Palma de Mallorca, 20th Oct 10
MALLORCA CELEBRATES OVER 20 YEARS OF RURAL TOURISM - AGRO TURISMO ASSOCIATION REPORTS GOOD OCCUPANCY IN 2009
When the Agroturismo Association was first established 21 years ago, they did not know if there really was a market for this type of holiday as Mallorca was primarily perceived by the travelling public as a beach and sun destination. Since that time the organisation has become increasingly successful as tourists discover the beauty of the island’s countryside and experience traditional Mallorcan hospitality in unique settings from mountain retreats to inland rural and seaside locations.
In 1989 the “Agroturismo” Association was first launched on Mallorca by local farmers and families to restore and preserve their old fincas and country estates and maintain family traditions and Mallorcan culture.
Today, Mallorca has a 120 members offering accommodation ranging in size and quality from bed and breakfast on a farm or country estate classified as an agroturismo, to luxury rural and interior hotels. Average prices range from 50 € per night to 375 € and in some exceptional cases up to 1,000 € per night.
Although the global financial crisis has had some impact on the length of stay, generally the members report good occupancy levels throughout 2009 dominated by 40% Germans, 25% British, 15% Spanish and the rest made up of Austrians, Swiss, Dutch, Scandinavian and French.
Rural tourism has regenerated Mallorca’s countryside and villages. A wide range of activities are made available to visitors from walking, mountain climbing, cycling, Mallorcan cookery, bird watching and golf to getting involved with the harvesting of grapes, almonds, olives or oranges.
Many agroturismo properties sell their own produce such as olive oil, jams and wine in attractive bottles which make great gifts.
Wine production has been particularly successful; in the Balearics production has steadily increased over the past 20 years and now over 1,395 hectares (3,447 acres) is given over to growing vines. Currently there are 60 bodegas on Mallorca and even though wine production in Mainland Spain is on the decline, forecasts for the island demonstrate an increase of approximately 18%. Furthermore, wine produced on the island is of an excellent quality which is demonstrated by the awards Mallorcan wines win each year.
Cycling and hiking are the two of the most popular activities in winter time. Some specialist UK tour operators have produced interesting rural packages. For example, Headwater Holidays, offer an eight day holiday called; “Secret Villages of Mallorca” walking between some of the island’s most beautiful, traditional villages dotted along the Tramuntana mountain range. Prices start at £1,207 per person. Information: www.headwater.com
Experience Rural Mallorca from the Air
A series of new helicopter tours have been developed by leading island helicopter operator, Sloane Helicopters. The company works in conjunction with over 15 rural properties in the Agroturismo Association where facilities allow the helicopter to pick up and land clients directly from their accommodation. A “heli picnic” can be organised in many exquisite “secret spots” from the top of a mountain to overlooking an idyllic bay. Prices start from 450€ to include a Robinson R44 helicopter with capacity for three people and pilot plus taxes and fees. The standard picnic hamper starts at 50€ to include a bottle of champagne. Further information: www.sloanemallorca.com
Some examples of rural accommodation/packages:
Cycling, Health & Relax at Can Calco Hotels, Moscari
Located in the heart of the island’s countryside at the foot of the Tramuntana Mountains, the setting of these hotels is perfect for cyclists and their new 7 day package is aimed at cycling groups. The package starts at 495€ per person and includes half board accommodation, special breakfast for athletes and a la carte gourmet dinner each night, a suggested daily cycling programme, access to the hotel spa, transfers from the airport, fully equipped garage for cyclists to keep and repair their bikes. This package is available from February 2011 through to April and throughout October. Information: www.cancalco.com
Read’s Hotel, Santa Maria
For an “upmarket” cycling holiday, Relais Chateaux rated Read’s Hotel offers a special four day cycling package. The hotel’s proximity to the island’s famous mountain range makes is a good base for the keen cyclist. In addition, the hotel’s luxury Vespasian Spa provides cyclists with a top facility for post training recovery and relaxation and it has been selected by various top international cycling teams for winter/spring pre-season training.
The hotel’s luxury cycling package includes four nights accommodation, breakfast, limousine transfer to and from the airport, cycle hire, 3x three course lunch or dinner in Bistro 33, three ESPA fitness massages, energy drinks and bars, use of the Vespasian Spa. Prices start from €1080.00 per person (excluding local tax) based on two people sharing a room. Further information: www.readshotel.com.
Cas Comte - Petit Hotel & Spa, Lloseta
Tucked away beside the Lloseta village town hall is this surprising “petit” hotel with 8 rooms, restaurant and spa. The hotel is open year round and makes an ideal base to explore the rural interior and enjoy the charm of a traditional Mallorcan village with some excellent restaurants. Prices start from 130€ per day per room (based on two people sharing) to include breakfast and entrance to the spa. Further information: www.hotelcascomte.com
For further information, please contact:
Mallorca Tourist Board, Dominique Carroll / Anna Skidmore,
Tel:(+34) 971 725 396 Fax: (+34) 971 713 540
Further Press Releases:
GOOD NEWS FOR MALLORCA IN 2012 (09th Feb 12)
THREE KINGS - THE FESTIVITIES CONTINUE! (05th Jan 12)
FESTIVE SWEETS CAN BE HEAVENLY (05th Jan 12)