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Balearics become most important luxury travel destination

Mallorca, the island of the rich and beautiful. At least for the latter, this slogan could become increasingly true, because so-called luxury or premium tourism seems to be gaining a foothold on the island. This is the hope of the Balearic government, which has been promoting the motto “class instead of mass” for years and therefore advertises Mallorca and the neighbouring islands abroad as a high-quality travel destination. This was recently the case at the International Luxury Travel Market in Cannes, which takes place every year in December and is claimed to be the world’s most important trade fair for luxury travel. There, at the last edition, the Balearic Islands presented themselves as the largest premium destination in the Mediterranean.

“We have become a real reference in this tourism segment,” explained Andreu Serra, tourism commissioner in Mallorca’s Island Council. The island offers everything it needs for this, he said, such as exclusive accommodation as well as a high-quality gastronomic, cultural and complementary leisure offer. Serra has the backing of the regional business association “Mallorca Essentially”, which has also been working on marketing luxury holiday offers abroad since 2013. In addition to golf courses, the initiative includes five-star hotels, gourmet restaurants and other providers of exclusive services on the island.

According to “Mallorca Essentially”, premium holidaymakers now generate around one billion euros in turnover per year. The association puts the average daily expenditure of a luxury tourist on Mallorca at around 5,000 euros. “The island offers a range of services for premium holidaymakers that is unique in Europe,” says association president Jesús Cuartero. In addition to the current total of 59 luxury hotels with a five-star seal, this also includes the 21 golf courses and more than 30 yacht clubs as well as the entire Tramuntana mountains, which are increasingly being taken under the boots of luxury tourists.

A clear indication of the current premium holiday boom on the island for both Andreu Serra of the island council and Jesús Cuartero of Mallorca Essentially is the increased number of private jets at Palma’s Son Sant Joan airport last year. An increase in take-offs and landings of around 95 per cent was registered there last year compared to 2019. During the peak season between June and September, most of the slots at the Son Sant Joan private jet terminal were fully booked. In the ranking of nationalities of premium holidaymakers, Germans top the list, followed by Britons, Swedes, Swiss and Austrians, according to the tourism department of Mallorca’s island council.

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