From pristine beaches to palaces, entire islands and its London embassy, a nation in crisis is selling its assets, writes Harriet Alexander.

The coast at Afandou is part of the Greek government's desperate attempts to raise money by privatising its vast portfolio of state-owned assets. Photo: ALAMY

The coast at Afandou is part of the Greek government’s desperate attempts to raise money by privatising its vast portfolio of state-owned assets. Photo: ALAMY

“We are like a bankrupt housewife forced to sell the silver, to save the family,” he said. “Greece has no choice.”

Some 70,000 lots are for sale, ranging from pristine stretches of coast through to royal palaces, marinas, thermal baths, ski resorts and entire islands. Only last Wednesday, bidding closed for a stake in the state gambling company.

Alexander continues:

The idea of snapping up a Greek island certainly has its appeal. In March the Emir of Qatar bought six for £7 million, while a Russian oligarch bought Skorpios – previously owned by the Onassis family – earlier this month for a reported £65 million, as a present for his 24-year-old daughter Ekaterina Rybolovlev. While both those sales were private, it showed there was a potentially lucrative market for chunks of scenic Greece.

To that end, the royal palace on Corfu, where Prince Philip was born, is now also for sale. So too is a large coastal estate which, the government boasts on its website, is next door to land owned by the Rothschild banking dynasty.

Article: Greece’s great fire sale | Telegraph