As part of its attempt to tackle mass tourism, the Spanish city of Valencia is preparing to limit new holiday rentals to ground and first floor apartments. This would put a halt to private rentals offering visitors to the city a room with a view. In addition, in the historic part of Valencia, the Ciutat Vella, no new rentals will be permitted at all.
The reason for this action is that the tourism boom in Spain has generated a growing backlash from local residents. They have expressed concern at being priced out of rental accommodation in the most desirable areas of their cities of residence. Valencia is Spain’s third-largest city and visitors are drawn to its thriving cultural, food and nightlife scene. Among the jewels in its crown is the Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias, as well as Modernista buildings, great museums, a long stretch of beach and a large, characterful old quarter.
The move comes as local authorities are being given the power to regulate holiday rentals in new legislation to be voted on by the regional government. Other areas of Spain have taken action against mass tourism, including Ibiza, which recently decided to clamp down on Airbnb rentals. “Councils will be able to take back control of what properties may be used for, and in Valencia we are going to impose an important barrier to ensure the trend does not grow in future,” Sandra Gómez, the deputy mayor of Valencia told The Local, speaking about mass tourism.
She also estimated that around 70% of the city’s 5000 holiday rentals don’t have the correct licences. That is unlikely to happen going forward, as property-owners will face steep fines if their holiday rentals are not registered and don’t have the correct licence, which must be shown on advertisements.