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Xander
The panda is the evolutionary equivalent of living off benefits.
Thu 5th Mar '09 5:20PM
169 Posts
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Member Since
16th Jul '08
The Big Benidorm Review
Located on the southern coast of Spain Benidorm in late February has a sunny if windy climate and miles of beautiful sandy beach. It’s here the Britain has taken a big dollop of the worst aspects of home and vomited it onto the Spanish coast.

So anglicised is Benidorm that any knowledge of Spanish culture is useless or indeed Spanish as a language. Long term ‘British’ residence brag loudly and proudly of their ability to not speak Spanish or learn it. Far from embracing Spanish culture Benidorm is a concerted attempt to take all the comforts of home and transport them to a patch of Spanish sun. It’s a truly fantastic example of neo-colonialism.

In February the local residents are made up entirely of British tourists of retirement age. This gives the whole of Benidorm the feel of an oversized retirement village. From this snap shot of the population it is also very apparent the UK has an obesity problem in the over sixties. This is also the only problem with golden sandy beaches topless bathing is permitted and the less said about that the better.

Architecturally the skyline is dominated by concrete high-rise hotel and flats. The old town has a vague hint of an older Spain with winding back alleys. Even in the old town thought the streets are dominated by tourist driven businesses. These range from the nice, ice cream stores, to the incredibly tacky, sex shops.

There are many restaurants but if you are looking for an authentic taste of Spain forget it. Restaurants cater to the British meaning it’s easy to find eggs, bacon, sausage and beans. Rather bizarrely Cornish pasty is available in most places too. For those who like the traditional British chip shop there are a few scattered around. McDonalds and Burger King are also represented. There is also a rather large amount of Chinese restaurants but strangely almost no tapas restaurants.

The most common feature is the vast amount of bars or more accurately pubs. Almost every pub brags that it is a ‘British pub’ and has a suitable pub name such as ‘Queen Vic Pub’ or ‘Bob’s British Pub’. There is little difference between any Benadorm pub and all fit under the category of sleazy.

Outside these establishment many touts little the streets trying to encourage business usually with promises of discount drinks, the match on television and two for one offers. The other big draw is the promise of live entertainment.

Not only have the Brits imported some truly terrible British style pubs they brought the dregs of the British entertainment industry. This includes some truly terrible acts such as a ballroom dancing act that can’t dance and singing acts that can’t actually sing. One overenthusiastic singing act was upstaged by the karaoke that followed.

Special mention goes to some of the tribute acts. An Abba tribute band made up of women who are older than Abba are today and have no vocal talent. The Elvis impersonator who bears no resemblance to Elvis. A gentleman who does a Chubby Brown act and unfortunately is exactly like Chubby Brown. The most tragic though is the Michael Jackson tribute act imaginatively called Ben Jackson who is actually really good but had the misfortunate to be ignored by his audience who were concentrating on a Man United match. In the corner sat his girlfriend cheered him on with clear devotion and love. A look around the advertising bords of Benidorm will show Ben Jackson does his Michael Jackson act every night of the week.

This is another curious feature of the entertainment circle in Benidorm. One bar will advertise Blues Brothers Tribute: Tuesday Night at 9pm followed by Abba Tribute: Tuesday at 10pm. The pub at the end of the road will then brag Abba Tribute: Tuesday at 9pm followed by Blues Brothers Tribute: Tuesday Night at 10pm. The bad acts seem to rotate rather unsubtly along the s.

To sum up Benidorm is probably the best holiday destination in the world if you’re Bernard Manning or just go to Blackpool. Maybe I’m being a little harsh as it is possible to avoid all the tack mentioned above. The place does have lovely beaches and it has a commodity greatly lacking in the UK namely sun. It's far from being a taste of Spain and you may as well go to Blackpool.
 

Demian*
Oh Lordy, Plegaleggole
Mon 9th Mar '09 1:51PM
4678 Posts
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Member Since
7th Apr '03
That sounds like hell on earth.

Reminds me of the time we went to Frankfurt and the people I was with insisted on spending the evening in 'The British Pub' so we could pay huge prices for crappy lager and play darts on a dartboard so old there was no felt left on it.
  

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