Can you live in a palace without being a prince? Or in a castle without being queen? Can you live in a convent without the votes of a nun? It can. The only requirement is that your checking account be well nourished and healthy. The rest is just a matter of imagination. The real estate market is full of homes, offices, premises for logistics or shopping centers, but in its recesses it also hides other types of buildings and residences that escape the eye and the economy of many citizens.
They are called singular properties and encompass from palaces to monasteries, through castles, old mills, stately homes "or any property that has an added value, either for its architecture and location or for its history." It is explained by Robert Menetray , CEO of Lançois Doval , a portal specialized in the commercialization of this type of real estate in Spain.
One of the most curious examples of its catalog is the medieval tower located inside the Chousa da Torre , near Foz (Lugo). It is a construction of feudal origin, "built in granite and stone 100 years before the discovery of America." The building retains all its original structure, in the style of the late Middle Ages, with the original granite edges, windows and stately door and with stone walls 70 centimeters thick. "The analysis of Carbon 14 conducted by CSIF on the age of oak beams incorporated into the original zuncho of the building, set its age calibrated from the year 1290, as a planting date, until 1410, as a cutoff date. Therefore the age of the building exceeds 600 years, "collects its sales record.
These types of properties are much more numerous than we can imagine and are located throughout the country, sometimes in places we would not imagine. For example, inside the former cloister of the Dominican Convent in Aldeanueva de Santa Cruz , next to the Sierra de Gredos, in Ávila. The convent was declared of Cultural Interest and inside it houses a restored 200-square-meter residence but with the escarpment arches and original paintings of the convent; Five rooms, an open kitchen and a large living room. Its price? 290,000 euros , a figure that is not, much less, among the highest of what can be paid in these transactions.
"We have medieval towers from 50,000 euros to emblematic farms only available to large corporations," explains Menetray. The medieval tower of Foz costs 325,000 euros; of other properties the price is not published, as it happens with the Monastery of Consolation , for sale in the Sevillian city of Utrera.
It is a 16th-century building with two floors "and a traditional monastery structure with double cloister", according to the description made by Lançois Doval in its sales form. Its main attractions include the 8,600 square meters built, its majestic and stately staircase with carved wood railing, its soap factory , "the first in Spain", back in the first decades of the twentieth century, and an orangery in the back, "where they are planted special orange for jams.
A convent for 950,000 euros
Another unique property for sale in Spain is this stately home located in Mancha Real (Jaén). The building is known as 'The Convent' because it was the place chosen by San Juan de la Cruz to found a convent of Barefoot Carmelites. A stone plaque on its facade commemorates it: "Here he was in 1586 San Juan de la Cruz and founded a Convent of Barefoot Carmelites under the invocation of the Clean and Pure Conception of Our Lady. Royal Stain to San Juan de La Cruz ".
His story is long. In March 1800 he shared his Convent functions with those of the Military Hospital, and years later, in 1835 he was the victim of the burning of convents, fires and looting that ended him.
Currently its plot covers 1,465 square meters, with a constructed area of 600 square meters distributed in four bedrooms, a suite, a bathroom, a kitchen and three living rooms. Its sale price is 950,000 euros.
4.8 million for a cigarral in Toledo
As majestic as the city of Toledo stands this cigarral of almost 12 hectares and more than 600 centuries-old olive trees. The price? 4,800,000 euros. Almost five million in exchange for access to a house built in 1972 with an area of 650 square meters.
Many of these unique properties come from family inheritances and belong to individuals, although others correspond to religious orders and administrations that, for different reasons, decide to put them on sale.
The Consolation Monastery, for example, is valued "as a future luxury hotel establishment or as a foundation". They are two of the most frequent uses in these cases. "Normally, given the characteristics and surfaces of these types of properties, they are destined to hotel activities or corporate buildings, all depending on their situation," explains the CEO of the firm.
Although its prices and its uniqueness may seem a priori a handicap, the truth is that this segment of the real estate market in Spain reasonably weathered the last great crisis, unlike the rest of the sectors that were hit by the bursting of the brick bubble In our country.
"The singularity is always a value that the investor takes into account and when a really attractive product comes into the market and with possibilities to make it profitable, the moment matters little," says Menetray.
Even that particularity gives them a security and a refuge that attracts investors even more. "In difficult times, they request emblematic buildings well placed in order to invest safely," he adds.
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