Why the image change of Mallorca has failed for the time being

Season start in Arenal
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Why the image change of Mallorca has failed for the time being

The season is on in Mallorca. At Ballermann it’s almost as loud and wild as before the pandemic. In May and June it is mainly young people who bang on the plaster on the Playa – or even go overboard.

Mallorca is back. The German vacationers enjoy the beaches and enjoy the summer weather at Ballermann and other places on the island. Here it almost seems as if there had never been a corona standstill. “It’s the same as always. I can’t find any differences,” says Mario Bröder with satisfaction. The vacationer from Koblenz must know: It’s already the 43rd time that he’s been here.

“When I see the first palm tree after arriving at the airport, I feel at home. Alcúdia is my second home.” For years, Bröder has always traveled to the same hotel in the coastal town in the north of Mallorca. Always in the same room. But this time it’s going somewhere else. In Porto Petro in the east, a hit trip is offered. Nino de Angelo and Bernhard Brink get the German to change his habits. “They perform every night instead of the normal hotel animation.”

The hit parties at Ballermann, on the other hand, are not for brothers. “I don’t like the crowds and the celebrations in the discotheques.” There is plenty of hustle and bustle on the party mile. The usual music is blaring at full volume from the jukeboxes on Playa de Palma these days. “Undress, undress, undress,” roared a group of young men in a bar.


  Sohel Abdoulkhanzadeh, owner of the Chucca cocktail bar in Playa de Palma, prepares a cocktail.

Sohel Abdoulkhanzadeh, owner of the Chucca cocktail bar in Playa de Palma, prepares a cocktail.
Photo: dpa/Ralf Petzold

“Everything is the same as always,” says Juan Ferrer, who heads the Palma Beach initiative, which calls for more quality at Ballermann. The disappointment can be clearly heard in his voice. Some time ago he said that Corona acted as a catalyst for his own efforts and attracted a new type of vacationer. They want things like good food with local products and environmentally friendly local transport. “As soon as the big party temples were open again, this new type of vacationer was pushed out by the old party crowd,” Ferrer now states.

In May and June it is mainly young people who bang on the plaster on the Playa – or even go overboard. Again and again there are fights between the drunks. Ferrer compares it to US students’ spring party: “It’s like a European spring break.”

“Free ride” is how Sohel Abdoulkhanzadeh describes the return to normality. The 34-year-old from Hanover runs the “Chucca” cocktail bar above the place where the legendary “Riu Palace” disco used to be. “The Ballermann stands for party. You can’t get that out of people’s heads. But that is the advantage of Mallorca. You can party, but you don’t have to. The island is big enough that vacationers can enjoy their free time elsewhere.”

“Spring went fantastically and I sometimes earned more than in the past few years in midsummer.” There is usually always a break after Easter. But at Pentecost it always starts again “and then it stays full until the end of the season,” says the innkeeper.

It can be observed that Germans often only book at the last minute, says Ferrer. Many vacationers come for a short trip at the weekend. “It is hardly possible to make an extrapolation that goes further than ten days.”

For the companies, there is also an enormous shortage of workers at the moment. “During the pandemic, the waiters had to see what they were doing and took office jobs,” says Abdoulkhanzadeh. Many no longer want to go back to the catering sector.

(csi/dpa)

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