Soller mayor Jaume Servera. | Archive

Soller town hall wants part of Puerto Soller, the old area of Santa Catalina, to be declared "saturated" for the purposes of holiday rentals. The town hall has made this submission to the Council of Majorca, which has been seeking responses to its zoning scheme for rentals.

On the Council's map for zoning, Puerto Soller is shown in orange, meaning that it is not deemed to be saturated and can have holiday rentals which are made available 365 days a year. Soller itself and Biniaraix are both shown in purple, which means that there can only be rentals for a maximum of sixty days a year; the purple for inland places denotes saturation. The town hall therefore wants Santa Catalina to have the same rule as Soller itself.

The mayor, Jaume Servera, says that the Council of Majorca believes that Puerto Soller is only a residential area with second homes and doesn't have a "village life". This is a false impression. Santa Catalina is being turned "into a hotel" and residents, adds the mayor, are complaining that the majority of holiday rentals are operated by investor owners who have acquired properties in order to rent them out. It has therefore become saturated with high tourism pressure.

The Partido Popular opposition at the town hall - Servera is a member of Més - believes that classifying Soller itself as saturated is an error, so it doesn't agree with Santa Catalina falling into the same category. But the principle that the Council has applied for town hall submissions is that these can only call for greater restriction and not less.