Temporary bar terrace in Palma, Mallorca

Summer's one thing, heating for terraces in winter is another.

07-12-2020Jaume Morey

Last month, Ciudadanos at Palma town hall presented proposals for further assistance for the city's bars and restaurants.

Eva Pomar, spokesperson for the Cs, one of the parties in opposition, insisted that "urgent measures" were still required for a sector that has been so badly affected by the virus. One of these measures was the proposed spending of 24,000 euros to help hospitality establishments purchase outdoor space heaters for the winter.

The town hall, as with others in Mallorca, has been enabling the use of more outdoor area for terraces, which has included allowing bars without terraces to create them. A temporary measure, parking spaces have been occupied by tables and chairs. The Balearic government, meanwhile, appears to be encouraging outdoor use through its planned QR codes system for bars and restaurants. This system will only apply to interiors.

There is, however, an issue with the temporary terraces when it comes to the use of space heaters, whether the town hall assists with their funding or not. Xisca Vidal of the CAEB Mallorca restaurants association, quoted by Hosteltur, says that the heaters can't be placed on the parking space terraces. The town hall's decree which allowed the use of the temporary area didn't include any reference to heaters. It covered tables, chairs and parasols, and that was it.

There is concern among bar owners that if they place heaters on the parking space terraces, they could end up being fined. Alfonso Robledo, the president of the association, stresses that the town hall needs to make it easier for customers to be on terraces, especially as they are being told that this is safer.

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