Despite Corona, the Spanish island of Mallorca is turning into a luxury tourist destination
The association “Essentia Mallorca” says that the occupancy rate of luxury hotels has reached an average of 90% continuously during the current year, and expectations indicate that the island will achieve by the end of 2021 about one billion euros ($1.14 billion).
The Spanish island of Mallorca is famous as a destination for low-cost celebrations for German and British tourists. The island is full of beautiful landscapes and charming towns, including the wonderful ancient town of Palma, which is one of the reasons why the world’s richest people are increasingly attracted to Mallorca.
Rich Chinese in Mallorca
And last October, the luxury yacht of billionaire Jack Ma, who is the richest person in China, was spotted mooring for several days off the southwest coast of Mallorca.
This billionaire founder of “Ali Baba” – the largest e-commerce platform in the world – disappeared from view for a few months, after he sharply criticized the trade regulator in China last year.
The fact that Jack’s first known international visit after his dispute with Beijing led him to Mallorca is evidence that the island has become attractive to people of great wealth like him.
The German newspaper, Mallorca Zeitung, commented on this visit, saying that the 57-year-old Chinese billionaire came to the island to shop and play golf, and it is also likely that he wanted to buy real estate there.
And the newspaper “South China Morning Post” – which is owned by the “Ali Baba” – that Jack Ma went to Mallorca to make business deals.
Whatever the purpose of the visit, Jack Ma is one of the world’s richest people who has their eyes set on Mallorca, where luxury tourism has become an “amazing development”, says Jesus Quartero, president of Palma-based luxury tourism company Vanity Welcome. .
The number of visitors to the island rose to record levels in 2019, and witnessed an even greater increase this year – despite the Corona pandemic – according to estimates by Quarteiro, who also heads the “Essential Mallorca” association of companies promoting the island as a luxury tourist destination.
“Mallorca is now promoting itself as one of the most important European luxury tourist destinations,” Quarteiro told dpa.
During the Saints’ Day holiday at the end of last October, which was long in many European countries, all 5-star shops and hotels in Palma were pre-booked, according to data from the Asfama Hotels Association.
Asfama president Javier Fisch told the daily Ultima Hora that the high demand for luxury travel has been going on for several weeks.
Many other statistics support this claim. Last July, Mallorca saw the arrival of 2,685 private planes, which is an increase of 60% compared to the same month in 2019.
The association “Essential Mallorca” says that the occupancy rate of luxury hotels has reached an average of 90% this year, and expectations indicate that the island will achieve by the end of 2021, about one billion euros ($1.14 billion). The association explains that luxury tourism means that a tourist spends an average of 5,000 euros per day.
“Our clients are politicians, businessmen, movie stars, sports stars and other wealthy, less well-known people – the villa rents 50,000 euros per week, the yacht rents 60,000 per week,” Jordi Ripa (from Limo Mallorca) told Ultima Hora newspaper. We are seeing a boom.” There are many who are benefiting from this development, including real estate agents.
Last September, the daily El Pais quoted Carlos Segui, a Mallorca real estate agent, that “the luxury real estate sector is getting stronger than ever, as Europe’s millionaires are now frantically buying homes.”
High class tourists
Quartero says that the high class of tourists is now invading “every inch of the island”, and foreign investors are closely following developments in Mallorca, and the luxury hotel chain “Echos” recently announced an investment of 110 million euros, to transform the Blau Porto Petro hotel in The southeastern region of the island has transformed into a luxury all-inclusive resort, which is the company’s second project outside of Greece.
While visits from the likes of Jack Ma, oil barons and millionaires from Russia and Switzerland have made the headlines in Mallorca, most high net worth tourists come from Germany, Quartero said, although official visitor numbers for 2021 have yet to be announced.
He notes that the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party – which has ruled the autonomous Balearic Islands since 2015 – has long sought to curb low-budget holiday tourism on the island.
“We don’t need tourists here who are looking to drink alcohol all week,” Palma Mayor Jose Hella has repeatedly said.
However, not everyone in Mallorca is fully convinced of this trend expressed by the mayor, as Juan – who runs a souvenir shop – warns that many small businesses and restaurants that have managed to overcome the Corona pandemic are still suffering, adding, “No.” I still want the kind of tourist who buys me souvenirs and soft drinks.”