Built by the Knights of St John, this fortified historic gem which the locals amiably call The City – Il-Belt, provides a wonderful opportunity of living in a baroque atmosphere. Real estate options can be varied – from ancient 16th Century palazzos, to post-World War II apartments, to buildings constructed at the height of the Colonial era not to mention the modern converted luxury properties that come available for sale or for rent from time to time.
Living in Valletta
Style is all important for those who decide to relocate to Valletta. Respecting the old-fashioned buildings and their outer core which should constantly retain a respectably Valletta-like look, property interiors can be transformed into the most lavish of homes, some being further enhanced with extremely beautiful views of the Grand Harbour waters, Sliema Creek, Tigne Point and beyond.
Living in the hub of the city is one thing. Living on any of the side streets is another thing. Upper and lower Valletta have specific characteristics which make them tangibly different. Each part of Valletta has its peculiarities, but wherever your property of choice is located, it is just one short walk away from the heart of Valletta. Choose to live on the stepped streets, choose to live on a harbour property, on the Upper Barrakka – in the end, your choice will make you a Valletta dweller, pretty much like the Knights of St John, so many decades ago. With Valletta being awarded the Capital City of Europe for Culture in 2018, there has been plenty of movement, not only in the real estate market but also in the endeavour of the Maltese Government to restore the City to its former glory.
What to See in Valletta
It is hard to make a short list of all the places of note in Valletta – there are way too many – a valid reason as to why the City of Valletta was officially recognised as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. However, key sites to check out include St John’s Co Cathedral, the Mediterranean Conference Centre, St James Cavalier, the new parliament building, the Palace, the National Library, Piazza Regina, Strait Street, the National Museum of Fine Arts, the National Museum of Archaeology, Casa Rocca Piccola, The Manoel Theatre, The Malta Society of Arts, the site of the fallen Royal Opera House, the varied churches and chapels, the Upper Barrakka Gardens, the varied auberges and more.
Shopping, Bars, Restaurants
Valletta is easily reached by one direct bus service from most localities and this makes it the ideal hub for all the island. It provides shopping opportunities of a wide-ranging choice. Mostly located on Republic Street, however a variety are situated on side streets. Boutiques, small corner shops, centuries old shops, new shops, the Embassy Shopping Mall and more. All major brands on the island seek to be represented in Valletta which is a crowd-puller by day since it is where one finds varied important offices and business centres. One may also call Valletta the “City of Gold”, where one may also find many Jewellers side by side, offering the best quality one may find in Europe at the most reasonable prices.
In Valletta one finds the seat of government, the Law Courts, parliament, varied government offices and corporate offices. Moreover, all major banks have a representative branch or office in Valletta, as do several travel agencies and insurance companies.
For those seeking to stroll in for a coffee, a sweet, lunch, brunch or dinner, Valletta is literally full of such possibilities. Whether one wants to dine indoors, outdoors, on a terrace with a view, or at street level, watching the world go by. Late night dining, especially in summer, is also available ‘al fresco’ accompanied by music and the occasional performance. It is amazing to see buildings built some 400-500 years ago converted so tastefully.
Visiting Valletta and staying there for some time to test the grounds and experience its lifestyle is also easily arranged since Valletta boasts several medium-sized hotels, boutique hotels and self-catering rental opportunities which range from low-cost all the way to luxury ranking.
It all happens here. Festivals, parades, public meetings, concerts, performances, exhibitions, carnival parades, Christmas events, and processions. Valletta is the place to be for these events and activities. It is recommended that one checks out local blogs and websites to find out what’s happening while you are there.
Whilst Valletta boasts just three schools – one public school, one church school and one language school, it is where the arts are regularly taught especially at the Malta Society of Arts, the School of Music and other institutions which also offer music, dance and art training on a part-time basis. Since it is so centralised, other schools are easily reached via regular bus service or via private transport services.
Property in Valletta Real Estate Market
The demand buying a property in Valletta has increased over the last few years. Specialised estate agents will be able to provide a tour of some of the most impressive properties available, most of whose owners will never publicise that their property is up for sale. It is not impossible to find a property to purchase or rent in Valletta since there are regularly a good number of old buildings which have been vacated and are seeking fresh ownership. Whether you want to live permanently in Valletta or just spend a few months or years; whether you want to establish your business or offices there, it is a fantastic location to be in, at all times through the year.
Typically, the market offers a couple dozen of homes available at any given time. There are apartments, townhouses, palazzos as well as maisonettes that are the most common finding. Being a niche market, it is recommended that you talk to someone that specialises in Valletta. The estate agent that you choose must know the City from the back of their hands and have the necessary market knowledge to be able to transfer that on to you so that you may take an informed decision.