The imposing building of the Escolapios, one of the architectural symbols of Alella (Maresme), will become a large luxury tourist complex. Vadim Sukharev, a Russian businessman with interests in health clinics and food companies, has seen in the farm of 4.2 hectares and 4,553 m2, a business opportunity in which he is willing to invest 43 million euros.
The Cal Governador estate, popularly known for being the former religious school of the Escolapios, has suffered degradation, vandalism and occupations since it became obsolete. “We had to remove dozens of statues and stone furniture to preserve them,” explains the new owner. Even so, some have been left at the mercy of the vandals. “Restoring statues like this – notes that of a dog sitting on a pedestal – has a cost of 10,000 euros.”
The hotel will have 80 rooms, of which half will be presidential suites
It took Sukharev three years to buy the farm. The future hotel complex is designed as a boutique hotel, an establishment surrounded by green spaces, including the romantic garden that captivated Sukharev and his wife when they settled in Alella five years ago. The project aims to return the garden area to its original state with all the splendor of the 16th century, when it offered numerous corners with privacy.
The project includes a relaxation center focused on clients with high purchasing power, from whom they can pay “1,000 euros per day”. The businessman points out that his potential users are neighbors of the Maresme and the area of Barcelona. The luxury establishment will have 80 rooms, of which half will be presidential suites, and will incorporate a large spa area with two swimming pools, one of which is heated.
In the Escolapios building, dozens of palatial rooms can host numerous activities that investors are still evaluating, such as a medical clinic with anti-stress and relaxation programs. In fact, it is expected that one of the buildings, of more than 2,000 square meters, will be exclusively oriented to health programs.
In the tourist complex there are also several restaurants, one of them haute cuisine and others more affordable. In addition, the hotel complex will have spaces to hold congresses and conventions, “but fleeing from banquets, weddings and communions,” according to Sukharev.
The promoters also move away from the thriving wine tourism in the DO Alella area, since “it is not a space where alcohol consumption is an attraction”. In addition, the natural environment of the Sierra de la Marina offers great possibilities for sports, such as mountain routes.
While profitability in other hotel centers located in cities such as Barcelona, according to Sukharev, “is 7% or 8%,” the Alella complex expects annual benefits of 18%. Currently, the businessman maintains rounds of contacts with potential investors.
The process to inaugurate the tourist complex is expected to last four years, a first for pending urban procedures and the drafting of the architectural project and three more years for restoration and construction.