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Monday, October 13th, 2014

Seven reasons which make living in Valencia worthwhile

View of the Ensanche district

The centre of the picturesque Mediterranean city of Valencia has emerged in recent times as one of the most desirable locations to live in Spain. The charming network of streets that meander through the central district between Carrer del Regne de València, the old riverbed of the River Turia and the Plaça de l’Ajuntament (bordering the tourist-populated Plaça de la Reina) as well as the high quality of life that one can enjoy here are just a few of the many reasons to live in the centre of Valencia. Below are seven more:

1. Streets designed for pedestrians. The wide pavements, tree lined avenues and lovely green spaces running down the middle of the streets are perfect for relaxing strolls around the city. The architecture of the city centre is also particularly beautiful, ranging from Valencian modernist era buildings to more rationalist styles, typical of the famous architect Javier Goerlich.

Panoramic view of the old Turia River

2. The old riverbed of the River Turia. Today the long tranquil stretch of park where the River Turia used to flow is one of Valencia´s most attractive features. Redeveloped in the 1980s, the area is now popular amongst residents and tourists alike for meeting up after work, relaxing on weekends and doing sport. Located conveniently near the Palau de la Música and running past many of Valencia´s main attractions including the iconic City of Arts and Sciences it is not to be missed.

3. Bars, bars, bars! There is no shortage of good quality bars, restaurants and cafés in Valencia. The streets of Carrer Ciscar and Carrer del Comte d´Altea are both packed with restaurants from all over the world including Italy, France, India and the Far East (Thailand, Korea, China and Japan). Local cuisine is also readily available with the restaurants of Casa Roberto and Racó del Turia in particular serving delicious regional specialities. Valencia is also famous for its prestigious international gastronomy; restaurants such as Saiti (the new establishment of chef Vicente Patiño), Canalla Bistró and Camarena (both by Ricard Camarena), Vuelve Carolina, El Poblet (the Valencian branch of Quique Dacosta) and Kaymus are all worth a visit.

Colón Market

4. Shopping. Carrer Colón is the main shopping street in Valencia boasting an impressive range of clothes shops as well as the new Apple store while the electronics and entertainment outlet Media Markt is expected to open in the near future. Carrer de Ciril Amorós, stretching all the way from Carrer de Russafa to the Plaça d’America, runs parallel to this street and is home to a wide range of small independent boutiques specialising in high-end classical and contemporary décor. The streets of Juan de Austria, Jorge Juan and Isabel la Católica are also well worth a visit where one can find a large selection of fashion shops.

5. Leisure. The brand new multi-screen cinemas of Lys and ABC Park, built after the closing of the city´s traditional cinemas, are located right in the heart of Valencia. Tyris, Acteón, Capitol, Serrano, Gran Vía, Suizo, Rex and Eslava were all decommissioned in recent times to make way for these modern cinemas. The Principal and Olympia theatres also run weekly shows for lovers of theatre and dance.

Plaza del Ayuntamiento of Valencia

6. Prestigious schools. The centre of Valencia is home to some of the city´s best and longest running schools. Loreto, Dominicos and Hermanos Maristas are all extremely well-established, traditional schools that provide students with high levels of education, modern facilities and extensive sporting opportunities. As a result, over the years there has been an influx of families into the centre of the city looking to give their children the best education.

7. Quality real estate. The Valencia city centre is home to some of the best properties in the city. Fully-refurbished spacious apartments line the streets, all with beautiful original features. Many of the buildings, constructed in the early 20th century, share common characteristics; high ceilings (often plastered) and large shuttered windows. There are also a number of new build properties, such as those in the Plaça d’America building, which make up part of Valencia´s luxury real estate market.

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