David Nahmias, owner of the Punta Grande Hotel, renowned as the world’s smallest hotel with just three rooms, declared on Monday that he has reversed his decision to close the establishment in January 2024. This change of heart came after an outpouring of public support since he first announced the planned closure last July.
The Punta Grande Hotel is recognised as an Asset of Cultural Interest (BIC). Nahmias had initially intended to shut it down due to institutional neglect, public harassment, and acts of vandalism.
Explaining his decision to keep the hotel open, Nahmias said, “We’re choosing not to close because this hotel is not just a business; it’s the embodiment of our love, passion, investment, and well-being.”
He recalled how in April 2018, previous owners Lamberto and Britta Wagner passed on the keys to what he describes as their “dream.” Nahmias emotionally referred to the hotel as “our son, a big son who had been neglected and was surviving in despair. He was starved of love, care, and human kindness.”
Despite achieving his long-sought dream, Nahmias expressed that fulfilment was elusive for reasons he plans to divulge later. “This dream should have brought us joy and happiness, but it didn’t, and I’ll explain why another time.”
Nahmias criticised the lack of institutional response to the hotel’s announced closure but praised the Canary Islanders for their overwhelming support. “Many of you have come annually and stayed with us; you’re not just guests, but family and friends.”
He insisted that the initial announcement to close was no idle threat. “It was an emotional outcry; after nearly six years, we hit a point of emotional exhaustion that unfairly affected our daughters. They didn’t understand, but they’ve come to learn that mental well-being is paramount, especially when under attack as we have been.”
Nahmias described experiencing various forms of intimidation, including graffiti, online defamation, and threats. “We were not born in the Canaries, and we didn’t know what we would encounter. Yet, we’ll keep going.”
He expressed gratitude for the opportunity to nurture and protect the hotel, which he refers to as “our son.” He vowed, “As long as we’re alive, this little hotel will remain open. Thank you to the Canary Islanders and the universe for bringing us here to breathe life back into this unique and iconic establishment.”
Concluding, Nahmias said, “The Punta Grande Hotel belongs to us, but it’s also part of the Canary Islands’ cultural heritage.”