Stay in SPAIN or RETURN to Un-United Kingdom ?.Remain in Spain!!!

Do you have a query on how to get things done in Andalucia, where to find things, who to call? Find out by posting and hear about others experiences.
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patricia
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Re: Stay in SPAIN or RETURN to Un-United Kingdom ?.Remain in Spain!!!

Postby patricia » Sat Mar 25, 2017 2:30 pm

Lyric wrote:I was thinking that something other than Chino shops were being referred to. The larger of the two next to Mucky Donna is the best IMHO, but the one referred to in TdM is the biggest I have ever seen.


That is the one I like. The people are nice in there and you can nip before you do your shopping and then pop your purchases in the car and shop.

You can get most things there, but I do worry about the ferraterias and if they are losing out because of them as well as the shops that used to sell writing paper and pens etc. The one I used to go to has closed. I do try to use Spanish shops first and some of the things in the ferraterias are often cheaper.

I love Wilko. :thumbup: Not the same at all. I love the one in Kingston upon Thames, they have some lovely things there and I have bought quite a few things there and brought them back. Two lovely lamps for example and face creams etc.
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Postby BENIDORM » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:51 am

Patricia,
Most of the inland ' Wongo shops' are in my opinion better than the coastal shops which stock more items suitable for tourists, and are the nearest option to Wilko that you are going to find in Spain, unless of course someone else knows differently.?

We actually try to use our local shops as much as possible and our 'village' with approximately 3,000 residents is very well catered for, in fact virtually everything is available locally and at reasonable cost.
Recently a new 'Dia' shop has opened , very much a mini version of the bigger supermarkets but nevertheless very good and also in the last weeks an old shop has been taken over and now offers a much greater range of stock.

SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL SHOPS...USE Them or Lose Them :!:

Regards,
Gordon The Happy Shopper... :wave:

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Postby patricia » Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:08 am

The local shops where I live in the UK have all gone, the village shops are nearly all restaurants or takeaways or are Estate Agents and offices. Yes I agree support your local shops. We do have a local grocery store on the corner here in Torrox and she does very well. All the locals go there because some of them do not drive and she stocks almost everything and is open even on Sundays for the morning, so if you run out of anything you can always get it whatever day it is.
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Postby BENIDORM » Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:53 am

Yes Patricia, so many local shops and pubs have gone in UK and of course also here in Spain many of the small villages have lost their one and only shop, such a shame as they were not only a source of supply but an important meeting place particularly for elderly people.
Years ago we visited a small village in Extremadura, looking at possibly buying a home, and we called into a little grocery shop and asked if the lady knew of any houses for sale, within 20 minutes we were being given a guided tour of the village by an elderly gent , 5 houses later he insisted on taking us to the little local bar and bought us lunch !.
He told us the asking prices of the properties and also how much we could buy them for with offers, then he took us to his house for coffee and presented us with a bottle of local wine.
He wasn't in anyway interested in 'getting anything out of selling a property', he was just a decent nice old man who wanted to be helpful....
And all of that was just from a casual enquiry at the local shop...wonderful !

Regards,
Gordon..

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Postby patricia » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:15 am

What a lovely story Gordon. Inland in the villages the locals are very friendly. Some of my friends who live inland in or near the small villages are showered with generosity. It is a little bit different here on the coast, but the villages ie Torrox Village the locals are very friendly and the same for Nerja.

I had walk around Cobham which is near me in the UK and nearly all the shops were boarded up or were charity shops. There was a huge shopping mail in the centre with supermarkets etc. Such a shame.

In Spain I used to love the 100 Peseta shops. I preferred those to the huge Bazaars that have opened up.
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Postby patricia » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:17 am

elusive wrote:Wongos! :lol: brilliant Yeah i agree re the one at torre del mar and theres also one at torrox costa that is good. But most are pretty off. Whats the deal with the chinese shops in spain never got round to googling it.


I think that they get huge tax benefits, there is something as to why they are opening up all over the place. It is on here somewhere.
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Postby BENIDORM » Mon Mar 27, 2017 2:52 pm

Patricia commented....

''I think that they get huge tax benefits, there is something as to why they are opening up all over the place. It is on here somewhere.''

Maybe, but they are also quite shrewd and don't employ many staff, which I know saves a lot of money !! :think:
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Gordon

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Postby patricia » Mon Mar 27, 2017 3:04 pm

That is true of course Gordon all their families work in them but there is also some arrangement in respect of tax which also make it a lot easier, I think it is quite huge. Our little grocers family all work in the shop so same difference but they do not get the tax brakes that these Bazaars get.
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Postby BENIDORM » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:22 pm

The whole retail experience has changed dramatically in Spain since we opened our first shop in Benidorm and we were alone at that time as British shopkeepers, a bit like the locals though as initially we only employed our own family, but as we expanded we took on numerous different nationalities, deliberately as I knew that they would attract trade from their different countries.
It was very hard work for only 'wages' for us in the beginning, but we enjoyed it and would have continued even longer than our 12 years in the shops if it hadn't been for tragic family circumstances and although the Wongo shops had started opening we found the competition quite good and it kept us on our toes and we did have very loyal customers from all nationalities.
So of course I've experienced and observed many problems through the years and now try to pass on helpful advice to newcomers, most are pleased to receive the advice , and some don't even sat 'Thank You', but that's life !

Anyway as per my original title we really can't see anything that would tempt us back to UK at the moment, but I do of course understand that many will be ready to return because of a huge variety of reasons and they will be going back to UK with a much different and better attitude after their experiences in Spain, as I've mentioned before..
But Newcomers please don't be put off by some of the tales of woe, Spain is a Great place to live, but you must learn to adapt to the pace of life and accept that you are moving to a different culture.
Good Luck to everyone whichever way you are going. :wave:
Regards,
Gordon..

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Postby patricia » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:06 pm

That is very interesting that you opened a shop and were successful until you had to stop due to a tragedy. Your experience must be very helpful for people hoping to open a shop and make a living in Spain. May I ask what you sold! So many shops I have seen open in Nerja and then closed, it obviously takes a lot of research to know what to sell and what will be successful.

Yes I do miss the English countryside I have to say. I would love to have the option of going back for six months and living in Spain for six months. I love both England and Spain the same. I have had a relationship with Spain since the late 60´s so have seen a lot of changes and I loved it in the 70´s it is quite different now, but change is inevitable just as it is in the UK. I always have to have my UK break which was more often until my cousin sadly developed Dementia just recently so her house had to be sold to pay for her care and that was where I lived when I went back to the UK. Lovely right in the countryside and very few houses around. My own is let out and that is in London, but now and again, in-between tenants I go back and stay in it and I love it. Walking along the Thames and around Hampton Court and Home and Bushy Park. Lovely area, leafy and green. But I love Spain and could never give it up either. But perhaps one day I may have to give one up, who can tell what the future holds, but at the moment things are ticking along nicely.
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Postby BENIDORM » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:39 pm

Patricia,
We did actually have numerous shops in different locations and sold a variety of items , but mainly clothing from budget to designer, baby/children's, underwear, football kits etc. , military surplus and 2 x 100 peseta shops.
And as you stated it did take a lot of homework and mistakes, and when we started in 1990 we already had quite a lot of experience in retail and catering, so I suppose that it did help.!
We ran an S.L company, which was a mistake and I wouldn't advise anyone to get involved with opening an S.L. company,personally I didn't find any benefit , but I suppose it would depend on the type of business.
My association with Spain goes back to the early 1960's and like you I've seen many changes, but of course the same goes for the UK.

I started when I was very young running a small business, even when I was serving in the Royal Navy, I always loved challenges, some worked-some didn't and often I'm asked how did I manage to cram so much into one lifetime, well at times I was actually doing three jobs, but still managed to have a good family life with 3 children and I couldn't have achieved it without Mrs.Benidorm, my wife for the past 51 years...
We've had many adventures and experiences in Spain, but I don't want to bore anyone with too many details !

Sorry to hear about your cousin , Dementia is such a terrible illness and as for having to sell her house to pay for her care, well that absolutely appalls me that this is forced on people who have worked hard all of their lives to provide their own home.
Anyway....
Regards,
Gordon

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Postby patricia » Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:07 pm

No Gordon it is not boring at all. You are obviously a person who is pro-active and who doesnt let the grass grow under your feet. That is the best and you lead - in my opinion anyway - a more interesting life. Challenges are what life is all about. Get knocked down and get up and brush the dust off and start again and learn from each experience and of course if you have a wonderful spouse who is behind you all the way that is everything.

I agree with what you say. She worked for the UN all her life and paid into the system but her house has gone! but before it was sold and the council were paying she was charged interest until the fee was paid off when the house was sold.

Thanks for sharing your experiences. Fascinating!!
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Postby Miro » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:43 pm

A few hours ago Mrs. Miro and I flew over Great Grandfather Benidorm's old farm land and arrived in Liverpool to be greeted by a glorious sunny spring day. Sitting here now reading this is very interesting. I can't remember if it was on this thread or somewhere else that I mentioned that we never came to Spain to "live the dream" and there was no love affair with Spain, and we're leaving now to return to the UK basically because it's just time for a change. Passing through the old terminal at AGP this morning, with it's scruffy floor tiles and dim lighting etc., I had a bit of deja vue. It occurred to me that Spain has indeed changed a lot in the 20 years we've lived there, and in many ways for the better. But I kind of miss the old Spain, the way it felt "different". Now, in many ways, it's indistinguishable from many other places. This is probably a Good Thing from a Spanish perspective, but for me at least , Spain is no longer particularly interesting. Returning to the UK after more than 20 years of course for us is a bit like going to a totally new country, and therefore it is actually quite "interesting"!
Gordon, absolutely agree that newcomers should not be put off by any negativity from grumpy old gits like me, and hope that we "will be going back to UK with a much different and better attitude after (our) experiences in Spain".
All the best to everyone, from Sunny Southport! :wave:
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Re: Stay in SPAIN or RETURN to Un-United Kingdom ?.Remain in Spain!!!

Postby Nimrod » Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:59 am

Patricia ,you regret the demise of the corner shop in the Uk but this is a generalisation.
You say you walk in Bushey Park?
Then you must know that Teddington,where I live,has a thriving High St full of independent shops.
Sure it has its fair share of estate agents,real estate is sky high because people actually want to live here,it has many restaurants because people have the money to eat out but it still has loads of independent shops selling gifts,jewellery, general goods etc.
Shops don't stay boarded up,they close and shortly after they open with a new business.
Coupled with excellent transport(free) I wouldn't want to swap it for Spain,the only bonus I see there is the weather.
Thankfully we sold our house in early March.
Spain is fine if you can hack it,I won't detail the problems we had,but it doesn't suit everyone.

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Postby patricia » Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:35 am

I know Teddington well. :thumbup: I love to wander along the high street. I love the charity shops there, they always have a lot of lovely things for sale. So far so good! It hasnt yet got a huge shopping mail built there and there are some other lovely shops. I love the fabric shop on the corner by the traffic lights and did I see a new little cafe open last time I visited! Just up from Fine and Country Estate Agents and the fabric shop and opposite the supermarket! selling all sorts of teas. I agree it is unique Teddington high street. Hope it stays that way. :thumbup: But it is true that the high street shops in many or most high streets are closing :thumbdown: Hampton Wick High street, Epsom, Chobham to name a few. Thankfully though no houses can be built opposite me as it is all Crown land. Love Bushy and Home Park :thumbup:
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Postby patricia » Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:38 am

And good luck to Miro and his wife in their new venture. Living in the UK. You can always spend a few months in a sunny country during the winter months. I agree weather isnt everything. Loads to do in the UK and free transport as Nimrod has said (if you are a pensioner) and also free tube too. Marvellous!
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Postby Miro » Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:56 am

It was a simply gorgeous day (weather-wise) in Southport yesterday and the pavement cafes along Lord Street were packed, people were crowding the streets in their shorts (!!!) and frankly it was a far cry from the half-done pedestrianised centre of Torremolinos, with it's dog turd covered pavements and closed up shops. Added to that the torrential rain the day before yesterday, and in this brief snap-shot comparison the UK won hands down.
Unfortunately, the vendors of the house we're hoping (trying) to buy are pi55ing us around and we are very frustrated at the moment....but we will overcome :wave:
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Postby patricia » Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:06 am

Oh that is a shame, but what else is new about vendors etc. Plenty more to buy if that falls through as disappointing as that may be.
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Postby Pamela1 » Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:48 am

Loving these posts, so interesting...Miro i hope things move speedily on for you and your wife, i can understand your frustration and as we get older we have less patients which dosen't help however even the most patient of people can get frustrated in Spain. :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Re: Stay in SPAIN or RETURN to Un-United Kingdom ?.Remain in Spain!!!

Postby BENIDORM » Tue Mar 28, 2017 11:59 am

I'm pleased to note that forum members are writing about their experiences ,good and bad, but without animosity and giving very sensible and accurate comments about their present and past experiences in Spain.
And it's great to hear that 'returners' are settling in well back in UK and I think that their comments are very valuable to newcomers who really need to be able to see all sides of living in a foreign country and it gives them chance to evaluate their own hopes and dreams and hopefully make them work.

Today I have a busy day so can't add too much, but please keep gently debating the issues about living or not living in Spain , it really is good for the soul.. :D
Have a great day everyone,
Regards,
Gordon ...The Busy B...( Benidorm or Bee ..Please )


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