Author Topic: All inclusive / Holiday lets / Rentals  (Read 1473 times)

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Belladonna

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All inclusive / Holiday lets / Rentals
« on: August 19, 2011, 10:58:23 AM »
I feel that this is a strong and ongoing subject and deserves a thread on its own, but to start off, here is a view by Andrew;

The Good, The Bad And The Holiday Let
I'm going to give you a list of organisations. When you get to the end of the list, here are your questions - what do they have in common and what is missing? Here goes, and pay attention:

The hotel federations of Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera; the association of hotel chains; the association for agrotourism; the Mallorca Tourism Board; the chambers of commerce in Mallorca, Menorca and Ibiza; the federation of local authorities; the University of the Balearic Islands; the associations of small and medium-sized businesses in Mallorca, Menorca and Ibiza (PIMEM); the association of travel agents; the school of hostelry; airlines; tour operators; unions.

Ok, if you have said they have all been invited to form part of the Balearics Tourism Agency, then have a banana. This is indeed what they all have in common.

Pretty big agency, huh? Yes, but a reason behind them all joining the agency is to avoid duplications in tourism efforts. So, credit where credit's due. The agency may now sound unwieldy, but better this than numerous bodies here and there doing their own things.

But what of the second question? What's missing? Need some help? Just look at the list again. Which are the really big players? Tour operators, airlines, yes, but also the hotels. Still don't know the answer? This is a tourism agency, don't forget. Tourism requires accommodation. Are you getting warmer?

Nowhere in this coming together of pretty much all those who matter in Mallorca and Balearics tourism is any representation of non-hotel accommodation: the holiday lets. The tour operators are one player that has an interest in this type of accommodation, others do to a degree as well, but otherwise there is no voice at all.

Why isn't there? The obvious answer is that there is no body to represent what is a highly fragmented part of the local tourism industry. Even if there were, how well organised it would be would be open to question. There are all sorts of reasons why owners of holiday lets might not wish to be part of an organisation. This aside, the chances are that it wouldn't be invited anyway.

Two summers ago some grand strategy talking-shop was meant to have been organised by the tourism ministry. It never actually met, but had it done there were to have been two key problems to be addressed, those of seasonality and holiday lets. While mostly anyone associated with the tourism industry would agree that seasonality is a serious problem, only certain parties openly state that holiday lets are. Who were due to have been involved in this strategy talking-shop? The hotels and unions for a kick-off. Both of them antagonistic towards holiday lets.

Amongst the organisations being pulled into the tourism ministry's agency now, there are few which might speak out in favour of non-hotel accommodation. You might hope that the university would offer an independent view, for example. But as for others, they will mostly tow the line, the one that the hotels, the unions and therefore also the tourism ministry promote: that holiday lets are a bad thing.

Not completely a bad thing, as the tour operators will be quick to point out. But their interests lie with the regulated and registered villas of Mallorca. The airlines might also point out that holiday lets are not a bad thing. What about PIMEM? Where would it stand on the issue?

PIMEM has a bar and restaurant division. PIMEM is quite vocal on different matters, such as all-inclusives. A bad thing, it has been saying recently. It has also been saying that permission for hotels to convert to condohotels would be a good thing.

A hundred or so hotels are already said to be planning to sell off rooms and apartments in anticipation of a change to the tourism law which would permit condohotels and which would therefore create a type of residential tourism, akin to holiday lets but to the hotels' advantage.

PIMEM reckons this is a good idea because it isn't all-inclusive and because it would benefit its restaurant members, given the type of tourist it would attract.

But this is precisely the same argument regarding holiday lets. Or one of them. So why doesn't PIMEM come out and support these? Probably for the same reason that the tourism ministry won't. It doesn't want to upset the hotels.

The newly constituted tourism agency is a good thing in many respects, but in one, that of a whole sector of the tourism industry, it isn't. The momentum against holiday lets is unlikely to let up. Unless there are now voices at the agency to say otherwise, it is likely to get very much stronger.

After all is said and done, a lot more will be said than done!

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Belladonna

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Re: All inclusive / Holiday lets / Rentals
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2011, 18:16:18 PM »
An interesting  link to listen to - and shout at in some instances - about all inclusive. With the added bonus of seeing Andrew!
The bar Don Pedro in Alcudia is close to my heart. Our first apartment was just opposite this bar - the Siestas - and a favourite of the children when they were really young. It just brings home that its real people who are likely to lose their living if the ai continues to spread. The agencies do NOT care enough about the locals, they are jumping on the band wagon for the short ride, NOT the long haul.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gNlwHdakcZ8
After all is said and done, a lot more will be said than done!

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andrew711

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Re: All inclusive / Holiday lets / Rentals
« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2011, 19:46:14 PM »
Not sure how much of a bonus it is, Bella, but it was an interesting project. And I shall stay in touch with Rajan as there are more in-depth documentaries he would like to do re tour operators, all-inclusive etc.

An awful lot more that could have been said, and my own bit probably lasted around ten minutes, but this is pretty normal.

The real sadness is, other than Paco losing the bar, what on earth will happen to Don Pedro? Why would anyone take it on? I know the owners of the bar better than I know Paco, and the bar dates back to when the Bellevue complex was built; Don Pedro was named after the father of the current owners who was one of the main builders of the complex in the early 70s. But take this bar away, take other bars away, and the soul of a place disappears.

I know Bellevue and the Siestas aren't everyone's cup of tea, but you obviously have fond memories, and when I took Rajan for a recce to the Don Pedro we met people who are veterans of the area and who have apartments there, and they were genuinely upset that the bar was going and that the area was being destroyed by all-inclusives.

favie

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Re: All inclusive / Holiday lets / Rentals
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2011, 21:46:37 PM »
An interesting  link to listen to - and shout at in some instances -

Interesting to watch and listen to Bella.....did a fair amount of shouting!  :o

So unfair what is happening...felt so sorry for Paco. Surely the authorities/or whoever!! must make sure the AI's are restricted to just some hotels and not let them ruin local businesses!! I know in some isolated hotels they may work, someone I know is just back from Fuerteventura at an A1 totally isolated hotel on a beach but absolutely no restaurants or bars for miles off, food was good and it may work there BUT not in towns and villages surely.
They have never appealed to me, firstly because I dread to think what the food may be like and much prefer to dine at local restaurants also some of the AI restaurants are like canteens I believe. ??? Also, really don't like the idea of wearing a band round my wrist for the duration of the holiday! :o
Another friend just back from Lanzarote, had the option of going from halfboard to A1 at 90p more pp each day!!!  How do they manage that? ???
On a more positive note, yes nice to see Andrew.....keep up the good work.  :)

PS Son is off to Majorca next month....offered A1 but declined.....like his Mum, he prefers to frequent the local eateries, so going self-catering!  ;D

Belladonna

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Re: All inclusive / Holiday lets / Rentals
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2012, 09:29:31 AM »
Keeping us updated with the happenings, or non happenings, or the All Inclusive debate, thanks Andrew;

The Moving Target: All-inclusives
Sometimes you can't tell the difference between tourists and local business types. An elderly chap wandered into Cheers on Tuesday lunchtime, scanning earnestly the business types, and pulled up a chair at the next table. Wasn't he going to join us? I realised that he wouldn't be when he ordered steak and chips in a broad Brummy accent. Having positioned himself next to the long table of business types, I trust he was well informed as to the latest thinking about all-inclusives. Cheers is a big place. It was not exactly packed on Tuesday lunchtime, but the tourist still chose the next table. I guess had he looked around at the empty tables, he would have got the drift as to what the discussion was about.

There again, Alcúdia's main tourist centre gets fairly quiet in October. You wouldn't expect packed restaurants at lunchtimes. More important, though, is whether you can expect packed lunchtime terraces and dining areas at any time of the season, except in the restaurants of all-inclusive hotels.

The tourist centre, a couple of kilometres away from Alcúdia's port, goes under various names. One of them is "around Bellevue". This massive complex has lent its name to the area because of its imposing importance. Five thousand or so guests when it's full, it now has five thousand or so guests who are all-inclusive, assuming that the figure given by one of the bar owners is accurate. 99%, he said. Which I suppose means 100%. You can never be 100% sure, as Bellevue has long been a breeding ground for rumours, urban myths and outright untruths.

This is hardcore all-inclusive land insofar as there are hotels which are known to be predominantly or exclusively all-inclusive. The all-inclusive tentacles, however, spread out from around Bellevue. They are wrapped around Magic and have crept into the port. In the opposite direction, they have grown into triffids, consumed much of Playa de Muro and swallowed almost whole Can Picafort. 

The resorts of the bay of Alcúdia form a conurbation in which there are similar concerns, the greatest being all-inclusive. I don't know that I had anticipated there being many people at the meeting but I began to appreciate why there weren't very many. From this conurbation (populated with roughly 150 hotels), you might have thought that Cheers would be thronged, but it wasn't, and the reasons why speak volumes as to why opposition to all-inclusives from the complementary sector is so weak.

The principal reason is fragmentation. Even within Alcúdia there is fragmentation. Bars and restaurants represented at Acotur's gathering to discuss all-inclusives were predominantly from around Bellevue. There was only one representative from the port. There were no great delegations from Muro or Can Picafort. One only has to consider how the local hotels are organised to realise just how shambolic the organisation of opposition is; Alcúdia and Can Picafort hoteliers federations joined forces some three years ago, and it is one of the loudest of the island's hotel groupings.

There was discussion about the need for far greater unity and for the creation of a genuine lobbying mechanism to match the all-powerful one of the hotels. It makes eminent sense for there to be one loud voice rather than the many quiet ones that proliferate in Mallorca's business world. Opposition to all-inclusives and indeed other aspects of tourism from within the complementary sector is dogged by fragmentation in terms of different associations, so the sector needs a proper structure before it embarks on a strategy; without a unified lobbying organisation, the detail of opposition is pretty useless.

But if the structure were right, would the strategy be right? One problem is that there is disagreement as to how current moves by the regional government should be responded to. Is the insistence on greater hotel and all-inclusive quality beneficial to the complementary sector? Some say it is, as this will result in a tourist base with greater spending power which doesn't confine itself to the hotel. Others disagree. Raise the quality that much and no one would ever leave a hotel.

If the bars and restaurants are unsure what their position is on facets of tourism policy, it will be difficult to create a coherent strategy of opposition, whatever this might be. And one fears that even with a unified body, nothing would change. There was much talk of the government giving the hotels carte blanche and of the hotels having the government in their pocket, but ultimately does this not miss the point that the real target for opposition is neither the hotels nor the government? It is the tour operators.

After all is said and done, a lot more will be said than done!

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Belladonna

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Re: All inclusive / Holiday lets / Rentals
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2015, 07:23:36 AM »
After all is said and done, a lot more will be said than done!

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