Skip to main content

How Benidorm's city council is unwittingly expelling LGBT tourism from its city

Gay tourism in Benidorm dates back to 1962, when Pretex opened its doors, it was the very first bar with a completely gay atmosphere in the entire Alicante area. Since then, many more bars have appeared and disappeared in what is now the touristic capital of Costa Blanca.

Most of these bars have been located in the oldest part of Benidorm for decades. They are small but very cozy places located in an authentic holiday location, the narrow, sometimes steep streets of an old fishing village. A place where tourists from the LGBT community from all over Europe loved to go.

Picture by Pixabay

Indeed, loved to go, because in recent years it seems that this form of tourism is no longer welcome in these city streets. What's more, in recent years the small bars have been seen more as a nuisance. That's a shame when you consider that that kind of tourism has made Benidorm what it is today.

The real problem is not the bars in the old town center, but the people who have moved there, they are annoyed by the nighttime noise that such a bar can cause. Something logical, entertainment and fun simply involve a bit more noise. The question then is, why do you come to live there if you know that your downstairs neighbor is a night bar? You wouldn't live next to an airport and then complain that the planes make you blast out of your seat and keep you up at night, right? Not to mention the masses of people that such an airport can bring about.

However, it seems more like the city of Benidorm has chosen to sell its old city center to people who want to turn it into an exclusive neighborhood, something like the nearby Altea Hills, a status symbol for second homes and real estate offices with a lot of money. And with money comes peace and quiet and of course also the sometimes huge cars that have to be able to maneuver easily in the small streets of the old town. There is therefore no longer any room for authenticity, respect for history, and built-up traditions.

Agreed, there is also another reason why gay visits to these types of bars are declining, which is the normalization of homosexuality in general. You can go anywhere as gay, bisexual or lesbian these days. It has become the most normal thing in the world. But sometimes you want to be completely among your companions, especially on vacation and certainly in a place with many years of LGBT history.

Hopefully, the city of Benidorm will realize in time that there are now exclusive neighborhoods all over the world for more wealthy tourists and hopefully they will not forget where it all started, just to go on holiday under the Spanish sun with friends or like-minded people and escape from their everyday life rut at home.


Popular posts from this blog

Pride week in Benidorm

Every year in September there is a fantastic pride week in Benidorm. With a well-established and welcoming gay village set in and around the narrow, picturesque streets of the Benidorm Old Town, the gem of the Costa Blanca plays host to many people's favorite event on the LGBTQ+ calendar, the Benidorm Pride Festival! Famous for its beautiful beaches, fantastic weather, and fabulous nightlife, Benidorm is one of Spain's most popular holiday resorts, loved by visitors from all over Europe and beyond. This famous LGBTQ+ Pride event completely fills the city street and hotels so you need to book well in advance. D on't forget your best rainbow outfits and attributes to make the city even more rainbow-colored. Picture by Harry Fabel It has grown into a week-long event, focusing on the key ingredients that make Benidorm unique. The Benidorm Pride Festival has well earned its recognition as the European Summer Closing Pride! Picture by Harry Fabel Fun, Friendly, and a little bit

The new Mirador of Benidorm

The famous and much-photographed viewpoint of Benidorm has been completely renewed. The archaeological excavations are over and the city has given the square a facelift so that the selfie-making visitors can once again enjoy the fantastic view. Picture by Harry Fabel In June 2019, archaeological excavation work was started at the Mirador del Castillo, meaning that it was closed to visitors throughout the summer. A search was done, among other things, for the remains of the old "Castillo de Benidorm" that was destroyed 200 years ago by the British. On the well-known large rock that separates the two beaches stood a fortress that had the function of defending the city against the raids of Algerian and Berber pirates in the 14th, 15th, and 16th centuries. Later the Castle was abandoned and nowadays there are only a few remains of walls on the rocks of the lookout point, which is also known as the "Balcony of the Mediterranean Sea". Picture by Harry Fab

Gay friendly hotels in Benidorm

Spain is probably one of the most friendly LGBT countries in the world. So traveling to Benidorm will give you no problems at all when you are gay. But which hotel do you choose in an already very gay-friendly city? Picture by Pixabay It is recommended to book a hotel right in the old town because this is where the gayest bars, restaurants, and clubs are located. The insiders call it the Gay Village. The Gay Village is located in the oldest part of the city and consists of about 4 streets. There are about 15 gay businesses in that area. Their numbers can vary, some close and others open, it is a constant change. Some other gay businesses are in close proximity to the Village. Most local gay people themselves are working in the old town. Here is a list of hotels you could consider booking your holiday based on their location and great service. Just keep in mind that there are lots more hotels to choose from in the Benidorm old town. Hotel Voramar Hotel Madeira Hotel Villa del Mar