The ice-cream stall doing brisk trade.

18-04-2016Hans Monheim

Social media was sent into a frenzy over the weekend when the call went out to save one of Puerto Pollensa's oldest establishments: the Gelats Valls ice-cream kiosk at the start of the Passeig Anglada Camarasa by the yacht club roundabout. A fixture for decades, the defence and support were stout. A petition rapidly raised over 3,000 signatures.

In an unusual move, prompted by this frenzy, the town hall issued a statement on Sunday. It explained that a town hall governing board meeting of 5 May last year had passed an "extraordinary and non-renewable authorisation" to end on 31 December 2015 in respect of the kiosk. It went on to say that there would be a tender for this ice-cream "point of sale" for this year.

Any fixed-site kiosk on the public way, which this one is, is subject, the explanation continued, to an open public competition. This is a legal obligation. Were there not to be such a competition, then the town hall could be accused of malfeasance. Gelats Valls was aware of this situation. Under this, it was not supposed to open, but the kiosk has opened.

In legal terms, the matter appears straightforward. Regardless of the length of time that the kiosk has been where it is, the town hall was applying the law regarding the occupation of the public way. The statement added that the bidding for the tender had not been opened because a process of mediation between affected parties had been seeking a "satisfactory and amicable solution" for all concerned. The "unilateral" opening of the kiosk had cut short this process.

What this refers to is the fact in September 2014 the town hall had received a request from the owner of the establishment near to the kiosk to consider this occupation of this public way. The owner is Cafe Capuchino 1919 SL. The establishment is Gran Café 1919. The cafe and the company named form part of Grupo Boulevard, an organisation with varied bar, restaurant and shop interests in Puerto Pollensa and elsewhere: its base is in fact in Playa de Muro. The request makes reference to what might be considered to be an invasion of space authorised or authorisable for use by the cafe.

The town hall is said to currently be completing a tender for continuing the activity of the sale of ice-creams in the kiosk.

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Gabriela / Hace over 4 years

Leave the kiosk as it is, it has been there for decades, and the holiday makers love it, it is part of the holiday in Pto., The councillors in Pollensa should leave well alone. They stopped many of the fun things on the front that people enjoyed goodness knows why, do they not want people to enjoy their stay, particularly families or are they just trying to keep the older generation happy. The residents in Pto. only have a short season to make money unlike say Palma why make life more difficult for them.

+1-

Ron / Hace over 4 years

Thank you Andrew. In that case I apologise to Grupo Capuccino for getting that bit wrong. The names are very similar. Capuccino in Palma etc. have lovely restaurants - and quality costs!

+-2-

Andrew Ede / Hace over 4 years

Ron, I can understand the confusion but as far as I am aware, the Cappuccino bar is part of the Grupo Cappuccino, which is a different company.

+-1-

Ron / Hace over 4 years

I agree that complete transparency has to be shown by Pollença council in awarding concessions - probably there councillors who are related to the Valls family - as would happen in any small town. And of course politicians from the president downwards eventually find themselves in prison for giving just this type of permission 'on the nod' (a dedo). But in this case Gelats Valls is a long standing local traditional business and every town is trying to preserve popular businesses that are successful and that people trust. Café 1919 should back down and leave well alone. They will damage themselves by pursuing any action. I see that they are part of the mega Capuccino group, whose other bar/restaurant on Port de Pollença front line is the town's most expensive place to eat and drink with extortionate prices!! It is good to see that people's opinions will make a difference here - unlike the disastrous and damaging tourist tax which is being forced upon us.

+2-

Sheila / Hace over 4 years

It has backfired on 1919 already. They have been told to reduce their terraza from 58 chairs to 42 this year. Having said that,a poor old chap in Northumbria has been chucked off his ice cream pitch of 47 years after losing out to a higher tender. Sh-t happens everywhere!

+2-

Alan Smith / Hace over 4 years

The Gelats Vals kiosk is an institution in Puerto Pollensa and should be allowed to remain under it's current ownership.

+4-

Michele Formby / Hace over 4 years

1919 do not like people sitting at their tables with Vals ice cream!! They are being bullies and trying to assert their larger corporation authority Take note Town Hall you will upset a lot of holiday makers by closing the iconic hut!!

+4-

Elizabeth / Hace over 4 years

Cafe1919 is being VERY short sighted. This will definitely affect their trade!

+3-

David Chad / Hace over 4 years

The ice cream kiosk is an institution with P. Pollensa. If it is got rid of it will offend many people and will likely affect detrimentally the business of 1919 cafe, for I for one will boycott the place, along with, I suspect a great number of holiday tourists

+5-

Lisa / Hace over 4 years

Cafe 1919 should be ashamed of themselves. They gain trade from the ice cream parlour! I for one will never go to cafe 1919 again if they force the parlour out.

+6-