A tale of two resorts
It was a week that was in a way a tale of two resorts. Yesterday's edition brought news of a seemingly staggering amount of fines dished out by local police in Playa de Palma - almost a quarter of a million euros in the space of a week for breaches of the bylaw on public drinking (in groups) on the streets and on the beach. Earlier in the week - Tuesday - we reported on a further action by the local police against clubs in the resort that flout local ordinance. This operation was specifically against sex clubs, of which there are thirteen in all. Only one was found to be operating scrupulously in accordance with bylaws.
Palma town hall has said that it will show "zero tolerance" to infringements of its regulations. The evidence is suggesting that the town hall means it. In Magalluf, meanwhile, we learned on Thursday that "disorder" was increasing in the resort not decreasing. The Acotur tourist businesses association denounced rising crime in other resorts as well as Magalluf - Playa de Palma, Santa Ponsa and Can Picafort were mentioned - but attention inevitably fell on Magalluf. The association recognised efforts by the town hall and businesses to effect improvements but reserved criticism for the national government delegation to the Balearics and a failure to increase policing levels, i.e. the Guardia Civil. It concluded that there was an absence of "political will" in controlling serious problems that increase each summer.
Then on Friday, and exclusively on our website, we reported on the attack on a Guardia Civil officer in Magalluf by a prostitute. She had been harassing two tourists and threatening them with a broken bottle. When two Guardia officers went to the tourists' assistance, one was assaulted with the bottle, fortunately incurring only light injuries. The woman was later charged with attempted murder.
Back in Playa de Palma, the National Police were notching up another successful operation against the organised human trafficking of women from Nigeria and their sexual exploitation - forced into prostitution. As Thursday's report explained, nine people were arrested while six victims were freed from the gang.
The cruise ships' debate
Last Monday witnessed the arrival in Palma for the first time of the mega cruise ship, Harmony Of The Seas. This provoked some comment from you. Even with over 8,000 people arriving (passengers and crew), it was questioned how much money might actually find its way into the hands of Palma businesses. Bernhard, though, offered a strong defence of the ship and of cruise tourism, observing, among other things, that crews spend significantly in Palma. With inside knowledge, as he works for the line, he asked for people to be happy that Palma has been placed on the itinerary.
But not everyone was. The environmentalists GOB, as reported on Friday, were attacking the "floating cities" that generate hardly any revenue. They did go on to say, though, that average spend per passenger (for cruise ships in general) was 55 euros, which isn't quite the same thing as "hardly any" spend, though the implication is that it should be far greater.
One story last week provoked unanimously negative comment from you. This was Wednesday's item about Majorca's exporters and their concerns about the harmful impact on them if there is a Brexit. Sean Dobson: "We can get by very well (in the UK) without Majorcan spuds; seek new markets." Ron Forbes: "Sa Pobla potato growers. They complain about everything - no rain, too much rain, too hot, too cold ..." There were others.
Ryanair branching out
While the Balearic government is working on its legislation for holiday rentals (expected to be in place next year), a Friday report revealed that a new player is entering the market for offering private accommodation. Ryanair will be launching Ryanair Rooms in October. Ryanair, it seems, wants to challenge even Airbnb in this market and believes that it will "transform" the booking of accommodation in the same way that its low fares "revolutionised" air travel.
A tale of two resorts
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