Monday, November 27, 2006

Carless in Valencia

I was carless today due to the service needed, oil change and that, so I spent the whole of the day walking round three areas of Valencia finding flats to offer.; Ruzafa, Cabañal and Benimaclet. Despite being far apart all are well served by public transport and so to get from one bit to the others is just a couple of metro rides or a bus journey away.

Ruzafa, recently described erroneously in the Sunday Times as the Notting Hill of Valencia, is a short walk from the centre of Valencia but with prices that are nowhere near places just a five minute stroll away. It is a melting pot of cultures, styles and architecture, moving from the totally decrepit to the modernist loft development. It is a great place to live and prices are in the 200 and something thousand euro range usually for your average flat.

Cabañal is a strange mixture of old town houses, ruins and redevelopments lying next to the America´s Cup Port. Some places are excellent value and certain areas are, shall we say, less inviting. Low rise mixes with medium rise and new lies next to old. Prices therefore are more eclectic and it is still possible to pickup redevelopment projects for just over 100000 Euros and new chic pads cost up to 600000 Euros depending on proximity to sea and port. Be careful in this area as there is a swathe which will be knocked down to make way for the extension of Blasco Ibañez street.

Benimaclet for me is the hidden jewel of Valencia. A young barrio as it was one of the few places that younger families could afford yet still retaining elements of the older generations that previously lived there, this is the real village within a village for which Valencia prides itself. Some streets are all still two floor houses with two flats, one above and one below. The streets are semi pedestrianised and around five in the evening the streets chime to the sounds of children laughing and running around as they are collected from the multitude of schools and nurseries in the area. A working class area of the city with a heart and soul.

The photos accompanying these words are of flats we have available in those areas just showing the facades.

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