HOQ Newsletter - April / May 2020 - Issue 8
OWNING A TRADITIONAL MALTESE HOME
As Malta diligently deals with the challenges imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic, we are learning how to live within a new normality which keeps us and the people around us safe. Local property prices keep showing resilience to shocks the economy may suffer, living up to their reputation as being sound and safe investments. In line with this patriotic note, we decided that this issue should focus on traditional Maltese homes. We trust you will find it to be of interest and simultaneously informative as well.
When it comes to homes with charm and character, the traditional Maltese home truly has a lot to offer. The three main property types are Houses of Character, Farmhouses and Townhouses.
Houses of Character and Farmhouses could even date back as far as 600 years, with the majority being in the 300-400 year bracket. All of these properties are constructed using limestone and use a soil putty mix to keep the masonry together. Walls in these dwellings are typically 1-1.5 meters thick as this provided insulation as well as robust architectural stability. Particularly in the case of Farmhouses, the lower floor would have been dedicated to animals, incorporating feeding basins and stone wall brackets to which animals would have been secured for the night. Animals sleeping indoors would have provided warmth to the upper living and sleeping quarters. These properties would have previously been surrounded by fields, especially in the case of Farmhouses - but as villages developed and expanded, most of the agricultural land gave way to the building of new neighboring homes.
Townhouses, on the other hand, are a more recent type of property, dating back a hundred years or so and are characterised by large wooden doors and slatted windows, as well as open wrought iron and traditional Maltese wooden balconies. One feature that has become very sought-after, are the traditional Maltese patterned tiles. These townhouses would generally have had the living quarters on the ground floor, overlooking a back garden or a courtyard. The stairs leading to the upper floor/s were decorated with intricate wrought iron banisters. The upper floor was reserved as sleeping quarters and in some cases also housed the main living room.
Palazzinos and larger Palazzos were the reserve of nobility. These properties have imposing facades, large gardens and a secondary limestone stairwell which was used by the housekeeping staff to move unseen from one floor to another, without disturbing the owners. In general, as expected with any palace, all the rooms were far larger than normal. Ground floor rooms were never intended as the main rooms of the house and the kitchen was almost always smaller than one would expect since it was reserved for kitchen and housekeeping staff only. The main living and sleeping quarters are usually to be found on the upper floors together with the 'Sala Nobile', which was a very grande room used for entertaining guests but also acted as the Palazzo's formal living space. Palazzos would have the formal dining area on either the ground floor or the 1st floor. Underground cellars were used to store goods such as wine and also kept properties dry and cool. Central courtyards would serve as light wells to let sunlight into the surrounding rooms.
Take a look at some of the traditional Maltese homes currently available on our books.
Keep well and stay safe.
UNCONVERTED AND CONVERTED PROPERTIES
An Rare Opportunity to Acquire this Unrenovated Palazzo in Qrendi
A Dream Palazzo in Qrendi, Ready for Conversion - Ref 914874
An unconverted Palazzo, absolutely full of character and old structural features, just crying out to be converted into a superb residence. The property enjoys a magnificent entrance hallway with a beautiful arched ceiling and original frescoes on the walls that leads onto a 290sqm garden full of fruit trees. The garden has several large rooms on three sides and the house could easily be converted into a very spacious 4 bedroom home with ample accommodation. Must be seen to be appreciated.
Houses of Character
House of Character in Mosta
A truly attractive HOUSE OF CHARACTER in this highly sought-after area with approx. 100 sqms of outdoor area including an 8m x 4m swimming pool.
House of Character in Mosta
Fantastic family home in the heart of this village and surrounded by all amenities.
House of Character in Zebbug
Charming, authentic, wide fronted HOUSE OF CHARACTER, having all rooms surrounding the sunny central courtyard.
House of Character in San Gwann
A fabulous DETACHED HOUSE OF CHARACTER enjoying 3 tumoli of land and located on the outskirts of San Gwann.
Farmhouse in Naxxar
Structurally converted FARMHOUSE set on a plot measuring approx. 2460sqm, situated in the quiet country side yet still close to amenities, whilst enjoying country views.
Farmhouse in Gharghur
Opportunity to acquire a newly converted, detached COUNTRY HOUSE on the outskirts of Gharghur, having a a fantastic, beautifully landscaped garden of around 5000sqm.
Townhouse in Sliema
Very well-converted Sliema TOWNHOUSE with a lovely facade, retaining old patterned tiling, wooden beams, wooden shutters and a Maltese balcony.
Townhouse in Floriana
A distinguished corner property in Floriana overlooks the unique view of the grand granaries piazza.
Townhouse in Gharghur
A very spacious, beautifully converted TOWNHOUSE enjoying unobstructed country and sea views, located in one of Malta's most-sought after villages.
VIEWINGS AND VALUATIONS DURING COVID-19
DO YOU KNOW THESE COVID-19 FACTS?
70 - 80% of patients do not need any medical attention
Loss of a sense of taste/smell has been reported as one of the symptoms
Some people are asymptomatic, so they show no symptoms of being infected
Information obtained from https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/covid-19/questions-answers