Authorities halt building work on the Six Senses resort & residential project in Cala Xarraca, Ibiza, as developer appears to have started work without the necessary paperwork

The local press in Ibiza reports that the developer of the Six Senses resort, spa, and residential project in Cala Xarraca, in the north of the White Island, has been ordered to stop building work whilst the project’s planning status is reviewed.

The resort and residential development, a joint venture between the international resort and spa brand Six Senses and local developer Beach Box Ibiza headed by investor Jonathan Leitersdorf was announced last April in a press release at the Six Senses website (see Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas premiers first and only resort and spa in Ibiza), and building work is already significantly advanced, with ground broken and concrete structures in place.

According to Jonathan Leitersdorf of Beach Box Ibiza, the visionary behind the design and the development of the project, “Our vision is to capture the authentic Ibiza experience of community, spirituality and celebration to be delivered with top service, organic food and beverage, and luxurious accommodations for our guests. It is the first full-service hospitality experience with rich amenities not yet offered on the island. Partnering with a world-class operator such as Six Senses, together we will deliver a resort and residential community for all ages, while promoting the importance of sustainability and healthy living.”

The developer is reported to have approval of the basic project and environmental impact study, but not the execution project required for starting work. The municipal authorities of Sant Joan, where Cala Xarrca is located, had promised environmental activists they would watch over the execution of this development “with a magnifying glass” but appear to have taken their eye off the ball. Local environmentalists, who have called the development a “brutal aggression” against Cala Xarraca, forced the Town Hall to concede that work had started without proper planning permission, and order a temporary halt to building work.

Mayor Antoni Marí has announced that the town council “will take some time, approximately a week, to study the situation with planning officials.” They will check that the basic project, the execution project (yet to be presented), and the environmental integration all comply with the licence, in which case the building work can be authorised. “But if that’s not the case, if there’s more construction, the halt could be definitive,” he is quoted as saying in the local press.

Environmental activists are claiming the project was sold as a simple refurbishment of an existing hotel, but in reality is much more ambitious, and extends the built area. Though not rushing to conclusions, the municipal government has indicated that demolition is a possibility if illegal building is found.

The project is reported to include a mooring jetty for boats to access the resort by sea, but the Mayor confirmed there is no permission for a mooring jetty.

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