Orlando Vacation Home Ownership

So you have selected an area – Orlando – entertainment capital of the world and home to Mickey Mouse and all his friends. First thing is to contact some realtors to show you around some properties. You should look for communities which are centrally located with easy access to all that Orlando has to offer and which welcome homeowners renting out their properties on the short term to holidaymakers.

Better quality furnishings last longer

Having chosen and bought your perfect property abroad, you must then (if it is a brand newly built house) turn your thoughts to furnishing it throughout. You would be well advised to stay neutral and select colours and styles, which will not go out of date too quickly and easily. Also it is not the best idea to pick any hues that are too outlandish or purely to suit your own personal taste. You wish your Orlando vacation villa to appeal to the broadest spectrum possible to ensure interest and repeat bookings for your vacation home, thus turning it into a profitable business venture.

With regards to furniture for the home, the cheapest may not always be the best in the long run. If the furniture is so cheap that it does not last and needs to be replaced regularly then this could prove to be a false economy. You may get longer life out of a slightly higher priced set of furniture.

Be careful when choosing a management company

You will need to turn your thoughts to some form of caretaker or management firm to look after your investment in your absence. Never just settle for the first or only one you speak to. Contact several as their styles (and prices) vary. These people will represent you if you do not live locally so they must be someone you can get along with and trust to look after your vacation rental villa in the manner you would like and expect.

Beware guaranteed rentals

Naturally a burning question on homeowner’s lips concerns bookings. A word of warning: – beware companies who “promise” you a set number of “guaranteed” bookings per annum. This promise is rarely upheld. Also do not rely heavily on family and friends to rent your Orlando vacation villa. The reality is whilst they may seem willing, extended family often look for a bargain and a reduced rental rate from the one you advertise and as you set up your new venture in the vacation rental market you are aiming to achieve maximum exposure in order to optimise your rental potential.

Finally, you want to do all you can to promote your Orlando vacation villa. You can do this through word of mouth, good photographs of your home, a website, advertising and subscribing to websites which display vacation rental properties to those wishing to rent a home in the sun.

If you put in the effort we are sure you will reap the rewards and see your vacation villa fill up with bookings – just remember to keep a couple of weeks for yourselves to enjoy all Orlando has to offer. After all your hard work, you’ll deserve the break!

Car Rental in Spain is Mainly Not the Same

In a nation like the United States, where icons like McDonald’s and Wal-Mart have spoiled us into thinking we can go anywhere we like and still get a quarter pounder with cheese – or find people wearing blue smocks – it can be easy to think that the world is all the same. Even the car rental game seems the same, because we can get off at any airport and choose between compact, mid-size, or full-size, and generally get what we want and expect. While we may not want to admit it, the rest of the world just does not operate according to our way of thinking.

Getting a car rental in Spain, for instance, may not be difficult, but it certainly is not the same as securing one in Cleveland. There are some subtle differences between a car rental agency in Europe and one in America. If you plan on traveling abroad, don’t expect everything to be exactly the same.

So what can I expect when I want a car rental in Spain?

For one thing, don’t expect a great selection of vehicles with automatic transmissions or air conditioning. A car rental place in Spain, or elsewhere in Europe, will usually have only a limited selection of vehicles with these customary American options. Plus, while a car rental place in the United States will charge you an insane fee for not filling the fuel tank before returning, this pales by comparison to what may happen in Europe. Not only will you pay a steeper price for returning to the car rental company on “E”, but you will have to pay for gas by the liter – and the cost could break the bank for you.

In fact, because of the steep gasoline prices in Europe, you may want to ask the car rental agency for a diesel-powered car, as this will be easier on your budget. This may not measure up the exotic dreams you had for your time in Europe, but your wallet will thank you for making the more conservative choice at the car rental agency.

Will I have problems actually renting a car?

That depends on what you mean. Some nations require an international driving license, and the car rental agencies in these countries are required to ask this of anyone renting a car. To be on the safe side, you might want to go to a place like the American Automobile Association to avoid an embarrassing scene at the car rental place in Spain. It’s up to you, of course, but “better safe than sorry” is a good way to go here.

Now, because Europe is such a popular tourist destination in the summer, you might be very disappointed when the car rental agent in Spain shakes her head and tells you that nothing is available. It is best to reserve your vehicle as far in advance as possible, especially if you hope to have any luck at the car rental places during the peak periods.

What else should I know?

While not necessary, you may want to opt for the insurance at the car rental place. The reason? Europeans are known to be more aggressive drivers than their American counterparts. This is not to say that they are worse drivers, but their aggressive maneuvers may take you off guard. And you don’t want to return to the car rental agency and have them charge your insurance company for your European driving lesson, do you? I didn’t think so.

So take these guidelines into account when securing a car rental in Europe, and they will provide for a much more enjoyable and hassle-free experience. And when you get there, say “Hi” to the Eiffel Tower for me.

Sun City – South Africa

Sun City is a luxury resort and casino that is situated in the North West Province of South Africa. This wonderful resort is located about 2 hour’s drive from Johannesburg near the city of Rustenburg. It is nestled between the Elands River and Pilanesberg. It borders the Pilanesberg Game Reserve.

Sun City was developed during the 70’s by the hotel magnate, Sol Kerzner as part of his Sun International group of properties. It was officially opened on the 7th of December 1979 and was located in the Bantustan of Bophuthatswana. South Africa’s government at the time declared Bophuthatswana an independent state although no other country recognised this. During the 70’s gambling and topless shows were banned in South Africa, but it was allowed in Bophuthatswana which ensured that Sun City became a very popular holiday and weekend away destination.

The United Nations imposed a cultural boycott on South Africa in condemnation of apartheid. Kerzner offered substantial financial incentives to performing artists to use Sun City as a venue. Many artists performed at the venue including the Beach Boys, Cher, Linda Ronstadt, Frank Sinatra, Status Quo, Rod Stewart and Elton John. Queen also performed here in 1984 which caused lots of criticism in the British music press.

This venue has hosted a heavyweight boxing championship fight between American Mike Weaver and South African Gerrie Coetzee as well as Miss South Africa, Miss South Africa Teen and Miss World pageants.

Sun City continues flourishing since Bophutatswana was re-incorporated into South Africa in 1994. The resort has four hotels including Sun City Hotel, Cascades Hotel, The Cabanas and The palace of the Lost City. The complex includes time-share facilities, which is a popular self-catering facility.

There are also two international standard 18 hole golf courses. The first on is The Gary Player Country Club which is home to the prestigious Nedbank Gold Challenge and the second is the Lost City Golf Course which is noted for the 38 crocodiles in the water feature of the 13th hole. Both were designed by Gary Player.

In 2014, the movie Blended with Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler, premiered after being filmed mostly at the resort.

A brand new water slide was installed in 2016 and expanded accommodation choices to countryside like Cabanas Chalets was just completed. The new Chalets are located 750m from the Cabanas hotel, nestled beside the Letsatsie bush which is close to the Cultural Village of the resort.

The Valley of Waves re-opened after its annual winter maintenance with another heart stopping ride to try. The new water slide, White Water, sees visitors have the ultimate 17m plummet body slide adventure in a capsule. It sends riders sliding at 40mph (65km/h) before being swept upwards into a near-vertical loop. G-force pins the riders as they slide up, over and then down before crashing into the splashdown lane. It is not for the faint hearted…

Sun City also has the largest permanent maze in the Southern Hemisphere, The Maze of the Lost City. It was constructed from artificial stone and wood which creates the illusion of an ancient archaeological discovery. It covers half an acre. The maze is accessed via a 100m suspension bridge from the Entertainment Centre and offers the most spectacular views of the resort. At night time flaming torches light the paths along the chambers…