UK Government's international travel forecasts mark start of peak season
The town of Estepona will strengthen its tourist offer this spring with the opening of the luxury hotels Ikos and El Pilar in May, and despite the pandemic, investors continue to bet on the destination, whose start of the high season is marked by the forecasts of the UK Government in terms of travel.
Thus, the five-star Grand Luxe Ikos Andalusia hotel is scheduled to open on 17 May, the date from which the British will foreseeably be able to travel abroad, as "we are very dependent on the English market", as highlighted by the Greek group.
The tourist establishment will be the first of the brand on the Iberian Peninsula under the "all-inclusive luxury" concept, with a varied offer comprising 411 rooms and suites spread over 7 buildings, "7 restaurants, SPA, 8 swimming pools" or a large area for sports. In addition, the hotel will have menus prepared by prestigious chefs, a menu with "300 different wines, the "all-inclusive cocktails" or "24-hour room service".
To this must be added the complementary offer with "services outside the hotel included", such as visits to "restaurants in Estepona and Puerto Banús as part of the stay", "green feet at Los Naranjos Golf Club", free entry to museums in Málaga or a "mini car for a day for free".
The Ikos group has invested around 150 million euros and foresees the generation of around 650 jobs, although this "initial forecast" will have to be adapted to the existing "occupation". In addition, it will implement a prevention protocol against Covid-19, which includes a "rapid antigen test" at the entrance.
On the other hand, the investment group Maravilla 1882 S. L. is planning to open the 4-star El Pilar Andalucía Hotel Boutique on 15 May, located in the Plaza de las Flores in the heart of Estepona's old town, for which it has earmarked an investment of more than 10 million, according to the director, Antonio Hernández.
The establishment will be open all year round and will offer "35 rooms and one suite, of which "9 are triple rooms" and "3 premium rooms with terrace and jacuzzi on the top floor", as well as a SPA, an events room and 2 patios with Andalusian architecture. On the other hand, the gastronomic offer includes "4 very diversified restaurants" open to the local public and a bar on the terrace with "spectacular views".
Among them, he highlighted a "temple of Iberian pork", an Asian restaurant and an English establishment with a "wide range of beers", as the group will have a craft brewery at the 5-star Maravilla Estepona Palace, whose work has not yet been completed.
Hernández pointed out that the investment group is "expectant about the current situation" marked by the Covid-19 pandemic, noting that the initial project has not been modified by the health crisis, but "we have outlined the facilities to adapt them to the current reality" and will apply "protocols" of prevention against the virus among staff and customers.
The town, a standard bearer for quality tourism
The Estepona Town Hall has been working in recent years to make the city a "standard bearer for quality tourism", which is reflected in the immediate opening of luxury hotel establishments such as 'Ikos Andalusia' and 'El Pilar Andalucía Hotel Boutique', according to the mayor, José María García Urbano.
The mayor emphasised that the recovery of the old town through the integral remodelling of more than 130 streets, the creation of new modern facilities and the legal security now offered by the Consistory have generated the necessary dynamics to attract investment and initiatives of interest to the municipality.
In this sense, the mayor pointed out that the local government "will continue to support and facilitate the implementation of projects that contribute to the activation of the local economy, that generate employment and that follow the guidelines that make Estepona an example of quality of life for residents and visitors".
The Consistory promoted the project 'Estepona, Garden of the Costa del Sol' to transform the old town and turn it into one of the main tourist attractions of the city.