Palma.—Despite schools in Britain about to break up for half term and Majorca being the fifth most popular destination last year and expected to perform just as well this year, this weekend is being dubbed ‘the last of the season' by most hoteliers and bar owners in the key resorts.

Experts in the United Kingdom are predicting one of the busiest Autumn half-term holiday seasons for years, following a ‘summer holiday delay' effect caused by the bumper round of events that have taken place in the UK.

The Jubilee and Olympics coupled with the washout summer of wet weather, has caused a 19 per cent surge in families searching for last minute half-term warmth, according to travel comparison website, but sadly, apart from Palma, Majorca is closed.

Yesterday, the Majorcan Hotel Federation announced that an average of 66 percent of the island's hotels are going to be closing this month and most of them will not be opening again until April - that is five months.

However, come the end of this month, 66.6 percent will already be closed, 3.4 percent more than last winter and one of the highest numbers in recent years.

And, come December 84.1 percent of Majorca's hotels will have closed.
In January, 82.5 percent of the hotels will be shut, 68.7 percent in February and 51 percent in March, but just under half are going to remain closed despite Easter falling in March next year.

According to the Federation, it is not going to be until April that the Majorcan tourist industry will show some serious signs of life when 73.3 percent of the hotels will be open for business.

Those which will be opening in January and February will be the hotels which specialise in catering for cyclists and hikers, but that is going to be about it.

In fact, in resorts like Cala d'Or, Cala Moreya, Calas de Mallorca, Camp de Mar, Can Picafort and Colonia de Sant Jordi, there will be no hotels open at all come November and that will obviously lead to the mass closure of local businesses.

Resorts where hotels will be open include the Playa de Muro, Alcudia, the Playa de Palama and Magallluf/Palmanova.
Palma is going to be where the most hotels will remain open although this year, two of the capital's most emblematic luxury seafront hotels will be closing as are three of the capital's most popular nightclubs - much to the anger of bars and restaurants along the Paseo Maritimo where the closing hotels and clubs are located.

The President of the Federation, Inma de Benito, said yesterday that the season is getting shorter every year with most hotels open for an average of just five months. “We're starting to have serious structural problems with Majorca as a holiday destination and we're finding it increasingly difficult to compete and develop low season tourism,” she said. “We've got more than enough attractions to pull people in during the winter but there are no incentives and no support for those businesses willing to stay open during the winter,” she added.