We have seen the last of Magalluf as it has become infamously known, confirmed the Central Government Delegate to the Balearics, Aina Calvo.
In a wide ranging interview with the Bulletin yesterday, which will appear in full this Sunday, Calvo, who was sworn into to her new position just a month before the pandemic broke out and Spain was thrown into the first phase of lockdown in March, praised the Balearic government for having taken a “very brave” step in closing down the trouble spots in Magalluf, the Playa de Palma and San Antonio in Ibiza as soon as the lockdown was lifted and the very short holiday season was permitted.
“With regards to the three resorts, or rather the flash point streets which were closed down due to excess alcohol and anti social behaviour which put people’s health and safety at large in danger, be they fellow holiday makers or residents, they will not be allowed to open and continue operating as they have been for decades.
“The pandemic has provided the authorities with an opportunity to seriously address the problems in the three resorts and the local government, with the full support of central government in Madrid and the British and German authorities, has been and is continuing to do all it can to ensure that the ills of Magalluf are cured and never resurface once life returns to some form of normality.
“That said, a unilateral approach has got to be taken involving all aspects of the travel industry and the tourism chains in the black spot resorts.
“After all, with regards to Magalluf and the Playa de Palma, we’re only talking about a handful of streets, San Antonio is slightly more challenging.
“Nevertheless, hotels, bars, clubs, supermarkets and tour operators all have to be on board.
“What we have to move away from is depending on the police to solve the problem.
“Being the Central Government Delegate, I am in charge of the state security forces in the Balearics, such as the Guardia Civil and the National Police and yes, during the summer, extra resources are deployed to the region, as they to all popular tourist destinations in Spain to help tighten security. But, we only have limited resources and one has to bare in mind that the security forces have other matters such as tackling drug and people smuggling, gender violence and day-to-day crime, not to mention enforcing the pandemic protocol - so flooding the likes of Magalluf with extra police is not the answer.
“The solution to the problem lies very much with society and holiday makers.
“In association with the British and German governments, the latter of which sends police officers to assist local forces on the beat during the summer season, we have launched numerous awareness campaigns on social media platforms and these have been embraced by the tour operators and the majority of hotels.
“What is more the Balearic government has introduced heavy fines for establishments not adhering to the rules and regulations or promoting illegal events such as bar crawls, cheap drinks, pool parties and party boats, for example.
“At the end of the day, we want people to come to Majorca and enjoy themselves but in a civic manor. “We want visitors to enjoy the island’s wonderful environment and all the night time fun it has to offer, but in a responsible manor.
“For example, when the local fiestas are held here, everybody young and old, has a good time, dancing, drinking and shouting, but it never spills over into street fights and violence.
“So, we all need to be working together, we can’t have businesses allowed to continue encouraging or promoting anti social behaviour fueled by excess alcohol.
“Obviously, we need a police presence on the streets, but that’s more to drive home the fact that Majorca is a safe destination, but, if tourists behaved, we would need fewer police in resorts so they are able to concentrate on more pressing issues.
“One thing is for sure, and I think the authorities in Palma and Madrid all agree, the fiesta is over in Magalluf, the Playa de Palma and San Antonio.”