Although there are many (so many) tourism destinations in Spain that are aware of being overexploited and crowded, only a few have known how to find the escape route, the method of revitalising the lost charm and recover the attraction that have made them the focal point of tourists from everywhere.
Benidorm, Torremolinos, Salou, Palma Beach… Examples for every taste and all of them, with greater or lesser success, have begun plans to change their future: Palma beach, in Majorca, took the first steps some years ago with a comprehensive change plan that intended to recover more space in front of the sea for promenade and park, making the hotel a second line one and offering a recreation and amusement area much bigger that the current area. Remodelling hotels, creating big natural areas, improving connections… The arrival of the economic crisis and the loss of limits by an autonomous administration tainted by corruption have stalled the project, leaving it in stand by.
Others are still studying the best way to confront their challenges of the future, in the case of Benidorm, where this year will be celebrated the tourism forum dedicated precisely to look for solutions to turn the capital of Costa Blanca into a Smart City Destination. For now, the steps taken are diminutive and the city keeps anchored to a 60’s tourism that does not find support in the current demand.
Nevertheless, the administration and government pairing and the private initiative seem to have found a solution for being worth the effort of keeping investing in these developed areas. A good example is the case of Melià in Magaluf with the creation of its new concept of resort: Calvià Beach, or some hotel chains like Sandos, Fiesta, Garden Hotels or Marconfort, that this summer will release a new theme hotel in Benidorm.
The Magaluf case
The Melià Hotels International group has been an author of one of the most successful reactivation projects of a developed destination in Spain: the Calvià Beach Resort project declared of regional interest that has received support from public institutions as the Balearic government and the Calvià council.
The work of the first phase, finished in October 2012, consisted in remodelling or restructuring 4 holiday hotels in Magaluf targeted at families to turn them into specialised hotels for very specific types of travellers with median and high purchasing power: sportsmen, couples, foreign young people… In all, around 1 km of the coast of this famous Majorcan town principally focused on the British tourist, where since several years ago the tourism bussiness and the socioeconomic data of the entire area registered it was plummeting.
Among the new revived hotels stands out the Beach House – called since the end of the last year ME Majorca– that incorporates a Nikki Beach, concierge service and the famous Wave House, targeted at young people and surf lovers, and includes a giant waves pool one step from the sea. Right beside are the Sol Cala Blanca Hotel and Sol Antillas Barbados, that still preserve some of the ancient essence of Only Adults holiday hotels and hotels for kids linked to the beach resorts line Sol Hotels; and finally, the inclusion of the theme park Katmandú creating the first hotel with theme park of Majorca.
Careful design and innovative facilities inviting to enjoy an experience in the hotel that gives value to the destination have been the key elements that have marked this project. Thanks to this, the hotel group has obtained a tourism merit badge from the Department of Industry recognising the effort made in the modernisation of a developed area, in this case Magaluf and, in general, the entire Palma Nova coast.