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Hotel refurbishment and expansion - the Luna Soláqua and the SunSet Albufeira Sport & Health Resort boost space for booming Algarve

alfamarAlbufeira’s Hotel Soláqua has been acquired by Luna Hotels & Resorts and will be called Luna Soláqua after a refit.

The hotel cost €12 million to buy and according to Luna Hotels & Resorts, the four star unit is firmly in the ‘sun and sand’ market sector.

"Like all units acquired by Luna Hotels & Resorts, Luna Solaqua will undergo a process of adaptation to the brand, in terms of standards and the staff taking in the company ethos.

At the end of the current summer season, the Luna Solaqua will be completely refurbished at a cost of €750,000.

Over at of Falésia, a three thousand bed project is planned for the old Alfamar hotel, in an area between the beaches of Falésia and Rocha Baixinha, Albufeira.

The Sunset Albufeira Sport & Health Resort, the old Alfamar, involves an investment of €119 million if the environmental impact statement is passed and the public consultation process does not throw up anything untoward, which it is unlikely to as the process ends on 11th August and was announced in the media only yesterday, August 8th.

Except for the urban-tourist areas already built at the Alfamar hotel and adjacent sports facilities, all the other building developments are in conflict with the territorial management instruments in force, namely PROTAL, POOC Burgau-Vilamoura, PDM Albufeira, RAN and REN.

Much of what remains of the Pinhal do Concelho, which is part of the pine forest on the sandy substrate of the Algarve's coastal zone, is considered a priority conservation habitat by European and national legislation.

As thre project has a PIN status and the CCDR-Algarve is happy to ride roughshod over its own rules to benefit any pet developer, the huge plot, some 95 hectares will end up with space for 3,532 beds, with 2,532 already in place in the Alfamar hotel which needs complete refurbishment.

This is a big project for Libertas-Investimento Imobiliário and the Sun House groups which want to focus on "residential health and sports tourism."

With this in mind, the owners will expand existing sports areas and to set up a high-performance training centre to "support sportsmen and coaching staff" hoping for "first-league teams.”

The project includes a rural hotel and something called a 'farmers club' with a riding centre. Organic agricultural products will be grown and detached properties will have their own vegetable gardens. The development also will provide health services and physical rehab.

The Alfamar was targeted by the Germans as a suitable way of spending money after the Ferrostaal submarine deal was signed. German companies were meant to spend €600 million in Portugal after the Portuguese State spent over €1 billion on two over-priced German submarines.

Court cases proved the Germans bribed their way into the deal. The promised ‘counterpart’ spending never happened. The minister of the economy in charge of the deal, insisted the counterpart deals were on the point of going ahead, even up until the point when he was sacked.

Nothing has since been heard of this German spending commitment.