Is it the End for Playa de las Américas?

Posted: April 23, 2009 in Life, Spain, Tenerife, Travel
Tags: , , , , , , ,

You’ve heard it here first, within a few years, maybe sooner, the resort of Playa de las Américas on Tenerife will simply cease to exist.
This news will come as a terrible shock to those millions of Brits who return year after year to enjoy its promise of almost guaranteed sun warming its man-made golden beaches and its lively bars and tribute act heaven nightlife.

For those who consider themselves travellers rather than tourists and for whom the mere mention of those four words Playa-de-la-Américas elicits the same reaction as if they’d just been served a montadito topped with a fresh dog turd, the news is unlikely to ruin their day.

‘So how come I haven’t heard anything about this before?’
I hear you ask. That’s because nobody is admitting it, but it doesn’t take a Robert Langdon to spot the writing on the wall.

Playa de Troya - Once in Las Americas...but no longer

Playa de Troya - Once in Las Americas...but no longer

First it was the rise of Costa Adeje; a few years ago an ambitious young upstart hanging on to PDLA’s wild and reckless shirt tails. But now it has spread its wings, reclaiming parts of the coastline which everyone who holidayed there once knew affectionately, or otherwise, as PDLA.

The invasion has spread as far as the two beaches which are officially still called Playa de las Américas I and Playa de las Américas II, now renamed Playa de Troya I and II lest anyone should think for a second that, god forbid, they are actually in Playa de las Américas.

This little manouvre has worked well with potential visitors who would never dream of staying in such a ‘downmarket’ resort as PDLA, but it’s confused the hell out of those who have happily been holidaying in PDLA for years. I’ve seen outraged debates from some visitors who love their holidays in PDLA, but now find themselves holidaying against their will in Costa Adeje, even though they haven’t actually changed location.

...and if this is no longer PDLA, where the hell is?

...and if this is no longer PDLA, where the hell is?

Technically there’s a valid reason for this; the area which has metamorphised from PDLA into Costa Adeje always was in the municipality of Adeje. Rightly, or wrongly, Costa Adeje has more of an up market image than its neighbour, so from a marketing point, it works in its favour to ‘rebrand’ and I’ve watched with amusement as PDLA has continued to ‘shrink’ over the last couple of years.

What took me completely by surprise was finding out that the Hotel Conquistador, which I always believed to be in the heart of PDLA is in fact in Los Cristianos. It must be true, I’ve just read it in the Arona Ayuntamiento website.

What this clearly means is that PDLA is now shrinking from both sides and soon will be no more than a fond, and possibly blurred, memory for the millions who visited over the years.

At the moment, by my calculations, PDLA now consists of three rocks on the beach in front of a rather tacky souvenir shop selling ‘Keep PDLA Common as Muck’ T-shirts and one Brit bar where they you can get a pint of beer and a roast beef and yorkshire pud meal with all the trimmings for €1.50.

Everywhere else, of course, has gone way, way upmarket.

Confused? Join the club.

  1. Alison says:

    This made me laugh out loud! Those Brits who love the Costas had better watch out or Benidorm will go the same way! (Wishful thinking) 😉

    Keep up the writing I am always popping in to keep up with “news from the North” having recently returned to the UK from another visit to PDLC.


  2. Pamela says:

    Upmarketing, now there’s a relief. I thought for a minute PDLA was going to be wiped out when The Sun’s volcano erupts and the sky falls. 🙂

  3. dragojac says:

    Thanks Alison,

    Hope you enjoyed your visit to PDLC.

    This whole ‘rebranding’ thing is hilarious. They’re even trying to distance themselves geographically from the south. Over the last couple of weeks I’ve noticed a few references to Costa Adeje as being in the south west of Tenerife!
    It’s not just happening in PDLA; Golf del Sur is increasingly being referred to as San Miguel de Abona by travel companies. I suppose the name of the municipality sounds more appealing better than ‘Golf of the South’, especially if you’re not a fan of hitting little white balls with a stick.

    Next it will be the name Tenerife itself, maybe they could change it to one of it’s ‘other’ names. I’m going to suggest ‘Isla Fortunada’ – I think that sounds quite nice.

  4. dragojac says:

    No, it looks as though PDLA is safe; the only smoke on the horizon is the stuff billowing from between Ricardo Melchior’s ears

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