury of the 62nd Festival de Cannes.