By Charlie Loran •
Published: 28 Sep 2020 • 17:23
IT’S true things have changed a little down here in Benalmadena on the Costa Del Sol because of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s not the first time things have changed though, this town has been evolving for years. The Benalmadena Community needs you now more than ever to support it.
Benalmadena is unique in so many ways, but it’s the sense of community here which keeps visitors coming back for more. Every bar and restaurant has its regulars who don’t just return during their holiday, they return day after day, week after week, month after month and year after year. You see, not very many people holiday just once to Benalmadena, the majority of visitors consider it their second home, with many actually owning second homes within the town.
It’s unusual if you’ve been here more than once to walk into a bar and not be on first name terms with the owners and staff, there are many well-established venues which have been accommodating Brits on the Costa Del Sol since way back to the 1950s. If you want to look further back you’ll discover Benalmadena has always been open to welcoming different cultures, Benalmádena welcomed the arrival of the Phoenicians in the 7th and 8th centuries BC. At this time an exchange of cultures began that focused on marketing and technique. These Phoenicians come into contact with the indigenous inhabitants of the area and set up fishing factories and trade focused on minerals due to the wealth of their iron and silver area.
Since then the welcoming of foreigners to Benalmadena has shaped the town into such a melting pot of cultures, it’s a community of acceptance and open-mindedness.
Right now the Benalmadena Community needs you!
There may not have been a COVID-19 pandemic before but there has been plenty of events which have stopped tourists from visiting, but the Benalmadena community is made of tough stuff and bounces back every time.
I spoke with Agnes Donnachie, who most readers will know, is the owner of Capones with her husband Bruce. Agnes is a proud ambassador for Benalmadena and is a very generous member of its community. If there’s a charity event going on, you can guarantee she’s onboard helping to spread the word, collecting donations, donating herself either financially, with her time or with her invaluable advice.
It’s sad to see that Capones is up for sale, but as Agnes said during our catch up on Friday, September, 25, “Benalmadena is still open for business,” and she’s absolutely right. Every bar which can be open is open and waiting to welcome you. They’ve cut back on staff, the opening hours are slightly different but they’re all still here, with a cold beer, welcoming smile and a sunny terrace.
On the subject of opening hours, Agnes highlighted something which I hadn’t actually thought about.
How many of us go on holiday and have so many late nights we end up saying,
“I’m going to need a holiday when I get home to recover?”
This new and ever-adapting Benalmadena is a true holiday right now ‘because’ of the opening and closing times in place to stop the spread of COVID-19, it’s not less of a holiday it’s actually more of one.
You may find you finally get a proper tan instead of sleeping off the night before through the best hours of sunshine too.
We’ve been burning the candle at both ends for years on holidays and it’s no wonder we have the holiday blues when we get home, it’s the come-down from a week or two of minimum sleep, binge drinking and overeating. This new normal we find ourselves living in gives holidaymakers the chance to fully relax now.
Days at the beach, out earlier for dinner and drinks and then in bed before 1am, there’s less drunken loutish behaviour, making it so much nicer for families to stay out a little later with their children. It’s time to explore more, we’re creatures of habit. Just because your favourite little bar may have closed for the season this year, there is another one a few feet away, whose owners are just as lovely, drinks just as cheap and food just as tasty.
It’s worth taking note of some alternative things to do, Benalmádena offers some beautiful days out, to visit some beautiful local architecture and heritage, places such as the Buddhist Stupa of Enlightenment, Colomares Castle and Bil Bil Castle.
The EWN is dedicated to supporting and helping its community and readers, for this reason, we have decided to start an online petition, this way as myself and Agnes discussed, residents don’t need to protest in the streets taking up police time and it’s safer for everyone maintaining social distances and removing any risk of upset, health risks or violence.
The Benalmadena Community needs us all, so this petition is to allow ALL bars to open between the hours stipulated in the regulations regardless of the premises having the ability to serve food or not. If we receive 2,000 signatures we as a paper will present the petition to the Town Hall in hope for some positive change for Benalmadena and its community. Click this link to sign and support!
One thing you will notice about Benalmadena and its community is its solidarity, the lack of information and help for ex-pats from the government has left many searching for support from each other. On social media sites, you’ll find groups offering bar owners support and advice, charity events taking place to show support and help local musicians and artists who are also being left without much work during these difficult times along with everyone else.
So, if you’re unsure if it’s worth visiting Benalmadena this year, let us reassure you that it really is. Benalmadena is still open for business and its ex-pat community needs your help and support through these difficult times. If you can’t make it this year, don’t worry, its wonderful community will be here waiting to welcome you back when you are able.
We hope you enjoyed this article “The Benalmadena Community needs you! ”.
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Manchester born mummy with a two year old diva (2020), living on the Costa del Sol for just short of a decade.
Former chef and restaurateur, holistic health fanatic and lover of long words.
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