This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
54 | OPP INTERVIEW


PORTUGAL REPORT


www.opp.org.uk |MARCH 2012


WORDS | Geoff Hadwick Leading by example


Diogo Gaspar Ferreira has one of the biggest jobs in the Portuguese residential tourism sector as the chief executive offi cer of the country’s high-profi le Vale do Lobo resort. It is famous for its luxury accommodation and its high build and fi nish standards. It is even famous for being famous: a place where the stars like to stay. What does he think Portugal needs to do to get its overseas property sector back on track? Top people talk to OPP.


Ferreira began to realise “how much Portugal was underdeveloped, and how many things we could do and achieve, if the country could only get itself properly and professionally organised.” His student days took him to the UK and the USA and Ferreira quickly understood how important it is to get away from home, in order to put things into perspective. Everyone involved in the overseas property business “should travel abroad and fi nd ways to learn from their international experiences,” he says. “That’s the way I did it. And I


I


t was while he was growing up and studying business in his home town of Lisbon that Diogo Gaspar


learned a lot.” He defi nitely likes the hands on approach. Go and see it, and do it, if you want to improve yourself, he says. “I have been involved in so many different industries, often with companies in a leading position. These experiences enriched me and helped me understand each new business that I went into.”


How many were there? What did this bright young business studies graduate do – and was property there right from the beginning. No, says Ferreira. “Until I was


27, I worked on all sorts of different projects. I did two years on the stock


market, two years in the restaurant trade, seven years with a TV company and four years in football. And now I have 12 years of experience in the property world.” How did he cope moving between


such disparate sectors? “My optimism always helps me through,” he answers. “It helps me to create new things, and my business studies degree helps me fi ne tune the ideas, and make them work.” Sports-mad and a keen reader, Ferreira fi rst got into the international property industry by taking a job as a “general manager at Vila Sol, a golf and beach resort on the Algarve. I


then went to MDC, one of the leading developers in Europe, and began to work on projects in more than 20 different countries. I worked hard and got to understand what makes property funds work and how to develop offi ce schemes, retail / shopping mall projects, and so on.”


“I then came back to the


residential market in the Algarve, to work at Vale do Lobo (VDL), which I truly believe is one of the best developments in Portugal.” “I would undoubtedly say that


VDL is the best-established and best- organised resort concept in Europe. We have carefully thought through all of


Vale Do Lobo


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68