VIVA True Stories - One way tickets
VIVA customers: Alistair Forrest & Lynda Adlington - Where and what they bought: Country house in Monda - Their dream: Escape England for a new life in southern Spain
“In January 2005, we decided to move to Spain. Between us we have five children, then aged between 10 and 21, and their needs were immediately paramount. We hit the Internet with a vengeance.
VIVA responded first, trying very hard to meet our requirements of a large inland house with mountain views, preferably overlooking a lake, and within striking distance of good international schools. They offered a good deal on a weekend apartment to use as a base, and in February we flew to Malaga.
The search for the right home was a dream come true, as VIVA's charming representative took us out to the mountains beyond Ojen and Monda. Houses at Alhaurin el Grande and Coin, though pleasant enough, didn't pass the test; the fourth house, in a valley behind Monda, hit all the right notes (except the absence of a lake!).
"For both of us, the joy is in the way we live now. After years of heavy pressure for each of us, we can now see the wood from the trees.”
House, schools and work were all sorted within a few weeks, thanks to tireless Internet research and several visits to seek out professionals to organise all legal aspects for us. All so easy... or maybe not, as there was still the small matter of selling our properties and a retail business in the UK. There were other difficulties, too, and while the Spanish side of the arrangements went swimmingly well, it took several months (and a hefty bridging loan) to make it all work in the UK.
Exhausted but undaunted, we made the move on our wedding anniversary. The house VIVA helped us to find is perfect for our requirements. It's big enough to cope with concurrent visits by all five children, beautifully designed, with around 5,000 sq.m. of olives and grounds just begging for creative landscaping and gardening, which we both love.The views of surrounding hills and Monda Castle are breathtaking.
The impressive La Canada shopping centre is barely 15 minutes' drive, along with the Costa's array of entertainment and culinary experiences, but it's the mountain restaurants and country ventas that have given us so many enjoyable afternoons and leisurely Sunday lunches.
Since moving here, we have bought a small neighbouring finca, complete with a further 5,000 sq. m. of olive grove, which we plan to sell on or let long-term now that we've restored it in keeping with its country nature, again with several exciting Moroccan touches.
For both of us, the joy is in the way we live now. After years of heavy pressure for each of us, we can now see the wood from the trees.”