A raft of new hotels announced for Larnaca - but will it happen?

The Larnaca Tourism Board (LTB) has announced the welcome news that the region will be gaining five ‘new’ hotels in 2015; one completely new and four either renovated/reinstated or adapted from hotel apartments.

The lack of hotel accommodation in Larnaca has always been a bone of contention as it has hampered the town’s tourist appeal - especially in the area of sunshine weddings and the guests they bring with them.

Two of the hotels will come from Sunnyseeker Management Ltd who have been managing the four-star Princess Hotel along the Larnaca/Dhekelia Road since last year, and are also refurbishing the three-star Sveltos Hotel (due on April 1, 2015). Mikes Kanarium City Hotel in the town centre (due January 1, 2015) and Ciao Stelio Boutique Hotel in the Mackenzie area (due April 1, 2015) will be managed by the group and were not previously hotels, although the buildings were in use for tourist accommodation.

A new boutique hotel will be opening near the church of St Lazarus at the beginning of 2015. The hotel will offer 17 rooms, some of which will be located in a restored, listed house, and the others in a modern complex. A further two hotels along Dhekelia Road that were non-licensed and have been closed for the past two to four years will also be refurbished and open for business once again - the names of which have yet to be officially released.

The region of Larnaca has 103 licensed hotel accommodation establishments with a total of 5997 beds. Only one of them - The Golden Bay Hotel on Dhekelia Road - is five-star and there are six four-star hotels with a capacity of 2316 beds - almost half the region’s beds. The lack of high-star and resort hotels prevents couples having big weddings in the town. At present the civil weddings that take place in Larnaca include a large number of weddings where the couple are only in the town for one day to marry, rather than big resort weddings that bring a larger number of guests who typically stay for one to two weeks.

At the start of the year, the mayor readily admitted that the lack of decent hotels was a problem as he noted the unusual situation Larnaca has as a coastal town, saying “We have no 5-star hotels within our city centre.” Chairman of the LTB, Dinos Lefkaritis said of the issue: “The region of Larnaca only has 7% of the island’s tourist beds at the moment. Due to the lack of beds and holiday resorts, some big tour operators are less inclined to include Larnaca in their packages. However, with the addition of new hotel beds within the next year, Larnaca will gradually start increasing its tourist accommodation capacity. On behalf of the LTB I would like to congratulate the companies that are investing in the region’s tourism industry as well as the hoteliers who have proceeded with renovations; all leading to the upgrading of Larnaca’s tourism product”.

At the beginning of May, the LTB met with CTO Chairman Angelos Loizou and discussed the town’s urgent need for more hotels, amongst other issues. Lefkaritis requested that the CTO move to change the legislative framework regarding the development of boutique and city hotels - which is pending since 2009 - so that the town can increase its bed capacity, with the CTO Chairman promising to take steps to push the issue forward, something that is now bearing fruit.

Source article: Incyprus

Financial Crisis is Driving People Abroad

We do not need to inform you that hundreds of Cypriots who are unemployed are abandoning the Island in search of a better future abroad.

Case in point, a EURES study contacted by the Ministry of Labor and showed that 742 Cypriots aged 18-29 left Cyprus back in June to December 2012. This number then doubled in 2013 and in particular after the Eurogroup fiasco 65 to 142 people left Cyprus each month to seek new opportunities, compared to 14-54 people each month from June to December 2012.

The study also shows:
  • 28% of people aged 18-28 intend to leave
  • 62% of these same people have a degree 
  • Moreover younger aged youths in the 22-25 bracket are also considering leaving the island.
Its important to mention that people who live in the cities that have been most affected by the current recession are subsequently more likely to leave the island.
  • 33% in Famagusta
  • 31% in Paphos
  • 29% in Larnaca
  • 28% in Limassol
  • 27% in Nicosia of people took part in the survey plan to abandon Cyprus in the near future
While the Government have taken some measures to address this critical problem, they have so far been wholly insufficient and impotent.Moreover, with the various Tax hikes and challenging measures that are crippling local small businesses, one wonders who will be able to employ young people in the future!

The recent Salamis Cruises rescue could be the start of a wave of refugee boats reaching the shores of Cyprus

The Limassol based Cruise Ship, the c/s Salamis Filoxenia was sailing off the coast of Cyprus recently, when it encountered and rescued a vessel in difficulty, with desperate refugees on board who fled from Syria. The Salamis ship picked up hundreds of war torn people, who were stranded aboard a small boat off Cyprus.

The Cyprus defense ministry went on record to state that some 345 people (52 children) docked into the islands main port of Limassol.

The refugees were taken into a reception center near Nicosia, where they were given shelter and necessary medical attention.

In essence the refugee boat issued a distress call in bad weather and was located around 50 nautical miles off Paphos. Salamis Cruises received a request from the Cypriot search and rescue authority to assist the rescue operation of the boat in difficulty.
At the time of the incident the popular Salamis Cruises Cruise ship was quietly returning to Cyprus from a Greek islands Cruise. The c/s Salamis Filoxenia has a passenger capacity of of 800 passengers, with a crew of 230. This incident put Salamis Cruises into the headlines of the world media, so every cloud has a silver lining for the Limassol Cruise operator.

This incident demonstrates that literally thousands of migrants are fleeing from various wars and conflicts in the Middle East and northern Africa, in a desperate attempt to cross the Mediterranean in boats that are not seaworthy, seeking safe havens across Europe. Hundreds have already met their fate at sea, however with a fresh Western bomings in Iraq and Syria, we can expect to see more refugees come to the shores of Cyprus.

Larnaca is one of the closest southern Cyprus EU ports to the coastline of Syria, so it's likely that Syrian refugee boats could make it here in the future.

Puttin on the Ritz - an exclusive "It's Vintage Darling" Fashion Show!

It was a wonderful show Sharon and Monique! 
All readers should know that the remaining merchandise is now available in the selected shops.


Without question, the best Fashion Show in town this Autumn! 

Showcasing timeless unique, one-of-a-kind, pre-loved and carefully selected statement Vintage pieces ranging from Furs to Accessories.

Koo, Mackenzie Beach, Cyprus

10th of October - Starts 7pm

More Information
This is a Ticket-Only Event! To reserve tickets click this link: Puttin on the Ritz Reservations

The Government is hell bent on destroying small businesses in Cyprus

Ever since the recession started in Cyprus and the disastrous bail-out crisis that followed, small and medium sized businesses (SME's) have been under constant attack by the Government. Tens of thousands have gone bankrupt and cannot afford to operate, yet the Government directed by the Troika are hell bent on destroying the small businessman through a series of Corporate Tax increases, new company taxes, increases in VAT, property taxes, international banking restrictions, theft from bank accounts, no credit facilities and tough tactics to collect funds when the man on the street is trying to survive. 

Cyprus was once the land of the small businessman, but that has now dramatically changed. It seems that no allowances are made for the SME's and the result is a mass of closures. It seems that the banks and Government who brought the country to into the mes we are in, are making the rules up as they go along by forcing the man on the street to pay for what they have done.

Now the story continues to get worse with the Annual Government Levy that was €350 until 30/06/2014 will be increased as from 01/07/2014 until 31/08/2014 to €385.

Then as from 01/09/2014 until 30/11/2014 the amount will be increased to €490.

A company that generates millions pays effectively the same as one that generates hundreds or even dormant. Of course to a large company €490 is nothing, but to a small business its the difference between surviving or not and another major blow.

In summary Cyprus is no longer SME friendly and it appears that the agenda is to squeeze out as many SME's as possible to bolster the business advancements of the mega companies and multinationals, so that the new workforce can be placed on the minimum wage.
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