The pool and the beach bar will go, | Lola Olmo

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The Mar y Paz pool in Can Picafort will cease to be this week. A traditional meeting place by the sea for 52 years, it predates the 1988 Coasts Law, but its concession has not been renewed. Work is to begin on removing the pool and the adjacent beach bar. In its place there will be a square with terraced seating, a project for which Santa Margalida town hall has a 15-year concession from the Costas Authority.

Toni Gelabert and Noe Pacini, the couple who have managed the swimming pool and the restaurant for eight years, say that they don't know why the concession was lost or what the reason was under the Coasts Law. This legislation, they note, is the same for the whole of Spain, but it is "not applied with the same rigour throughout the country as is happening this year in Mallorca".

Toni Gelabert describes this as "an emblematic place for the Mallorcan public". As with the bar-restaurants on Capellans beach in Playa de Muro that will suffer the same fate, the Mar y Paz is frequented by people from all over Mallorca and above all by "residents of Can Picafort who have made it their meeting point".

It first became evident in spring 2019 that the Costas would not be granting a new concession, but it continued to operate until last summer. "After two years of pandemic and crisis, then a war with its consequences, we think that a little room could have been given for economic and job recovery. Between the bars of Capellans and Mar y Paz, 75 direct jobs will be lost."

In high season, 25 people work at Mar y Paz. Toni Gelabert explains that "we will open on May 2 but only with the tables that we have inside the hotel restaurant". Fifteen jobs will go. "There is nothing more we can do. I have already notified the employees and have said how sorry I am."