Romania On The Rise ~ Investing In Eastern Europe ~ by Kevin Stillmock - "Moscow aside, if you look at central and eastern Europe, Bucharest is probably the biggest and most interesting opportunity for property investors right now," says Edit Vesser, corporate director for CB Richard Ellis in Bucharest in an article recently published by the esteemed Irish Times. Approximately nine months ago, in February 2005, I first alerted readers of Escape Artist to the incredible potential latent in the Eastern European country of Romania. Several readers who contacted me purchased land through a realtor that I advised them of in an area outside of the city limits of Bucharest at 40 Euro per square meter. Nov./05
Romanian Serendipity ~ The Biology Of Travel ~ By Lucas Moyer-Horner - Want to mix biology and travel then take a look at the following article; it talks about travel and how travel is a natural extension of our biological processes. This is one way to look at travel and you may never think the same way again about getting on a plane and exploring. May/03
Romania's Road To Heaven ~ And Answers To Last Month's Questions ~ by Kevin Stillmock - Imagine a path that led you along a dramatically changing natural landscape of spectacular waterfalls, rugged mountains, ancient underground temples, volcanoes, and prairies where wild buffalo still roam. You might believe that it was the path to Heaven itself. In fact it is Romania's own road to Heaven; a brand new superhighway under construction, costing about 2 billion EURO, with an expected completion date of 2010-2012. Mar/05.
The Romanian Profit-Machine ~ Investing In Romania ~ by Kevin Stillmock - Sooner or later just about all of us come to the painful realization that money does not grow on trees, no matter what kind we plant or where we plant them. I’ve traveled to a lot of countries and I’ve always made a point to check out the local trees and see if any of them, by some odd twist of fate, have started to turn green with dollar bills. I’ve never completely given up hope that one might exist by some miracle, somewhere. It’s been said that “sometime the answer is right under your nose.” For those of us searching for cash-bearing trees, I have discovered that the answer is indeed right under our noses. We’ve simply been looking in the wrong direction, we have been looking up instead of down. Jul/05
Actualities: Russian prostitutes in Paris... free cruises (men only)... the safest place in Mexico... pets in Panama - Russian prostitutes in Paris. It has become hard to find a good French prostitute. At least that’s what a recent article in the Figaro tells readers. “Russian girls have flooded Paris,” reported the headline, recalling the well-known Baptist hymn, “We’re sinking deep in sin.” As a happily married man I cannot take on the kind of undercover research required to verify the facts, so I have to rely on secondhand sources. Still, I’m glad to hear about the Russian women. They represent an extension of the division of labor and hope for the future. Not that the local girls didn’t provide a quality product. But they couldn’t compete with the Eastern Europeans on price. The Russians brought deflation to an industry traditionally marked by tumescence, if not actual price inflation. (This observation and much more)
An Interesting Russian Marriage ~ From Beginning To End ~ by Paul Bowden - I decided to go off to Eastern Europe or Russia in search of romance and adventure. The problem was, I didn’t have the money to be able to afford to live there. I needed a job that would support me. So I decided to teach English as a foreign language, for which there was apparently a considerable demand, or so I was told. I took the Trinity TESOL qualification in April 2000, and in May I was offered a teaching job in Krasnodar, Russia, not far from the Black Sea. Aug./05
How To Prepare For Living And Working In Russia ~ More On Living In Russia ~ by Jon D. Ayres - Want to come to work as a Native speaking English teacher in the Russian Federation? Getting a visa, temporary residence visas, and work permits here in Russia is not easy if you choose to do it on your own. It is a long, drawn out process that discourages a lot of people and many end up giving up and leaving. It is better to come here on the invitation of a school or other business and let them handle it all. The following is only my experience of dealing with Russia’s visa process. Sept./04
Investing in Russia-firsthand advice from a one-man profit center - Investing in Russia -
One investor's story - Advice for entrepreneurs - How to set up shop in Russia -
Looking at Russia - Investing in Russia - Looking At Russia - By Douglas Casey. Doug Casey needs no introduction, he is one of the most astute expatriate investors in the world. In this article he turns his attention to Russia and gives seasoned advice.
Mano a Mano With Tolstoy ~In Front Of The Saloon With Richard Koster - Roger Gallo staggers his way through another article of wit and wisdom. The master of the waterfront dive staggers into the surf brandishing his sword, if not like a Samurai drunk on Saki, then like a defrocked priest intent on penitence & absolution. Dec./02
Nowhere Man - Investment opportunities in Russia - Then...there are stocks in the former Soviet Union. I just got a report from James Passin's employers at the Firebird Fund that tells of some of the values available. How about a company with 1 billion barrels of oil...high-quality oil reserves...valued at a level that prices the oil at just 2.5 cents per barrel? You could buy the whole company for the price of a few 60-minute TV ads on Superbowl Sunday. Heck, you could probably buy it with the loose change under the seat cushions in the Amazon.com boardroom.
Predictions for 2000 and beyond - Predictions for 2000 and beyond - Voters have already lost interest in the next presidential election -- and it is still 10 months away. They are bored with the candidates and tired of the whole numbskull process of electing them.
News From Russia - Real
Estate News From Russia - Global online travel company Opodo
recently placed Russia second only to Bulgaria in its industry respected
report relating to predictions for the top ten emerging destinations for
travellers in 2007; and Opodo’s opinion of Russia as a hot market for travel
is supported by many other global brands and experts who also see the real
estate and investment markets in Russia as emerging positively. Sept./06
Spots To Consider - Sint Maarten/Saint Martin – The Friendly Island -Spots To Consider - Sint Maarten/Saint Martin – The Friendly Island - St. Maarten/St.Martin, the Friendly Island. Well connected by air from the Eastern U.S.A., Puerto Rico, Canada, Paris and Amsterdam; the home port for many of the largest luxury mega yachts in the Caribbean and a “must call” port for many cruise ships. Relaxing, interesting, entertaining, and different; most certainly a place to visit and perhaps the place to fulfill your dream of escaping to paradise. By Calum Johnston
Saudi Arabia, After The Intifada ~ Life In Saudi Arabia As An Outsider ~ by Didier Ratsiraka III - Recently, I completed a seven-year stint as a trainer in a school belonging to a corporation in Saudi Arabia. While things ran fairly smoothly when I arrived in 1996, once the uprising began in Palestine, life went downhill until blood began to flow even where I was working. June/04
Scotland - Castles, Monsters and Fairy Whispers ~ by Dawnelle Salant - I’m ashamed to say that before I visited Scotland, it wasn’t high on my list of countries to tour. I’m not sure why, but I think it had something to do with what another traveler said to me. “You’re from Canada? Go to Scotland. It’s just like Canada, you’ll love it.” I travel to see places that are different from what I am used to, so I mentally crossed Scotland off my list. When I finally found myself wandering around Britain’s northernmost country, I was pleased to discover that Scotland has more to offer than I expected. And honestly? It’s really not very much like Canada at all. May/04
Long Way From Florida ~ The Isle Of Skye, Scotland ~ by Rita Shannon Koeser - “For nobody born in any other parts of the world will choose this country for their residence...” said Dr. Samuel Johnson about the Isle of Skye in his book, “A Journey To The Western Islands of Scotland” published in 1775 after his famous trip there with his biographer, James Boswell. I often thought of this after I moved to the Isle of Skye from Florida. Yes, I was born in another part of the world, quite a different part of the world. But with all due respect to Dr. Johnson, I did choose the Isle of Skye for my residence and never regretted it. Aug/04
Spooked In Scotland - Supernatural Shenanigans In Black-Hearted Edinburgh ~ US$1 equals 0.57 British pounds~ by Steenie Harvey - moonless night at the Mercat Cross on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile—and it’s Ghost Busters gone mad. Thirty people are following a black-cloaked witch down Advocate’s Close. From the screeches, something nasty is happening in the City Chambers porticoes...maybe it’s to do with the body-snatcher now racing down High Street. And here comes a vampire, chivvying his charges behind St. Giles High Kirk. There’ll soon be more screams if the trailing brown-cowled monk is a “jumper-oot.” March/04
The Trans-Siberian Railway -The Ultimate Rail Journey ~ by Matt Scott - The Trans-Siberian Railway is the ultimate rail journey, the longest in the world, possibly the coldest if you go at the wrong time of year and the only journey that travels in two continents in a single journey, while staying in the same country. Without leaving your seat you can clatter your way along almost a third of the globe; the Trans Siberian is a journey of almost mythical proportions. Dec./03
Living And Teaching In Singapore And Hong Kong ~ What You Need To Know ~ By Mark Redmayne - Singapore and Hong Kong have long had a high demand for English teachers and both have a high quality of living for expats. If you have always thought about teaching overseas and living in Asia, then the above article will get you started on your journey to the East. July/03
Living And Teaching In Singapore And Hong Kong: What You Need To Know - Living And Teaching In Singapore And Hong Kong: What You Need To Know ~ They opened the heavy steel door and I peered inside. A sudden realization gripped me and I felt my emotions begin to stir. ‘A furnished studio apartment,’ they had said. ‘Close to the school,’ they had promised. I fought the sudden urge to collapse onto the nearest available poultry house and turned to smile patiently at their expectant faces. By Mark Newton Mar/06
Singapore: Living, Working and Doing Business - Singapore: Living, Working and Doing Business - Situated at the southernmost tip of the Malay Peninsula with a land area of 685.4 km2, Singapore is an island-state with a 4.2 million population.Modern Singapore was founded by Sir Stamford Raffles in 1819. Only until the “rightful” Johorean heir agreed to sell the island to the British that it became a colony. Widely known and recorded by many sojourners as Temasek - Sea Town - by the 14th century, Singapore was part of the Sri Vijayan empire.
Singapore Real Estate - Get There Before the "Gang" Arrives - Singapore Real Estate - Get There Before the "Gang" Arrives - Hot investment money is pouring into mainland China’s biggest and most well-known cities. Shanghai has been a haven for foreigners buying commercial properties. Buoyed by rising property values, they are now also purchasing luxury residential real estate, mostly for rental purposes. Jun/06
So You Want To Retire In Paradise - Thoughts On Bali, Singapore And New Guinea ~ by Bruce E. Pohlmann - Once upon a time, there was a man with a band of children, a lovely wife and a house in Bali. Life was good, but this man thought that life could be better if only he didn’t have to work. This is the story of that man and his dream. Bali. For some people the name says it all - warm seas, soft sands, cold beers, vibrant colors, exotic sounds, friendly people, large smiles, laughing children, a multitude of inexpensive small hotels and homestays. Bali. A land of wonder and magic set in the warm waters of the Bali Sea and the Indian Ocean. Hand planted rice, homemade religious offerings, vibrant cloths used in ceremonial clothes. Mar/05
The Anomalous Real Estate market that is Singapore - The Anomalous Real Estate market that is Singapore ~ Being featured in the most recent issue of Wallpaper Navigator as one of the cities to visit, Singapore is making its reputation as a ‘city that’s learnt that it’s ok to live a little’. Most of the efforts towards being creative are, in its purest irony, government-driven, as detractors all too often point out. But government sanctioned licence and creativity isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as this city shows. By Hajar Ali Sept./05
The Bluest of the REIT Blue-Chips: Now On Sale in Singapore - The Bluest of the REIT Blue-Chips: Now On Sale in Singapore - For global investors seeking the best of all worlds, Singapore is probably one of the most undervalued property markets this decade. A combination of powerful investment factors, including rising income distributions, currency appreciation, a thriving real estate market, and a favorable tax regime all make Singapore one of the best property values in the world right now. Oct./06
The Singapore Taxi Driver - Fast, Easy And Efficient In Singapore ~ by Ieuan Dolby - Fast, easy and efficient could describe life in Singapore. You don’t stroll along the streets in a world of your own with time to spare and you definitely do not walk when a taxi is waiting nearby. Life in Singapore is geared towards the making of money and any spare moment given is put to that task. So if one should need to get to work or get to the office, go shopping or attend the cinema (because the children insist on it) then transport is essential. May/05
The Slovak Tiger ~ Buy a Castle for Three Cents…Live Well for US$1,500/month ~ by Mark Nestmann - Like buying gold at US$35/ounce before it soared in the 1970s…getting in on the Microsoft IPO at US$21/share (and picking up a cool 27,800% profit after all splits)…or investing in property in Miami Beach in the 1980s when you could pick up a beachfront condo for US$30,000? (You can’t touch one much bigger than a closet for under US$300,000 today.) Of course, that’s the trouble with those opportunities. They only seem obvious in hindsight, while it takes a special kind of foresight to recognize them. Jan/05
Slovenia: Old Europe at its Best - Slovenia feels the way Europe did 30 or 40 years ago, when life was slower and more civilized. The capital, Ljubljana, often compared to Paris and Prague, is more manageable and relaxed. The Kras wine region reminds me of Tuscany before the crowds, and the Slovenians are aware of the need to limit development.
A tumbling South African rand makes luxurious living in Cape Town affordable - Real Estate in Cape Town - Now is the time to invest in property in South Africa. A weak rand gives you tremendous buying power if you're paying with dollars or sterling. In short, you can buy a lot of house for your money. For example, you can get a luxurious 6-bedroom detached house for $87,726, a 4-bedroom house for $52,998, a beachside apartment for under $19,000, or a city-center pied-à-terre for $11,157. With 300 days of sunshine per year and a quality of life unaffordable back home, South Africa also makes good sense as a retirement or holiday home destination. by Cheryl Taylor
Between Mountain and Sea - Atlantic Seaboard, Cape Town, South Africa -Between Mountain and Sea - Atlantic Seaboard, Cape Town, South Africa - Voted the best foreign city in the UK's 2004 Telegraph Travel Awards, Cape Town is an extraordinary city. Its physical beauty is unrivaled and is accurately described as a lifestyle destination. The rugged mountains present natural playgrounds resembling artist rendered backdrops that also have practical, rich soil. The mountain sides have become cultivation havens and a wine estate luncheon is never more than an hour’s drive away. In Cape Town, dilemmas often begin with choosing a beach. Which stretch of white sand, near which rocky cove or kelp forest should I admire beautiful people on today? By Nicole Crozier
Escape to Cape Town - Moving To One Of The World's Most Beautiful Cities ~ By Connie Gargano - Cape town is said to be one the most exciting cities in the world. The mountains behind and the beaches in front. Cape Town has always been a popular retirement destination for Brits. And recently it has become a popular business location for companies from the U.S. If you are thinking about moving your business to South Africa then you may need the help of a local consultant. The above article will help you contact a group that can do just that. March/03
Global sporting events impact on SA property prices -Global sporting events impact on SA property prices - Much has been said about the positive sentiment towards South African property created by winning the right to host the 2010 world cup; now an analysis of major global sporting events has put some numbers to the hype. Speaking at the launch of SOLD, a new magazine for estate agents published by MortgageSA, Managing Director Saul Geffen says, “We can get an idea of what is likely to happen to our property prices if we analyse major global sports events like previous soccer world cups and the Olympics.
Guide to opening a business in South Africa - Guide to opening a business in South Africa - Why would anyone want to open a business in a country where people get killed for less than $5? There are many good reasons. South Africa may be the country with the highest crime and AIDS rate in the world, but it offers several incentives that cannot be overlooked. April/06
South Africa: crime, a suspicious “epidemic” - And some of the world’s best real estate bargains - I’ve seen no evidence of an AIDS plague anywhere in Africa. No overloaded hospitals, no sick people lying about the streets, no horror stories from locals and the epicenter of the epidemic is supposed to be in the very places in central and southern Africa where I’ve spent the most time. In fact, when I was in the Congo’s Katanga province last year, I went out of my way to visit a hospital in Lumumbashi run by a Belgian doctor to talk with someone who actually dealt with these things first hand. His opinion was that people were dying of lots of things, but not noticeably more than was ever the case. He thought that to whatever degree AIDS was a problem, malaria was a vastly bigger problem. He thought AIDS was 90% hysteria and 10% reality. by Doug Casey
South Africa ~ Prime Real Estate ~ by Daryl Ducasse - Property has long been considered the ultimate investment class, whether primary residence, income opportunity, retirement security or your very own vacation destination. Owning a ‘piece of dirt’ has always been humankind’s interpretation of self. However and wherever it is used as a source of personal security, the fundamentals of sound property investment always comprise location and value. Sept./04
South Africa ~ The World’s New Destination ~ by Tony O'Kelly - As other countries around the globe make it more and more difficult to migrate to, South Africa has eased its restrictions. The intention of the South African Government is to attract skilled workers to the country. South Africa is short of 500,000 graduates in various fields including IT, Engineering, Business and many other technical fields. One of the strategies is for South Africa to become the call centre capital of the world. This requires skilled people and investment. Mar/05
The Dangers Of South Africa ~ Fear Of Crime ~ by Bronwyn McIntosh - Do you know that feeling of awakening at 3am? Ah yes, we all know that too well, that sudden knowledge that a loud noise has awakened you - the sound of a car starting, the sound of a gun shot, the sound of a scream, the sound of police sirens blaring, dogs barking, the alarm on the front gate triggered by someone opening it, the outside security lights blazing because of movement outside, the security alarm blaring. Feb/04
The Desperate Faces Of Durban ~ South Africa's Tourist Mecca Unraveling ~ by Carol L. Bowman - After 14 days of schlepping through Southern Africa, we had crisscrossed South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and Swaziland. After collecting 17 new stamps in our passports, my husband and I decided that touching our toes in the Indian Ocean might be the perfect ending. We selected the much publicized, vibrant, seaside city of Durban, South Africa for our “grand finale”. Durban is billed as having the most unique, African feel of any South African city, with a complex interweaving of Zulu, Indian and Dutch African culture. Dec./05
They Say Cape Town Is Friendly ~ In South Africa ~ by Ben Murphy - Before travelling to South Africa, I sought the advice of one of my Australian relatives, who frequently visits there on business. “You’re going to Cape Town? That’s good. I went to Johannesburg and didn’t like it. Everyone says that Cape Town is much more friendly, what they mean is that it’s safe.” July/04
A Ramble in South East Asia - A Ramble in South East Asia - Continuing Ron Hannah's observational and perceptive ramble...."We were interested in the villages around Sapa and I wanted to see Dien Bien Phu where the French were defeated in 1954. We heard from returning travellers that it was below freezing up there, and that travel was difficult. The spectre of a very large Australian tourist at a streetside shop trying to buy a sweater that would fit him in this land of small people, was what finally scrubbed those plans, I think." Sept./06
A Ramble in South East Asia: Part 3 - A Ramble in South East Asia: Part 3 - Part 3:More than once on my I travels was painfully aware, and more than a little embarrassed, by my wealth and soft life compared to these people. I had been reduced to bankruptcy in Canada, yet I was still far better off and had many more opportunities than these labourers. They were cutting irregular chunks of red clay from the ground with their shovels and stacking them piece by piece, bucket by bucket, onto the circle. What they put inside to fire the clay was not clear. They noticed us and waved, making jokes that may or may not have been polite. Oct./06
A round-up of the top 10 golf courses in Spain - Sports Travel -
A Spanish Love Affair ~ Living On Ibiza ~ by Katharina Bishop - In March 2003 I found myself in a travel agent’s office together with my husband Charles and our seven month old son Kiran. England had been cold, dark and rainy for the past six months and we felt that it was time for a family holiday. Two weeks soaking up the rays on a Mediterranean island seemed like a very good idea. Given the choice between various last minute packages to Mallorca, Menorca and Ibiza, we breezily opted for the latter. Aug./05
Actualities: $18 a night lodging in Alicante…the world’s best dancing girls… waiting for the Bay Islands Channel…no more tolls in Mexico - $18 a night…stylish lodging in Alicante. Weary of public transport after a day stuck in Madrid’s airport, I splurged on a taxi and went straight to El Barrio, Alicante’s old town. Like all Alicante locals I met in this off-season, my driver spoke nothing but Spanish. It was good to have to make myself understood. I requested the Pension Las Monges, which I’d heard was like a boutique hotel with eight lovely and individual rooms. With much confusion but more good will, the driver took me right to the place, almost, because it’s within the old pedestrian zone beneath Alicante’s shabbily magnificent Castillo de Santa Bárbara, which roosts over the seaside town. The driver gave me directions I could almost understand: through the arch, right one block, past the plaza. And there it was. Ken Layne, Alicante, Spain (more)
Alicante, Spain And How To Explore It In One Day ~ A Foot Walk Around Alicante ~ by Robert Carlton - After just coming back from a short business trip to London, my wife and I were sitting together with friends in our garden in the Alicante suburb of San Juan on a warm summer evening. Whilst sitting together I mentioned a request from Escapeartist for an Alicante article which I received some days before. You should write about “Alicante and how to explore it in one day” – my wife said, because traditional Costa Blanca tourists really won’t have much interest in the city – but more in the beaches, villages and bars around the area. June/04
Alpine living in Spain - Farmhouses from $60,000 - Travelers Bulletin Board - The last affordable market in Europe: Adriatic hideaways from $70,000 - Plus an article on What investors in Nicaragua aren't telling you -
An Ex-Ex-Pat ~ Even Cowgirls Get the Blues-Home Home on the Range? - Libby Royster returned to the US after two years as an instructor of English as a foreign language in Madrid, Spain. Those two years were the best, most challenging, of her life, she says. Returning wasn't an easy choice. She left a lot behind. Her observations show that expats can return home, again, but not without leaving much behind. She says, "Life does not end when you come back. You just have to try harder, rage against the known, and mix it up a little. And you can always go back…"
An Old Olive Mill in Southern Spain …. Business AND Pleasure !! - An Old Olive Mill in Southern Spain …. Business AND Pleasure !! - Embraced by the rugged, but beautiful terrain to be found in the heart of Andalucía, Gaucín was once a sleepy, sun-bleached village. Nowadays, it is managing to balance a centuries-old way of life with a burgeoning interest from tourists seeking the authenticity of ‘real’ Spain. Here they are discovering the ideal ‘get away from it all’ holiday destination... indeed, one of the attractions of Gaucín is that it is so laid-back, even the cicadas take a siesta. Sept./06
Andalucia, Spain: coastal cottages from $15,000 - Real Estate in Spain - A Special Issue of International Living on Spain
Ape Attacks, Bull Fights And Cities That Never Sleep ~ In Spain ~ by Dawnelle Salant - I was particularly eager to visit Barcelona as it is part of Catalonia. Being a Canadian, I’m fascinated by other countries that also have two “separate” regions, complete with their own languages, and I wasn’t disappointed. Barcelona definitely has a different feel than the rest of Spain. It’s not just hearing Catalan spoken, there’s something a bit more sophisticated about the city. It’s rich with history, culture and art all its own. Sept./04
Barcelona - From The Best Of International Living - "Barcelona is like Paris or Rome —only smaller and a fraction of the price. It’s the chicest city in Spain. All the trendy European and American designers have shops here. It’s also safe, cheap…and easy to get around. And it has some excellent, if bizarre, architecture. - - - Real estate and rentals in Barcelona are surprisingly inexpensive… and a very sound investment, particularly right now, if you’re paying with dollars or sterling. Prices are relatively low because Spain is still digging itself out of General Franco’s socialist mess."
Barcelona: trendy shops, chichi buildings - One of Europe’s lowest costs of living - Barcelona is like Paris or Rome, only smaller and a fraction of the price. It's the choicest city in Spain. All the trendy European & American designers have shops here. It's also safe, cheap and easy to get around. And it has some excellent, if bizarre-architecture. by Michael Palmer
Become a citizen of sunny Spain, and open a back door to the European Union - Moving To Spain - More of the Special Issue of International Living on Spain
Buying a Home in Spain - Real Estate in Spain - Spain offers infinite variety with something for everyone, including magnificent beaches for sun worshippers and spectacular unspoiled countryside for magnificent vistas and peaceful strolling. There are also an abundance of mountains and seas for sports fans and a vibrant night-life for the jet set. For those who are comfortable living in cities, there are bustling sophisticated metropolises. The Costa Blanca and Costa del Sol have the highest percentage of retired persons in the world, when both Spaniards and foreigners are included. If you’re seeking a second home, will it be mainly used for long weekends or for lengthier stays.
Coming to Spain? - Coming to Spain? - The first part in a series of short practical articles (very general in scope) for people who plan on visiting or living in Spain, written with the intention of pointing out aspects of Spanish life that may be challenging to foreigners. Sept./06
Down To Earth Living - The Cave Houses Of Southern Spain - The Cave Houses Of Southern Spain - Old cave houses in the Granada countryside can still be found for a relatively small investment. Last year, old cave houses in need of renovation were on the market in Granada's pricey Albaycin district for 30,000 to 50,000 euros on small lots with no conventional buildings and no Alhambra views. For finished cave houses, expect to pay eighty to two-hundred thousand euros, depending on the adjoining land that goes with the cave, the views, etc. There are currently cave houses with land advertised for as high as 900,000 euros, with Alhambra views, though we regard this price as extraordinary. Given the real estate market in Spain, prices will continue to go up. You can also explore areas such as Guadix and either buy existing cave homes or buy land and build, with the latter option probably presenting the best value if you discover a good site. by Charles Leary and Vaughn Perret
Escape To The Other Side Of The Atlantic ~ France, Spain And Dubai ~ by Rosemary Jaworsky - After my last article for Escape From America Magazine, LIVING in GASCONY, (May 2005), I was inundated with requests for information on residency, home buying, working and healthcare, etc. I tried to answer every email to the best of my knowledge and from some borrowed knowledge, too. Some of my writers, who were keen to learn more of the area and were interested in buying, actually paid me a visit. I still have about 6 more scheduled visits for September and October and two confirmed visits for April and May next year. Since then, I have continued to receive requests on secondary home ownership with a view to later retirement. Oct./05
Experience Spain And Learn Spanish - Studying In Spain At Don Quijote Language School - Spain is a really seductive country. In January 2000 I came from Brazil to Salamanca (In the North West Spain) for a short stay to learn Spanish and see for myself all the´exotic landscapes I imagined while hearing fairy tales in my childhood. I decided to stay longer and four years later I'm still here. In my opinion this country is one of the best places to live in the world. In the lines below you'll find out why Spain is so interesting and why it is so important to learn Spanish nowadays. Life is good in Spain and people know how to enjoy it. March/04
Finding The Center In Barcelona ~ A Year In Barcelona ~ By Blane Bachelor - Barcelona is the capital of Catalonian culture and anyone from Barcelona will tell that being Catalonian is something very different from being Spanish. The city is covered in layers of history and culture and as a place to spend a year in it offers something for everyone: great food, great people and great sites. Go and see for yourself. Dec./02
Forum Cuba Libre - Forum Cuba Libre - Our contacts and our research led us to Spain, specifically the Andalucian coastal towns and the islands of Menorca and Mallorca. This is a beautiful part of the world, of course, with sun and sand, harbor towns and mountain villages. You can enjoy the best of the ancient and the modern-tumble-down, centuries-old farmhouses and world-class golf courses... generations-old markets and first-rate infrastructure.
France And Spain By Train: Like Drinking Café Olé ~ Like Drinking Café Olé ~ By Maxine Schur - Great article about traveling through the Costa Brava on Spain's northeastern border near France. This is an area that became popular with artists in the 1920s because of its great climate, people and food. If you want to know a little about the towns that dot this area then the above article has some great resources for exploring Costa Brava. June/03
Green And Virgin Spain - Nothing Like Its Packaged Sibling To The South ~ by Steenie Harvey - If you’ve wondered where discerning Spanish go in summer, I can tell you. They’re on the Bay of Biscay...vacationing in tasteful coastal towns like San Sebastian and Santander. Pounded by the Atlantic, the Bay of Biscay fronts Spain’s northern coast —and it’s practically virgin territory for foreign visitors. July/04
Hassle-free building on the Costa Brava - how one couple created a dream home for S24.500 - Moving to Spain -
How To Walk In Spain ~ Trekking Through The Beauty Of Spain ~ by Richard Robinson - Spain was never the softest of options for walkers - even if you could plan your way around the heat of high summer there were always the dodgy maps to catch you out. Those tantalising mountains, rising mistily beyond the beach or viewed from some castle rampart remained mysterious and inaccessible, vaguely daubed on playschool maps that ripped apart when opened. Things have improved in recent years, though, and the British expatriate community that can take some credit for blazing the trails, organising groups and writing walker’s guide books. Spain these days is more walker-friendly and the repertoire of rambles, the incredible variety of landscapes, grows ever more accessible. Nov./04
I Want A Property In Spain -Real Estate In Spain - If you have decided to buy a property in Spain, there has never been a better time to set the wheels in motion. Interest rates are low at the moment and there is an absolutely fabulous selection of properties to choose from. Nov./04
In Need Of Energy ~ 3 Paths To Personal Power From The South Of Spain ~ by Paul Read - At first it seemed a romantic alternative; candle lit meals, gas lighting and early evenings to bed. Living 2 km from the nearest electricity pylon gave us a novel and factura-free lifestyle. Our friends frowned at our choice of such a remote farmhouse, but although we had been pampered by city life, we accepted that campo living was about going back to basics. Equipped with a portable 12v battery pack we could recharge our mobile phones and plug in a B&W 2 inch screen TV. What more would we need? Well, for a start there was the washing machine, the water pump and the iron. We had to use a generator for these things but the noise and the fumes destroyed the peace of our valley as well as the lining of my lungs. But AA batteries alone couldn’t run such power hungry items. Oct./05
Is Land Ownership in Spain Truly Freehold? - Is Land Ownership in Spain Truly Freehold? - Taking land without justification or at worst, adequate compensation, is an undeniable breach of human rights and perhaps of the theory of freehold land ownership but,..hey what human rights existed in Spain in 1938..or even later? By Tom Clancy Mar/06
New Year's in Madrid: Red underwear, a dozen grapes and great $25.00 meals - Spanish police seized two vans from the Basque separatist ETA that were full of explosives reportedly headed for the year 2000 celebrations in Madrid. They also swiped 17 bottles of sparkling wine from my party as we entered the capital's Puerta del Sol in the first hour of the year 2000. by Ken Layne
On An Olive Farm In Spain ~ Zen And The Art Of Gorse Clearance ~ by Paul Read - Lets try and be positive about this. Gorse can provide a useful sanctuary for some animals and birds, I’ve seen toads and wasps for example happily co-existing within this hardy plant. Its presence, one has to admit prevents soil erosion in places that perhaps few other plants would grow. Jun/05
On The Camino de Santiago ~ The Way Of St. James ~ by Richard Frederick - There may come a point in some people's lives when they decide that they must go on a pilgrimage. Pilgrimages come in different sorts. Some may be less weighty; they can lead to Graceland or to Jim Morrison's grave in Paris. Others may be personally important, perhaps the return of an emigrant to his birthplace after many years of separation from his homeland. Others can lead to the settlement of a new country. The dictionary says that a pilgrimage is a journey undertaken with a specific objective. Nov./05
On The Coast Of Spain ~ A Look At The Ecology Of Coastal Livng ~ by Paul Read - Over the last twelve months, we have seen nature at its most unforgiving: whilst the tragic tsunami hit Asia, Spain experienced freak frosts that decimated crops and fruit trees followed up a drought that many believe is one of the worst in living memory. This summer, whilst the USA was hit by Katrina we have witnessed jelly-fish invasions on the coast and tornados in Barcelona. Jan/06
Open a Bar in Remote, Rural Spain - Are You Crazy? - Open a Bar in Remote, Rural Spain - Are You Crazy? - Is establishing a successful, thriving British bar/restaurant in a remote part of Spain a possibility? Buy two crumbling old farmhouses in a remote, rural part of Spain and open up as a British bar/restaurant? Are you mad? April/06
Open Wounds ~ Looking At The Recent Past In Spain ~ by Paul Read - The 20th November 2005 marks the 30th anniversary of Franco’s death. One year ago the government promised to “restore the true history” for those that died defending the democracy enjoyed by all today. Because for whilst the Nationalists were honoured as heroes, the Republicans that died fighting fascism lie forgotten in hidden graves. But the removal, earlier this year, of the last statue of Franco from the streets of Madrid created an unexpected backlash amongst Spain’s not-so-dormant Right-wing. Will the Government now continue in its pledge to “honour the dead” and to “re-write history” or will it just let old wounds fester? Dec./05
Owning A Business In Spain - Buying A Bar ~ by Samantha Hornick - Ever wondered about buying a bar in Spain? Last year alone, a record number of ex-pats left their home towns for a new life abroad, and 75,000 of them bought properties in Spain, a figure which is expected to rise to 100,000 in 2005. There is little mystery as to why Spain has become such a popular destination for those seeking a new life. For many Spain is the perfect choice with year round sunshine and a better quality of life overall. But the biggest dilemma facing most potential émigrés is finding work abroad and the one dream most of them share is to own and run a bar in the sun. Buying your own bar is the most appealing and low cost option for those wishing to move abroad and ´do their own thing´. May/05
Practicalities and Idiosyncrasies of Life in Madrid - When you come to live in Madrid - the burden of cultural adjustment will be upon YOU and there will be significant changes to which you will have to adjust. Spain is a western country with attitudes, habits, and a standard of living that is broadly speaking, the same as in Britain and the US. This doesn't mean that you won't need time to get used to the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of your new surroundings, though.
Property Picks: Banana groves in the Canaries... three holiday homes for less than $50,000… your own Irish island - Barcelona is a marvelous and exciting city. When I first came here, I intended to stay only one year. That was 35 years ago. I now specialize in renting houses and flats to expatriates who work in banks and consulates. Rent in Barcelona at the moment is very high, but the center of Barcelona is one of the best places to live in Spain. You could certainly do very well buying properties in the city center and renting them to the increasing number of expatriates and travelers who come here every year.
Real Estate in Spain - Real Estate in Spain - In light of the Valencia Land Grab Law is the Valencia Region worth investing in?~ Many people have invested in the region in previous years and have seen terrific returns on their money. In my own example I bought a property 4 years ago and it has grown in value by some 300%.If anyone knows of a better investment vehicle then I would be pleased to know about it. However in light of the recent coverage of LRAU – Valencia’s land grab law – is Valencia still a safe place to buy property? By Vince Barnes Oct./05
Really Rural Spain - Really Rural Spain - The city of Jaén city sprawls around the base of a pine sloped hill and a magnificent 16th century cathedral draws the eye. Rest on stone weathered benches on the cathedral plaza under monstrous magnolia trees. There are many smaller monuments, well deserving of a maze-like stroll around the cobbled narrow streets with their profusion of flowers tumbling through wrought-iron railings. By Rachel Webb May/06
Relocation, Relocation, Relocation! - Moving To The South Of Spain ~ by Mark FR Wilkins - Over the last few years we have heard an increasing number, perhaps apocryphal tales of UK citizens “not recognising “ the country they grew up in. Feeling alienated in their own country and looking for a way out. When you decide that you are nearing the end a busy working life, your family have fled the nest or you simply want a better quality of life for your family, your mind will inevitably wander to questions of whether there is a better quality of life to be found elsewhere. We’ve all attended those “lifestyle” shows at the NEC or Olympia where the prospect of 330 days a year of sun, a milder climate for arthritic bones, a golf course for every day of the week, international quality schooling and a magnificently diversity of influences are dangled carrot like beneath our noses. Mar/05
Running A Business In Spain ~ A Little Advice ~ by Katja Dekker - It has been almost three years since we moved to Spain and finding our way around has been fun and sometimes a struggle. When you move abroad you realize that you are giving up your career, your house, the lease car and all. But in return, there is a romantic future lying ahead of you; a future without stress, traffic jams, thousands of emails a day, dark clouds, rain. An exiting future with new possibilities, new people and new habits. Jul/05
Running to Spain - Running to Spain - Whatever your life stage, I am confident that you and your family will experience a new lease of life, often out of doors, and you’ll wonder for ever more why you didn’t do it ten years ago. Jun/06
(This observation and much more) Renting month to month in sunny, southern Europe - inger in beautiful Italian cities like Rome and Florence. Portugal is another good bet for a longer stay—winters here are mild, trains go everywhere, and you can do a lot of exploring from an Algarve base or the Lisbon coast.
Short Term Work Resources ~ Resources for Locating Jobs Abroad - Summer Jobs & Short Term Employment Abroad - Transitions Abroad has collaborated with Escape from America Magazine to bring escape artists a broad and exhaustive compilation of job opportunities in over 30 countries all over the world, including a regional guide to the Mediterranean, Latin America, Central and Eastern Europe, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. In addition to that treasure, this page and the next offer sound leads to serving in a voluntary capacity, as well as teaching overseas at some of the world's most prestigious schools. In following issues of Escape from America Magazine, we will be adding to this valuable resource on a regular basis. We know how important our Jobs Overseas section of your magazine is, and we're doing something about it. Check it out.
Spain: An Overview - Spain: An Overview - Spain is a country with a rich, colourful and diverse history, a land of many varied regions and a people who are proud and welcoming. For many first-time visitors to Spain, the expectations are of frequently used and evocative media images of sangria, sombreros and bullfights. While all of these play a part within traditional Spanish culture, there is much more that makes modern Spain a progressive, diverse and cosmopolitan society. Oct./06
Spain ~ Revival Of Arab Baths ~ by Richard Robinson - In the shadow of the fabulous Alhambra palace, El Bañuelo survives as an empty shell, the last Arab bath in Granada. The rich carving and tiling, the hot running water have long gone, but shafts of sunlight fire through star-shaped openings in the vaulted roof, creating a shadow-play among the silent pillars, the arches and the bare stone walls. In Moorish times in Al-Andalus (the name given to the Moorish dominions in Spain) there was a bath on every street, gurgling with steaming water, crowded with the devout going about their ablutions. The city of Córdoba alone could boast 600 public baths in its 11th-century heyday. Oct./04
Spanish Property Prices - Spanish Property Prices - For many years now, Spain has been one of the most popular places for those wanting to start a new life in a foreign country. By far one of the most popular reasons was that huse owners could sell their existing property in their home country and purchase a property in Spain at a very good price - thus leaving a large amount of capital that could either be invested or help serve as income through the forthcoming years. Jul/06
Starting a New Life in Spain - Starting a New Life in Spain ~ I suppose it was about ten years ago when we first started thinking about buying a property in Spain – a holiday home that we would intend to visit for two or three weeks of the year. Over the following years, at weekends, we would trail numerous property exhibitions organised by the big estate agencies. But back then, like with many others, owning a home abroad turned out to be only a dream, as the visits to the exhibitions were as far as we got and we never took that step further. By Elaine Ablett Mar/06
Starting A New Life In Spain ~ Making The Move ~ by Elaine Valet - I suppose it was about ten years ago when we first started thinking about buying a property in Spain – a holiday home that we would visit for two or three weeks of the year. Over the following years, at weekends, we would trail numerous property exhibitions organised by the big estate agencies. But back then, like with many others, owning a home abroad turned out to be only a dream, as the visits to the exhibitions were as far as we got and we never took that step further. Dec./05
Taking The Slow Route Home ~ Living On A Spanish Farm ~ by Paul Read - Miguel has sold his car and has decided to buy something much better. This new vehicle gives off no pollution, no emissions whatsoever. In fact it uses a very green sort of fuel that can be recycled for other uses. It transports him, his tools, his packed lunch and his dog to work but he rarely has to use a road. And when the sun sets over the green Vega that snakes up to his village from the Granada coast, his trusty mode of transport gets him safely back home down narrow alleyways that even a Smart Car would think twice before entering. Jul/05
Temple De La Sagrada Familia - In Barcelona ~ by Shirleyann Costigan - I came to Barcelona to see Gaudi's masterpiece, the Temple de la Sagrada Família. However, when I discovered that six of my travel group wanted to see Parc Guëll I decided to visit the Parc with them before going my separate way. At the Tourist Office located in the Plaça de Catalunya it is possible to purchase a bus pass that offers two different sightseeing routes around the city, both on the same pass. Passengers can get off at any stop and catch the next red or blue bus that comes by every 20 minutes or so, but because the stop-and-go ride to the Parc would take 45 minutes, we opted to take the Metro directly to Parc Guëll station. That was a mistake. Dec./03
The Best Places in the world to Retire - Retirement Overseas - These days, you can buy low everywhere, especially in Southeast Asia. It is unclear when these economies will turn around. This has been good the world over for the dollar investor. Now let's see who's at the top of our list
The Call Of Girona - A Lost Treasure Found ~ by S.A. Costigan - The ancient and beautiful city of Girona, Spain, located about 60 miles north of Barcelona, is a desirable destination on any travel itinerary. It’s loveliness stands quite apart from its deep history as the major Catalonian town on the Costa Brava. July/04
The Camino de Santiago ~ In The Steps Of Popes, Princes And Kings ~ by Brandon Wilson - Although they say that it’s the journey that matters and not the destination, I, too, had my doubts. That was until I heard about Spain's Camino de Santiago. And what a difference that trip has made. If the idea of exploring Europe is met by a "been there, done that" response, think again. There’s a unique option whose concept started long before the advent of those whirlwind package tours. You can walk all or part of the Camino de Santiago across northern Spain for an intimate, at-your-own-pace exploration of a country steeped in magnificent beauty, art, history and faith. Feb/05
The Expat’s Guide to Living in Spain - A report on moving to Spain. The nation that produced the twentieth centuries best artists; including Picasso and Miro. The backdrop for the novel The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway, the novel about expats that changed our perspective of the world. Spain is among the quintessential expat destinations. With fine real estate, excellent food, profound culture, and some of Europe's best islands and beaches, Spain is an extremely worthy consideration as an expat destination. This report by Arin Vahanian, eighty pages in length, provides the details that we need when considering Spain as a destination. Real Estate, Contacts, Employment, Legal Considerations, Citizenship, all laid out in a comprehensive easy to read format. An Expat’s Guide to Living in Spain will save you money, answer your questions, and prepare you to live in Spain. An Expat’s Guide to Living in Spain - Aug/03
Three secluded Spanish beaches where you can still find beachfront rentals for less than $300 a month - I spent the past 2 weeks traveling along Spain’s coast, 2,318 miles from the French town of Angeles-sur-mer, north of the Pyrenees, back down the coast to Gibraltar & then up to the westernmost town on Spain’s southern coast, Isla Christina, just 9 miles from the Portuguese boarder... What did I discover? Fabulous beachfront apartments for much less than $100,000 (on almost empty beaches) several-thousand-square-foot homes in the coastal hills for less than $80,000, and great rustic fincas (ranches) with several hundred acres of fertile vineyards and olive trees, for less than $200,000. I found charming Andalucian hill towns here... just off the coast, that would make excellent retirement spots or great places to escape for several months a year for rest & solitude. by Michael Palmer
Traveling And Teaching On The Mediterranean - Mallorca, Sardinia and Rhodes ~ By Ron Jenkins - Traveling and teaching on the Mediterranean sounds like something from the Ancient world. That distinctive Mediterranean blue water mixed with rejuvenating Mediterranean air. It makes me think of a Chirico painting or a glass of retsina with a small plate of olive oil, tomato and feta. Jan/03
Travels And Good Times In Portugal ~ First Time In Iberia ~ by Matthew Atlee - There is a new direct flight from Panama City to Madrid. The name of the airline is Air Madrid: the flights leaves every Monday and Friday; the flight takes 10 hours and 20 minutes: you fly up the Caribbean, over the Dominican Republic and then north past Florida, when you are in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean you turn east and fly straight over Portugal and Spain. When the trip was planned I thought we were just going to Spain and then realized we were also going to visit Portugal, which I really wanted to see because I had heard that Lisbon was a great city. It was! Jan/05
1,000 Mile Bike Ride to Spain - Unique Travel - In October 1999, I set out alone on a bike from Zurich, Switzerland to Cadiz, Spain to get back in shape. The plan was to get in condition as I biked along. Switzerland was probably the wrong place to start - like training to fight Tyson while fighting him. An article by Jerry Ritter - When Jerald Ritter isn't riding his bike he is publishing a magazine on living in the Caribbean. He has lived in and invested in the Caribbean and Latin America for much of the past thirty years. He publishes the Caribbean Property List Magazine, the largest online directory of Caribbean and Latin Americans properties on the Internet.
Working & Finding Work In Spain ~ Moving To Spain ~ By Gaetan Philppart - Looking for a job in Spain could be difficult right now as Europe is in a bit of a slump. But there are always ways of finding jobs and the above article is filled with great ideas about how to find a job in Spain. Who cares about the money: think of the good times, the bars, the restaurants and the people you would meet. April/03
Sri Lankan Sojourn - Sri Lankan Sojourn - History and culture fiends salivate over the legendary city of Kandy, last capital of the Sri Lankan kings and site of the illustrious “Temple of the Tooth.” Travelers who are less than ecstatic at the thought of journeying several hours to see Buddha’s left upper canine, however, can opt for a site of alternative anatomical interest - King Kasyapa’s palace in the ancient city of Sigiriya. Built in 500 AD, its walls are adorned with frescoes of nude beauties that represent some of the lascivious king’s reported 500 concubines. After that foray into Hefner-ism, it is probably best to take a purifying hike to the summit of Sri Pada, whose mystic heights continue to draw pilgrims of multiple faiths. May/07
Federated By Ferries – Part II ~ Nevis – Head In The Clouds ~ by Deb Andrews - Nevis is more than sleepy, its moody! Perhaps its to do with the dominating mountain, the shapeshifting cloud around the peak, changeless and changing, the light never the same. Walking up the main street at 8.15 on a Wednesday, through the banking sector, past First Caribbean (Barclays Bank and CIBC), Scotia Bank, Royal Bank of Trinidad and Tobago, and the Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis, and then the ferry dock, the various Ministries of Government and the Cotton Ginnery; I saw two people, and never more than one car on the road at a time. Between 8.30 and 9, things did liven up, and people started to arrive opening up offices and shops. Oct./05
Stop Dreaming - Buy That Land in St.Kitts - Stop Dreaming - Buy That Land in St.Kitts - We fell in love with this area, buying land a few years ago for $4/sf and there are many opportunities to still get in early before full off-island developments take hold. Sept./06
Mustique: The Caribbean's Best Kept Secret ~ A Private Hideaway In The Caribbean ~ by Heather Prince - Gazing out the twin propeller plane window the jagged emerald island seemed to float in the tri-colored turquoise Caribbean waters. This is the first site of the illustrious private island of Mustique: The upper crust’s best kept secret. Tommy Hilfiger, Mick Jagger , Princess Margaret and Viscount David Linley, just to name a few, all have enjoyed the splendor of the small 1,400 acre island located in the Caribbean Grenadines. Luckily for me, this was the location of my best friend’s wedding, so I became one of the few who have been able to sneek-a-peek into the secret life of the rich and famous. Jan/05
More Adventures In Surinam ~ Explorations ~ by John Spampinato - I had little success fishing the first several days, but there was plenty of food, and just about the first time I thought someone to share my rum with might be nice I had a surprise encounter with Garifuna bushmen - long removed progeny of nineteenth century slaves who, seeing the Guiana’s striking similarities to the jungles of their Congo origins, escaped their captors by simply vanishing into the wilderness where to this day many thrive unhindered, a feral society. Coming up over the ‘tall trees’ trail I swore I heard human laughter. Suddenly four sparsely dressed fellows appeared and froze in their tracks, as did I. Smiling, I motioned them to the lean-to where I made various unintelligible offerings and possibly inappropriate inquiries. Sept/04
Finding Love In Sweden - Tales From Sweden ~ by Darren Packman - “As I sat at 35,000 feet hurtling at great speed towards the north of Sweden I stared down at the raw lump of herring and wondered whether I was really supposed to eat it or call the stewardess and ask her to put a parachute on it and throw it back into the sea. May/05
Living In Sweden ~ A Pint-size Guide To Stockholm ~ by Darren Packman - It’s not easy finding a Swedish pub in the country’s capital. In fact, there isn’t one, and believe you me I’ve looked. For the past five years I’ve lived as an English expat in Sweden working as an export manager for a British Brewery – a job that has required me to travel around much of the country and in particular the capital to drink in pubs. Jun/05
Surströmming in Northern Sweden - Yuck! YUCK!!!! - Andreas Grundtvig went to Sweden and discovered the culinary practice of eating fermented fish, the stink from which will hopefully stay in that part of the world thanks to the Coriolis Effect and Wegner's Theory of Plate Tectonics. Grundtvig writes, "On a sunny balcony in soaring temperatures of 15ºC, my hosts take the tins to the bottom of the garden. Trying to protect their noses with their shoulders, they carefully open them. They try hard not to inhale as the pressurized stink emanates from a suspect, murky brown liquid. The smell is so overpowering, I wonder if somebody nearby has a very bad stomach problem and should make a quick exit to the crapper, or leave altogether."
Swedish for Beginners - Swedish for Beginners - A Didactic Warning by an American Student to Those Attempting to Access the Inaccessible Swedish Language. Sept./06
Bittersweet Switzerland - Living in Switzerland ~ by Aimée Skidmore - I make the three minute walk to my four- year old daughter, Celeste’s, neighborhood school four times a day. Each time I find myself wondering what I am doing in Geneva, Switzerland. I feel guilty that I have the time to make four trips to her school a day. Between the times I have to be at the front door of the school when the automated bell chimes four times, I wait for the nap alarm to go off on our bedside clock. This indicates that I need, once again, to change from slippers to shoes, and dash out the door. At times I long for my old teaching job back home so I can have something to grumble about when my husband gets home. Sometimes I actually use the nap feature and sleep away the morning. Other times I try to read, but become restless, stack the book on my leaning tower of bedside books, and jump up to sweep the floor or do the dishes. Now and again I sit and stare out the window, eating Swiss chocolate and sipping coffee. A feeling of contentedness slips over me. May/04
Carless in Geneva ~ Living in Geneva ~ by Aimée Skidmore - The invitation for the monthly Parent Student Association coffee was crumpled up in Isabel’s back pack when I found it on Wednesday morning. I sat in the kitchen, looking at the paper and trying to decide whether I should go or not. My eyes settled on the address of this month’s get-together: Centre Chavannes, Chavannes de Bogis. I didn’t know where that was and so decided immediately to attend. I didn’t really care for the last meeting, but the mission to travel without a car was irresistible. June/04
Christmas In Zurich - New Toys And Old ~ by Bonnie Burns - Nice article about Christmas in Germany and Switzerland. Bonnie takes us to the Cristkindlesmarkt in Nuremberg, Germany as well as the Spielzeugmuseum toy museum. Bonnie gives us an idea of what it feels like to be caught up in the Christmas mood in Germany.
Currency Cards ~ Like Having Liquid Gold In Your Wallet ~ by Sean Brodrick - A Swiss Travel Cash card looks like a credit card, but has no name on it, just a numerical code. The user also gets a PIN code. The user calls his or her banker, who loads the card with a maximum 10,000 euros, U.S. dollars or Swiss francs. It can then be used to withdraw cash all over the world. Even better, there are no monthly limits of withdrawal, although a limit per withdrawal may apply. And you can reload the card when you run out of cash. Now, it’s not free. When you purchase the card and load it for the first time, you pay a commission of 1%, not unlike an insurance premium in the event of loss or theft. Charges for each withdrawal are three euros or three U.S. dollars (depending on the type of currency loaded in the card) worldwide, though local ATMs may add on their own charges. And when you reload it, you pay a commission of 1% on the reloading amount. Aug./05
Escape To Geneva ~ What You Need To Know To Make Your Escape ~ by Aimée Skidmore - The young and famous; the rich and retired; the eccentric and persecuted have all sought refuge in Switzerland for hundreds of years. Nastassja Kinski, Isabelle Adjani, Aga Khan, Alain Delon, and Yoko Ono are just a few of the famous who have relocated to Geneva because of the appealing surroundings, quality of life, and privacy afforded them. There are many other benefits to living in Geneva as well. They city is small, but urban. There are 178,000 residents in a city with a vibrant and bustling downtown as well as quiet neighbourhoods. Dec./04
Finding & Using An Offshore Broker - Swiss Style Service In The Americas - Finding & Using An Offshore Broker - If you're accustomed to using banks that shout your account balance across the room, give you an electric toaster for opening an account and then make you wait in endless lines to get to an impersonal service window; let me the first to inform you that the quiet and attentive dignity of Swiss service would be a big shock to you. Bankers in Switzerland are also brokers.
Finding A Job At The UN - Learning Where To Look For A Job In The UN ~ By: Michele Ann Jenkins - The UN from my experience is a very hard organization to find a job in. Many of the jobs inside the UN are advertised only within the UN itself. And that is the key to finding a job with the UN: knowing someone who can tell you when job openings are posted. Living in Geneva and working in the Palace des Nations and handling the kinds of problems that the UN faces on a daily basis must be stimulating. Learn through the above article how to find a job in the UN and what its like when you finally land a job in an organization that may maintain the peace. Feb./03
First Read Manufacturer's Instructions - Moving Day In Switzerland ~ by Bonnie Burns - Nobody likes moving day, and if you're living overseas, moving day can mean hell. Find out what a moving day is like in Switzerland with its multi-lingual population and electronics instructions. You'll see that moving in your own country is a lot easier than what you might find in your new home overseas - but moving will be part of the journey and fun. Oct./03
Following My Heart To Heidiland - Inside The Landscape Of A Famous Movie ~ By Maxine Shur - The movie Heidi is burned into the imagination of many people. The story of an orphaned girl who through circumstance ends up living with her unhappy grandfather is played out in the mountains and flowers and green valleys of the Swiss Alps. And that landscape to many people is the trigger that sets off the emotions that the movie transmitted to them as a child. Never saw the movie, but the landscape must have made the emotions especially beautiful. Feb./03
Has Switzerland "Sold Out" to Washington, London, & Wall Street? - Let's be Franc - Investment expert Ron Howard is a frequent contributor of articles to Escape from America Magazine. Once again Ron Howard speaks frankly about investment opportunities in the very near future. "It goes without saying that it has been a tough couple of years for Switzerland and the franc. What Happened to Switzerland & the Swiss franc? What is Switzerland's Future as a Financial Safe Haven & the Swiss Franc? If You Are Already Invested in Swiss Franc Denominated Investments in a US Product or Offshore in an Annuity or Swiss Bank Account - How Do You Keep Up With What's Going On? Ron Howard has the answers.
La Suisse - The Switzerland The Tourists Haven’t Discovered…And Where Foreigners Are Allowed To Own -US$1 equals 1.37 Swiss francs ~ by Steenie Harvey - Switzerland isn’t just for the mega-rich, and not all Swiss properties cost more than $1 million. In the Villars-sur-Ollon area, bijou studio apartments sell for just over $100,000. And while you won’t see “Heidi Homes” in IL’s Pocket Money Real Estate, a three-bedroom chalet in Gryon could be yours for 360,000 Swiss francs. At current exchange rates that’s $262,350. Built way back in 1733, this postcard-pretty chalet is 1,600 square feet. Jan/04
My Swiss Bank Affair ~ Opening An Account ~ By Bonnie Burns - No matter where you live banking practices can seem quite mysterious or idiosyncratic when compared to the country you come from. Banking is very different from place to place and that is what is exceptionally translated in the above article. A wonderful and comical piece about being told what you need to live on by your friendly Swiss banker. If you want to know what a person really thinks then watch what they do with their money, and if you really want to insult a person tell them how much of their money they need and why they can't withdrawl more. Remember, Switzerland is not America. Aug/03
Offshore Stock Exchanges - Special Feature From LowTax Online TaxWire - Offshore Stock Exchanges - In an ongoing effort to provide a cross-section of the best offshore information on the internet, EscapeArtist seeks out the best online resources. We are really excited about a new website and news letter called, Low Tax Online NewsWire - In this issue or Escape From America we present a Special Feature from the NewsWire on Offshore Stock Exchanges. Countries such as Bermuda, Ireland, Jersey, Cyprus (maybe), Hong Kong (already) and Mauritius are cleaning themselves up for what could be a glittering future. This report includes some of the offshore jurisdictions with Stock Exchanges, their Regulatory Basis Including Listing Rules, Trading and Settlement, Costs of Listing and additional resources.
Thanksgiving In Switzerland ~ Turkey Day ~ by Bonnie Burns - Overseas for the holidays and you want to recreate the atmosphere of home. Many people have experienced this dilemma and there can be no holiday more alien to Europeans than Thanksgiving. Read about how Bonnie introduces and then inculcates her European guests into the traditions of Thanksgiving. Nov./03
Relocate to Switzerland: A Tax Haven at the Heart of Europe - Relocate to Switzerland: A Tax Haven at the Heart of Europe- If you’re wealthy, you have any number of options about where to live. Some places have a wonderful location; some have favorable tax laws or a welcoming and accommodating culture. But the fact of the matter is this: Switzerland is already what it would be like if wealthy people could design their own country. The Swiss tradition of discretion is particularly important for the wealthy and famous individuals who choose to make Switzerland their home. Swiss tax and immigration laws allow for foreign-born wealthy people to keep a larger share of their own money while experiencing the joys of living in Switzerland. Jul/05
Retire In A Wealthy Nation ~ Switzerland ~ By Bonnie Burns - It's important that you have persistence when you want to move to another country - especially one in Europe. The above article tells you all about how to punch your way through the red tape and into the mountainous beauty of Switzerland. Having stamina is definitely part of the process of relocating to your new home. July/03
Short Term Work Resources ~ Resources for Locating Jobs Abroad - Summer Jobs & Short Term Employment Abroad - Transitions Abroad has collaborated with Escape from America Magazine to bring escape artists a broad and exhaustive compilation of job opportunities in over 30 countries all over the world, including a regional guide to the Mediterranean, Latin America, Central and Eastern Europe, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. In addition to that treasure, this page and the next offer sound leads to serving in a voluntary capacity, as well as teaching overseas at some of the world's most prestigious schools. In following issues of Escape from America Magazine, we will be adding to this valuable resource on a regular basis. We know how important our Jobs Overseas section of your magazine is, and we're doing something about it. Check it out.
Swiss Rental Cows ~ Get Your Own Cow ~ By Bonnie Burns - In the past decade, more than a quarter of Switzerland’s family farms have gone out of business. Those that remain find creative ways to generate extra revenue. One such enterprising family leases out their cows during the alpine summer grazing. What do you get out of the deal? Visitation rights, if you are willing to drive up into the Alps to visit your ward. Sept./04
Switzerland’s Hidden Gems: The Sovereign Society Unveils a Treasure-Trove of Value-Play Shares - Switzerland’s Hidden Gems: The Sovereign Society Unveils a Treasure-Trove of Value-Play Shares - In a world where most CEOs hype their company’s prospects, it’s refreshing to see how the Swiss describe their companies in the most conservative terms possible. Pilatus Bahn’s CEO, André Zimmermann, described the 2003 tourism season as being “at a low.” Well, the number of passengers riding the railroad up to the peak of Pilatus peak rose 11.8% to 321,457, and revenue from the sale of tickets climbed 12.8% to SFr10.8 million. The hotels, restaurants, and shops on the mountaintop brought in another SFr5.0 million in revenues, up 12.9% from the previous year. Despite the increase in business, the company’s costs sank by 2%, leading to cash flow of SFr3.9 million, up a whopping 50%. The Sovereign Society
Advice On Finding A Job In Taiwan ~ Six Months In Taiwan ~ by Daniel Wallace - This is a guide to coming to Taiwan as an English teacher, but it is not a complete one. It is a list of things to do and try, rather than a list of things to avoid or be careful of. At the end of the piece I will give some links to other, more comprehensive information sources, if you are interested in doing further research. There is a huge amount of complaining about Taiwan on the Internet, and as I really like living here, I want to give my positive advice on how to come here and get a good life sorted out. Jan/06
Differences Between China And Taiwan ~ Living In Taiwan ~ Photo And Story by Daniel Wallace - One very noticeable difference between China and Taiwan is that Taiwanese women frequently have fuller bottoms. I’ve only been in the country a month, so my studies on the issue are hardly authoritative, yet the difference is pronounced. Fuller – not especially in the width and height dimensions; it’s in the depth department, in that mysterious and so hard to draw z axis. Is it a sign of more affluence in Taiwan, that greater comfort and security allows women’s bottoms to flesh out? Oct./05
Four Years of Living Dangerously In Taiwan - Four Years of Living Dangerously In Taiwan - It is said that the first step in any journey is the hardest. In an Asian country it should be said that the first one hundred steps is the hardest. If I didn’t have a clue what was happening in Scotland Taiwan left me completely lost. Everything in Taiwan is in Taiwanese or Mandarin. Quite a surprise considering they deal with a worldwide market on a daily basis but the place is pretty unschooled on the way of English and English conversation. After four years and being an Australian in Taipei I never want to hear “Oh your koala very cute” ever again. There is an off chance that if I do encounter a koala I may have to punch it in the face as a result. Even a pretty koala looks ugly with a broken nose. Apr./07
Job Seeking Blues ~ Finding Work In Taiwan ~ by Daniel Wallace - I was in the park with a friend one night, and he explained all his blues. "So, I was teaching in Japan, thinking about flying home, then I get this email from a school in Taiwan. They say they'll pay me 60,000 a month, a free scooter, a free apartment, a free hotel when I arrive and I don't have to sign a contract until I've seen the school. So, I come to Taiwan, and at the airport, the manager is standing there and she wants me to sign the contract before she can drive me to the hotel. Nov./05
Living in Taiwan - Working in Taiwan: An expatriates story - Two and a half years in Taiwan gave Mark Cannon some interesting experiences to relate - Mark is currently working in the Los Angeles television industry with the goal of returning to Asia to make documentaries ~ more
The Native Speaking English Teacher ~ Teaching In Taiwan ~ by Ieuan Dolby - Expatriate English teachers come to Taiwan to teach for a whole host of reasons and are of varying ages. There are many South Africans, Brits, Americans and Australians, New Zealanders and Canadians. Many South Africans currently view teaching in Taiwan as a means to making money as their position back home is not stable. Many Brits and others view Taiwan as a stop gap between university and starting a career back home. May/05
Adventures In Tajikistan ~ Part 3: Getting My Feet Under Me ~ by Brad Farquhar - The thing you notice as you drive around Dushanbe is how well people are generally dressed. Far more suits and ties here than you will ever see back home, although I suppose my small city on the Canadian prairies is not a good basis for comparison. The traffic is what I would call chaotic, but not verging on anarchy as you would find in other parts of the world. Jul/05
Adventures in Tajikistan – Part 4 ~ Miscellaneous Diary Entries ~ by Brad Farquhar - One thing you can learn in other countries is creative ways of mixing different foods. Today, I learned that you can put corn on a bed of rice, smother it with some kind of white salad dressing, sprinkle it with parsley, and call it "salad". So when your travel agent tells you not to eat salads on your trip for fear of some water-borne disease, take it with a grain of salt (and pepper), at least in Central Asia. You've got to put your North American pre-conceptions of various food types behind you. After all, salad doesn’t always mean salad. Oct./05
A Cut Above ~ Suan Lum Night Bazaar, Thailand ~ by T.E. Banker - Until recently I was jaded about open markets in Thailand. There was no shortage of markets and entertainment here, and they have long been an important part of the Thailand’s tourism, especially Bangkok: Pratunam, Sukhumvit from Nana to Asoke, Silom from Rama IV to Soi Nongsee, Soi Cowboy, Patpong’s Night Market and Jatujak’s Weekend Market. But they had all started looking like vulgar variations of the same thing. Nov./04
A Day In The Life Of A Siam Escapeartist ~ More On Living In Thailand ~ by Tomy Gunn - Tomy has written a number of very informative articles about Thailand for Escape From America and this time he takes us to the beach resort of Hua Hin. The town has become a popular spot for the King and Queen of Thailand as well as some very talented musicians who perform yearly in Hua Hin at the International Thai Jazz Festival. Nov./03
A Soon-to-be-Expat’s Relocation to Thailand (and Beyond) - A Soon-to-be-Expat’s Relocation to Thailand (and Beyond) - This is after all the Land of Smiles. I’m not dreaming this. It is however, my personal vision of my very near future. You see, I’m in what I call my “pre-expat” mode (according to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary; the definition of expatriate is: to leave one's native country to live elsewhere). Now, there are numerous reasons why one chooses to become an Expat. In my case there are a few but the biggest of all is “money” (as in the lack of it), especially since I’m basically going to survive on Social Security. Then of course, there’s that great big catastrophic storm cloud that’s being prophesized for the U.S.A. in the very near future (both financially and politically). Apr./07
An Introduction to Living and Teaching in Bangkok - Living and Teaching in Bangkok - Right now the English Language industry is booming in Thailand, and Bangkok is awash with language schools both big and small. There is absolutely no reason why any native English speaker need spend more than a week or two finding a job suitable for him or her. Currently, only top-notch institutions hire from abroad and the best place to land a job is in the city itself. Almost every issue of the Bangkok post carries at least two or three advertisements for language teaching positions and even those schools stipulating qualifications/experience necessary are realistic enough to compromise if the applicant seems reliable and smart.
...and Who Is Harold Stephens? - ...and Who Is Harold Stephens? - Harold Stephens has lived a life that rivals Hemingway's. He has been a stand-in for Marlon Brando in Mutiny on the Bounty He did meet Ernest Hemingway. He's climbed the Matterhorn, as well most of the major peaks in North America and he even briefly join He's an expat in Thailand who currently writes for the Bangkok Post and the author of numerous books including 'At Home In Asia,' Expatriates in Southeast Asia and Their Stories - - Escape From America Magazine
Back to School in Bangkok - Studying in Bangkok - Ok you may not be able to afford the tuition and living expense of going off to Europe or Japan for a few years to get a master’s degree, but what about Thailand? There are a number of universities in Thailand that offer international programs, both undergraduate and graduate level, that are taught exclusively in English. Many of these programs are priced fairly reasonably. At Bangkok University, where I’m currently working on an MBA, the overall cost of a master’s degree, tuition, fees and books, is only around $5,000 and takes approximately two years to complete.
Boom Time In Bangkok: Cheap Credit Fuels The Property Market - Real Estate In Bankok - Banks and finance houses that are lending money again for property purchases are fuelling the boom, with advertising hoardings throughout the city shouting out the latest deals available. Led by the Government Savings Bank, financial institutions are pumping billions of Baht’s worth of cheap credit into the marketplace. The bank loaned B68 billion (US$1.7 billion) in the second quarter of 2003, nearly doubling its lending of B37 billion (US$0.92 billion) in the comparable period in 2002. By Andy Guest
Border Run To Poi Pet... No Sweat - Border Run To Poi Pet... No Sweat - So you've discovered the unique beauty of Thailand... and now you'd like to stay for as long as possible. Unless you've managed to land a work permit (which is almost impossible) or are retired and sitting on loads of cash, it's likely that you've only been given the opportunity to explore Thailand in 30-day increments...and only three of those at a time if new rules go into effect.To stay longer than 30-days, you'll be required to do what we call a "Border Run." Oct./06
Buying Real Estate in Bangkok: Bargains in Asia’s most livable city -Real Estate in Bangkok - The Bangkok real-estate market has now stabilized, as has the rate of exchange. Moreover, the Thai economy—in free fall through most of 1998—has bottomed out. As there is still a property overhang in Bangkok, big short-term gains are unlikely, but over the longer term it should be a very different story. If you buy now, you can be sure that you will be buying at (or very near) the bottom, and also that you will be obtaining some of the best value the Far East currently has to offer.
Caves And Crossbows ~ Spelunking And Archery With The Hill Tribes ~ by Antonio Graceffo - Litee Akha, the champion marksman of Northern Thailand, set the butt of the large crossbow against his flat belly. With both hands, he expertly pulled the powerful string into place. There was an audible "click" as the trigger popped into the ready position. He removed the short bamboo arrow from his mouth, rubbed it with natural bees wax, and set it in the groove, atop the ancient weapon. Holding the bow in a straight line, away from his body, he took careful aim, and pulled the trigger. Aug/04
Earn an American or British degree in the Land of Smiles, Thailand ~ Exactly the same degree that could be earned in the USA or England - Higher Education Overseas - Scott A. Hipsher is an English teacher in Bankok Thailand. He earned his BS degree from the University of Maryland (Asian Division, Sasebo Japan) and his MBA from Bangkok University. He writes, "Many North Americans and Europeans will automatically assume that any degree earned outside the USA, especially in a developing country, is inferior to a degree in their home country. But it is possible to eliminate that problem and to earn a USA or British degree abroad, which is exactly the same degree that could be earned in the USA or England.
East Meets West ~ In Thailand With Vietnam Vets ~ By Robin Sparks - Robin Sparks continues her odyssey in Asia. She is back in Thailand talking with some Americans that have decided to settle down and make a life for themselves in the Thai Kingdom. Robin takes us inside the marriage of a retired American soldier to his Thai wife. Also learn about some of the volunteer work that some of the ex-soldiers are involved in in Thailand. If you are sick of the tensions that most people are feeling right now in the U.S., then a life overseas in Asia might be the answer for you. April/03
Eco Travel In Your Own Backyard ~ Exploring The Garden ~ By Bernie Tetrault - Some great photos in the above article. Bernie takes you through his backyard in Thailand and introduces you to some of the beautiful animals and butterflies that inhabit his garden. It's interesting what you can see in nature if you just take a little time and look around you: the photos and the writing in this article will help relax you and may send you off in search of what lies in your garden. June/03
Elephant Polo ~ The Biggest Sport in the World ~ Player Recruitment Announcement - Tickle and the Ivories - Tickle and the Ivories Elephant Polo Team was founded to raise money for recognized environmental charities in Asia and to eventually win one of the tournaments. And they're having a terrific amount of fun trying to achieve these aims! The team has an Australian flavour to it but welcomes women and men from all nationalities. In fact they have a few spots available for some of the forthcoming tournaments. You don't have to have any equine polo experience, so if you're interested in playing, supporting, seeing the videos, helping raise money for elephant-oriented charities, attending the tournaments and watching, or just hanging out with the team, then contact them. July/02.
Elephant Polo ~ The Biggest, Weirdest, Slowest, And Most Expensive Game In Thailand ~ by Antonio Graceffo - The theory by most have-nots, of which I am one, is that the rich are bored, and that they invent unusual sports to entertain themselves, such as croquet, yachting, and sailing. Cricket is perhaps the greatest example of what happens when you have too much money, and nothing to occupy your free time. A single game could last for three days, and end in a tie score. Any person of normal means would fall asleep in the interim. Sept./04
ESL In Thailand ~ Dropping Standards ~ by Dustin Javorsky - The ESL industry that brings so many expatriates to Bangkok every year with hopes of procuring an honest job teaching has become quite the dark and shady business, like everything else in Thai culture the ESL industry is following suit, the standards are dropping at an obscene rate, employers picking up anyone with a white face and a pulse and slapping them infront of Thai students who genuinely believe that this well dressed foreigner has some kind of qualifications to be there. Aug./05
Expats In Asia - Bill Heinecke - Expats In Asia - Bill Heinecke - Excerpted from the book, Expats in Asia by Harold Stephens - "Bill Heinecke is one of the best known expatriates in Southeast Asia. His father, Roy Heniecke, was a war correspondent, stationed in Bangkok, where Bill went to high school. I first met Bill. -
Exploring the Wild Rivers of Southeast Asia-Unique Travel - Harold Stephens returns to Escape from America Magazine with stories of high adventure and discovery. Stephens writes, "At the opposite extreme of the Chao Phraya River in Thailand is the Rejang River in Borneo. The Rejang is a wild river where fierce headhunters once roamed. The Rejang River to this day spells adventure. When I set out to explore the headwaters, my plan was to hire longboats in Kapit, the last outpost on the Rejang, and travel up river to where the Rejang meets the Balleh River. I would then follow the Balleh to its very source, leave boat and there hire porters, and cross into Kalimantan in Indonesia. That was my plan, but it didn't work out quite that way."
Former Hit Artist Turns Restaurateur - Former Hit Artist Turns Restaurateur - So why come to Bangkok? Loveland pauses and says, "Six years ago everyone said that Asia was the place to put your money, and specifically Thailand. But they said to do it quickly, because the opportunity wouldn't last. When I bought this place we were the only ones out here. Now the development is just booming, and soon there are going to be two more expressways passing right by here, so I couldn't have asked for a better location. Our clientele is also much better behaved because we are far away from the Sukhumvit, and the Patpong crowd."
Grad Schools in Thailand - Studying and Working in Thailand - Scott Hipsher is an English Teacher attending Bangkok University enrolled in their MBA program. Scott tells Escape from America readers how an MBA degree from an Asian university can increase your value on the labor market in the USA and Europe. He provides a partial list of schools and programs in Thailand, and restricted the list to graduate level programs taught in English. He writes, "Many of the same universities also offer undergraduate programs in English." Hyperlinks to several university websites accompany this article.
Highlights Of Thailand: Bangkok, Chiang Mai And Phuket - From Day One With My Digital Camera ~ by Dorothy Aksamit - I have a history of falling on trips and decided it was time to lighten the camera load and go digital. As the date approached in April 2004, I was more confused than ever and decided to let it go until I got back. The night before I left my daughter came over and insisted I take her tiny Cannon Elf, 3.2 pix, 3X zoom. She spent five minutes showing me the basics; I tucked it into my shoulder bag and thought how great it would be to travel so light. But I didn't trust myself enough to leave the Cannon EOS Elan at home.
In Siam With Passion II ~ Relocating To Thailand ~ By Tomy Gunn - Tomy Gunn moved to Thailand two years ago and has been living in the "Land Of Smiles" and learning what life is like for an expat in Thailand. Find out how "Western Influences" have changed the lifestyles of the Thai people and Expats. Learn about what makes Thailand so attractive to so many people and what an everyday routine is like for an expat in an Asian country that is very open to the outside world. July/03
Lifeboat ~ A Story From Phuket, Thailand ~ by Steve Rosse - In his pre-Phuket life Murray was a Wall street investment banker, with a designer label wife, an athletic sixteen-year-old son in prep school and an anorexic fourteen-year-old daughter in therapy. He was good at his job; the Reagan years were good to him, and by his fortieth birthday he was quite wealthy. On that day he drove his wife up to Newport to show her a birthday present he'd bought himself. It was a 51 foot Jeanneau yacht named Fixed Interest, and Murray said he was ready to retire and show his wife the world. Jun/05
Looking At Real Estate In Bangkok, Bali & The Philippines - Looking At Real Estate In Bangkok, Bali & The Philippines - I then went to Bangkok, a hot and crowded place, but my favorite city in this part of the world, probably even ahead of Hong Kong. Poor planning got me there in the middle of the Thai New Year, which meant everything was shut down for a week, and I didn't get a chance to see a lot of property. On the other hand, the whole city goes wild with a water festival; you walk down any street and after five minutes you're completely soaked from squirt guns and buckets of water thrown at you, day or night. It's great fun. Bangkok reminds me of L.A. without the social problems. If you're thinking of living in the Orient for a while, this is the place. - Doug Casey looks for real estate in the Orient.
Making the Visa Run ~ Doing it the Thai Way ~ Sometimes it's Part of the ABCs of Living Overseas - Thai Visa Run - One of the unique aspects of ex-pat life can be the visa run. Visa runs are common enough throughout the world but are especially a part of life for foreigners living in Thailand. Like usual, I got my visa with a minimum of hassle, I went someplace new, met interesting people, saw new things, didn’t spend too much and basically enjoyed myself. If you have to make a visa run, or happening to be visiting SE Asia, you should consider making a short trip to Cambodia. June/02
RCBS – Irreverent Charitable Involvement ~ In Thailand? ~ by T.E. Banker - Eight empty large tour buses were arrogantly parked out there in front of the Pakred Crippled Children’s Home at 06:00AM on my way to the gym one Thursday last March. What in God’s name are so many tourists doing out here in these boondocks at such a non-tourist-like hour, I asked myself? Although I do not consider myself a particularly nosy person, this certainly warranted a bit more investigation, so I parked my car down the Soi a bit and strolled on in to the school itself. Aug./05
Real Estate In Thailand, Condos and Contracts - Real Estate In Thailand, Condos and Contracts - Real estate transactions in the United States and the other First World nations are governed by “Marquis de Queensberry’s rules”. - Rules enforced by the TESTED legal systems of the respective countries involved... All bets are off when you are attempting to buy property in 2nd and 3rd world countries. Oct./06
Return to Adventure - Return to Adventure - This informative article on adventure desitinations draws on excerpts from our friend Harold Stephens' newest book Return to Adventure: Southeast Asia. Stephens, an adventurer and early escape artist, is a well known expatriate in Asia having written thousands of newspaper and magazine articles and 19 books. Stephens says, "How few of us ever stop to realize that adventure is not something in the past. It's now. It's happening all around us, all the time. The problem is knowing where to look. We turn to new horizons. Adventure awaits in SE Asia."
Risky Business ~ A Story Phuket, Thailand ~ by Steve Rosse - Saul retired to Phuket from New York City in 1991. At the age of 40 he already had under his belt a Master's Degree in Business Administration from New York University, three years of therapy with a strict Freudian psychiatrist, an amicable divorce from his wife Amy and a small fortune from the sale of his father's business. Feb./05
Robin Sparks Looks At The Expat Scene In Bangkok - The Expat Scene In Bangkok - One woman says that although she came here for her job, she has grown to love Bangkok. "This weekend I ate in the best restaurants, partied in some excellent clubs, took a new dress design to my tailor who will work from my sketches, ate durian, and cruised the klongs in a water taxi on Sunday with friends. We found a temple and offered up our wishes on wax tablets. Where else can you get all that?" July/02
Seven Reasons Why Living In Thailand’s Golden Triangle May Be Right For You ~Relocating To Thailand ~ by John P. Seely - Thailand, Burma, Laos, and China meet in Chiang Rai - known as the Golden Triangle. Bamboo - and teak - covered mountains separate wide river plains to form a lush landscape of thick jungle with hidden cascading waterfalls, rice paddies, and groves of lychee trees criss-crossed by roads lined with giant red flame trees and bright yellow laburnum. The Mekong - one of the world’s last great untamed rivers - forms the eastern border and the Mae Kok river, which is widely regarded as Thailand’s most beautiful and unspoiled, flows through the province from Burma to Laos. Nov./04
Thai Visa Run - Off To Malaysia ~ by Bart Walters - Last week I engaged in a common occurrence among expats here in Thailand—the visa run. Both my business partner and I were due for out 90-day excursion outside the Kingdom of Thailand, to satisfy our non-immigrant B visas granted to us for business purposes. Visas and changes in visa policy are part of life as a foreigner in the Kingdom of Thailand. Until recently, visa and work permit requirements for most western developed countries and rich Asian countries were pretty relaxed. Visa extensions, long-term, and multi-entry visas could be had cheaply and hassle-free. April/04
Thailand ~ A Place Expats Call Home - Kaleidoscope for Escape - Escape Artist extraordinaire, adventurer, and sage Harold Stephens reports from the land of golden temples, tiny bells tinkling in the breeze; lofty mountains, tropical forests and endless offshore islands; a nation of smiling people and happy children; of high rises, shopping malls, tropical five star resorts, and even McDonald's. Stephens writes, "For the expat living in Thailand, it's not the lack of love for one's home country, or the desire to flee from an unhappy home, nor is it for political, economic or social reasons, that brings the expat here. The reason might be more complex, but their motives are quite simple. It's not so much to escape as it is to find, and expats find what they are looking for in Thailand." - by Harold Stephens
Thailand Transformations: Lessons in Life - Peter Donaldson lived in Thailand for nearly 10 years yet his friends say he remains unaffected by it. Nevertheless, Thailand has shaped him in ways both profound and incidental. From the Jan/Feb 99 issue of Transitions Abroad -
The Best Of International Living - The Best Of International Living - Buying Real Estate in Bangkok: Bargains in Asia’s most livable city - A new series to the Escape From America Magazine. Each month we'll feature the best of International Living Magazine. If you don't know what International Living Magazine is all about, you're in for a treat!
The Best Way to Buy Thailand - The Best Way to Buy Thailand - It’s easy for you to own land in Thailand. All you have to do is invest 40 million Baht (about $1 million) in a project considered “useful for Thailand” (not real estate, mind you). That minor detail out of the way, you then have to select the land you want from a list of approved areas (you didn’t think you could buy anywhere you want, did you?) Sept./06
The Life Of The Lifers ~ One Day In Chiang Mai ~ by Antonio Graceffo - I woke up in my two-dollar-a-night hotel room and peeled the stinking sheets off of my body. Even in the hundred-degree heat and sauna-like humidity I couldn’t sleep unless I was under covers. It had been that way since childhood. A psychologist once said this represented my need for security. The way I see it, if I had needed security I would have stayed in the five dollar a night place. Shows you what psychologists know. I wrapped a towel around myself, and went into the hallway for a cold shower. Jul/05
The Magic Of Phuket, Thailand ~ Finding Thailand ~ by Susan Hart - When I first arrived in Thailand, I did not expect to fall in love. In fact, just the opposite was true. Driving into Bangkok for a three-day stopover on the way to Phuket Island, my first impression was one of shabby buildings, unsophisticated advertising billboards, and suffocating smog. In the superficial glance I was able to give it, (and through the lens of my Western cultural viewpoint), Bangkok looked like a tawdry imitation of what I had left behind. Nov./05
The Many Faces And Exotic Secrets Of Southeast Asia’s Land Of Smiles ~ Adventures In Thailand ~ by Steenie Harvey - During a February trip, I packed what seems a lifetime of experiences into 14 days. I rode an elephant. Stomped gilded temples. Went white-water rafting. Bartered for opium artifacts and jade carvings near the Golden Triangle. Feasted on spicy papaya salads and tiger prawns the size of a toddler’s fist. Sampled a traditional two-hour massage. Trawled markets where the goods on offer included live frogs and ants eggs. Marveled at a seascape of islands and jungly pillars straight from an eastern fairytale. June/04
The Meeting Place on the Mekong Riviera - Expat dives and resources in Laos and Thailand - A quick surf through the Mekong Riviera website and it was clear we'd found the survivors of Coppola's Apocalypse Now some 30 years later. We'd also confirmed the existence of seasoned expats of the Rick's Place in Casablanca vein living in Thailand. After an hour of browsing, we'd discovered a uniquely esoteric package of resources for expat interests in Laos and Thailand. The Meeting Place, adjacent to Vientiane, the capital of Laos, is the expat hangout in that region of Southeast Asia. It's a place to learn the ends and outs of Thailand and Laos.
The Mood of Southeast Asia - The Mood of Southeast Asia - Harold Stephens returns to Escape from America Magazine with an excerpt from his novel, Return to Adventure: Southeast Asia. Stephens writes, "There are images so powerful you cannot forget them. The sounds that came to me, at first, were inconsequential, until I minded them. When you sit there long enough, you wonder if your senses are deceiving you. I heard, very faintly, the echo of a gong somewhere far off. A gong in the forest! In an instant more, it was clearer, and louder, and mingled now with faraway voices. Then came the sound of a flute, and another, and more gongs. I watched them grow from fuzzy silhouettes into focus, like a camera zooming in on its subject. I could see them clearly now, all wearing sarongs, white sarongs, and around their waists were scarlet cummerbunds fastened with rich buckles carved in gold."
The Knight of Wands ~ In Siam with Passion, Energy, and Life - Living in Siam - Tomy Gunn had a 1989 Emmy Nomination, several Billboard chart records as a songwriter, and numerous film and TV credits as a composer and sound designer, before calling it quits to that razzle dazzle rat race. Today, Gunn lives in Thailand while he runs his Paradisemoon.com website. He chooses to live for passion and romance and high adventure in the Kingdom of Siam.
The Writing Women Of Bangkok - A Women's Writing Club In Bangkok ~ By Robin Sparks - Robin Sparks is back in Asia and has been spending the last few weeks getting to know a group of women writers based in Bangkok. She talks with the women and finds out how each made their way to Bangkok and what are the motivations behind their writings. Robin has also been interviewing Vietnam Vets in Thailand for her next article which will appear in our next issue. March/03.
Then He Put His Foot On My Stomach ~ Thai Boxing ~ by Daniel Wallace - Travelling and losing weight don't always go together, I discovered. Ten months into my round the world trip, about to head south from Bangkok, I looked in the mirror to notice I was somewhat more out of shape than I had planned. Exact details are perhaps unnecessary - a chin fractionally more podgy than I remembered, a stomach... The end result is that I postponed my exit from Bangkok, and later that day enrolled in a Thai Boxing class. Sept./04
Tracing A New River - Doi Saket, Thailand ~ by Antonio Graceffo - Ask any of today's great adventure writers: Tim Cahill, Paul Theroux, or Robert Young Pelton, and they all agree on one point. "It's been done." Basically everything on this planet which can be done has been. And even more extreme is that with package tour operators making the most remote corners of the globe accessible to everyday people, even formidable obstacles, like climbing The Himalayas are options for the average tourist (more accurately, the average tourist with $60,000, the price of a guided ascent up Everest). July/04
Two Years On In Thailand - US$1 equals 40.15 Thai baht ~ by John P. Seely - We’d been regular visitors to Thailand for years, so when we finally decided to make a permanent home here we had an idea what we were letting ourselves in for. The low cost and the high standard of living attracted us, as well as the warm welcome offered to foreigners. We decided on the mountainous northern section of the country, because it offered the best climate for us, and was unspoiled and undeveloped. At the same time, it had all the modern conveniences we needed and was easy to get to. Dec./03
Up-Country Adventures In Isaan ~ The Thailand Most Tourists Never Discover ~ by Steenie Harvey - The young Isaan driver and his brother aren’t Thailand’s most adept guides. Although it’s only 50 miles from their home in Udon Thani, they take a wrong turn on the road to Phu Phrabat’s geological wonderland. But there’s no rush—Phu Phrabat’s cave paintings and bizarre rock formations have been around since prehistoric times. Jun/05
Working at the University - Living In Thailand - Teaching In Thailand - by John Irvin; I chose this life for myself because I felt the materialistic life I led in America was not satisfying for me, and I yearned for something simpler, yet more challenging and more adventurous. Living in Thailand became that adventure.