When one thinks of the beautiful Spanish island of Mallorca, it is normally in the context of dreamy summer holiday and not as an attractive business destination. For a relatively small island, Mallorca has so much to offer and is one of the jewels of Spain and the Balearic Islands. With its perfect climate, accessible airport, and well-developed legal, administrative and financial infrastructure, Mallorca has attracted a swarm of international investor particularly during the last decade (2010-2019).
Attractive business opportunities in the tourism sector and in the lucrative property development market have enticed many wealth foreigners, albeit with some affiliation to the island, to finance new ventures on the island. For example, many of the new Palma luxury boutique hotels are foreign-owned and managed. The amount of scaffolding supporting protected facades while a ‘city palacio’ gets an extensive renovation in the capital’s old town is a common sight. Most are the passion-projects of foreigners who have fallen in love with the city and dream of restoring one of the beautiful old buildings in the centre of Palma. But it’s not only a love story, there are attractive returns on investment particularly if the property was purchased some years ago. There are still bargains to be had but they are now few and far between in comparison to previous years.
There is a lot to know and understand about doing business in Mallorca. The first advice is to get a good professional advisor based on solid and trusted recommendations. You will need a lawyer, a tax advisor and a banker that can advise you throughout the process of buying or setting-up a new business. Thankfully we have tried and tested professional contacts that we have got to know over the years – so if you need a recommendation do contact us.
We have compiled a Fact Sheet about doing Business on Mallorca to provide you with a starting point to get the know the commercial side of the island.
Fact Sheet about Mallorca
Island official name: Mallorca or Majorca
Government Type: Autonomous community (created in accordance with the Spanish constitution of 1978, with the aim of guaranteeing limited autonomy of the nationalities and regions that make up Spain).
In the Mediterranean sea. One of the Balearic Islands
Latitude 39° 34’ 09” North, Longitude 2° 39’ 00”, East
Elevation above sea level: 34 m = 111ft
From the mainland of Spain: Approximately 130 miles south of Barcelona and 150 miles east of Valencia.
Dimensions: 100km North to South, 70km East to West
Sea water quality:
The quality of the sea water is mostly very good around the island of Mallorca and a lot of beaches can be compared with the Caribbean – turquoise waters with fine white sandy beaches.
Area: 3,640.11 km2 (1,405.45 sq miles)
Currency: EURO €
Administrative Capital: Palma de Mallorca
Commercial Capital: Palma de Mallorca – Population (404,681)
The climate of Mallorca is Mediterranean, with annual average temperatures of 19º C and precipitation of 410mm. The coldest month is usually January, with 15ºC and the warmest August, with 31ºC. There are on average 51 days of rain during the year.
The coast is mainly rocky, pocketed with small coves, sandy beaches and caves. Four large bays provide shelter from the open seas – Palma Bay, Alcúdia Bay, Pollensa Bay and Port de Sóller. The interior of the island is covered with lush pine forest, olives and almond trees, and in the central plains there is mainly agricultural terrain and vineyards.
Highest Mountain: Serra de Tramuntana, Puig Major 1,445 m (4,741 ft)
National Parks and Nature Reserves Area: Including all 7 Parks and Reserves – 662.2316sq.km
Island population: 907.197 (2018)
Population Growth Rate: 1.36% (Balearic Islands in 2017)
Population Density: 240.45 people per sq km (622.76 /sq mile)
Life Expectancy at Birth: 85 female, 80 male
Catalan co-official with Castellano the official language in Spain. In many towns you will hear locals speaking Mallorquí which is a dialect of Catalan. Note: English & German are widely spoken in tourist areas and there is also a well developed infrastructure for foreigners buying property on Mallorca.
Religion: Catholic 83%, Muslim 10,3%, Protestant 4.9%, Jews 1,1%.
Time Zone: Mallorcan Time is one hour ahead of GMT.
International Dialing: +34
Voltage: 230 V
Frequency: 50 Hz
Plugs: Type F
Agriculture & Fishing – 0,65%
Industry – 2,20%
Construction – 5,86%
Services – 91,27 (according to the contract signed in the month of July)
Agriculture & Products
Woodland areas (almond trees, olive trees and carob trees) and fruit, followed by cereal and vegetable crops which are above all to be found in the “Pla de Mallorca” (centre of the island). Most important are the olive groves, the citrus fruit orchards in the Sóller valley, the potato and vegetable crops in Sa Pobla.
- The agriculture food sector includes production processing of almonds, oranges, lemons, olives, grapes, wine and cheeses.
- The towns of Binissalem and Felanitx are famous for their wine (over 70 winery’s on the island) and locally produced brandy and liquors.
- There are some mines of copper, lead and marble.
- Local craftsmanship include blown glass work, pottery, work on traditional Mallorcan fabric and the production of wicker baskets.
- The footwear and leather industries are situated in Inca and surrounding villages.
- The production of the world-famous artificial Mallorcan pearls and jewellery in Manacor are amongst the most important industrial sectors on the island.
More than 15 million tons of goods were shipped to the Balearic Islands in 2017, representing an increase of 6% more than in 2016. Between January and November 2017 more than 2-million tons of goods were imported to the port of Alcúdia and 9.4 million tons were imported to Palma. Demand is high from the tourism and construction sectors bringing estimates to at least 17 million tons in 2018.
Mallorca’s key market characteristics
The demand for high-end property continues to rise amongst a wide array of overseas clients. While it used to be the case that the German and British were the dominant players in the property market today clients come from Sweden, Switzerland, France as well as Russia, America and China. The ´Golden-visa` is a factor in this change. The Spanish Government guarantees non-EU citizens permanent right to residence if they purchase a property worth 500K or more.
From Son Vida to Puerto de Andratx, discerning home buyers can find everything they need; chic marinas, the finest restaurants, upmarket shops and international schools. Buyers are looking for security, exquisite style, an exceptional location, luxurious amenities, state-of-the-art technology and high-end design.
Cosmopolitan Lifestyle on Mallorca
The Balearics have the highest number of foreign residents in Spain with the total population around 876K, it is estimated that 20% of the population are foreign nationals. As the island continues to grow into an affluent international hub, Mallorca boasts a strong cosmopolitan and vibrant cultural identity. There are eight Michelin-star restaurants, a growing retail scene and many major cultural events throughout the year. Palma is becoming a magnet for leading artists and collectors.
Travel from Mallorca is easy – you can be in any major European city in 2- 3 hours and if you have the means at your disposal anything is possible. How about a shopping trip to Milan, an exhibition in Berlin, hanging out in Paris or dining in Noma in Copenhagen? When the whole of the Mediterranean is your oyster why not sail to Formentera to catch an unforgettable sunset, or skip over to Morocco for a desert safari? All is possible from here.
Cultural Highlights & Exclusive Events
The perfect year-round weather and growing reputation as a luxury playground, Mallorca has a growing calendar of glamorous events. The polo scene in Mallorca is growing with a strong community already connected to the island – four large private polo facilities and more under-construction. The goal is that Mallorca will become Europe’s polo island.
The glamorous Copa del Rey Regatta takes place in the stunning setting of the Bay of Palma and attracts leading teams from around the world. The island is home to around 15 of the world’s superyacht with an active calendar of events. The Palma super-yacht and boat show in May is now one of the largest in Europe. In addition, there is the Evolution Film Festival, the Mallorca Classic Car Rally and lots more to attract the world’s richest to Mallorca.
Beyond the crowded tourist spots of the island are the hidden gems only known to a select few: where you find the real character of the island and isolated wonder that require a little more effort to reach. Spending time in the charming village of Deia on the rugged northwest coast, you can find yourself in the unexpected company of the occasional celebrity hiding out fromt eh rest of the world. Or visit the restaurant of Sa Foradada, that you will need to navigate a precarious 45-minute walk or get there by boat. Looking for the best beach on the island? On Playa Formentor you’ll feel like Robinson Crusoe but with all the benefits of a 5-star luxury resort.
Health and Wellbeing on Mallorca
Mallorca offers 300 days of sunshine a year with an average temperature of 22 degrees. Wherever you are on the island you are never too far from the mountains and the sea, making it the ideal adventure playground for sports and outdoor activities.
One of the main reasons people choose to live here is to have access to a better quality of life. Finding a balance between plugging into the island’s cosmopolitan lifestyle and being able to find freedom and space to disconnect from it all.
Doing Business in Mallorca
There are many opportunities for growing a business in Mallorca with a buoyant high-end property market, an evolving luxury tourism market, and the growing demand for 5-star hospitality and services. Investors are flocking to the island and there is a vibrant start-up scene of young entrepreneurs.
As an international hub within easy reach of all major European cities, many of the island’s wealthy residents use their home in Mallorca as a base of their international businesses.
Mallorca offers a well-developed infrasture of trusted real estate agents, experienced bankers, efficient lawyers and well-informed international tax advisors.