Court declares Lanzarote hotel “illegal”

LAST UPDATED: 6 Aug, 2007 @ 13:43
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Canary ‘Algarrobico’ built on virgin shores

A 747-bed hotel built on virgin sands on Lanzarote is illegal, according to the Supreme Court of the Canary Islands.

The Papagayo Arena hotel, which locals have dubbed ‘the Algarrobico of the Canary Islands’ – in reference to the controversial tourist complex built on protected land near Almería, has had its building licence revoked by judges at the region’s highest court (TSJC).


The 12-storey complex, close to the town of Yaiza, shares its grounds with another “illegal” hotel – the Dream Gran Castillo, which also had its building licence revoked by the court earlier this year.

Both complexes have been built upon beaches protected by regional land laws and exceed height restrictions.

“The construction of this macro-hotel eliminated public access to the Colorados beach. It also destroyed green belt land and exceeds height restrictions by 50 per cent,” spokesman for the island’s government said.

According to claims in newspaper El Pais, the court is investigating Yaiza mayor José Fernández Reyes for alleged corruption and money laundering in relation to the granting of a works licence for the Papagayo Arena hotel.

The legal ruling comes as a regional report claims there are up to 12,000 illegal hotel beds on Lanzarote.

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