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Ibiza's Parador scheme back on track?

Castle conversion work gets green light, again!

If you've been reading Spotlight news as long as I've been writing it then you'll know that we bring you regular updates – every three or four years – on the three year scheme to convert Ibiza's castle into a Parador. For the uninitiated, a Parador is a Spanish state run hotel, usually in an iconic converted building – palaces, monasteries, castles and the like – and has a restaurant specialising in excellent local cuisine.

Way back in 2004 we told you about the plans to convert the castle and in 2008 we ran the story of the start of the project. It was going to be finished by 2011 and cost roughly €17,499,462.89 to complete the 72 room hotel. However a slump in the economy made funds difficult to find, and complications arose in the construction works when extremely important archaeological finds were made under the castle.

The remnants of the old Ibiza city discovered in the foundations were significant enough to demand a complete redesign of the project so that they could be not only examined, but be put on show in situ for visitors to see. Consequently work ground to a halt on the conversion.

Now the Secretary of State for Tourism, Isabel Borrego, has announced that the National Government will provide funds to complete the project once new plans have been drawn up for it. The new scheme will be chosen by the College of Architects in Madrid with at least one representative from Ibiza, from a competition to find the best plans.

As yet no time scale has been mentioned for completion. However we can tell you that the aesthetics of the castle have been improved no end in the last few days as the rather ugly television transmitter up top has been removed. Two new transmitters elsewhere are providing vital TV signals to the good people of Ibiza so there's no need for the one sitting on top of the town's most iconic monuments.

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