3 Nov, 2023 @ 18:30
2 mins read

Benidorm refuses to host illegal migrants in its hotels as a part of Spain-wide proposal following a surge in boat arrivals

HOTELS on the Spanish mainland have been approached to provide rooms for the wave of migrants arriving in the Canary Islands. 

Human rights organisations are making requests to hotels, including in popular holiday destinations such as Alicante and Benidorm.

They are asking hotels to provide rooms at around £35 per night to offer proper housing for asylum seekers, who are forced to endure miserable conditions when they first arrive on Spanish shores.

Currently, some hotels in the Valencia region have indicated a willingness to put up the new arrivals.

Rescatados 61 Migrantes Subsaharianos A Bordo De Una Patera En Las Costas De Tenerife
A canoe with 61 sub-Saharan migrants on board sailing towards the island of Tenerife in 2021 (Photo by Mercedes Menendez / Pacific Press)

However, Benidorm, the well-known British tourist hotspot, has declined to participate on the grounds that the request has not come from official government authorities. 

The Valencian Hotel Association, HOSBEC, said they were willing to help but emphasised that they would not participate until a well-organised plan is put on place by the Spanish government.

“In the last 72 hours, several hoteliers in the Valencian Community have expressed their bewilderment after being contacted by external organisations offering flexible accommodation contracts for refugees in the coming weeks, adapted to each establishment’s economic and service conditions,” said a spokesperson from HOSBEC. 

The association confirmed that no hotels in Benidorm are assisting at this time, though they are aware that in other tourist destinations within the Valencian community refugees are already staying in affiliated hotels or will do so in the near future.

The migration crisis in the Canary Islands reached unprecedented levels in October, with nearly 15,000 people arriving on the coasts of the islands.

The figure surpasses even the numbers from 2006, when thousands attempted to reach islands like Tenerife, Lanzarote, and Gran Canaria. 

Benidorm Hotels See 85 Per Cent Drop In July For Overnight Stays On Spain  S Costa Blanca
Hotels in Benidorm are not keen to host migrants who took the perilous journey to the Canary Islands by boat until the government organises the plan

So far this year, migrants have continued to arrive in the Canary Islands. 

In total, 44,404 irregular migrants have reached Spain, representing a 57.5% increase (16,208 more individuals) compared to the same period last year.

The peak number of irregular migrant arrivals was recorded in 2018 when 57,498 people reached the Spanish coasts.

The recurring crisis has put additional pressure on authorities to find temporary accommodations for undocumented immigrants awaiting processing before potential repatriation. 

Existing camps are overcrowded, with approximately 150 people forced to spend their first night in the garage of a police station in south Tenerife, under appalling conditions.

The situation was marked by broken pipes hastily fixed with electrical tape, leading to sewage leakage and an unpleasant smell, creating a risk of accidents and the spread of infectious diseases.


Walter Finch

Walter - or Walt to most people - is a former and sometimes still photographer and filmmaker who likes to dig under the surface.
A NCTJ-trained journalist, he came to the Costa del Sol - Gibraltar hotspot from the Daily Mail in 2022 to report on organised crime, corruption, financial fraud and a little bit of whatever is going on.
Got a story? walter@theolivepress.es

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