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The jewel in Marbella’s crown

February 20, 2017

It’s the jewel in Marbella’s crown. A privileged enclave where the glamor industry landed half a century ago. Where many look and only a few can spend. That Andalusian town that was built in 1970 with a modern marina has over the years become one of the most sophisticated corners of the world, which boasts the largest number of luxury establishments per square meter. In Puerto Banús there are shops of top international designers, movie cars and impressive yachts that cut their breath just by seeing them. On the Golden Mile there are luxury contemporary villas for sale only most can dream of. It is the ‘Marbella brand’, a magnet for opulence capable of attracting personalities from any field and high-quality, high-quality tourism. Until now, because the tourism ‘low cost’ has crept in scene and gains a growing prominence. All the alarms have jumped in the city.

They do not even want to hear about Magaluf, but the behaviour of many of these visitors, mostly British, refers to that gap that contaminates large areas of Mallorca. Young people who walk half naked in broad daylight around Banus and in a notorious state of intoxication. That is why he encourages the application of “zero tolerance with this kind of incivility and absolutely despicable behaviours”. Otherwise, he warns, “it’s going to get out of hand.”

Marbella is not ill, but begins to suffer disturbing symptoms of deterioration. The authorities declare themselves conscious and willing to administer an “urgent” treatment and to “be vigilant” to avoid a worsening of the situation. The ‘ailment’ is identified and located mainly in Puerto Banús. Marbella has 27 kilometers of coastline and an urban center that for the moment is free of contagion. The neighbors of the old town confirm this, but they are “vigilant”; they do not want the ‘undesirable tourism’ virus to spread out of control.

“Marbella no longer boasts the glamour of twenty or thirty years ago, but maintains an international prestige that we cannot ignore. We must be proud of their potential and not admit tourists at any price if their behavior is not appropriate”

Some English websites offer three hotel days, plus transportation from the airport and a bracelet that gives access to an alcohol-free bar for 160 pounds, a separate flight. Many use images of some of the most emblematic beach clubs in Marbella as a claim, although in the destination the offer is reduced then simply to look, since a drink can cost 17 euros. Other sources consulted talk about even more controversial practices. This is the case of operators who anticipate up to one million euros for beach clubs and hotels in the months of March and April and begin to send customers whose drinks are amortizing the advance.

But how do you slow down a business model based on low-cost flights and stays that sometimes entails the promotion of unlimited alcohol consumption? In that is immersed precisely now the City Council since the accident in May. Just then, the security reinforcement planned for the summer was ten days ahead. In parallel, a municipal campaign was initiated to explicitly ask certain tourism entrepreneurs, owners of fashion stores and hotel complexes, to reorient their offer towards a “higher quality” tourism.

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