Skip to content

Invest in a slice of Sofia as Bulgaria soars from strength to strength

The data revealed that from January to September 2008 the number of foreign tourists visiting the country had increased by over 18% and that end of year figures are set to be equally healthy – with a 20% year on year increase predicted.

The knock-on effect of these statistics for the country's tourism sector has been extremely positive, with the income generated during January to August 2008 up some 13% on the 2007 figure and, with the State Tourism Authority requesting more money to help promote the country as a quality destination that offers good value for money, these figures could be set to increase further still with the new year. In fact, this same Tourist Agency is predicting that a new scheme based on 'Regional Development' could see the monies generated from Bulgaria's tourism industry grow by €50 million by 2011, proving that Bulgaria's focus is well and truly on growing this sector of the economy.

Within this climate of growth in Bulgaria, the capital city Sofia is also making a stand as the European destination of choice. Bulgaria's cultural and economic centre is also one of Europe's oldest cities and it is increasingly proving to be a great draw for tourists and business people alike. Recent passenger figures from Sofia Airport have shown an increase of 20% a year for the last five years, with positive numbers expected despite the credit crunch. Not only this but popular budget airline Easyjet have also recently added extra flights to Sofia Airport from Manchester to their schedule – as of 11th December 2008 – with a spokesperson from the company recently commenting on the city's potential and the new flights to be,

"…ideal for the growing number of second home owners from the region investing in the Bulgarian market, Sofia itself is one of the up and coming city break destinations for 2009."

This additional accessibility to Bulgaria's capital city is sure to increase its popularity further still and, as Easyjet have recognised, this proves good news for those investing in property in the region. As a growing market, this is an excellent time to invest in Sofia, and one project – The Aston Hotel Sofia – is sure to be a sound investment for the savvy buyer. This project is a 4 star hotel complex that boasts 52 beautifully designed en-suite bedrooms and 6 suites available on a buy-to-let basis. Featuring a restaurant, stylish bars, swimming pool, fitness facilities and a 400 capacity conference centre, The Aston Hotel Sofia will primarily target the business community and city-break visitor.

This hotel initiative offers investors 28 days per year of potential room income earning 50% of the revenue from their allocated room and a guaranteed 6% yield in the first year. And with occupancy rates conservatively predicted at 43%, but more likely to be around the 70% mark, as well as very few projects offering the same facilities in the area, The Aston Hotel Sofia will fill a lucrative gap in the market. Joseph Upchurch, Managing Director of Aston Lloyd, explains,

"The major international hotel groups in Sofia are currently not able to meet demand. In particular, there is a real lack of conferencing and business facilities. The Aston Hotel Sofia will have 400 capacity conferencing facilities that will well and truly meet this demand… so the hotel not only offers a considerable yield for minimal risk (particularly in today's market); it's an affordable and simple lifetime investment."

With investors such as WBC Super Middle Weight World Champion Carl Froch already having invested into the project and infrastructure improvements taking place in the local area, as well as prices affordable at just €10,000 for an en-suite bedroom and €14,000 for a suite, now is the perfect time to invest in a slice of Sofia. Not only this but the recent announcement that the European Investment Bank (EIB) are transferring €105 million to the government of Sofia for the expansion of the underground metro system also confirms that now is an excellent time to be investing in The Aston Hotel Sofia, as Joseph Upchurch explains,

"The announcement that the Sofia government will be receiving millions of Euros to expand and improve the metro system is fantastic news for those looking to invest in property in the area. In particular, these improvements are set to reduce commuting time to our developments in Kostinbrod  to just 15 minutes which can only mean even greater ROI than we anticipated for investors of both The Aston Hotel Sofia and our Capital 68 apartments."