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Why Cyprus?
The charming island of Cyprus is tucked in the eastern Mediterranean on the southeastern edge of Europe and bordering on the continents of Africa and Asia. It is this key location of Cyprus that has directed the course of the island’s intense history and defined its rich civilization.


Blessed with a mild climate and predictable sunshine almost every day of the year, the island is valued for its natural and largely unspoilt landscape, as well as its diverse flora and fauna. The varied coastline marks its borders, while inland plains give way to rolling hills and the rising Troodos mountain range.


Beyond its visual attractions, Cyprus lures visitors - often permanently - with its unique lifestyle. A balance of quite rural areas and cosmopolitan urban centers, short traveling distances between amenities, excellent services, comprehensive business and leisure facilities and a friendly population are the cornerstones of a comfortable lifestyle. For the business community in particular, a highly qualified workforce and a favourable tax environment enhance the advantages of the island’s strategic location.


When it comes to buying property on the island, the procedure and formalities are straightforward (and particularly simple for European Union nationals). The choice of properties is vast and there are flexible financing schemes to make property acquisition even more tempting. Bank loans can be granted in all major European currencies including Euro, Swiss Francs, and Sterling.


It is not surprising that Cyprus has outranked many other southern European destinations as a desirable location for a second home or relocation, strongly challenging countries such as Spain in attracting foreign investment in its real estate industry. As demand continues to rise, the appreciation in property values is predicted to continue at a rate which makes investments on the island an appealing proposition.
 

Climate

The island’s Mediterranean climate is characterized by hot and dry summers from June to September, followed by a brief autumn season before the relatively mild winter from November to March. Much has been said about Cyprus as one of only 3 countries where you can enjoy skiing in the mountains and swimming in the sea on the same day. In winter, the snow-covered Troodos peaks are only 35 minutes’ drive from the coast. After the last snow melts, the island bursts into a colourful spring... before the next warm summer.


History

Wherever you go in Cyprus, you are likely to experience a fragment of its 10.000-year history, often intertwined with Greek mythology. Valuable historical and archaeological sites are scattered across the island. In several cases excavations are ongoing, and continue to bring amazing facts to light, which fascinate scholars throughout the region and beyond.

The Venetian Walls, the Cyprus Museum and the Folk Art Museum are the major attractions in Nicosia, while the Limassol and Pafos districts are well known for the ancient theatre at Curium, the Temple of Apollo and the Roman mosaic floors in Kato Pafos. The Troodos mountains are home to Byzantine monasteries and churches, many of which contain exquisite, awe-inspiring frescoes that attract a continuous flow of admirers.


Language

The local language is Greek, but English is widely spoken, practically by everyone in the urban areas and the resort centres. In fact, a great deal of local business is conducted to some extent in English. Street signs, shop signs and directions are written in Greek and English, making life easy for visitors or residents who do not speak Greek. Due to the influx of tourist, the high number of Cypriots who study abroad, and the growing number of foreigners who have settled on the island, it is quite common to meet people who speak Russian, German, French and other European languages.


Religion

The majority of the Greek Cypriot population is Greek Orthodox. At the same time, religious freedom is safeguarded, and diverse religious services are held regularly in all the major towns, where people of various ethnic backgrounds and beliefs meet.


Standard and Cost of Living

The standard of living in Cyprus is fairly high by European standards, while the overall cost of living still compares favourably with many parts of Europe or the USA. Housing costs in particular, as well as private health care, is still considered more affordable than in other European countries with a comparable standard of living.


Cypriot Hospitality

Cypriot hospitality is almost proverbial, and often traced back to a long history of changing civilizations and a constant flow of foreigners, both friends and foes. In more recent years, the flourishing tourist industry has introduced the local population to nationals from east and west, who in turn enjoy their hosts’ warmth and friendliness, which bring so many visitors back, again and again. 


Low Crime Rate

A major contributor to the peace of mind that people living in Cyprus enjoy is the fact that the crime rate is very low in comparison with other Mediterranean countries such as Spain, Portugal, Italy and France, and practically restricted to downtown urban areas. The Cyprus crime rate has been estimated at only one tenth of the average rate of the other European countries and at 6% of the United Kingdom rate. This sense of security plays in important part in making visitors and foreign residents feel comfortable on the island.


Banking and Currency

The banking system in Cyprus is aligned with European standards and policies. Local banks maintain an extensive network of branches in the most convenient locations across the island, while foreign banks are located in the city centres and focus on corporate services, with unlimited number of retail banking products. The banking system as a whole is modern and efficient, and communication as well as correspondence in English is taken for granted. Foreigners interested in acquiring property in Cyprus can apply to any major Cypriot or foreign bank for a loan in any major European currency. On 1 January 2008, the Euro (€) replaced the Cyprus Pound (CYP) as the island’s local currency.


Telecommunications

With a direct dialling network that reaches over 200 countries, the Cyprus telecommunications services rank among the most developed around the world. Mobile telephony is available through two providers offering a choice of competitive packages, while high-speed internet access and wi-fi hot spots are also widely available at extremely affordable prices.


Health Care

Public and private health care in Cyprus is of a high standard and available to everyone. Cypriot dentists, doctors, specialists and surgeons have all qualified abroad, mainly in Greece, the UK, Germany and the USA. All are fluent in English, any many in an additional foreign language. Both government hospitals and private clinics offer emergency services with doctors on call at all times. It is worth noting that private health care is far more affordable – and therefore more common and in demand – than in other European countries.


Culture

The island’s cultural heritage is not only kept alive in the numerous museums, archaeological sites, monasteries, churches and cultural centres around Cyprus, but lives on in daily life in Cyprus. Festivals reflecting local traditions, music, drama and the island’s main religion are open to all, providing insight into the history and customs of the island. Taking part in them is always a wonderful experience that brings locals and visitors together.


Sports and Leisure

The climate of Cyprus favours outdoors sports and activities of all kinds. While a whole range of water sports including diving, sailing, fishing, wind surfing and canoeing take advantage of the sea all around, the hills and mountains as well as unspoiled regions along the coast draw hikers and bikers throughout the year. Horse riding, tennis, squash, shooting and bowling are also among the popular pastimes, while golf is gaining increasing popularity. In the winter months, snow-skiing in the Troodos mountains is an added bonus!


Golf

Golfers coming to Cyprus can currently enjoy a choice, or a tour, of four golf courses: Secret Valley, Tsada, Vigla and the championship standard course at Aphrodite Hills Golf Club. All are easily accessible from our developments, roughly a 20-minute drive away. Over the coming few months, the Government of Cyprus is expected to grant another 8 (eight) licenses for new courses. One will be located in the southwestern suburb of Limassol.


Gastronomy

Eating out is a popular pastime among Cypriots, which is not surprising, given the number and variety of local and speciality restaurants available for all tastes and budgets. Traditional taverns, from simple and casual to upmarket rustic, serve local specialities including the sumptuous Cyprus meze, while ethnic restaurants specialize in a choice of French, Chinese, Italian, Indian, Lebanese, Japanese, Russian and Mexican cuisine among others.


Nightlife

When you’re ready for a night on the town, evening entertainment in Cyprus ranges from bouzouki clubs to more international nightclubs with live music, numerous discos and a variety of bars, which are usually divided between the modern city centres and the old heart of each town.


Social Clubs and Associations

Cyprus Friendship Clubs as well as EU and American citizens clubs are continually increasing in number, as Cyprus welcomes more and more expatriates who choose to settle on the island. The UK Citizens Association is particularly popular, while all are a good place to meet, make friends and develop a social network, especially if you are new on the island or want to meet like-minded residents.


International Relations

During the Copenhagen Meeting of the European Council in December 2002, Cyprus officially confirmed the successful completion of the accession negotiations and was invited to join the European Union on 1 May 2004. Cyprus is also a member of the United Nations, the Council of Europe and the British Commonwealth.