Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Tourism economics / Fiestas

Yea, yea, beat the drum. It’s that good old boy, Joan Flaquer, the Balearics Minister for Tourism, telling us that there has been close to an 11% increase in tourism to the Balearics during the first half of 2006 (close to 12% to Mallorca). Great.

But here we go yet again. The numbers game. What do we believe? So, tourism’s up, but there’s little evidence that this increase is meaning increased spend. Crucially, much of this increase is explained by mainland Spanish tourism, and - as anyone can tell you - they don’t dosh up like your average Brit or Scandinavian. But hand it to Sr. Flaquer, he comes out with some belters: “the tourism sector will be able to increase their (sic) profits”. And just how do you define tourism sector, Sr. Flaquer?

The fiesta season is in full swing. The best of the lot is the Pollensa “Patrona” (see a listing under the What’s On Blog). Why is it the best? Because they make it more of a party. The squares are full of music - mostly contemporary - late at night, and there is just a more youthful and energetic feel to Patrona than any of the other local thrashes.

Playa de Muro’s fiesta is small beer by comparison. But hats off to Muro town hall. Firstly, they don’t spend a small fortune on the publicity material, unlike Alcúdia and Pollensa, and - uniquely - what they do produce is in several languages.

It is some while since I have delved into the “Daily Bulletin”. How could I be so lazy? Anyway, there is a letter from some buffer bemoaning the apparent decline of Puerto Pollensa. It’s the usual I’ve-been-coming-here-since-Nelson-was-a-lad stuff, stating that Puerto Pollensa is no longer “quiet” thanks to streets vendors and musicians. Fine buffery. But where is “quiet” at this time of the year?

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