Greek Property Promotion

Archive for November, 2015 – Who’s Buying Property Where?

The report also has a section detailing buyer motivations, which says location is the most important buying factor for 66%, price 19%, condition of property 7% and agent reputation 6%.

So, why is the agent reputation figure not higher, we asked? “A lot of buyers looking to purchase a property overseas will be doing so for the first time. These buyers are likely to have a property in the UK so are used to working with UK agents. Agents in the UK work on behalf of the person selling the property and not the person buying. This is very different to agents overseas who will work with both the seller and the buyer.”

Aimee Valaitis says the report reveals interesting trends about the role of technology in buying – 73% of buyers say they find property through the internet, 65% through overseas agents, 13% UK agents, 11% exhibitions and 9% print – plus the details in the word clouds. Most buyers (85%) use desktop computers to search, with half (49%) using tablets and third (32%) mobiles.

“We feel that there are two very surprising findings from this report. Firstly, the number of buyers using mobile and tablet devices to search for property. Buyers are becoming more tech savvy so it’s import that we also keep up with this as an industry. We need to make sure websites, enquiry forms etc. are all mobile compatible so we can make the buying process as easy as possible.

“Secondly, we feel that the word clouds on the country overview pages perfectly demonstrate the inspiration behind buying a property overseas. These word clouds are the responses from buyers when we asked them what inspired them to buy overseas. Spain = Weather, France = Lifestyle, Italy = Love, Portugal = People and USA = Investment.”

The top 10 countries where buyers are looking to purchase a property within the next are: 1.       Spain 2.       France 3.       Italy 4.       Portugal 5.       United States of America 6.       Cyprus 7.       Ireland 8.       Greece 9.       Turkey 10.   Bulgaria

The top 10 regions are: 1.       Andalucía – Spain 2.       Murcia – Spain 3.       Valencia – Spain 4.       Algarve – Portugal 5.       Languedoc-Roussillon – France 6.       Islas Canarias – Spain 7.       Poitou-Charentes – France 8.       Illes Balears – Spain 9.       Aquitaine – France 10.   Provence-Alpes-Côte d`Azur – France.

There were slightly more male buyers taking part (55% v 45%) and most buyers (41%) were aged from 55-64, with 29% from 45-54, 19% 65-plus, 11% from 30-44 and 2% aged under 30.

Two-thirds of buyers purchasing in Spain are looking for holiday homes and 68% are cash buyers. Half of purchasers want to rent their home out when not in use.

In France, 55% are buying second homes with 70% being cash buyers and 59% looking to rent their homes.

There are 61% looking for second homes in Italy, with 59% paying cash and 65% wanting to rent their property when it is not being used. Selects Hewlett Packard Enterprise to expand next generation technology

Sabre Corporation and Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced a multi-year renewal of their long-standing relationship.

Under the agreement, Hewlett Packard Enterprise will provide virtualization, automation and security services, hardware and software to support faster product development and extend Sabre’s position as the leading technology provider to the global travel industry. HPE also will provide new services to support Sabre’s growth and product priorities in the areas of data analysis, operations, e-commerce, retailing and merchandising for businesses across the travel industry.

“As the leading innovator to the global travel industry, Sabre is committed to delivering technology solutions to our customers based on world-class virtualization, security and operability,” said Tom Klein, Sabre president and CEO. “This agreement also delivers new capabilities to accelerate product development and increase our speed-to-market, all driven by Sabre and supported by Hewlett Packard Enterprise.”

Hewlett Packard Enterprise has supported Sabre’s infrastructure and applications environments for more than 14 years, providing infrastructure services including a portfolio of hosting and storage solutions. This expanded agreement leverages products and services from across Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s four transformation areas to help Sabre maintain its leadership position.

“Sabre is a pioneer in providing innovative solutions and services to the global travel industry, and together our partnership has helped Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Sabre set the standard in the industry,” said Meg Whitman, president and CEO of Hewlett Packard Enterprise. “Today’s agreement demonstrates the next step forward for Sabre, who will leverage Hewlett Packard Enterprise technology and services to deliver transformational offerings in cloud, security, analytics and mobility.”

This agreeent expands on the existing infrastructure services relationship by providing Sabre with a robust next-generation, hybrid infrastructure environment to optimize processes and increase automation. These capabilities will help extend Sabre’s state of the art diagnostics and analytics on technology operations and shorten Sabre development cycles, resulting in faster speed-to-market for software, data, mobile and distribution solutions. – Top 10 destinations for global travelers in 2016



Greece’s financial woes may have dominated the news headlines in 2015 but Australian travellers were not deterred, with Flight Centre bookings up more than 52 per cent.

Greece’s default notice and resulting referendum was a major, world-wide news event with economist worried about the future of the Euro and travel companies concerned about the impact to bookings.

Despite this, Flight Centre bookings surged with the uplift expected through 2016.

Greece is also often found to be a cheaper entry point to Europe than London, Paris or Rome; when it comes to Greece, Flight Centre believes the question really is why shouldn’t you go? – Egyptian mogul identified & negotiating to buy 2 Greek islands for refugees

Egyptian TV tycoon Naguib Sawiris, whose fortune is worth an estimated $3 billion, has “identified two privately owned Greek islands that constitute a good opportunity for the project,” a statement from his communication office reads.

thumb_big_1_276d0635[1] – More than 75% travelers will research and book on mobile devices in 2016

The advent of mobile devices in travel booking has transformed the outlook of the industry in the last couple of years. It is quite imperative to understand the trend and equip travel services to assure a further growth in individual travel businesses.

Travel experts from all over the world observe the growth of mobile bookings and predict further growth in the next five years. It is also predicted that almost 75% of all travel research and travel bookings will be conducted from mobile devices.

According to the figures released by eMarketer, a global marketing company providing research, insights and benchmarks on digital marketing – combined mobile and tablet transactions in the US will hit 51.8% in 2016, up from 43.8% last year.

The comfort of a smartphone is also adding a huge change in booking habits among travelers worldwide. It is observed that out of 48.5 million US travelers who book trips via a mobile device, almost 80% are smartphone users and rest are tablet users.

In 2016, 62% of all the holiday travelers will research their trips on a mobile device, up from 26% in 2015.

As travel companies are implementing more optimized websites for mobile devices, travelers are finding a simpler solution to purchase travel deals, accommodations and tickets. The trend is set to increase in the coming days and 2016 might witness the biggest figure for mobile bookings and research in the global travel industry. – Booking – Hotel Technology Conference Focused on Latest Innovations

TheHotel Technology Conference (HotelTech) –Asia’s only dedicated platform for hotel CIOs, CTOs, Information Officers and E-commerce Directors – welcomed 25 speakers, more than 150 hoteliers and 1 world-renown robot in Singapore on October 22. Organized by international conference powerhouse Questex Hospitality Group, the conference brought hotel technology leaders on a journey to exceed guest expectations and empower internal efficiency.
Anthony Wai, Regional SE Director – APAC from Aruba Networks (an HP Company) opened the conference with the keynote “How to Enhance the Guest Experience?” The presentation explored various innovations that hoteliers could leverage and capitalize on, including internet access, proximity marketing and mobility. “Guest satisfaction score is affected by their wifi experiences,” said Wai. He further cited network architecture, management, dynamic guest access management, remote support and applications as top consideration points in implementing mobility solutions.
In the Mobility Panel, a well-rounded group of stakeholders discussed how mobile technology impacts guest experiences. Leading the discussion, Marriott International VP information Technology, Asia Pacific Martin Bookallil commented that Marriott is all over mobility, having recently launched a real-time chat channel as well as realized mobile booking channel as a revenue driver. Marina Bay Sands Senior Vice President – Marketing Maunik Thacker pointed out the importance of incentivizing guests to download and use the hotel mobile app. “Entice people; create value for the guests along the way,” said Thacker. “Marketing is as important as technology. Tell guests what the technologies could do,” agreed Robert Honerkamp, Director Network Operations, DOCOMO interTouch. SilverNeedle Hospitality Senior Vice President, Information ServicesSudhir Abdul Rahman noted that staff adaptation and buy-in is also essential to the success of hotel mobile apps.
At the Internet Access Panel, panelists agreed that bandwidth provisioning is essential and a freemium model is the direction. Constance Hotels and Resorts Chief Information Officer Roshan Koonja suggested hoteliers to use tiered model as well as work with internet service providers (ISP) for flexible bandwidth in resort settings. ANTlabsPte Ltd Product Director Toh Teck Kang urged hoteliers to rethink bandwidth management. “Hoteliers should set how much bandwidth per guests, not devices,” said Toh. “Now you can predict how much bandwidth you need.” When asked about TripAdvisor, Premier Inn Southeast Asia Head of Information Systems, Whitbread Hotels & Restaurants InternationalJudyantoGunawan commented that it gives good indication of the internet services at their hotels, as compared to their competitors.
Ken Kline, Senior Director of IT & Security APAC, Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group presented a Myth Buster session on low guest satisfaction for internet access. Based on Kline’s research, bandwidth is not as important as internet access points. Having commercial access points and branded high-speed internet access (HSIA) providers both contribute to higher guest satisfaction. As such, hoteliers may justify the investment for better wifi infrastructure because of the impact on satisfaction and hence revenue.
A panel of hotel chief information officers debated the value of having a preferred technology vendor list. Tony Yeoh, InterContinental Hotels Group VP Global Technology AMEA cited standardization, consistency, integration and reliability as primary reasons for having a mandatory list of vendors. Travelodge Hotels (Asia) Pte Ltd. VP Information Technology & Systems Tim Waterhouse disagreed. “For particular brand, functionality or integration requirements, we should just have the requirements,” said Waterhouse. For Raymond Dumanauw, VP of Hotel Technology and Systems, HPL Properties Pte Ltd, the need for preferred vendors depends on the systems. “For critical systems, hoteliers should not take risk. For other systems, such as hardware, procurement decisions should be based on performance specifications,” said Dumanauw. IGB Corporation Berhad Senior General Manager – Group IT Tony Wong concurred, “Technology is moving so quickly. We cannot rely on a fixed list of vendors.” Wong, who works for hotel owners, also noted that he needs to deliver value to ownership and it could be challenging for him to justify purchasing from preferred vendors when they charge premium over non-preferred ones.
For the first time ever, Hotel Tech incorporated an interactive roundtable session. Led by Tony Lee, Vice President, Business Process &Infocomm Systems, The Ascott Limited, attendees discussed various hot hotel technology topics including generating ROI on technology, differentiation hotels through technology, the roles of TV and telephones, as well as staff adaptation.
Relay, the state-of-the-art robot designed for autonomous delivery of items between people, participated in Hotel Tech, marking its Asia debut. Relay formed an integral part of the HotelTech program, fetching amenities for delegates in the refreshment area and presenting gifts and drawings during the conference.
Other heavyweight speakers include Gregory Spicer, Chief Executive, Xn Hotel Systems; Michael Lee, Former Chief Information Officer, Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts; John Lim, CISA CISM CGEIT CRISC, President, ISACA Singapore Chapter; Steve Cousins, CEO, Savioke; Andrew Khoo, Director of Business Development and Operations, ABR Holdings Limited; Doug Carr, Executive Director of Distribution, FRHI Hotels and Resorts; Melpo Wong, Director of Digital Distribution, Dorsett Hospitality International; Brijesh Paleri, Director, Sales Automation and Lead Prospecting, Asia Pacific, Starwood Hotels and Resorts; Tejveer Singh Bedi, Group Revenue Director, Park Hotel Group; Devdutta Banerjee, Director, Revenue Management & Distribution, Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts; and Declan Monahan, VP Sales, Asia, Fourth.
HotelTech 2015is a partner event of TravelRave, Asia’s most influential travel trade festival.TravelRave 2015 provides a dynamic platform for business leaders and industry professionals to convene, share knowledge and insights, network and discover new business opportunities and celebrate Asian tourism at its best.
HotelTech will return to Singapore in Oct 2016. – 5 imperative luxury travel trends to look out for

The 2015 World Travel Market just ended successfully last week. As always, WTM serves both as an industry ‘wrap up’ for the travel year that’s been, and more importantly, as a passage to the coming travel year brimming with hope and good tidings for all businesses.

Along with the contacts created and businesses conducted also comes calculated predictions for the coming year. One of the most insightful and useful seminars given in World Travel Market was “Trends in the Luxury Sector: how to adapt to the demands of the modern luxury traveller.

This was marvellously presented by Philippa Wagner from The Future Laboratory, a leader in trends forecasting across multiple sectors. Along with ttgluxury editor April Hutchinson, there was also a panel discussion which consisted of: Mark Hehir, curator & CEO, The Small Maldives Island Co., Michael Marshall,Chief Commercial Officer, Minor Hotel Group, Piers Schmidt, Founder, Luxury Branding, and Greg Ward, Vice President sales, Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts.

While there were several trends discussed that are pertinent to luxury brands, this post will briefly touch on trends that are relevant to travel.

1) Continental Drift

Because luxury consumers travel frequently, lead busy lives and are borderless, the international airport has now become a place to catch up on shopping. Cosmetics won’t be the only items in demand on Duty Free. High-value purchases such as electronics , mobile phones and laptops are fast becoming hot items from luxury travellers in transit.

2) Metro Magnets

There are cities that are attracting luxury spenders such as Beijing, Hong Kong Rio and Shenzhen. It would be worthwhile to see the gradual rise of new hotels in these cities.

3) Billionaire Boom

The wealthy will keep getting wealthier and will continually seek untouched experiences that are unique to them. They want to be among the first to try something revolutionary. A perfect example ia Etihad Airways’ The Residences. It is a product that is not an improvement of something that already exists, but rather a completely unheard-of idea that shook the world of luxury commercial aviation last year.

This type of trend is not new to the world of luxury travel (think Emirates’ In-flight spa on the A380 and Virgin Galactic) but due to technology improving year after year, we can see a surge of these exciting flights of fancy coming to life.

4) Life Lodging

The rise of brands such as Airbnb and One Fine Stay is creating pressure on the hotel industry as a whole. Because luxury travellers are becoming experiential and are seeking more local experiences, hotel brands are starting to add authentic experiences as part of their concierge / activities program. One example is Hotel Hotel in Canberra, Australia, which strived to become part of the local community by having a mini ‘compound’ that includes a cinema, library, bike hire and gallery all within the hotel property.

5) Virtual Opulence

The concept of “Virtual Reality” has been around for a long, long time but it was not until this year when Samsung partnered with Oculus Rift to create an accessible and affordable Virtual Reality set.

Shangri-la Hotels and Resorts has already utilised the VR Experience as a sales tool. The group has rolled out Samsung Gear VR headsets across all global sales offices. By January 2016, half of the hotel chain’s portfolio will have VR videos available with full roll out to be completed before the end of next year.
As luxury consumers change, the same goes with their style and preferences brought about by evolving lifestyles. And with technological capabilities surpassing and making people’s imaginations come true – what a time to be alive and travelling indeed. – Major quake hits Greek island, one killed

A temblor of at least 6.1 on the Richter Scale hit the western Greek island of Lefkada on Tuesday. Local reports indicated that buildings had been damaged and one person was killed. The earthquake was felt across western Greece, with residents on Lefkada and nearby Ionian Sea island of Kefalonia rushing out of their houses. The fire department was sending rescue crews to Lefkada.

The Athens Geodynamic Institute said the quake had a preliminary magnitude of 6.1 and occurred at 9:10 a.m. (0710 GMT) about 300 kilometers (186 miles) west of Athens. However, the U.S. Geological Survey put the preliminary magnitude at 6.5.

Authorities had received reports of one woman killed by the collapse of a wall in her workplace, Ionian Islands Regional Governor Theodoros Galiatsatos said. There were reports of damage to the island’s road network from landslides, and authorities were waiting for more detailed information from the fire department. Aftershocks were also hitting the island.

Earthquakes are common in Greece, which is one of the world’s most seismically active areas. More than 100 people died in a severe quake near Athens in 1999.

Those temblors stirred memories of the catastrophic 1953 quakes that flattened nearly all the islands’ structures, killing hundreds of people. The Ionian is a seismically active area, and new buildings on the islands are constructed to strict anti-seismic standards. In January, 2014, Kefalonia was struck by a series of strong earthquakes, two of them caused damage and minor injuries sans fatalities. – Technical teams to survey earthquake damages in Lefkada