retail-shopping-centers Market News: Spanish Real Estate Intelligence

José Avillez to Turn Porto's Oldest Café into Cafeína Downtown
8 January 2019 The well-known chef's group acquired Progresso, which its new owners will convert into a restaurant similar to the space it owns in the Porto area of ​​Foz. Progresso is no more. Opened on September 24, 1899, boasting the title of "oldest café in Porto," the centennial establishment closed over Christmas. The venture will suffer a complete makeover and will reopen with a new name. The Cafeína (caffeine) group, which is controlled by José Avillez, acquired the café Progresso, a source at the company confirmed. "By next summer, we plan on opening Cafeína Downtown in the Café Progresso building, which has a strategically interesting location and where we will create about two dozen jobs," said Vasco Mourão, the head of the Cafeína group. The group owns five restaurants in Porto and was acquired by the José Avillez group last summer. Considering that "its title as the old café in the city was just a slogan since it had long had no real link to its past," the new owner opted to drop the name and instead intends to replicate the Cafeína concept in downtown Porto. Installed in a charming 19th-century house in Foz, Cafeína is the most international space of the small empire that Mourão sold to Avillez. Mourão continues to manage the group and holds a 25% stake. The José Avillez group acquired Café Progresso from the entrepreneur Diogo Baptista, who along with his friends Artur Ribeiro and Pedro Sá Pereira, had acquired and reopened the establishment in the summer of 2017. The café’s new décor and service failed to attract the needed footfall, and the new café lasted for little more than a year. In addition to Cafeína and Cafeína Downtown, which will open at 5 Rua Actor João Guedes, near the Praça Carlos Alberto, Avillez’s group also owns the restaurants Terra, Portarossa and Casa Vasco, which are all located in Foz, and the downtown Panca Cevicheria & Pisco Bar, on Rua Sá de Noronha. In all, José Avillez’s restaurant empire "currently comprises 35 restaurants," an official source at the group told Negócios, adding that "a holding company is being formed," to be jointly held by José Avillez and Arié Investimentos (of the Arié family, one of the richest in Portugal). The holding company will control 100% of the José Avillez Group (including Cantinho do Avillez, Belcanto and Cantina Zé Avillez), 100% of the Doca de Santo Group (formed by a dozen restaurants, mainly located in Lisbon) and 75% of the Cafeína Group. Original Story: Jornal de Negócios - Rui Neves Photo: Paulo Duarte Translation: Richard Turner  
Aveiro Undergoes Real Estate Boom Based on Hopes for Urban Renewal
9 January 2019 Ribau Esteves stated his belief that investments by the city council in urban renewal are leading private investors to take a second look at potential investments in the city, particularly in hotels and retail. The city’s mayor took advantage of the presentation of a preliminary study on the renewal of the Rossio area, which would create an underground parking facility, to highlight some of the projects under discussion at the city council.  He specifically referred to five-star hotels, of which there are still none in the city. The expressions of interest by private investors, according to the politician, occurred after "comprehensive urban planning" by the city council, with a series of interventions in the urban area under the so-called PEDUCA package, which is part of an urban renewal program focused on Avenida Lourenço Peixinho, the city’s main artery. "When we are working with investors, private companies, this matter is discussed," Mayor Esteves explained in response to Manuel Oliveira de Sousa (Socialist Part), who criticised the lack of a "strategic framework" to coordinate the range of redevelopments to the public space.

Large store and a hotel in the former Bank of Portugal

"Within a few weeks," the mayor announced, a well-known store will open on Avenida Lourenço Peixinho. He added that it is "one of the best stores of one of the most famous Portuguese brands in the world." "[The chain] isn’t going to open a store at the chosen site simply because they just enjoyed the idea of it, they were attracted by the [city’s] new dynamics," due to the new construction, including pedestrian pathways between the former Bank of Portugal building and the old trading post building. "This is why it chose that site for one of its finest shops in the country and the world," said the mayor. Last year, in that same area of ​​the city, the Commercial Association of Aveiro (ACA) sold its headquarters to real estate investors. Ribau Esteves said that there are "a dozen investment projects focused on the avenue, based on a revision of the PDM and our investments. We will finally have a modern and high-quality, high street." There are also plans by private investors to build five-star hotels. "The first" will begin construction within the next weeks, in the centre of the city. The site of the future hotel is the former Visconde de Valdemouro palace on Rua José Estêvão, which was once owned by the Diocese. Two other investors are committed to projects for luxury hotels. Plans have already been announced to build a new hotel at the site of the former Bóia & Irmão factory. The mayor also stated that the former Bank of Portugal building, currently occupied by the Tax Authority, will also become the home to a new hotel. "When investors begin looking at the city and talking to us about investments, they are following public investment. They look at these areas because it makes sense," said Ribau Esteves. Original Story: Notícias de Aveiro Translation: Richard Turner
Shops in Downtown Lisbon Are Now More Expensive than on the Avenida da Liberdade
15 January 2019 It's a first. For the first time on record, the rents for street-facing stores in Baixa, Lisbon’s downtown, are higher than those on the Avenida da Liberdade, Lisbon's main luxury artery. Furthermore, they are already nearing the prevailing prices in Chiado, the most expensive retail area in the Portuguese capital. According to data from several consultants contacted by Expresso in 2018, street store rents in Baixa reached a high of between €105 and €130 m2/month, while on Avenida da Liberdade they ranged between €85 and €100 per square meter per month. In Chiado, rents hovered between €130 and €135 per square meter per month. Rental costs have risen the most downtown since 2014, especially from 2017 to 2018, according to data provided by Cushman & Wakefield. According to the consultancy's figures, rents in Baixa, more precisely on Rua Augusta, the area’s main commerce and tourism artery, grew by 20% between the end of 2017 and September 2018. Rental costs saw little to no change on the Avenida da Liberdade, according to data from the various consultancies. For example, Cushman calculated that rents stayed flat at €95 per m2/month, while JLL  saw an increase of €5 m2/month to €90 m2/month. In Chiado, both saw, prime rents, or the most expensive ones in the area, rose by just over 8%. However, despite the limited growth in rents on Avenida da Liberdade, the consultancies guarantee that that area is not suffering from a lack of interest. "Avenida da Liberdade went through a less active period in relation to the street trade because the stores that came on the market, a result of the rehabilitation of the area, did not correspond to the current demand on the part of store owners for areas with larger dimensions," JLL’s head of retail. Patrícia Araújo, stated. The head of retail for CBRE, Carlos Récio, believes that Avenue da Liberdade is still the first choice for many luxury brands, but supply is not always in line with demand." However, the Avenida da Liberdade seems to be regaining some momentum. "There were new stores opening, such as Massimo Dutti, Arcadia, Sandro and Maje," said Patrícia Araújo. It was "the only area that demonstrated positive rent growth in the last quarter of 2018, going back to €90 per m2/month," she added.

Rehabilitation and tourism help Baixa

The increase in tourism in the city of Lisbon, and in particular in Baixa, is one of the principal causes of the increase in rents for stores. However, before the influx of tourists, the area had to be gentrified. That gentrification was made possible by the amendment to the rental regime, facilitating the rehabilitation of old buildings and the replacement of run down stores in Baixa with new, more modern and larger storefronts, and subsequently, more well-known brands. "The impact of the change in the Rental Law was strongly felt in Baixa, specifically on Rua Augusta, since most of the rentals contracts for spaces in the buildings fell under the previous law. With the legislative amendment, many of these spaces entered the free market and could be negotiated based on their real potential, which had significantly increased in recent years due to the increase of tourism and the improvement to circulation in Baixa, with a greater number of renovated buildings. Rua Augusta currently has rents that fit its profile. It is the country's best trade (excluding luxury shopping) location, with a very high volume of daily visitors and potential for growth. It is common in other markets in Europe that these locations have higher rents than the luxury areas. An example can be found in Barcelona, where Portal del Angel has higher rents than those of the Paseo de Gracia," Marta Esteves Costa, of Cushman & Wakefield, explained. It is for that reason Patrícia Araújo believes that the current trend of price increases in Baixa will continue. "The area continues to present good business opportunities for rehabilitation, making Baixa, especially Rua Augusta, a zone of interest, where rents are reaching high levels and low yields," she stated. While rents increased in the downtown area, the number of new stores that opened in recent years rose in tandem, and not only on Rua Augusta, the principal thoroughfare. "The streets under development are mainly Rua do Ouro and Rua da Prata, in the first two blocks and the perpendicular streets, such as Rua de Santa Justa [the elevator]," Mr Récio stated. Even the Rossio has had "strong demand, particularly for the restaurant sector", but there is a "very reduced availability" of space now, he added. The Campo das Cebolas, next to the Terreiro do Paço on the way to Santa Apolónia, is also considered part of downtown Lisbon. The area also benefited from rehabilitation and increased tourism, Ms Araújo said, referring to the inauguration of "independent shops and restaurants." Some of the new restaurants and cafes that in the area last year include L'Eclair, the Cantinho do Avilez and Basílio.

Rents also rise in Porto

The phenomenon of tourism and urban rehabilitation are not limited to Lisbon. On the contrary, Porto has also seen strong growth in recent years and, as in the capital, this has led to more dynamism in the street trade and even more expressive growth in rents, though starting at a lower level than Lisbon. For example, five years ago, rents on Rua de Santa Catarina - which was always Porto's main street trade artery - did not go beyond €25 per m2/month. They have now reached between €60 and €75 per m2/month. Much of this growth occurred in 2018, with year-on-year increases of 15% to 20%. Rents also increased in the Torre dos Clérigos area from 2017 to 2018, from €35 per m2/month to the current €45 m2/month. This is also considered one of the new street shopping areas in Porto and one of the areas that saw the greatest number of new stores opening last year. 22 new stores inaugurated in 2018, according to Cushman & Wakefield.

Numbers at a glance

110 euros per m2/month - the average rent that in Baixa. However, there are already cases of rents reaching 130 euros per m2/month; 55 euros per m2/month - the average rent in Baixa five years ago; 90 euros per m2/month - the average rent on Avenida da Liberdade, little changed over the past four years; 135 euros per m2/month - the rent in Chiado, one of the most expensive areas in Lisbon; 70 euros per m2/month - the highest average rent on Rua de Santa Catarina in Porto, the most expensive street in the city. Rents increased by more than 55% since 2017; 40 euros per m2/month - the average rent in Clérigos, in Porto, currently one of the most sought-after by brands and stores. Original Story: Jornal Expresso - Ana Baptista Photo: Nuno Botelho Translation: Richard Turner