New Savoy too big?
The construction of the new Savoy hotel is continuing at a blistering pace – the photo above, taken from Funchal Daily Photo, is already out-of-date, with the building now a couple of floors taller. The size of the new Savoy, being built by the AFA Group, and the increasing height, which is particularly evident along Avenida do Infante is at last beginning to causing some concern. The structure has already reached the tenth floor, with a total of thirteen floors planned for the southerly side overlooking Travessa Imperatriz D. Amélia.
There are other tall buildings nearby, notably the Carlton, but these are not particularly attractive, and the latest development could easily become a serious blot on the landscape. The hotel looks set to open on schedule next summer, with additional labour being taken on recently, adding to the initial workforce of 300 employed in January 2016. In their defense, the constructors are already paying a lot of attention to creating “green spaces”, planting tress and preserving existing ones. Nice to see the Prince Albert re-open recently after major re-furb – the pub will be dominated by the new hotel, but I guess it will be happy to see the increased business
Madeira Regency Palace
Still on a hotel theme, thanks to Maurice for pointing out that Pestana are actually opening the “new” Madeira Regency Palace on May 1st, despite denying that they had anything to do with it just over a month ago (previous post). It will be marketed as all-inclusive, at a price of around €300 per couple per night according to their website, with discounts for earlier reservations.
Minimum wage comparisons
Today saw the National Living Wage in the UK rise to £7.50/hour, or, for someone working an average 37.5 hour week, £1218/month. Using today’s exchange rate this equates to €1433/month.
By coincidence the Madeiran Legislative Assembly has this week been discussing various proposals for increasing the national minimum salary in force in the region. The government proposal, which should be approved, recommends an increase of 2.3% to the current €557 minimum wage in force at the national level. With this increase, the minimum wage in Madeira will increase to €570 per month – an increase of about €366 per year. Even though the practice was supposed to be stopped as part of the bail-out , monthly wages in Portugal are still paid for 14 months a year – so the actual minimum wage comes out at €649.83. Other political parties advocate higher increases, similar to the Azores (5%), where the minimum wage is slightly higher at €585/month.