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Dear Sir, Over the months and years your columns have carried the laments of tourist associated businesses, columnists and politicians alike, bemoaning the shortage or lack of these beings essential to the health of the Majorcan economy. I have just returned from a two week holiday drive through France, our nearest competitor in this field, ending up in Barcelona before returning home to Illetas. Fontainebleau, Nice, Marseille, Sete, Perpignan and even Barcelona have learned how to attract and retain the higher spending short–stay or day visitors by copying how I remember Palma was in the 1960*s when I first visited the island regularly. Each of them, in their own way, has set up areas dedicated to the strolling visitor who wants to sit down in a comfortable ambience gathering a large selection of open air street cafes or restaurants together – of mixed quality and prices – where one can take a drink or a meal and just watch the world go by. In addition the French restaurateurs and resort leaders have co–operated to ensure plenty of street entertainment (be that singers, musicians, clowns etc) in such places and ensured no begging or outstretched caps by arranging payment from the providers of provender on agreed terms with the entertainers, thus encouraging visitors to linger. In my young days The Borne was such a place – could it not be revived in a like manner? Likewise Plaza Mayor and the Paseo Mediterraneo, Puerto Andratx, etc ? Nowadays many of the visitors to the island are, like myself, owners of apartments or other accommodation here. We would love places to go at night, or at least from 4 in the afternoon until midnight. Instead of sitting at home, feeding ourselves we would be inclined to spend in restaurants and cafes if such facilities as the obviously popular resorts that I have mentioned were to be replicated here – I may say that these places were so busy, even at the beginning of June, that we often had difficulty arranging accommodation at night! Majorca could relearn what it has forgotten, but there would need to be some political impetus to bring together the people necessary to activate my suggestions. Go to it Minister of Tourism, let's see what the new administration can do! Michael Bernard
Pollensa blues
Dear Sir, JUST returned from another week in Puerto Pollensa 14–21 June. I read on the letters page of The Bulletin a lady complaining about the increased prices and the speed of motorcycles/scooters, and would comment as follows:
1. Prices
If you were there immediately before the introduction of the Euro and again just after, as we were, you would know that the majority of the price rises were solely down to that, and for those of you old enough, exactly the same thing occurred in Britain when decimalisation was introduced and will happen again if the Euro is voted in in this country – be warned! The same thing has occurred in every European country that has adopted the Euro as its currency, in spite of promises made to the contrary.
2. Motorcycles
Yes there is a speed limit along the front at Puerto Pollensa and has been for sometime, but they ignore it, as they do crash helmet regulations. No big surprise there then, but what does surprise me is the lady's attitude. After all, she lives in Britain not on Mars and I can assure you her point about the scooters in Puerto Pollensa pales into insignificance with what's going on in this country, so can I assume she is writing non stop to English newspapers? After all the whinging, I am surprised that she goes on to say she'll be back again – why bother? As a long standing visitor to Puerto Pollensa, I can assure you that for everyone that doesn't come back there are a dozen to take your place. All the talk about tourist problems in Majorca, it certainly doesn't apply to PP and if you doubt me, have a chat with the local bar/restaurant owners and they will put you straight. Been there in April and June and back again in September – eat your heart out! Terry Curtis
Orpington, Kent