Quinta Jardins do Lago

Madeira island’s top rated hotel Jardins do Lago site relaunch

Quinta Jardins do Lago

Winner of the 2013 Tripadvisor Traveller’s Choice award for #1 Hotel in Madeira and #2 in Portugal, Quinta Jardins do Lago is synonymous with quality, style and elegance.

This delightfully situated small luxury botanical garden hotel has published its new website and whilst the appearance is very much in keeping with its traditionally elegant branding, the site utilises the latest technology and offers a quite amazing web encounter which allows visitors to fully immerse themselves in the holiday experience awaiting them.

The new multilingual website provides rich image galleries with truly wonderful photography and the complete production is ‘responsive‘ which simply allows the site to adapt to display on any device. View the pages on a smart phone, a tablet or a wide screen desktop computer and the site is always easy to read, navigate and enjoy.

The Quinta Jardins do Lago has long enjoyed superlative traffic and a high percentage of online reservations directly from its website. To ensure this growth continues ‘Navega Bem – Web Design‘ were re-commissioned to create the new website.

Chris Szabo, Creative Director of Navega Bem explained “We have always enjoyed a close professional relationship with Jardins do Lago and we are fully aware that the success of any website will result in our continued success. We strive to provide the best possible service to our clients, both during the development process and long after a site has been launched. This philosophy is the reason we have many return clients for whom we have done not only a second project but in some cases a third or even a fourth.”

“We have created this website around the Joomla CMS framework. We have absolutely no doubt that open source technology provides the most innovative and cost effective solution to web development.
Too many hotels have been enticed into the web of proprietary software and found at their cost that they were imprisoned in a system that didn’t allow then to switch their booking engine or development partners. The Joomla CMS gives a hotel the best of both worlds; an easy to manage website that has zero outsourcing requirements and the flexibility to use any web design company and any booking engine.”

To learn more about successful responsive multilingual Hotel Web Sites visit this page: www.navegabem.com

To visit the new Quinta Jardins do Lago website follow this link: www.jardinsdolago.com

Author: Chris Szabo

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W3C Workshop in Rome showcases Hotel Royal Savoy Madeira Joomla! website

Royal Savoy Madeira

Brian Teeman, co-founder of Joomla! and OpenSourceMatters  showcased the Royal Savoy Madeira Website in Rome on Tuesday 13th March at the W3C Workshop program – “Making the Multilingual Web Work“.

The MultilingualWeb community develops and promotes best practices and standards related to all aspects of creating, localizing, and deploying the Web across boundaries of language. This W3C workshop aimed to raise the visibility of existing best practices and standards for dealing with language on the Internet and on identifying and resolving gaps that keep the Internet from living up to its global potential. The workshop was held in Rome, and was hosted by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations.

Brian Teeman made the presentation “Building Multilingual Web Sites with Joomla! the Leading Open Source CMS”

Brian Teeman

Used by over 2.8% of the web and by over 3000 government web sites, Joomla is the leading Open Source CMS. Making web sites truly multilingual, rather than relying on automated translation tools, is now a requirement. The latest release of Joomla makes building multilingual sites considerably easier, while also making them more accessible across different user agents and form factors (e.g., desktop or laptop computers, mobile phones, or tablets). The presentation showcased how these new developments can be used in Joomla to greatly reduce the burden of building and releasing multilingual sites.

Brian said “The Royal Savoy Madeira website is a great example of a Joomla 3, Mobile and multilingual website”.

The site was developed by full service digital marketing, development and responsive web design agency Navega Bem, located on Madeira island, Portugal.

You can learn more about the Savoy Group websites here.


Author: Chris Szabo

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Khusan Property Trading Place Classifieds Case Study

khusan

After a successful launch on June 14th 2010, Khusan has attained many positive comments from within both the Property Market and Web Development circles.

Khusan is a new and refreshing way to create free classified ads within the property market. The site offers a clean and inviting interface and allows fast user registration and advertisement placements.

The concept is based on the ‘For Sale by Owner’ premise where property owners can advertise at no cost and users interested in a property contact the owner directly. Khusan, as the portal owner has no intermediary role between buyers and sellers.

Navega Bem – Web Design‘ were commissioned to develop the project after they were found through a Google search for ‘Real Estate CMS Websites’. Having studied the Navega Bem website and the Portfolio, Jan Schouten – Khusan Project Director was confident he had found the perfect web developers for the job.

Jan explained “One of the most important assets of any website is its ability to be found in search engines. Whilst looking for a company to develop Khusan we were impressed at how well the Navega Bem website performed in the search engines. The proof is in the pudding as they say and Navega Bem showed their professionalism and know how through the performance of their own website”.

Chris Szabo, MD of Navega Bem was responsible for the corporate identity and layout of the web portal. “In a market saturated with websites trying to attract property advertisers, we were very aware that the portal needed to reflect a fresh, lively and highly user friendly concept. We chose modern colour compliments and designed the logo to gel with that feeling of simplicity. The complete interface is easy to use and is inspired in part by the Google search interface. Khusan wants to allow users to advertise Real Estate and search for Real Estate, with as little interference or distraction as possible.”

The launch of the Khusan -Property Trading Place Portal was targeted to specific geographical regions as part of the build-up phase. The Property markets in London, New York, Panama, Shanghai were amongst the main destinations specifically addressed. Further areas are now being introduced into the marketing strategy.
However, Khusan remains an ‘International’ Real Estate Classifieds Portal and initial indications show that properties from all corners of the globe are being introduced into the websites listings.

The website has been developed around the Drupal open source content management platform. Further post launch development will focus on additional user functionality. Visit the Portal at www.khusan.com

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Drupal or Joomla! Which one can you love?

drupal-joomla
After a 4 year love affair with Joomla! we have given in to temptation and begun romancing Drupal.
We have not by any means stopped loving Joomla – we have merely widened our horizons and now we are having two love affairs instead of one.

So what made us want to scratch the itch and try something different?
We have developed close to 50 Joomla web sites over the last 4 years. Some of them have withered and died, most are still up and running and some of them are award winning sites. Undoubtedly, Joomla! has been our bread and butter and we have many happy clients.
The last 12 months have been quite critical and many companies have opted for their first ever web site and many others realized that a static site was not the way to get a competitive edge.
Choosing a CMS site has been a financially rewarding decision for many of our clients. Our advice was always ‘Go with Joomla!’ – and go with Joomla! they did.

Navega Bem – Web Design‘ has grown both in expertise and in size. Subsequently, the type of projects that we develop have also increased in size and we find ourselves being asked to do bigger and more complex projects. It’s this shift in our development diversity that brought us face to face with the seductive Drupal.

Being commissioned to do a large property portal and other similarly complex sites that require granular access control and are forecast to carry heavy traffic – we saw that Drupal was the prefect solution.

So what are we now recommending to our clients?
Surprisingly, it’s not a case of which is better; Drupal or Joomla!  Both open source solutions have distinct advantages and disadvantages, so each and every project is analyzed on its own merit and conclusions are then drawn. We can’t say that one is better than the other. They are both excellent CMS tools and are made for different things. They are both reasons why commercially developed CMS solutions have increasingly more and more limitations.

Joomla is very straight forward and easy to use out of the box solution (the term ‘easy’ being relative).
Drupal can do what Joomla! does – but the learning curve is much steeper. Drupal is however, a web application framework that offers massive extra scalability.

We were initially reluctant to go for Drupal. We did feel a little disloyal to Joomla! But we are now enjoying them both. The fact that Drupal has now won the best open source PHP CMS for the second year in a row – made it all the more sexy.

What are the big boys out there using?
Well, the United Nations website runs on Joomla!  The White House website runs on Drupal.

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Do you know what Content Manager your site uses?

mask

Navega Bem is a company that is specialized in developing and designing websites that use Joomla as it’s Content Management System (CMS). This is a fact we’ve never kept hidden from our customers, and in fact, you can find Joomla plenty of times in our homepage.

We do this for two reasons:

  1. We consider ourselves an Open company that tries to use Open Source solutions for our customers as much as possible in order to provide them with competitive and cost-efficient products.
  2. Joomla is licensed under a GPL License which among under things tries to prevent companies from selling altered versions of a Licensed product, or make changes to the CMS without distributing it for free.

Joomla is built by a large community of people and they distribute their work for free. We do not claim credit for their work, we only claim credit for our ability to take their excellent CMS and make equally great-looking websites.

This brings more advantages to you, as a customer, than to us as a company, but it’s the proper thing to do. The companies that don’t disclose what CMS they’re using, and claim Joomla as if it were a proprietary system are basically putting these on their customers:

chains

By keeping an open approach, you as a customer are free to choose any company that knows how to work with Joomla. We want people to come, or return to us, because of our quality service and websites, and never because they feel obligated to do so.

Here’s an example of a “masked Joomla”:

mascarado1

And here’s what the normal Joomla login looks like (taken from one of our websites):

mascarado2

Why is it bad for your CMS to be masked?

  • Because you don’t know what it is! – It’s like buying a car and not knowing the brand
  • You don’t know if you can turn to another company if need should arise. – If your “unbranded” car breaks down, who will you turn to?
  • It’s insecure! –  Just as car companies recall their vehicles when they have flaws to fix them, Joomla is constantly updated to fix security flaws. These flaws might be affecting your website right now!

Next time you choose a company to build your website, whether it’s running Joomla, WordPress or another CMS, try to make sure that they’re honest about what they’re using. What might seem like an attractive deal in a short term, might turn into a large expense in the long run.

Learn more about Joomla and CMS Solutions here.

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