Thanks for the info, morerosado. We'll give the website a go.
We stayed in Almoradi earlier this year for 12 days and really liked the town and the surrounding area. We had a property in Catalunya for 3 years and were very lucky to sell it at the beginning of the downturn a couple of years ago. Hardly anything is selling in the area now. A friend of ours has had his property on the market for the past 3 years. However, I think the fact that we bought an old Spanish townhouse, which we restored, made it easier to sell than if we had bought a place on a complex where all the properties are the same. Catalunya is a very beautiful part of Spain but the double language thing makes it difficult for us Brits to get work as you need to speak both Castellano and Catalan to get on. All the locals speak Catalan to each other and Castellano to 'foreigners'. My Spanish didn't improve whilst we lived there! We decided to go back to the UK for a while (until youngest son leaves home...happened 5 weeks ago!) and return to an area of Spain where Castellano is the only language spoken. We know each area has its own dialect but one language to learn is a definite plus point. As you mention, Pat, the best thing about staying/living in a 'Spanish' town (ie things don't revolve around the tourist industry) is the fact that it's business as usual all year round.
The area behind Torrevieja was the last area on our list to explore as a possible place to spend our winters (having already spent time in the north of Spain and the Costa del Sol). We had heard and read so many negative reports about the area...you all know the tales, "too many Brits, too built-up, too much crime etc etc". We hadn't expected to enjoy our stay there. But, Almoradi remains a very Spanish town, as do all the towns and villages a few miles back from the coast, and we loved Torrevieja. It's a wonderful city..and we ate an excellent 'menu del dia' in one of the local, Spanish restaurants (in a back street) for only 8euros each! We almost always drive to Spain when we visit and we spent each day exploring the area. It is so much more beautiful (and Spanish) than we had expected. Yes, there are areas in the southern Costa Blanca which are built-up and overflowing with complexes that have obviously been built for us 'foreigners' but the same applies on the Costa del Sol...
So, we are looking to spend the whole of this winter in Almoradi where we hope to get to know others that are doing the same. We hope to be there by at least october 1st (if not before) and will not be returning to the UK until April (all being well with our elderly mothers). We had been intending to buy our own place again quite soon but we have decided to rent for the next couple of years or so until things start picking up again...unless we find another Spanish townhouse that we fall in love with!
We live in Grantham at the moment, having down-sized to a 2-bed place as a way of keeping a foothold in the UK property market.. I was a teacher until 3 years ago (took early retirement, as many of us do!) and my husband was a builder (same scenario). We are hoping to get to know other folk that spend their winters in the area (or who live there full-time) so keep in touch, Pat!