Hollywood stars, tourism shape home prices on Greek islands
The price of homes on most Greek islands rose sharply in the last year with visiting Hollywood stars and the country's strong tourism sector largely shaping the market.
According to data compiled by spitogatos.gr, Santorini was the big winner for 2019. The average selling price for homes on the island jumped 18.2 percent from 2018, reaching 3,466 euros per square meter.
A close second on the list comes Antiparos, where selling prices rose 18.1 percent to 3,807 euros per square meter. Aegina, which is located close to Athens, is in third place with homes there going for 1,990 euros per square meter (up 15.8 percent year-on-year).
Rising tourist numbers are helping prop up the real estate market and the recovering Greek economy but are also causing problems for some parts of the country.
In a bid to prevent the risk of overtourism, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) announced this week that it will launch a program to promote sustainable tourism in Santorini and Rhodes.
Greece's investment-for-residency program, known as the Golden Visa, is also spurring demand for beachside property.
In Antiparos, a growing presence of Hollywood stars is boosting its popularity.
Actor Tom Hanks is said to own a home on the island, while other big names such as Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, were spotted holidaying there last summer.
Mykonos, Greece's top destination for global jetsetters, also saw a rise in prices. Data shows that the price of housing on that island rose 6.9 percent to 5,229 euros (sq/m).
Out of the 35 islands reviewed by spitogatos.gr, 23 showed a rise in prices with 12 recording a drop in the last year.
On the downside, the island of Skiathos suffered the biggest losses. Home prices on the island, where the musical movie Mamma Mia was shot in 2008, saw prices dip by 16.6 percent to 2,561 euros per square meter. Prices also retreated in Lefkada, Samos and Hydra.
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