According to tourism forecasts, this winter on the Costa Tropical is going to be a bumper one, thanks to the growing influx of Nordic visitors.
One of the problems for our hotels on the Costa Tropical is their having enough trade to keep them open during the winter, which, given our amazing climate, seems strange.
The fact is that the coastal towns have always been dominated by national tourism; i.e., Spanish tourism. Let’s be honest, we live here because it is predominately Spanish, otherwise we would live over in Málaga, where tourism is predominately foreign.
Precisely because tourism has always been Spanish, the coast is largely forgotten outside the summer and major seasonal breaks, such as Easter and Christmas, meaning that hotels are unable to generate enough trade to justify the costs of keeping their doors open 365 days a year.
The Government does run a pensioners’ scheme called Imserso, which provides subsidised holidays for Spanish pensioners during the off-peak seasons. This both provides quality holidays for the elderly and provides enough income for hotels to keep their doors open – nobody is going to get rich, but it pays the salaries and running costs in general.
Now, if your are from the frozen north, the Costa Tropical offers insanely blessed weather for peanuts, compared with what it costs you to live in your homeland during the ice-laden months.
So, sun-seeking Vikings and eager, Costa Tropical hotels have fallen in love and bookings for this winter are solid, bulging and boisterous. Viva el Polo Norte!
December is always a good month for hotels because of the mid-December break and Christmas, so it doesn’t count, but November, January and February are showing 65% occupation figures, so hotel managers are breaking out the party hats and farting cushions in gay abandon.
But it’s an uphill struggle to sell 300 days of sunshine to the incredulous, because, let’s face it, when your thermometer is sniggering below-zero, who would believe that the sneaky Costa Tropical is wearing sunglasses and baring suntanned knees in all their glorious nobbliness?
The end result, fortunately, is that of the 7,800 hotel beds available on the Costa Tropical, most are being slept in during the winter months, whereas before, 2,200 of them would be sulking in reluctant emptiness.
So, Ladies and Gentlemen, next time you see a Viking, even if she/he is wearing socks with his/her flip-flops, be sure to flip the blighter a thumbs-up this winter because the more long-boats the merrier!
(News: Costa Tropical, Granada, Andalucia)