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Monday, June 22, 2020

In the South of Tenerife, the 'new normality' will take longer to arrive

Sunbeds at La Caleta

Thirty German tourists arrived yesterday afternoon at Reina Sofía. It was the first tourist flight after more than three months of the state of alarm. An insignificant figure, but that at least opens up air traffic to make the so-called 'new normal' a reality in the South of Tenerife, where everything suggests that it will arrive much later than other places on the island that do not depend so much on the economy generated by the hotel complexes.

Although those first flights have started arriving in Tenerife, the truth is that this summer, there will be very few hotels that open their doors and, in any case, they will do so at a lower capacity and as "training" for the winter season, in hope of making their reopening profitable, rescuing their furloughed workers, although the hoteliers' association, Ashotel, has requested that the furlough last, at least, until December.

While hoteliers and restaurateurs yearn for the English, German, Italian, Russian and Belgian visitors, the people of Tenerife take advantage of the weekends to settle, more comfortably, on the southern beaches, in some cases under capacity control (Candelaria, Güímar or Arona) and in others with freedom, as occurs in Granadilla de Abona.

Yesterday, the first day of the new normal, there was a exodus to the south by many residents from Santa Cruz and La Laguna, but it was not much different from the previous weekend. Despite the less restrictive measures, not many leisure or gastronomy venues in El Médano, Los Cristianos or Playa de Las Américas opened up, also despite the fact that many municipalities have prohibited bathers from bringing food to the beach.

Another Sunday, the caravans and motorhomes along the coast were also noted, especially those of Güímar, Arico, Granadilla and Guía de Isora, pending that there is ever an authentic regulation on this type of tourism.

The new normality, although it allows events of up to 1,000 people in open spaces and 300 in closed spaces, has not yet reached the southern pubs and discotheques with force, because the majority do not plan to open, “and less when they prohibit dancing” , said a well-known businessman from the San Telmo area, in Los Cristianos.

For now, as Mary Carmen Riverol, who has lived in Los Cristianos for more than 30 years, recalled, “nothing has changed, almost everything is still closed and it is sad to see empty streets, such as the Golden Mile, where the stores are still unopened." Siam Park is still closed, although they have already announced from the company that it will shortly be able to open its doors. That will bring us closer to normality.


Although the presence of bathers is more noticeable in the southern coves, especially those that are accustomed to receiving domestic tourism, the truth is that the arrival of the 'new normality' has left few variations with respect to sectors such as hotels and restaurants, who are still reluctant to open, waiting for international tourists.

In places like Candelaria, El Médano or Los Cristianos, to give three examples, restaurants and terraces in the avenues and squares near the sea had a large movement of customers, not so in Playa de las Américas, where you can count on your fingers the number of businesses that have opened to the public, while the hotels, large and small, remain closed, waiting for the month of July in some cases and mostly after August.

Places that are normally crowded, such as the Golden Mile, continue as wastelands, while the only queues are in supermarkets or waiting for a table on a terrace to be free, despite the fact that capacity has been increased, because of maintaining the 1.5 meter distance.

En el Sur la ‘normalidad’ tardará más en llegar