Costa Teguise – 50 years Old

The special plan that resulted in the creation of Costa Teguise was enacted on 2nd September 1972, so the town celebrated its 50th anniversary this month.

It was originally built purely as a tourist resort, with plenty of input from César Manrique, and the plan was that it would be the most upmarket resort on the island, and would feature Lanzarote’s very first five star hotel and the island’s only golf course.

The area was originally known locally as “Rio Tinto,” because most of the land, around 12 million square meters, was owned by the Rio Tinto explosives company. The company decided to create a high end tourist resort there, and called it Costa De Teguise Urbanization. The “de” was soon dropped and it became known as Costa Teguise.

The original builds began in the 1970’s and included Pueblo Marinero, which was designed to be like a fisherman’s village, the fabulous Melia Salinas Hotel and the Los Molinos apartment complex – all of which involved Manrique in much of the design. Large areas were given over to planting, creating green spaces for tourists to enjoy.

Sadly, the original plans missed the mark. In the 70’s and 80’s, Lanzarote failed to attract sufficient numbers of tourists looking for high class accommodation, and the town went into something of a decline. Several projects that had been started, failed, and it became obvious that the upmarket aims needed to be changed.

In the early 90’s the resort re-positioned itself to compete directly with Puerto del Carmen. New 3 and 4 star hotels were built, along with several large apartment complexes. Costa Teguise also began to attract much more sports tourism, highlighting the benefits of the natural sand beaches, the off shore breaks and winds that turned it into the island’s best place for wind surfing. It was during this period that the Aquapark was built, reinforcing the fact that Costa Teguise was a “Family” resort.

By the mid 2000’s Costa Teguise had successfully metamorphosed and was attracting high numbers of tourists, but it was about to undergo another big change.

With the construction of the large out of town projects like Teguise Greens, it became a much more residential town, attracting lots of people who had previously lived in Arrecife and Playa Honda. In the last 10 years, Costa Teguise’s resident population has exploded and it is now the most populous in the municipality, with more than 9,000 residents. This necessitated the building of a new health centre, a school, a civic centre, sports facilities and more.

The influx of Canarians into the resort, in turn, attracted cafés, bars and restaurants to suit their needs, and that’s why today, Costa Teguise has a much more “local” mix of eateries and drinking places than the other two resorts on the island.

Over the 50 years of its existence, Costa Teguise has changed a great deal, following the needs of the tourists who visit and the people who live and work there. What does the next 50 years hold in store?


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