Travel news for the trade community

Magaluf works to shed its stag ‘n’ hen reputation

The Magaluf Hotel Association has revealed its mid-season results, which its says shows the effect of efforts to shed the Spanish resort’s reputation as a party hard weekend destination. 

Magaluf is working to shed its party hard image.
Magaluf is working to shed its party hard image.

Key findings supporting its claims include:

The number of young people (aged 16 – 25 years) has decreased by 9%, whilst couples (aged 30 years and over) and families have increased by 5.2%;

Crime rates have fallen by 87% in 2015, compared to the same period in 2014;

Organised pub crawls have significantly reduced, with pubs in Punta Ballena reporting revenues down by 40%;

Less dependency on British tourists to Magaluf with an increase from Italian, German, Portuguese and Swedish holidaymakers.

Among the more positive developments for the resort is the increase in the number of family groups (+3.2%) as well as couples/adults (+2%), at the expense of British youth, which sees a decrease of 9% in stays – this equates to 50,000 less 16 – 25 year olds going to Magaluf.

In an effort to attract a more affluent and sophisticated guest, hotels are moving away from all-inclusive packages, which currently makes up around 30% of the Magaluf hotel market.  Following a greater willingness for guests to spend more, hotels are improving the quality of their complimentary facilities, which are more aligned with a higher standard of hotel guest.

The organisation claims the typical Magaluf tourist is steadily being replaced by families and more mature holidaymakers, which is affecting the season in two ways; firstly, by causing a fall in hotel occupancy (around 4% less in July 2015 than July 2014), but optimising at the same time the balance between occupancy and prices, in which an increase of 5-8% in prices lowers temporarily room occupancy but, in turn, helps to change the mix of customer profiles.

The destination has seen a greater balance and diversification of nationalities, generating less dependency on the British market (-6.2%), although it still maintains a clear leadership, representing 55% of the approximate 1.5 million stays up to July 2015.

The significant decrease of the Russian market (-56%) – attributed to the country’s current financial climate – and in a lesser extent, the drop of the Spanish market (-8.5%) is offset by the important growth of Italians (+34%), Portuguese (+ 21%), Germans (+ 7.85%), and Swedish (+ 8.8%), thanks to the hotels’ commercial efforts and quality improvement.

Sebastián Darder, chairman of the Palmanova/Magaluf Hotel Association, remains convinced that “the firm commitment to the future from the majority of the resort’s hotels has shown that it was possible to achieve the most difficult of all objectives. All that remains is that we don’t look back, but rather continue to focus on consolidating the new tourism model and building greater levels of trust amongst our new types of guests”.

Data provided by The Magaluf Hotel Association highlighted the renovation and repositioning efforts made since 2011, with 44 hotels renovated in that time – a process that will continue in 2015 and 2016 with 10 additional hotels planning renovations and four upgrades from 3 to 4 stars. Currently, 35% of the total are 4-star hotels.

It is a strategy being driven by Meliá Hotels International2, a Spanish-owned hotel company with 350 properties worldwide, to transform Magaluf into a chic “city resort” pitched at a high-spending clientele from across Europe.

The organisation also claims positive progress has been made in security and public order.  After the approval of new law-enforcement measures and a greater presence of both Spanish and, more recently, British police, antisocial behaviour in Punta Ballena and other nearby streets is in decline.

Figures show a fall in crime (robberies, prostitution, hawking and drug dealing) with three arrests compared to 23 in 2014; and 50% fewer guests being expelled from hotels for bad behaviour. In addition there have been 50% fewer cases of balcony falls in Magaluf.

These measures, in addition to the shift of tourist profile, are directly contributing to the decrease in Punta Ballena Pub crawls from other destinations in Mallorca, which help in the effort to consolidate Magaluf’s positioning as a fun destination, but with an emphasis on health and safety.

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