Saturday, August 25, 2007

It’s Good News Week

Well, at least the weather has improved enough for the beaches to be, if not packed, then well-attended. And near me in Playa de Muro attended also by the Guardia and a television crew (to be precise one person with a camera, but crew will do). What were they doing? Not sure; you don’t exactly walk up to the Guardia and enquire, but there was some chap with a clipboard and documents. Could have been more on the sunbed/lounger over-provision (15 July).

Some while ago, ages ago it seems, I mentioned the attempt to eradicate illegal holiday apartments. There has been more activity on this recently, with owners rushing to get their properties legalised, only for their applications to be rejected (in not every case, but in a majority). I bring this up because a correspondent to “The Bulletin” makes some pretty strident comments on the subject. He makes a very valuable point, namely that this form of accommodation has a benefit in that it offers high-value, year-round tourism, while those renting this accommodation are the sort of people who will go out. He finishes - “their (the people doing the renting) spend bears no comparison to what a typical hotel bed contributes”. Well said, I reckon.

And while on hotel beds. More “good news” statistics. Apparently the tourist season is exceeding all expectations. Ah yes, of course it is. Anyway, July’s hotel occupation for Alcúdia was 95% and Muro’s nearly 97%. What strikes one, well me at any rate, is the imbalance between Spanish and other tourists. You might recall my saying that the whole tourist season is being buoyed by an increase in Spanish tourism to Mallorca, a form of tourism that does tend to have a high spend (not that everyone would agree with that, but be that as it may). Yet look at Alcúdia, and the number of overnight stays during July were as follows - 8,439 (Spanish), 650,949 (foreign) - and for Muro they were, respectively, 35,004 and 515,965. As I pointed out on 7 August, the congratulatory noises regarding Spanish tourism were unlikely to be echoed on the streets of Alcúdia. I didn’t realise by how little. To put this into perspective, the proportion of Spanish to foreign tourists (per overnight stay) in July in Palma was about 1 to 5. In Alcúdia it was 1 to 77! The overall proportion for the island was around 1 to 11. Enough said.

Finally, just a quick word of consolation to Jane and Kevin at JKs Bar in Puerto Pollensa who have had a flood. All will be back and in order by tomorrow. It never rains, it pours. And Puerto Pollensa got it in the neck more than anywhere.

The Smiths everyone should have known. The other one was The Corrs “Would You Be Happier”. As a counterpoint to yesterday and because of the “good news” (allegedly) about the season’s numbers, who recorded today’s title?


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