Magaluf closes bars and clubs for summer after Brits party to excess
Brits in Magaluf have been pictured enjoying their last drinks before bars were closed until September amid concerns of a tourist-caused coronavirus risk.
Popular nightspots in Punta Ballena were shut down this week following a shock decision from regional governors. The Balearic Islands Tourism Minister said as he announced the closures: ‘I think it’s a sufficiently clear message to those practising the type of tourism of excess we don’t want here, that they shouldn’t come because those types of establishments are not going to be able to open.
‘If those holidaymakers go to other areas, and if there are businesses that promote that type of clientele, they will also be closed and they will also be prohibited. We will not hesitate a single second when it comes to doing everything we need to to guarantee the health security of our citizens and our economic reactivation.
‘We are a safe destination. The vast majority of our citizens, business leaders and holidaymakers, who are making a great effort, do not deserve the sort of images we have seen over the past few days and they do not deserve those types of holidaymakers and those types of businessmen.’
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A spokesperson for Calvia Council, which has spent years trying to improve Magaluf’s image, said the closure of the strips had been ordered by the higher regional government.
They said: ‘It’s a difficult and tough measure but one that is necessary because of the potential for putting public health and the economy at risk.’
Referring to footage of Brits jumping on a car outside a fast food takeaway in Punta Ballena Street in the early hours of last Friday morning, they added: ‘There are images that have appeared over the past few days, linked to drunken tourism, that put public health and the economy at risk.
‘We have spent many years fighting against this type of tourism and this year it has an added component which is protecting public health. The decisions we take today will determine not only what happens this holiday season but next year as well.
‘In Calvia we want tourism of course but we don’t want the type of tourist that only comes here to commit excesses, only those holidaymakers who come here to enjoy themselves responsibly and who have a guarantee they will find security here as well.’
A heavy police presence could be seen on the party strips ahead of the closures on Wednesday, but a number of tourists still managed to squeeze in a last round of drinks.
There is no suggestion that any of the holidaymakers pictured in and around Punta Ballena were involved in bad behaviour.
Regional health minister Patricia Gomez said of the three street closures: ‘You have to look at the evidence. Where are the Covid-19 outbreaks? We see everywhere they are the result of people massing in groups in small spaces for some time without protective measures.’
She added in an interview with local media: ‘We can’t put a police officer on each tourist to avoid that happening and believe me, in areas like the streets we have closed, it’s very easy for 20 to 30 people to group together in a second, do something stupid and post it on social media.’
With additional reporting from Natalia Penza.
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