HOWEVER little Villajoyosa wants the Varadero beach restaurant, it can apparently do nothing to prevent it being built.
Bartrom SAU has all the necessary permits although, ironically, successive councils could have halted the project but failed to act. The Varadero problem began in 2009 when the Ministry of Public Works compulsorily purchased land at Varadero beach following amendments to the Coastal Laws. This now lies within the protected right-of-way strip measured from the water’s edge.
Instead of cash compensation, the owner was granted a 60-year concession to use the land. The council opposed this arrangement but when the two years later the development plans went on public display the council raised no objections. When Bartrom applied for the concession and the town hall failed to respond, the company interpreted this as consent, an assumption later backed by the courts.
Another opportunity to halt the project was missed in 2013, when the municipal architect voiced misgivings that the restaurant covered a larger area than was permitted. Not only does it appear impossible to reverse the decision, but Bartrom is now reclaiming €113,000 from Villajoyosa Town Hall for loss of earnings and fees paid for an activity it has not been able to carry out.