Six companies have submitted bids for the management of the Orihuela Costa beach bars. Among them is Chiringuitos del Sol, the agency that has been running the bars for the last four or more years, the 2014 tender process for which is currently being investigated in the courts.
The Councillor for Beaches, Luisa Boné, has confirmed that the deadline for submission of proposals is now closed and that she expects the service to be up and running once again before the start of the peak season.
The situation with Chiringuitos del sol should not affect the new tendering process. The company provided a first class service during their period of managing the bars which gradually improved year on year, adding ever more facilities and provisions during their tenure.
The company currently has no debt with the City Council, an essential condition to the tendering process as they try to retain the business that they have successfully built up on the coast. According to Boné, the company has paid all outstanding invoices with the consistory and with Costas for the use of the beach domain.
She added, however, that the local administration is considering claiming more money for the service that they provided between January and April of this year, when the company maintained two of its chiringuitos, but without a formal contract with the local administration.
The contract expired in November 2017 but neither the City Council contracts department nor Department of Beaches realise that fact until April 2018, when it controversially closed the facilities and ordered the cessation of activity. Since then the beaches have been without bar service, sunbeds, umbrellas or toilets.
Now, Boné has asked the contracts section to see if they can claim the corresponding fee for those four months, but that is something that will not affect the new tendering process.
She says that the City Council is trying to process the new contract at full speed taking into account the dates and the discomfort that exists among the users of the beaches for a current lack of beach services. However, the new contract could be introduced earlier than expected thanks to a recent report stating that all facilities and equipment previously used by Chiringuitos del Sol should transfer to municipal ownership.
She said that the Contracts Department has communicated with to Chiringuitos del sol the transfer of assets, and has given the company a period of 10 days to submit any counter claim.
According to sources, four of the companies that have submitted bids to manage the beach bars include Chiringuitos del sol, Sunrise, Magani and Chiringuitos Piratas.