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Ease of integrating for non-fluent Americans

Posted: Tue Sep 14, 2021 5:49pm
7 replies130 views2 members subscribed
laurahammie

Posts: 6

Joined: 22 Aug 2021

Good Day - My husband and I are semi-retired and will be in your area next month to wander.  We are considering a rental for a few months in the spring and my husband is curious on the ease of living while we are learning Spanish (which takes awhile at this age! :)  It seems from reading your forum that it's fairly easy to conduct every day business in English in this area.....maybe I'm assuming.  Also what is the Torrevieja area like versus Guardamar - I've read Torrevieja can get pretty packed in the summer.  I wanted other peoples' experience on what it was like for you moving to Spain or staying for extended periods.  I am so looking forward to this visit and hoping I can convince my husband I'm not dragging him into the bush to fend for himself.  :)  We are 71 and 58.  Thank you for any words of advice and insight!

elinspain

Posted: Tue Sep 14, 2021 6:03pm

elinspain

Super helpful member

Posts: 1321

1670 helpful points

Location: La Mata

Joined: 4 May 2018

Posted: Tue Sep 14, 2021 6:03pm

Hello

 I live just along the coast from Guardamar in La Mata and before Torrevieja  and love it! In some places it will be ok to conduct business without Spanish - in other situations it will be more difficult so every few words you can learn will help,,,,the Spanish love a trier if if it's not great haha. After many years of living here I still take a translator to the medical clinic, police station & sometimes the hospital butGuardamar is a nice little town with many expats of all nationalities so you will be fine. My daughter & grandson live in Maitland, Orlando Fl. and visit often, they love it here.

.

Everywhere along this coast , from Alicante south to  Torrevieja & beyond gets packed in a normal summer and this one was so much busier than last year. The spanish people from the  Madrid area and everywhere north have holiday homes here, so for most of the year except for Easter & July/Aug  and odd weeks here & there, most of those properties are empty.

 Where in the U,S are you from/ Dont hesitate to ask if you need any more help with the area

Cheers

Elinspain

laurahammie

Posted: Tue Sep 14, 2021 7:52pm

laurahammie

Original Poster

Posts: 6

Joined: 22 Aug 2021

Posted: Tue Sep 14, 2021 7:52pm

Hi Elinspain - Thank you for the info.  I am originally from Buffalo, NY and my husband is from Long Island, NY.  We did live in Orlando but in October 2019 moved to Bradenton, Fl so just south of Tampa Bay.  How long have you lived there and are you from the UK originally?  I've been following peoples comments on the transition with Brexit - definitely throws a wrench into things!  Once again thank you and I'll be keeping up with reading peoples comments.  Wonderful information here!

Have a great day :)

elinspain

Posted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:29am

elinspain

Super helpful member

Posts: 1321

1670 helpful points

Location: La Mata

Joined: 4 May 2018

Posted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:29am

laurahammie wrote on Tue Sep 14, 2021 7:52pm:

Hi Elinspain - Thank you for the info.  I am originally from Buffalo, NY and my husband is from Long Island, NY.  We did live in Orlando but in October 2019 moved to Bradenton, Fl so just south of Tampa Bay.  How long have you lived there and are you from the UK originally?  I...

...'ve been following peoples comments on the transition with Brexit - definitely throws a wrench into things!  Once again thank you and I'll be keeping up with reading peoples comments.  Wonderful information here!

Have a great day :)

Hello laurahammie

 I've lived here 18years and I am British and came here from the UK. These days I don't go back  there very often,  my family  & anyone else I know prefer to visit me here!

Hope your plans go well and you find what you are hoping for  when you come to visit this area soon.

Cheers

Elinspain

Kimmy11

Posted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 6:02pm

Kimmy11

Legendary helpful member

Posts: 4316

8362 helpful points

Joined: 8 Aug 2017

Posted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 6:02pm

Hi Laurie,

We live less than 10 minutes inland from Guardamar del Segura.  My in-laws lived in La Marina for 18 years - we used to visit them 2 or 3 times a year and always visited Guardamar, as we liked it so much.  It was the main reason for us choosing where we live now.  Even though it's much smaller than Torrevieja, it doesn't become a ghost town out of season, like some other coastal areas.  It's got a vibrant high street with local shops and a weekly market, several parks, including a dedicated dog park, a busy promenade with bars and restaurants overlooking the beach, a marina, health centre, police station, bus station (it's on the main coast road bus route) and all the amenities you would need for day to day living.  For serious retail therapy, you can travel along the coast to Torrevieja for the Habaneras shopping mall and a bit further along the coast to La Zenia for Zenia Boulevard.  Many Spanish people in retail and hospitality along the coast speak English, but it's wonderful to see the reaction you get from locals when you practice Spanish with them.  Depending on your personal preferences, you could buy an apartment around the town centre, or a house in the countryside - except for the busy 6 weeks' summer season, driving is easy, so you can get around to other towns quite quickly too.  I would recommend Guardamar over Torrevieja - but I am biased, LOL!

Kind regards,

Kim

laurahammie

Posted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 11:23pm

laurahammie

Original Poster

Posts: 6

Joined: 22 Aug 2021

Posted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 11:23pm

Hi Kim - Thank you for the great info!  We will be landing in Barcelona on the 29th and will be wandering for two weeks to check out the coast.  Guardamar looks very enticing and since I haven't booked some days I think we will find a place to perch for a few days and check it out :)  I'll be back for more questions but any recommendations for good Spanish restaurants?  I'm all ears!

Can't wait to get there!  :)

Kimmy11

Posted: Fri Sep 17, 2021 11:17am

Kimmy11

Legendary helpful member

Posts: 4316

8362 helpful points

Joined: 8 Aug 2017

Posted: Fri Sep 17, 2021 11:17am

Hi Laurie,

My favourite Spanish restaurant in this area is in Torrevieja, called El Meson de la Costa:

https://elmesondelacosta.com/

It's not cheap for this area, at about €50 per head including drinks, but the quality of the produce, excellent customer service and authentic traditional interior make it a fabulous experience.

At the other end of the scale, around €15 per head, my favourite local Spanish restaurants are Chema in Guardamar:

https://m.facebook.com/restaurantechema/

and travelling inland from Guardamar, on the road to Rojales, is Casa Paco:

https://m.facebook.com/pacomaestroparrillero

If you wanted to go to any of these on a Saturday or Sunday, you'd need to book in advance, but should be able to just walk in during the week.

Kind regards, 

Kim

laurahammie

Posted: Fri Sep 17, 2021 3:44pm

laurahammie

Original Poster

Posts: 6

Joined: 22 Aug 2021

Posted: Fri Sep 17, 2021 3:44pm

Morning Kim - Thank you for that.  We will definitely keep this info and check out the affordable one on this trip.  I'll be in touch - we don't land until the 29th so still have a little planning to do and a few reservations to drum up here and there.  This forum has been wonderful and we appreciate all the insightful information.  Makes me wonder what we did before the internet!  Groping around in unknown territory!  LOL

Have a wonderful day  :)

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