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Lloret de Mar hotels take the bull by the horns to have water

Lloret de Mar, one of the most important tourist municipalities in Catalonia, has generated a large number of headlines in the press this week after it was announced that the Hospitality Guild and the city council will buy a portable desalination plant to supply themselves with water. It is worth remembering that the Generalitat has prohibited the total or partial filling of hotel and campsite swimming pools in 202 municipalities due to the drought emergency situation. Enric Dotraspresident of the aforementioned union, explains in this interview the details of the operation and the reasons that led them to take this unusual measure.

Enric Dotras. Source: Lloret de Mar Hospitality Guild.

The purchase of the portable desalination plant in Lloret de Mar has caused a great stir. Did you expect it?

Yes, there have been many reactions. Really, this acquisition is going to involve a great effort, but it is going to be a good thing for the destination. The purchase of a mobile desalination plant is a solution that from the first moment we are carrying out jointly with the Lloret de Mar City Council. What happens is that, to gain agility, we are contemplating the possibility of paying for the project or advancing some money from the private sector.

Next to Lloret de Mar, in the municipality of Blanes, a desalination plant has existed for twenty years. The Catalan and Spanish governments have announced that they will expand this facility, which will allow it to multiply its current production capacity by four. But that project, of 220 million euros, will not be finished until 2028 or 2029. I imagine that you cannot wait that long…

Indeed. Every day that passes plays against us in the international markets we address. Since the drought emergency situation decree came out in Catalonia, a month ago, we have already started working because it is clear that we need a solution. We couldn’t sit idly by. What do we do, do we close the hotels again like in the pandemic? The Generalitat told us that we could only use seawater, but filling the pools with seawater directly poses a very big problem.

Because?

Firstly, because of all the microplastics and microorganisms that are in the sea. Secondly, the use of seawater in swimming pools would also harm drains and machinery.

So we said to ourselves, since they let us use sea water, we threw our hats in the ring, bought a desalination water treatment plant, let’s do it as agilely and quickly as possible, and solve the problem. But not only the problem of swimming pools. That is why we have proposed acquiring a larger mobile desalination plant in order to generate drinking water that can also be consumed by the residents of Lloret de Mar.

But then, that desalination plant will have to connect to the municipality’s supply network…

Clear. It didn’t seem right to us to make an investment just to fill the pools and then there might be water restrictions in the town. That is why the decision was made to purchase a larger mobile desalination plant, so that the water generated, which will be suitable for human consumption, can be distributed throughout the municipality, as long as we obtain the relevant authorizations from the Catalan Water Agency. Water. We are working on this project to have the plant up and running within three months.

Does this technology already work in other places?

Yes. Mobile desalination plants have already been operating in the municipality of Port de la Selva for more than two years, supplying water to the entire population. It is the same company we are talking to.

And we are talking about the purchase of a desalination plant, not a rental?

It will be a purchase, indeed. It will cost approximately 1.5 million euros, including installation. It must be taken into account that tanks, connecting pipes, etc. must also be provided. The municipal technical services of Lloret de Mar are working on this part.

lloret de mar hoteliers desalination plant

Swimming pool in a hotel establishment in Lloret de Mar. Source: Hotel L’Azure.

Will the portable desalination plant have a useful life of X years?

It will have the useful life we ​​want as long as we maintain it well. It is a 50 cubic meter/hour desalination plant.

And where will it be installed?

Because we are now in an emergency situation, the plant will initially be located next to the beach. Later it will be moved to another more distant point, which will require installing pipes underground.

You have previously referred to the impact that the reports broadcast by television in Germany, the United Kingdom and France about the drought in Catalonia are having on international markets. What type of questions are hoteliers in Lloret de Mar receiving from international tour operators? ?

The most frequently asked question we are receiving is whether the pools will be open this season and if there will be enough water for your clients to shower, etc. We are explaining to them that we have launched the desalination plant project, to give them full assurance that there will be no problems. We have a lot at stake. Thousands of direct and indirect jobs in our destination depend on tourism.

And in short, hoteliers have decided to take the bull by the horns…

Companies cannot stand still in this situation. We have to get ahead. And if help arrives later, it is welcome. Of course, we hope they don’t put any brakes on our wheels, since the investment comes from the municipality.

In any case, he has commented before that they will need permits from the Catalan Water Agency…

It wouldn’t make any sense for them to object, considering the moment we are in, with water restrictions. Well, if they object, turn it off and let’s go. Also, we didn’t invent anything. As I said, in Port de la Selva this same system is already in operation, supplying water to the entire population. What we do is move forward and look for solutions.


Lloret de Mar Hotel News:
– The Indotek Group buys the H Top Royal Beach hotel in Lloret de Mar
– Fergus grows in Lloret de Mar and adds a third hotel, the Clipper
– The Hotel Monterrey in Lloret de Mar joins the Meliá portfolio
– Pierre & Vacances opens the Lloret Santa Rosa Hotel after investing €2.2 M
– Marsol Hotels will maintain its pace of investments in Lloret de Mar
– Casa Coco, new adults-only boutique hotel in Lloret de Mar
– The new L’Azure hotel marks a turning point in Lloret de Mar
– Hotels that reinvent themselves and transform a destination: the Lloret de Mar case

Source: Hosteltur

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