Francisco Matte, regional director of Crystal Lagoons: “PAL™ project to bring beach life to Madrid

Although Madrid, the second most populous city in the European Union, is recognized as a major tourist hub

Although Madrid, the second most populous city in the European Union, is recognized as a major tourist hub for its diverse gastronomic and cultural heritage, the city has no beach life. That until now, because on the outskirts of that city, Crystal Lagoons will build Alovera Beach, its first Public Access Lagoons™ project on the Iberian Peninsula. Elsewhere in Europe the company is already developing PAL™ projects in the Czech Republic, Poland, Romania, Hungary and Turkey, as well as having already developed two real estate complexes in Spain (Costa del Sol and Murcia).

What are the main characteristics of this iconic project?

Alovera Beach will be the largest artificial beach in Europe, located in a Mediterranean urban area less than 40 minutes from the center of Madrid. The centerpiece of this resort will be a 2.1-hectare turquoise lagoon that will be open to the general public for the price of an entrance fee.

What benefits will this new complex bring to the region?

The project is an innovative concept, which will transform the municipality of Alovera and boost tourism in the Guadalajara area, positioning itself on the European map of technology, innovation and sustainability and as a unique reference point in outdoor water sports. The complex will be open all year round and expects to receive around 350,000 visitors annually.

The project, which will be developed by Crystal Lagoons in partnership with Grupo Rayet, will become a model for urban regeneration that will change the local landscape in a revolutionary way, have a high social impact and generate more than 330 direct and indirect jobs.

How will local residents benefit with the project?

Public Access Lagoons™ projects, also known as PAL™ developments, drastically change people’s lifestyles. They bring beach life and water sports possible in a city context, making going to the beach as close and as normal as going to the local park is today.

The body of water will be surrounded by an extensive, 1.6-hectare, white sandy beach and include sports facilities, a water park with slides and children’s pools, a water sports school for kayaking and paddle boarding and gastronomic services.

How do you address the current need to be a sustainable amenity?

Like all of Crystal Lagoons projects, the Alovera Beach lagoon will include the multinational’s sustainable technology, which allows the use of any type of water, consumes 30 times less water than a golf course and only half that of a park of the same size. Its filtration system uses only 2% of the energy of a conventional system and up to 100 times less chemicals than a swimming pool.

What are the main projects of Crystal Lagoons in Spain and Europe?

Alovera is the firm’s third project in Spain, which include the Alcazaba Lagoon (Costa del Sol) and Santa Rosalía (Murcia) residential developments. Meanwhile, elsewhere in Europe, Crystal Lagoons has just signed a master agreement to develop six PAL™ complexes in Prague, Warsaw, Budapest and Bucharest. The company also has a project in Turkey and is in advanced negotiations for projects in Italy (Milan, Verona, Rome and Naples), Portugal, Greece and Georgia. www.crystal-lagoons.com