Benidorm opens highest residential block in Spain

by Deborah Cater
Benidorm tower block, Intempo. Image by Jose A on Flickr.com under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

BENIDORM – Fifteen years after Basque businessman José Ignacio de la Serna promoted the Intempo building, the residential tower which graces the Benidorm skyline, will finally be put into use this summer.

The tallest residential tower in Spain consists of two ‘golden’ towers of 193 meters high with 47 floors. Connected by an M-shaped dome, the two towers dominate the Benidorm skyline. The popular seaside resort on the Costa Blanca is also called Beni-York because of the number of skyscrapers.

The long construction process that preceded this moment has, according to El Español, become a symbol of the real estate madness prior to the 2008 crisis and the subsequent bailout of the banking sector.

Now, 15 years after the foundation stone was laid in 2006, the details are being finalised to finally open the doors. According to the initiators, 90% of the work has already been completed.

Intempo’s blighted history

Intempo’s history dates back to 2006, when it was promoted by Basque businessman José Ignacio de la Serna (Olga Urbana SL). When the real estate bubble burst, the project had to be rescued in 2012 by the Asset Management Company of ‘Bad Bank’ Sareb. The property came with an inherited debt of €108million from NovaCaixaGalicia, the entity which financed the construction.

cogesa expats

It was not until 2018 that the investment fund Strategic Value Partners (SVPGlobal) took control of the property. They activated its promotion through UNIQ Residential, responsible for the reconstruction project. Since then, people have been working hard to adapt the outdated construction and equipment to current standards. All 256 homes in the building have undergone changes in one way or another.

‘Diamante apartments’

The main changes are made on the higher floors that fall into the ‘diamond’ category. The problem there was that half the floors did not have a sea view, but looked out on the mountain area. As a solution, the apartments have been linked so they have both sea and mountain views. With that they have become more luxurious than they already were. Each apartment should yield at least a million euros.

Communal spaces

Prospective residents of the Intempo Tower will be able to bathe in luxury with a Spa with breathtaking views. There is also a bar on the upper floors and a restaurant where owners can eat with guests only. In addition, there will be 7,100 square meters of communal areas, including a swimming pool. The initiators want to promote a resort model. They also want to prevent the houses in the tower from being used for tourist rental. This will be regulated by the Articles of Association of the Owners’ Association.

Other projects in Benidorm

The Covid-19 crisis significantly slowed the real estate sector on the coast of Alicante. Nevertheless, that has not prevented certain companies from continuing their promotions along Poniente beach. Others include the luxury residential Delfin tower adjacent to the legendary five-star hotel Delfín and the Sakura Towers covering 165,000 square meters for an investment of €260million in 1,200 homes. An H10 hotel recently opened in the same area.

According to estimates by the employers’ association in Benidorm, the city will receive approximately 13,000 new hotel rooms in the coming years. These can be added to the existing 43,000 rooms.

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