Beaches in Athens. Greece which is unknown to foreigners

Beaches in Athens. Greece which is unknown to foreigners

Spending nice vacations is possible not only in Crete or Rhodes, but in Athens as well, with its cheap real estate and beaches that are next door to. But buying a more expensive home, gives already a residence permit allowing access to European round trips, Greek medicine and education. Panagiotis Petrakos, Real estate agent at Riginos Real Estate (Greece) tells to the readers about all this issues.


It is known that the Russians prefer the sea. Is it difficult for Athens to compete with resorts offering beach vacation?

– Athens may be different. For example, accommodation in a densely populated urbanized center has some certain advantages. But there are suburbs, nestled in a picturesque location near the beach and if you buy a property there, the level of your life will be much higher. Athens is not as popular among Russians as islands or resorts are, because only a few people are aware that there are beaches in Athens! Just in half an hour from the city center. If you have a house in a suburb of Athens, say, in Voula or Vouliagmeni, which are 15 km away from the center, you can walk to the sea.

Who are the foreigners dominating at the Athens housing market?

– Athens as one of the oldest and most interesting cities in the world is popular among residents of different countries. Customers come from both, outside the EU – from Russia, China and also from Europe.

Beaches in Athens. Greece which is unknown to foreigners | Photo 1 | ee24

What current offers do you have, what are the prices? Is it possible to buy a new property in the heart of Athens, or at best, one has to be content with a renovated housing?

– Athens, of course is the ancient city and housing in the secondary market is more widespread there. But sometimes you can find new high-quality property. Of course, if you have a realtor who will "monitor" the situation and respond quickly. As for the prices, its range is truly great, starting from €100,000 (if we talk about liquid housing, of course), but the average price tag of what we sell is €250,000-300,000. Most of the proposals are formed by houses and apartments with an area from 60-80 up to 200-250 sq.m, including the primary market.

– How do you feel about the program of issuing the residence permit to buyers purchasing luxury real estate in Greece?

– The advantage is that the residence permit holder may travel to other Schengen states for up to 90 days within any six month period and also have an access to health and education services. The residence permit is not provided with a labor permit, except for the executive directors and shareholders who may be engaged in economic activities in the country. I believe that having made this decision, the Greek government has earmarked a friendly attitude towards those who want to buy a home. I think that this measure has a positive impact on both the real estate market in Greece, and potential buyers as well. In general, it is advantageous for all.

Beaches in Athens. Greece which is unknown to foreigners | Photo 2 | ee24

And why do you think Greece has made such a step and has accepted the "golden visa"? Is it because of the crisis?

– I do not think that the law allowing foreign investors to obtain a residence permit (or else a golden visa as is widely used) was adopted just because of the crisis. We strive to create a favorable investment environment of an open economy attractive for foreign capitals.

Have you ever faced with cases of buying the property and applying for a residence permit? How much time it takes – weeks or months maybe?

– Yes, we had such clients and the demand for Greek residence permit exists. The procedure takes few months, but you get a legal basis to remain in the country during all this time.

Interview: Kyrill Ozerov,