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The future of tourism in Portugal after COVID-19

Photo by Claudio Schwarz | @purzlbaum on Unsplash
Article Idealista News

The future of tourism in Portugal after COVID-19

The boom in tourism in several cities worldwide, notably in Lisbon and Porto in Portugal, generated controversy in pre-pandemic times, due to excessive numbers of tourists and the anticipated effects of this trend on inhabitants. This is a situation that COVID-19 has, of course, dramatically changed, and in 2021 getting tourists back is the priority for cities across the world. Some signs of change are anticipated when the recovery comes, but what is the future of tourism in Portugal after COVID-19? “The cities that used to live from tourism were the first to suffer an unparalleled crisis, while the streets became deserted and the economy was paralysed due to a lack of visitors”, writes the Portuguese newspaper Expresso. The article quotes experts who state that at this stage, cities that have previously relied on tourism, such as many Portuguese cities, should not lose sight of sustainability goals and begin to plan more adjusted strategies for the moment of recovery, correcting excesses committed in the past. According to Eduardo Abreu, partner of Neoturis, a national consultancy firm which focuses on tourism, “the issue of excessive crowding in some tourist destinations in Portugal was already on the agenda before the pandemic, which may have accelerated reflection on the subject”. He also stated that “disruptive moments” such as those that Portugal and many countries are currently going through “lead to reflection on future development strategies, particularly those that meet the needs of more sustainable tourism in the long term”. Things have well and truly been reversed, and many cities throughout the world that were being overwhelmed by tourism one year ago now want tourism back, and this isn’t only the case in Portugal. What are cities thinking of changing in the future in a post-COVID-19 world when it comes to tourism? And what is the future of tourism in Portugal? Recovery in cities after the coronavirus pandemic is expected to be slower than in other destinations, even with the arrival of a vaccine, but some signs are being given to indicate change. These are some of the steps that European cities plan to take in the near future, according to the Expresso publication: The Italian city of Venice will have entrance fees for daily visitors who do not stay in hotels from 2022 onwards; Lisbon will only receive cruises (tourist ships) mooring with electricity from the end of 2021, following a protocol signed this summer between the city council and the port of Lisbon; Porto will reinforce cycle lanes in the city to disperse traffic and is preparing the measures for next year – these should be presented in January or February 2021. According to Expresso, improving mobility and encouraging the use of public transport instead of own cars is one of the goals of the municipality; The Spanish city of Barcelona is maintaining its regulation stating that no new hotels can be opened, and the concern in a post-pandemic scenario is to not have empty hotels in the city. What will it be like when the pandemic ends in Portugal? Hard times are expected until at least the spring of 2021, when some recovery in tourism is expected in Portugal. According to Eduardo Abreu, “no one is speeding up the COVID-19 restrictions. Everything is very focused on reaching March and April and getting tourists, with the vaccine reaching the market and gaining some normality,” he says. In the cases of Lisbon and Porto, “cities where the issue of ‘excessive’ numbers of tourists has been evident,” the main priority on the agenda of public decision-makers and entrepreneurs is to “recover the flow of lost tourists”. These are, according to Neoturis, some trends which are being accelerated by the pandemic in Portugal, and which could improve situations of overcrowding of tourists concentrated in specific points of the cities. Measures include the deconcentration of housing supply from historic centres to outlying areas, increased investment in public space and outdoor areas, better management of visitor numbers at tourist attractions and greater focus on attracting national tourists in Portuguese cities to promote tourism within Portugal. See original article.
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3rd best year ever | Jornal de Negócios

Article Jornal de Negócios | 31 December 2020

JLL: Real estate investment falls in 2020 but is expected to be the third best year ever

Real estate investment in 2020 is expected to exceed 26 billion euros, according to JLL estimates. Values ​​representing a 20% drop compared to the 2019 record.

JLL estimates that by 2020 2.6 billion euros will have been invested in commercial real estate and another 24 billion euros in housing purchases in Portugal, which should be the third best year for this market.

The real estate firm considers that this was “a very resilient sector in the context of the pandemic crisis”, pointing to price and income stability in most segments, as well as a high volume of transactions.

“The year started at full speed in the different market segments and, had it not been for the proliferation of covid-19, 2020 would have been the best year ever for this sector, breaking new records”, says JLL general director, Pedro Lancastre . “After a 2nd quarter of panic in a context of absolute ignorance, the 3rd quarter was bringing normality to the sector, with transactions taking place, and the 4th quarter was already marked by greater confidence and the return of many investors to assets, also because the vaccine stopped being a mirage to become a reality “, he adds.

The head of Capital Markets at JLL, Fernando Ferreira, points out that the local capital, coming from open real estate investment funds and pension funds, “was much more active” and points out that the offices were one of the most desirable assets “. The retail segment “underwent greater scrutiny” by investors, due to the impact of the pandemic on the free movement of consumers, which caused a drop in the performance of many assets in this segment, especially with regard to shopping centers. statement sent to newsrooms.

With regard to the residential market and also to the industry and logistics market, there is “strong demand”, which is accompanied by a “lack of product”.

In 2019, 3.240 billion euros were traded in commercial real estate and 25.1 billion euros in residential, which means that in 2020 a drop of about 20% is expected compared to the previous year. In 2018, 3.356 billion euros were traded in commercial real estate and 24.1 billion euros in residential real estate.

Portugal stands out in 2021

The same real estate company is optimistic about the performance of the Portuguese market next year, stating that the country keeps “its attractions intact”, after leaving “well positioned” in the pandemic compared to other European counterparts.

Even so, JLL takes the opportunity to point out some growth brakes that already inhabited this market before the pandemic invaded it. The real estate firm argues that it is necessary to resolve the delays in the licensing processes and review the strategy for Gold Visas, “which can again be an important catalyst for the country’s economic recovery”.

See original article.

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Convento do Carmo – Expresso Economy

Article Expresso Economia | 09 November 2020

Fortera turns Convento do Carmo into apartments

Investment totals 10 million euros

The Fortera group will transform Convento do Carmo, in Braga into a complex with 70 apartments to which it adds some services, in an investment of € 10 million. The work on the convent, founded in 1564, will begin next year and should be completed in 2023, the group announced this Monday. Located in the ARU area, a few steps from the Braga market, in the historic center of the city, the project also includes a bar, pool, restaurant, gym, lounge and outdoor spaces.
It will bring a new life to the space that was in the beginning a convent, but it was also a military hospital, college and leisure and recreation space. The objective of the Fortera group is “to preserve the magic of the place”, says its executive president, Elad Dror.

The Fortera Group, specialized in the luxury segment, announced a global investment of € 250 million in pipeline, which includes the Skyline project, in Vila Nova de Gaia, a € 100 million project signed by the architect Souto Moura.
In the last four years, the company completed 9 real estate projects in Gaia, Porto and Espinho, corresponding to an investment of € 21 million, and in 2019 the amount invested in acquisitions totaled € 45 million.

See original article.

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Israeli group Fortera invests € 80 million in Gaia

Israeli group Fortera invests € 80 million in Gaia

 

Project includes a hotel, a congress center and apartments

“The Skyline project is unique and brings together an ecosystem of commerce, services, residential, hospitality and leisure in two buildings”, says Elad Dror, executive director and one of the founders of the Fortera group, of Israeli capital.

The “jewel of the project is a congress and exhibition center that will make it possible to transform Gaia into a central city with facilities for major events and exhibitions”, adds Elad Dror.

The Skyline, which will be served by 600 parking spaces, was designed for Rua General Torres, at the rear of the City Hall of Gaia, on a 26 thousand square meter plot, with the possibility of building 45 thousand square meters above the ground. The project will have two construction phases: a 260-room hotel, which will also have apartments, in a 20-story building. A second phase will be “a congress center for two thousand people, served by a square and shops, to enhance leisure activity”. “In total, there will be 16 thousand square meters of offices and 10 thousand square meters for the residential and commercial area”, adds Elad Dror.

SOUTO DE MOURA ON THE EQUATION

The architecture of the congress center and the hotel must be designed by Souto de Moura, but Elad Dror does not take the choice. “He is one of the most important architects in the country, we are working on the agreement and we will announce the decision soon,” he says. As a guarantee, only that “it will be an emblematic project for Gaia and also for Porto and will bring about a great change, it will create many jobs, placing the region on the map of major world exhibitions and congresses”.

The € 80 million investment “will be supported by equity”, guarantees the administrator of Fortera, which has other investments in the North of the country. With the sale of the square meter between € 3,000 and € 5,000, Fortera expects to deliver 60 more apartments by the end of the year, divided between Porto, Gaia and Espinho. Some of these dwellings “resulted from changes in hotel projects, which were converted into residential units, with greater importance for the external area, with the inclusion of terraces, which are now essential” due to the pandemic.

“We concluded, between 2016 and 2019, nine projects, with a total investment of approximately € 21 million, and we invested another € 45 million in acquisitions during 2019. The total investment we currently have in the pipeline is more than € 250 million”, says . Elad Dror does not fail to criticize the restrictions that are preparing for the gold visa regime. “It is exactly the opposite of what should be done and it will be a disaster for the economy”, he anticipates.

The administrator guarantees that the Fortera group “is ‘unleveraged’, with little bank exposure”, so he predicts that the construction of the Skyline will start as early as 2021, in a work that “will take approximately two to three years to finish”.

DIFFICULTIES UNTIL SEPTEMBER 2021

For the next year, the administrator recognizes that “the first three quarters will be difficult”, but assumes that the attraction of foreign investment can help to move the economy, create business and jobs. “The fundamentals have not changed: the climate, the people, the gastronomy and the security”, he says. For this reason, he guarantees, the group has underway “the preparation of two real estate funds to continue investing in the residential market, street commerce and logistics”.

Among the investments is the transformation of Convento do Carmo, in Braga, which “will be converted into a residential building”, and in Gaia awaits the licensing of three towers to “start a residential project”, he concludes.

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Real estate investments in the north in the midst of crisis

Property investment in the north in the midst of crisis: Israelis bet on building hotels and houses

Headed by the Fortera group, new projects total 180 million euros. Since 2015, nine projects in the same region have been completed.

With close to a dozen real estate projects already completed in the northern region of Portugal, the Israelis of Fortera are betting on the national market, despite the crisis installed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. After having invested more than 65 million euros between the construction of projects and the acquisition of land and real estate, this group is now preparing to fly higher and concentrate on the execution of more ambitious projects, with investments in the order portfolio of 180 million euros.

“Right now, we are divesting our small projects and focusing on the big challenges and projects we have in our portfolio,” said Elad Dror, CEO of Fortera, to Business, detailing that “the year of 2019 was a break, when we made strategic acquisitions – we did it below the market price, which allows us greater flexibility and capacity to overcome any market fluctuation ”.

Regarding the decision to proceed with investments in full pandemic, the manager explains that, “although Covid-19 has an impact in the short term”, the real estate agent is “optimistic” in relation to its investments in Portugal. “Fortunately, we don’t have any hotels – ours are scheduled for 2023-2024, and we all hope to return to normal by then,” he claims.

As for the residential segment, he argued that Fortera’s target market, “which is the local market, will continue to have a strong demand for housing in large cities”. Regarding Portugal’s situation in relation to the pandemic, the Israeli businessman considered that, “unlike his neighbors, he has so far managed to avoid total chaos, which is very important for the investors we lead, but above all for the country”.

New projects in the pipeline

In May of last year, for example, they bought a plot of land on Rua General Torres, in Gaia, next to the D. Luís I bridge, where it is planned to start “in November” the construction of “a new four-star hotel, with 64 rooms, which will be explored by a Spanish group”, the manager also told the newspaper, without identifying the operator. The investment “is around 8/9 million euros and will be ready in the summer of 2023”.

And because this city is “one of the main targets” of Fortera, the Portuguese developer of Israeli capital acquired a land of 54 thousand square meters, at the back of the City Hall, and is “in the final stage of acquisition” of another 44 thousand square meters. , “In the most attractive place in the city, with the best views and the best access to all the points of interest in Gaia”, Dror guaranteed, without revealing the location.

The first site aims to build the Skyline project, budgeted “at 80 million euros” and which consists of a congress center with 2,500 seats, a five-star hotel with more than 250 rooms and a multi-purpose center, with the planned start of the work to the next year. “The congress center will attract conferences from all over the world and will allow the city to become a center of knowledge, innovation and creativity”, emphasized the businessman to the daily.

The other land, in a project also budgeted at 80 million euros, is intended for the construction, starting also in 2021, of a residential complex with “more than 300 apartments”, distributed over three towers, to be built “between three to four years”. Meanwhile, in Porto, it will start, still this year, with an investment of 47 million euros in the construction of a hotel and 200 houses.

In the port area of Bonfim, the Israeli group Fortera expects to move forward soon with the construction of a five-star hotel and a residential complex, in an investment in partnership with the Israelis also Issta Lines and Fattal, which are the largest travel agency and the largest hotel group in the country, respectively. The hotel, which will have 258 rooms and about 16,500 square meters of construction area, will be born on Avenida Camilo, opposite the Alexandre Herculano Secondary School, in an investment of 27 million euros.

Nearby, on Rua do Bonfim, Fortera and its partners will invest 20 million euros in the construction of a project with about 200 apartments. “We will start the construction of both projects by the end of this year, to finish in the summer of 2023”, guaranteed CEO Elad Dror.

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180 million in hotels and houses in Gaia

Israeli invests 180 million in hotels and houses in Gaia

Israeli investors, headed by the Fortera group, start with the construction of a four star hotel in Gaia, where they will also execute the Skyline project – which will have a hotel, a congress center and a multipurpose – and a residential complex of more than 300 houses, to which is added a five star and 200 more houses in the center of Porto.

After providing compulsory military service, he emigrated in search of business opportunities. He passed through the United States, Belgium, United Kingdom, Spain, until he landed in Porto, in 2010, where he started selling remote controlled carts. Two years later, Israeli Elad Dror begins to realize that the city’s real estate market had great potential. In 2015, together with his partner and ex-politician Nir Shalom, he founded the real estate developer Fortera, which focused its investments in the cities of Porto, Gaia and Espinho. “In the last four years, we have completed nine projects, with an investment of approximately 21 million euros, and we invested another 45 million in acquisitions during 2019,” said Elad Dror, CEO of Fortera, to Negócios. Espinho One, an investment of 7.5 million euros in the construction of 38 apartments in this coastal city, Cais da Fontinha in Cais de Gaia, and Boavista One, in Porto, were some of the nine projects already concluded. Now, in the middle of a pandemic, Fortera wants to fly higher and focus on the execution of more ambitious projects. “Right now, we are divesting our small projects and focusing on the big challenges and projects we have in our portfolio,” said Elad Dror. “2019 was a year of rupture, when we made strategic acquisitions – we did it below the market price, which allows us greater flexibility and the capacity to overcome any market fluctuation”, explained the businessman. After providing compulsory military service, he emigrated in search of business opportunities. He passed through the United States, Belgium, United Kingdom, Spain, until he landed in Porto, in 2010, where he started selling remote controlled carts. Two years later, Israeli Elad Dror begins to realize that the city’s real estate market had great potential. In 2015, together with his partner and ex-politician Nir Shalom, he founded the real estate developer Fortera, which focused its investments in the cities of Porto, Gaia and Espinho. “In the past four years, we have completed nine projects, with an investment of approximately 21 million euros, and we have invested another 45 million in acquisitions during 2019,” said Elad Dror, CEO of Fortera, to Negócios. Espinho One, an investment of 7.5 million euros in the construction of 38 apartments in this coastal city, Cais da Fontinha in Cais de Gaia, and Boavista One, in Porto, were some of the nine projects already concluded. Now, in the middle of a pandemic, Fortera wants to fly higher and focus on the execution of more ambitious projects. “Right now, we are divesting our small projects and focusing on the big challenges and projects we have in our portfolio,” said Elad Dror. “2019 was a year of rupture, when we made strategic acquisitions – we did it below the market price, which allows us greater flexibility and the capacity to overcome any market fluctuation”, explained the businessman.

Hotels, congress center and 300 houses in Gaia

This was what happened “in May last year”, with the purchase of land on Rua General Torres, in Gaia, next to the D. Luís I bridge, where it plans to start “in November” with the construction of “a new hotel of four stars, with 64 rooms, which will be explored by a Spanish group”, he said, without identifying the operator. The investment “is around 8/9 million euros and will be ready in the summer of 2023”. And because this city is “one of the main targets” of Fortera, the Portuguese developer of Israeli capital acquired a land of 54 thousand square meters, at the back of the City Hall, and is “in the final stage of acquisition” of another 44 thousand square meters. , “In the most attractive place in the city, with the best views and the best access to all the points of interest in Gaia”, Dror guaranteed, without revealing the location. The first site aims to build the Skyline project, budgeted “at 80 million euros” and which consists of a congress center with 2,500 seats, a five-star hotel with more than 230 rooms and a multi-purpose center, with the planned start of the work to the next year. “The congress center will attract conferences from all over the world and will allow the city to become a center of knowledge, innovation and creativity”, emphasized the businessman. The other land, in a project also budgeted at 80 million euros, is intended for the construction, starting also in 2021, of a residential complex with “more than 300 apartments”, distributed over three towers, to be built “between three to four years”. Meanwhile, in Porto, it will start, still this year, with an investment of 47 million euros in the construction of a hotel and 200 houses.

No covid-19 effects and in high demand

“Although covid-19 has an impact in the short term”, the CEO of Fortera says that the real estate company is “optimistic” regarding its investments in Portugal. “Fortunately, we don’t have any hotels – ours are scheduled for 2023-2024, and we all hope to return to normal until then,” he said. As for the residential segment, he argued that Fortera’s target market, “which is the local market, will continue to have a strong demand for housing in large cities”. Regarding Portugal’s situation in relation to the pandemic, the Israeli businessman considered that, “unlike his neighbors, he has so far managed to avoid total chaos, which is very important for the investors we lead, but above all for the country”.

 

“We look at Vila Nova de Gaia as one of our main targets for the coming years.”

ELAD DROR | CEO of Fortera Properties
 

5 star hotel in Bonfim

In the port area of Bonfim, the Israeli group Fortera expects to move forward soon with the construction of a five-star hotel and a residential complex, in an investment in partnership with the Israelis also Issta Lines and Fattal, which are the largest travel agency and the largest hotel group in the country, respectively. The hotel, which will have 258 rooms and about 16,500 square meters of construction area, will be born on Avenida Camilo, opposite the Alexandre Herculano Secondary School, in an investment of 27 million euros. Nearby, on Rua do Bonfim, Fortera and its partners will invest 20 million euros in the construction of a project with about 200 apartments. “We will start the construction of both projects by the end of this year, to finish in the summer of 2023”, guaranteed CE0 Elad Dror.

Hello real estate with cannabis

Living in Portugal since 2010, Elad Dror, 40 years old and father of five children, lives in Matosinhos. Fortera’s CEO, who attended the University of Tel Aviv, is not just dedicated to the real estate business in Portugal. After starting to sell remote controlled carts (toys) in our country, in 2012, with a partner also Israeli, Beyond Fresh, which owns and operates 19 mobile phone accessories and repair shops, Smart Talk and Dr. Smart. However, among other business projects in Portugal, Fortera Properties is also a partner of the Israeli Together Pharma, a pharmaceutical listed on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, which will produce medicinal cannabis in Cantanhede – “we recently received the pre-license from Infarmed (Portuguese regulator of the medicine)”, assured the businessman.