ORLANDO -- A destination resort called Universal Mediterranea is
growing around the landmark Port Aventura theme park, which reopens
March 15 in Spain's Costa Dorada region for an extended season.
According to Fred Lounsberry, senior vice president of the
Universal Studios Recreation Group in Orlando, two 500-room hotels
and a water park will soon open as well at the site, which is about
an hour's drive south of Barcelona.
Universal, which has run the Port Aventura theme park since
1997, is an investor in the complex, that until now consisted only
of the theme park.
Port Aventura features sections themed to different areas of the
world, such as the Meditteranean, the western U.S., Mexico, China
This season, the park will remain open through Jan. 6, 2003.
Days of operation, however, will be limited in November and most of
December to Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It will be open daily
during Christmas week.
Lounsberry said that the first hotel to open in the complex will
be the Hotel Port Aventura. The property will feature meetings
space. While the soft opening will coincide with the park's
reopening, reservations will not be accepted for arrivals before
The second property is the Hotel El Paso, featuring a beach on
the Meditteranean Sea. Its soft opening is set for June 1, but
reservations will not be accepted for stays until July 15.
Also opening in June will be Costa Caribe, a water park.
While North America is not yet a major market for this growing
resort complex (unlike Barcelona), business from U.S. agents is
welcome, Lounsberry said.
Spain, the U.K., the Netherlands and Russia are the source of
most guests, he added.
For details on the new attractions, agents can log onto www.universalstudios.com and visit the Port
Aventura pages under Theme Parks/Spain.
From the U.S., bookings should be made with Universal's
Spain-based personnel -- Anna Benages or Elana Masdeu. Their phone
number is (011) 34-977-779110; fax: (011) 34-977-779082.
The email address is [email protected].