Tag Archives: Italy

Living a healthy lifestyle in Italy

I’ve lived in the Piemonte region of Italy for many years now and it’s become very clear from my point of view, that it’s far easier to live a healthier lifestyle here.

One of the major advantages is the good weather of course, this means as a keen cyclist I can get out more which in turn gives me a great feel good factor.

I’ve noticed that in almost all of the villages here, you find great outdoor sport facilities, all with floodlights so you can play long into the night if you so desire. In fact during summer you see many Italians playing football way past midnight. It’s no wonder Italy is so good at the sport.

Most villages have outdoor swimming pools which serve as great entertainment for the kids during the summer break. All these pools have somewhere to eat so you can spend the whole day there and get fit at the same time.

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Christmas in the Langhe 2011

My family and I have enjoyed yet another wonderful Christmas here in the Langhe region of Piemonte. Alba itself looked truly beautiful with all the decorations particularly Piazza Savona which as you can imagine was bubbling with local life and looked so glamorous with it’s decorations.

People often ask me how an Italian Christmas differs to that of the UK. Well I suppose in my opinion it’s not so commercialized with more aspect placed on the religious considerations. Don’t get me wrong, there’s still the big push on parents to buy presents for the kids etc, it’s just a little more low key.

One major difference is that the Christmas period extends a little, with La Befana. She is a witch who travels on a magic broom and on the night of January 5th delivers sweets to children who have been good and coal to those who have not. Children leave out their stockings hoping for them to be filled with goodies.

For an Englishmen like myself I find it a little strange that all the old Xmas songs are played again during this period, however its still a fun time to enjoy.

Happy  New Year to you all

Buying a business in Italy

Many of us dream about moving to Italy and making a fresh start in life. Italy has much to offer, wonderful warm local people, scrumptious food, prestigious wines and it’s fabulous climate make it a popular choice for relocation.

The reality for most of us is that to make this move successful we must generate some form of income to live. The Italian job market can be a little limited if you are not fluent in Italian – you can teach English, become a tour guide etc.

So what are the options? One such possibility is to buy a business for sale in Italy that allows you to generate and good income using your native tongue language. An interesting, lucrative business proposition is working in the tourism industry for example a bed and breakfast accommodation, Hotel or a holiday rental business.

What are the advantages of buying an established business for sale? Well of course there should be an established income in place, but also, the property in question will already be set up for business, it may already have a swimming pool, car parking area , existing clientele etc…
Expenses like these can soon mount up when starting a business from nothing often placing an additional financial strain on the business even before it has started.

A business with an established income may also help with cash flow projections for the bank if a little borrowing is required

How can the business provide additional income? It may be worth looking a properties that have vineyards and hazelnut groves. Vineyards involve more work and skilled work so if you don’t have experience then you will need to learn or you could hire someone to work the vines for you and teach you the tricks of the trade. The locals are passionate about the land and its produce and genuinely pleased to share their enthusiasm and experience. You then have the option of making the wine itself or selling your grapes to an established wine maker or a local cooperative.

Hazelnuts are another possibility – referred to in Italy as the “Lazy man’s tree”. They are much easier to maintain and require less work. Here in The Langhe most of the local hazelnut production go to Ferrero, the makers of Nutella, Ferrero Roche, Kinder chocolates etc

There are also small local businesses making local products with the hazelnuts – for example , hazelnut cake, toasted hazelnuts….

Selling local quality produce, wines, hazelnut cake, preserves etc is also an interesting addition to any tourist based business.

In addition to the income generated from a vineyard or hazelnut grove there is a certain sense of achievement, satisfaction and appreciation of nature that comes with working the land.

Business practices vary from country to country and Italy is no different. It’s essential that you deal with an Italian accountant preferably that speaks your mother tongue language. He or she will be able to guide in the right direction and help you with other matters like insurance and the availability of local grants etc.

Buying a business in a Italy is a big decision so do your research thoroughly – however it could be the best decision in your life….mixing with the warm friendly local people, enjoying scrumptious food, prestigious wines and the fabulous climate…………

We have several businesses for sale in the Piemonte region, check our website for further details.

George Clooney in Alba

Alba is fast becoming a popular destination for celebrities as well as those who have an interest in food, culture and wine.

Our lastest visitor was George Clooney who popped down to Alba on his Harley Davidson motorbike and stopped for a spot of lunch at one our local bars in Piazza Savona.

Mr Clooney was kind enough to have his picture taken with three very happy ladies who happened to be in the square at that time.It was not long ago that Brad Pitt was here in the Langhe area looking for a property himself.

Alba is a charming town, full of sophistication and life, and is of course home to the world famous truffle festival in October.
Try to visit if you can.

Property investment in Italy

Although the world financial crisis is in full swing we still have clients with money to invest and with uncertainties in the financial markets they are seeking alternative investment opportunities.

Property prices In Italy are remaining relatively stable but of course there are some bargains to be had !!

Tourism here in the Piemonte (Piedmont) region of Italy is thriving and while the poor performance of Sterling may affect the British market a little, the number of tourists coming here each year is increasing.

Piemonte offers something for everyone be it sports, food, culture, sea, skiing, wine and access to the wonderful Italian cities of Milan, Turin, and Genoa etc.

More and more tourists visiting the area are seeking self catering type holiday accommodation. Investors looking at properties in Piemonte with holiday rental potential certainly have an interesting investment opportunity……

A typical two bedroom property can fetch in the region of Euro 1000 per week with this figure increasing depending on standard of accommodation and amenities eg if there is a swimming pool.

Tourists are arriving in the Piemonte region all year round – a good return on your investment is for sure a viable proposition.

If you don’t live in Piemonte permanently and you buy a property for holiday rental, you will need someone to manage the rental business for you. There are agencies who will do this for you and there are also local Italian and foreign families that provide this service. Such assistance is very easily arranged.

With careful planning and an effective advertising campaign this is an investment seriously worth considering …….