AS if things weren’t difficult enough!
Now, some of our over-paid and over-here American cousins have come up with the brilliant idea of creating a replica Las Vegas gambling strip on the Costa del Sol.
I was going to write that to do so would undermine the entire culture of towns like Torremolinos, Marbella and Torrox but, upon reflection, that may not be a bad outcome.
I suppose that another mega hotel with gaming facilities might be beneficial to the local economy inasmuch that it will create a few jobs.
However, I am just a trifle suspicious when I read that the chairman of the group that wants to build this “gaming and hotels playground” is looking for big concessions on planning permission.
This usually means that the proposal is for something that is much too big for the site, much too close to the briney and is likely to clog up the local infrastructure for ever after.
When they consider the two or three interminable years that it will take to complete the construction phase, three more years being investigated for building irregularities and another four of judicial pondering, our colonial cousins will probably decide to take their investment dollars back home again.
Anyone who has spent time in the real Las Vegas will be aware that gaming and hotels playgrounds are there for one reason and one reason only: that is to remove hard earned dosh from punters’ wallets in order to nurture and grow it in the safe environment of the playgrounds’ bank vaults.
All great fun if you have a substantial disposable income and, I must admit, the accompanying cabarets of good-looking hostesses dispensing liberal quantities of alcoholic beverages is enjoyable in the extreme.
But, come the harsh light of dawn, the cost of picking up the loose dice, loose chips and loose women might outweigh the value of the investment.
Personally I don’t do serious gambling beyond the occasional flutter on the ponies.
This is a lesson learnt from The Lady Bartie’s family, all of whom were scions of the banking industry.
They only gambled when they knew they would win or that some gullible government would underwrite their losses.
Surely that could not be the intention here.