Top tourist year for the Balearics
Not only were they able to convey to their Spanish counterparts that the sales of package holidays have got off to one of the strongest starts in nearly a decade, but the trend is continuing with demand for summer holidays on the high street and on line out stripping this time last year.Hugh Morgan, the Managing Director of the Monarch Travel Group, said all of the suppliers and hoteliers at Fitur were extremely cooperative which has meant that all of the UK tour operators are able to offer very competitive prices and as always see ‘price is king’. “But we’re seeing huge movements on social media and it’s all very exciting and very positive. Things are looking very bright for this summer, especially in the Balearics where holiday sales are up to all of the islands. “I think this year, with no reason to stay in the UK , no jubilee, no Olympics and no football, and after two wash out summers, most Britons decided early on to book a holiday, to guarantee some sunshine. “Those that left it late last year, and many did as we saw that late surge in September and October, did not necessarily pick up a good deal. “So this year, they’ve decided to book earlier and that helps us enormously because if needs be, we can increase capacity on our airlines and hotels,” Morgan said yesterday.
But, he did reveal that the only sector that is suffering slightly is the cruise industry
Mallorca properties market
Come the end of last year, First Mallorca, which currently operates out of five offices with 42 multilingual staff, has produced 16 percent more sales than in 2011.As market reports show the average selling price fell from 1.1 million euros in 2009 to 810.000 euros in 2012. The German purchasers nearly doubled in 2012 while Spanish buyers almost vanished from our statistics.
A new front-line property in the area of Puerto de Andratx sold this autumn for a sqm price of approximately 23.500 euros.
Whilst the apartment market is experiencing healthy demand, First Mallorca, is also noticing a stronger interest by investors for exceptional fincas with extensive land. Enjoying the same attention are attractive building plots with uncompromised privacy and “a world on its own”.
The rental market is strong with German clients heading rental contracts by over 50 percent. The contracts are mostly with Spanish owned properties, the British coming a close second.
The Germans top the table of purchasers accounting for 45.68 percent of the market followed by the British on 24.13 percent, the Swedish with a 12.93 percent share of the market, the Austrians on 4.31 percent, with the Russians a similar share.
PROPERTY SALES l Total number of sales: 116 l Turn-over of sales: 94.004.240 € l Highest sale: 5.600.000 € lLowest sale: 80.000 € l Negotiation margin: 10.87 percent l Average property price: 810.381 €
Magaluf film The truth about magaluf
Majorca is suffering from a colossal hangover following the sensationalistic documentary, The Truth about Magaluf shown on BBC television earlier this week. Exposing the tawdry underbelly of the island’s most notorious ‘bad boy’ resort has seemingly upset the sensibilities of local officials and sent shivers down the spine of the British expat community living in Majorca. Manu Onieva, the local mayor, has already registered his displeasure with the makers of the documentary at what he and Calvia council described as a ‘stitch up’.
The island’s local British newspaper, the Majorca Daily Bulletin, has been inundated with letters from outraged readers dismayed by the content of the documentary presented by Stacey Dooley which lifts the lid on the excessive drinking, drug-taking and sexual antics of the resort. Sorry to be a party pooper, but what did they honestly expect?
There’s a very good reason why Magaluf has been awarded the sobriquet ‘Shagaluf’ over the years. It’s a wild party resort just like infamous Salou on the Spanish mainland, targeting the British ‘yoof’ market and offering ludicrously cheap booze and practically 24/7 entertainment of the most dubious kind. It’s a Jekyll and Hyde resort, benign and harmless enough by day and by all accounts a seething den of iniquity by night with few boundaries or concerns for common decency and where, according to one cynical police officer interviewed on the TV programme, ‘every day is the weekend.’
THIS VIDEO IS QUITE SHOCKING we think only suitable for people above 65
Aside from holidaymakers’ uncontrolled imbibing, drug taking, sexual antics and frequent drunken brawls, Magaluf appears to have far more serious problems on its plate. According to a local ambulance team interviewed, last summer there were 40 cases of ‘balconing’, the term used to describe drunken youths who attempt to climb from one hotel balcony to another. It was claimed that twelve youths had died as a consequence. Rape in the resort has also apparently escalated with 15 to 20 girls apparently making distressed calls to the ambulance service last summer alone. Just this week a young British woman testified against a man who allegedly raped and stabbed her in the resort in 2008. And if that’s not bad enough, there’s been a rise in the number of prostitute gangs and those masquerading as prostitutes who rob inebriated men returning to their hotels late at night.
In the BBC documentary we accompany young presenter Stacey Dooley, Bambi-like in her wide-eyed innocence, on a trip with a local harassed ambulance crew, patrolling police officers, and to a bar where she serves up noxious, alcoholic beverages to intoxicated youths. Squirming with embarrassment she watches an explicit sexual game being played out in the bar and later attempts to take the Spanish owner and promoters to task. They remain unrepentant, placing the blame squarely on the shoulders of British holidaymakers unable to hold their drink. Tellingly – although not investigated by the programme – one Spanish bar owner accused the all-inclusive hotels of putting local businesses under pressure to compete.
It’s easy to blame British youths for lacking any sense of personal responsibility or propriety but fingers must surely also be pointed at the resort itself and its many operatives who seemingly manipulate and exploit the weak-minded and easily misled? Starved of sun and cheap booze back in the UK, for many teenage first time holidaymakers, Magaluf is a disaster waiting to happen.
There are though attractions that keep a responsible eye on their ‘wards’. Mallorca Rocks, arguably the hippest music venue now in Europe, maintains tight security and yet manages to create a relaxed and fun atmosphere. I have ventured from the hills to accompany groups of teenagers to the venue and have never witnessed anything but young people dancing and having a good time. Staff members are courteous, drinks must be purchased-no all inclusive deals here- and everyone must leave on the dot of midnight.
While the storm rages about the BBC documentary, ITV is also homing in on the resort with the launch of a new six-part documentary series. Still, mayor Manu Onieva should cheer up because as far as the modern day Sodom and Gomorrah resorts go, all publicity is good publicity. No doubt thousands more young Britons will flock to Magaluf –as opposed to say Malia in Crete or Salou in Catalonia-thanks to these seemingly perennial, titillating TV extravaganzas and the money will keep rolling in.
In times of economic gloom, the likes of Magaluf, warts and all, are a welcome cash cow for a debt-ridden nation.
theme park in Majorca
majorca—Leading global Majorca hotel chain Meliá Hotels International has entered into a “joint venture” with the owners of Katmandu Park in Magalluf to create Majorca’s first theme park resort.
Last summer, Meliá Hotels unveiled an ambitious project to upgrade the resort by creating the Calvia Beach Resort which will include four upgraded hotels offering a new lifestyle in the resort and fresh and exciting entertainment.
This week, the hotel chain has announced that it has linked up with Producciones de Parques, which own Katmandu Park, to create the Sol Katmandu Park and Resort.
The resort will involve the Sol Magaluf Park Hotel, which is right next door to the Katmandu Park, and will be transformed into an interactive new generation hotels just metres from the beach.
Both companies want to continue expanding and diversifying in Magalluf and eventually, the hotel will be reformed into a first class hotel over the coming years.
Renovate or die
Katmandu Park was founded in 2005 by a small group comprising a Majorcan businessman, who opened Golf Fantasia in 1988, and a company which specialising in creating American-style attractions .
All this is part of Meliá’s mission to reform and renovate Magalluf , a resort which they fear will die if such action is not taken.
Meliá has already opened its wave house this summer and Nikki Beach, come the start of next summer, the Calvia Beach Resort will really begin to take shape.
And, in order to ensure the project runs smoothly, the government has declared it of “Tourist interest” which means red tape will be reduced to a minimum.