Filming on location in Mallorca with film office head Esperanza Crespí Pibernat
Esperanza Crespí Pibernat was born in Palma de Mallorca. She works in career guidance and development, heads City Council of Palma and for the past year has been President of PalmaActiva, the local development agency and headquarters of Palma Film Office.
What can you tell me about the region that you cover?
Palma is the capital of Mallorca, the largest of the Balearic Islands situated in the western part of the Mediterranean Sea at the east of the Iberian mainland. Its municipality extends along the bay of Palma. It’s the eighth biggest city in Spain by population, with more than 400,000 inhabitants. It’s a privileged and beautiful city.
What locations are most commonly used by foreign film and TV crews when they come and film in Mallorca?
Foreign film and TV crews commonly love to use the historical old town of Palma de Mallorca with its narrow streets. The coastal area offers stunning beaches and coves like the beach of Es Trenc.
There’s also the mountain range of the Serra de Tramuntana with its ancient villages like Sóller, Valldemossa and Deià, often used by film and TV crews because of the traditional look. These towns were the retreats of many distinguished visitors like Chopin, George Sand and Robert Graves.
What are the more unusual locations that our readers would not necessarily associate with Mallorca?
People would associate Mallorca more with beautiful beaches with fine sand and modern cities than with mountains and ancient villages. Therefore two of the most unusual locations are the water reservoirs Cuber and Gorg Blau. These are found between the slopes of the Puig de Massanella and the Puig Mayor, the highest peak of Mallorca situated in the Serra de Tramuntana, a mountain range that forms the northern backbone of Mallorca. Due to the height a few days of snow during the winter are not unusual. The result is a Nordic mountain landscape showing a beautiful lake!
In Palma about 120 film or photography projects visit each year. Nearly half are commercials and documentaries are also common, but we also get TV series, feature films and shorts.
What has been your most difficult location assignment to date and why?
Filming on highways can be difficult because of the impossibility of closing them for traffic.
What types of international productions do you work on most?
In Palma about 120 film or photography projects visit each year. Nearly half are commercials and documentaries are also common, but we also get TV series, feature films and shorts. Cloud Atlas was a recent high-profile international visitor, as was UK TV show Mad Dogs.
Are there any tips that you would like to share with our readers for filming in Mallorca?
We have a great array of amazing locations within a reasonable-sized territory, a good crew base, a modern transport network, great food, a multi-ethnic cast and we’re still cost-effective compared to most other European countries.
Which are the main international airports?
The airport of Palma de Mallorca is called Son San Joan and after Madrid-Barajas and Barcelona it is the largest one in Spain. It’s a modern airport 8km. from the city centre and offers connection flights of around two hours to hubs across Europe. Around 20 million passengers pass through it every year and over 30 airline companies operate in it.
Do you have an incentive in place and what key points should producers know about it?
The Government of the Balearic Islands is promoting the future Audiovisual Law. It provides the creation of a single window processing licences and permits, as well as the creation of the Balearic Film Library.
What would you recommend crew and cast do to have fun and relax in Mallorca?
Historic Palma has many architecturally interesting buildings. Highlights are the Bellver Castle build in 1300 with its typical circular form, the Almudaina Palace which dates back to Roman times, the Arab Baths as an example of Arabic architecture and the crowning architectural jewel of the island is without a doubt the Cathedral of Palma.
The Passeig Marítim offers partying practically every night of the year. Music and entertainment combine on beautiful terraces like the ones that Capuccino and the Hard Rock Café offer us.
Historic Palma has many architecturally interesting buildings. Highlights are the Bellver Castle build in 1300 with its typical circular form and the Almudaina Palace, which dates back to Roman times.
What do you do to relax after work?
I love going for a drink with friends or with my partner. Sitting on a terrace in the centre of Palma as we talk on the latest news or a walk by Es Molinar (seaside neighbourhood of Palma) after a working long day, are definitely the best plans for me.
Where did you last go on vacation?
This summer I spent a few days in Formentera. It's been a busy year at work and I craved a few days off, a quiet and relaxed “us time”. Lie on the beach with a good book and get away from everything.
To contact PalmaActiva please click here.
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