THE Valencian Community has always been famous for its nightlife and party spirit, dating back to the infamous Ruta del bakalao techno craze in the 80s that drew revellers from all over Spain.
However, the pandemic has long tentacles that seem to reach into every area of life – and Valencian clubbing is no different.
Growing numbers of discotheques and clubs are up for sale throughout the region, including numerous historic locations that had been running for over 20 years.
On a national scale, more than 200 establishments have this year been forced to hang up the ‘For sale’ sign due to the severe crisis engulfing the tourism and leisure industries, with asking prices ranging from €50,000 to €6 million.
All Spanish regions are affected except Ceuta, Melilla and La Rioja, where there are no registered businesses of this type.
Many others have been transformed into cafés with seated customers on the dancefloor enjoying afternoon coffee instead of late-night drinks.
Within the Valencian Community, property sites list buildings for sale across the three provinces, including Gandia, Benidorm, Pego, Alicante and Valencia cities, San Juan and Villareal (with the third most expensive establishment in Spain, costing €4.5 million).
Analysts reveal that there are already numerous purchase operations under way, with many more set to be launched next year as potential buyers wait to see how the health crisis develops and prices continue to drop.
Estimates suggest that many more bars, pubs, clubs, discos and events halls will be forced to shut down in 2021 due to ongoing financial pressure, which is predicted to affect up to 300 of the 1,100 establishments currently registered throughout the Valencian Community.
With fixed expenses staying the same but income dropping by between 25 and 30% compared to pre-COVID figures, desperate managers are struggling to remain afloat.
Since the weekend of December 12, clubs have been allowed to open from 12.00 to 23.00 hrs, while discotheques can do so from 17.00 to 23.00 hrs.
Crowd numbers inside the establishments have been limited to one third, with dancefloors closed off and no bar access. Tables are set out respecting the recommended social distance, and the maximum capacity on patios and in external areas has been halved.