We’ve come a long way baby…
In 2005 lawyers Alexander Vaughan and Stijn Teeuwen, from the UK and Holland respectively, went into business together in Barcelona, opening the first of their Lucas Fox luxury real estate offices in the heart of the city’s Eixample district. It was a glorious time to be in town, and an even better one to be in property as the boom was at its zenith. Fast forward just three short years to 2008 however and Catalunya was buckling under the worst recession in Spanish economic history. It seemed inconceivable that anyone would want to relocate here. Lucas Fox not only survived, but business blossomed. They now have 10 offices around mainland Spain and the Balearics with around 80 staff. And in true Lucas Fox spirit, they’re out to give back as premier sponsors of Barcelona’s first ever ‘I’m Barcelonian EXPAT Day’, to be held at the Maritime Museum on 25 October.
“We have been inspired by Barcelona’s dynamic soul and lucky enough to be able to recruit a mix of young, enthusiastic, professional, international and national staff to work for our company. Most importantly we have had a great time doing it and living in Barcelona with our families. We want to encourage and help other entrepreneurs and business people to do what we have done and to enjoy it as much as we have”, says co-founder Alexander Vaughan who will be revealing some of the secrets of his company’s success during the event.
Hot on the heels of an economic upturn, Expat Day is an initiative put together by the Barcelona Ajuntament and Barcelona Activa as a means of pulling together the city’s vibrant communities. A series of round-table discussions, symposia and conferences covering practical and cultural aspects of life in the city are squarely aimed at enhancing quality of life and experience, as well as simplifying the entry procedure. International schools, estate agents, relocation services and insurance brokers will be on hand with advice and information, and Lucas Fox will host a ‘Living and Working in Barcelona’ stand aimed at encouraging better integration among expats and the local populace.
Lucas Fox Fox founders, Vaughan and Teeuwen, will also lead two conferences on the practical aspects of doing business in Catalunya including lots of personal insight from their decade of experience.
“In the same way that Barcelona is no ordinary city, Lucas Fox tries not to be an ordinary estate agency”, says Vaughan. “We offer a wide range of services in both the residential and commercial property sectors. Our Property Lounges, such as our flagship store in Turó Park, are a world away from traditional Estate Agency shops, continuing our philosophy of offering a more personalised and integrated service to our clients. Our monthly afterwork events at our Property Lounges offer a great opportunity for international and local business people to get to know each other in an informal setting. Our new lifestyle brand LFStyle offers unique lifestyle information and insider guides, vital information for those expatriates who are striving to create their own new lives in Spain.”
The bottom line is that the ‘Barcelonian’ of 2014 is very different to who he or she was 20 years ago. Barcelona has regenerated and is constantly reinventing itself and its residents and the international businesses who have chosen to make the city their home reflect that change. There’s never been a more exciting or promising time to make the move.
For more information and to register for the event see: