Latviski English По-русски
Monday 23.04.2018 | Name days: Jurģis, Juris, Georgs

Palanga offers 1 euro day dinner amid unseasonably chilly July

(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RU

Basanavičius street, Palanga

Linas Jegelevičius for the BNN

If you were to turn your ear to Palanga hoteliers and restaurateurs these days, the main story line is the same: this high season is bad and moreover – one of the worst ever. The lamenting is usual, many locals would say. On the other hand, the unseasonably low summer temperatures, gusts and tropical June and early July downpours have shooed many potential holidaymakers away.

Is the situation really so bad?

Well, it depends on who you’re ready to listen to.

«Well, it is enough to take a look at the scarce passer-by flows on Basanavičius street, which is the resort’s main artery. You won’t see many people in the terraces, even at night. Weather rarely coddles Palanga in June, but July is usually abundant with sunshine. Not this year, however, unfortunately for local café and restaurant owners – we see only rain,» Artūras Timukas, owner of «Devintam Danguj» restaurant, a popular local hangout spot, told BNN.

Indeed, the prolonged downpours have soaked the seashore, gnawing away parts of it.  With the water creeping close, owners of some beach patios had to use sandbags to rein it in.

Some of the beach guard stations are still at risk and sandbags are handy.

Vying for the scarcer than usually July visitors, some restaurants have launched yet unheard marketing campaigns, inviting all to have dinner of the day for one euro.

First it was «Laukinių Vakarų salūnas», a trendy café and night club, known for its youthful clientele at day and testosterone-driven customers at night, as well as for a stout black host at the entrance, that started to lure all to come in for a one-euro dinner.

It has created a good deal of buzz in local and national media, with many wondering whether Palanga is ready to rid of the trope as an expensive resort.

Explaining what many see as a well thought out marketing, Audrius Mikalauskas, the café’s manager, noted that, this year in particular, many visitors are price-savvy and tend to tighten the purse strings.

«There is a significant part of people who come here, saunter around and ask others for cheaper spots to eat. Therefore, we decided to respond accordingly, pricing all cheaper dishes with one euro,» he said.

In his words, the decision paid off, with many of the penny-pinching holidaymakers willing to try the novelty.

«The interest is tangible. The number of the type of guests depends on weather. But we’ve had a good deal of the customers by now. Both youth, visitors and local workforce like one euro dinner,» Mikalauskas said, noting that the café has slashes its menu prices up to 40 per cent during rainy days.

For one euro, the guest can get a bowl of soup and a 120-130 gram portion of balandėliai, a national dish made of minced meat stuffed in boiled cabbage leaves, for example.

However, the case is misleading, conjuring up an impression that Palanga has become an all-affordable holiday destination.

Although most of local restaurants do respond accordingly to the volume of the human flow outside, the range of dish prices has virtually changed little, or has not at all over the last year.

You may spend from 8-15 euros for your main dish in 80 per cent of Palanga restaurants, up to 40 euros in a handful of them, including «Žuvinė» on Basanavičius street, and up to a whopping 100 euros – or more! – in the A-list clientele catering «Pušųpaunksnėje», a restaurant owned by the family of the legendary Lithuanian basketball player, Arvydas Sabonis.

«Indeed, Palanga offers a wide variety of services in a different range of prices. Naturally, the prices are on a higher end in Basanavičius street, but further from it they drop significantly,» Šarūnas Vaitkus, mayor of Palanga, says.

He, however, acknowledges that some local entrepreneurs tend to spike upthe prices and he regrets it.

«Excessively high prices do make harm to the resort’s image. Sadly, there are still some businessmen who, in a couple of months, want to ear for the rest of year. From my experience, they come here from elsewhere. On the other hand, if there’re people who are willing to pay more, there will be someone who will be charging more,» the mayor emphasised. «I’d say this: the resort offers many places where the visitor is respected in spite of the width of the wallet.»

Agreeing, Ingrida Valaitienė, head of Palanga’s Hotels and Restaurants Association (PHRA), says that the variety of prices and services has become Palanga’s signature feature. Especially so this summer.

«The fact that some places started offering outlandishly low prices, even for one euro, suggests that even part of the local businesses got fed up with the continuous message that Palanga is a place of frightening prices. Palanga accommodates very different types of visitors. From those affording a five euro per night room in the attic of a wooden house belonging to a local granny (many local senior residents tend to rent their free rooms and can be quite bothersome offering their services in the local bus station-L.J.) to those who let with ease thin their pockets by 300 euro per night for a room in a five-star local hotel,» the PHRA head said.

According to Valaitienė, it is too premature to make conclusions on the year’s high season, but the flexibility of prices is definitely one of the summer’s defining features.

«In terms of the make-up of the visitors, Estonians and especially Latvians are abundant here so far. Meanwhile, many Lithuanians in such summers like to go to what we call Latvia’s «wild» beaches in Pape and around it,» she said.

As for Russian guests, their numbers have reduced since the worsening of the geopolitical situation following annexation of Crimea, she noted.

«Western tourists have not replaced them since then. I’d say we’re seeing more local people arriving at Palanga and they have partly replaced Russians. Yet not locals but foreigners are a sought-after clientele by Palanga hotels for a single reason: foreigners make bookings in advance, meanwhile Lithuanians book late and tend to do cancellations,» the PHRA head noted.

The average occupancy of Palanga hotels is at around 70-90 per cent for the weekend, Valaitienė said.

Not bad, uh?

Ref: 020/

Leave a reply

  1. Trevor Hudson says:

    It might encourage more people to visit Palanga if the Parking charges were reduced, over 5 Euros for 3 hours parking is a right Rip Off

    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

Week in Lithuania. Economists, trade unions cautious about tax, pension reform plans

Lithuanian economists and trade union officials say that the government's planned tax and pension system reform unveiled on Monday, April 23, will lead to a rise in wages, but will not help drastically curb emigration.

BNN summary of the week: prime minister without solutions; birth rates down; organic food rules

BNN offers a summary of this week’s topical news in a variety of categories: Change; Growth; Business; Assessment; Fight; Future.

Economy Ministry: producer prices will affect dynamics of raw material prices

Producer prices in industry will grow in 2018 similarly as they had in 2017. Producer price level is largely affected by fluctuations of raw material prices in the world, as noted by Latvia’s Economy Ministry.

PUC: Gaso’s separation from Latvijas Gāze was legal

After examining documents submitted by the transmission system’s operator, the Public Utilities Commission concluded that activities performed by AS Gaso as part of reorganization of Latvijas Gāze were sufficient to ensure compliance with requirements for independence, as reported by PUC representatives.

Industrial producer prices in Latvia up 3.5%

Compared to February, level of producer prices in the Latvian industry rose by 0.2 % in March 2018. Prices of products sold on the domestic market grew by 0.1 %, but prices of exported products went up by 0.4 %.

Municipality: after meeting in summer, British Steel refused to buy KVV Liepājas metalurgs

After the meeting that took place at the end of August 2017, British Steel, which had previously voiced an interest in KVV Liepājas metalurgs, refused to purchase the bankrupt company, says Liepaja City Council chairman’s advisor for public relations matters Andrejs Rjabcevs.

SRS determines Latvian officials with the largest salaries

Thanks to real estate transactions Prison Administration Chief Ilona Spure and Healthcare Minster Anda Čakša had the largest income among state officials in 2017. The holder of the largest wage among state officials remains the governor of the Bank of Latvia Ilmārs Rimšēvičs, according to information compiled by the State Revenue Service.

Total tax debts in Latvia – EUR 1.255 billion

At the beginning of April total tax debts in Latvia, including outstanding, halted and payment extensions, was EUR 1.255 billion, which is 3.2% lower than the previous month.

Eight-year-long Latvian-Russian state border demarcation process concludes

Latvian-Russian state border demarcation documents have come to force. 21 April 2018 marked the conclusion of the two countries’ joint border demarcation process that lasted eight years, as reported by Latvia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry’s press-centre.

Prosecutor general turns to Constitutional Court against MPC regulations

Latvia’s Prosecutor General Ēriks Kalnmeiers has submitted a case to the Constitutional Court about the non-compliance of the mandatory procurement component with the country’s Constitution.

Unity may become New Unity; Kariņš may become prime minister candidate

Unity may start in upcoming Saeima elections with a new name – New Unity. The party may pick MEP Krišjānis Kariņš as its prime minister candidate, as reported by Panorāma programme of LTV.

France to fine for naming veggie foods in meat terms

In France, vegetable-based products such as soya steaks or vegetarian sausages marketed as meat substitutes are to be banned in France for misleading consumers as it will be prohibited for food producers to use any meat terms to label products that do not contain meat.

Breach intensity on a rise near Latvia’s state border

Two groups of Vietnamese citizens were caught in an illegal attempt to cross Latvia’s border and multiple cigarette-smuggling attempts were thwarted by authorities in April, as reported by Latvia’s State Border Guard.

Latvia downgraded in openness of civic space rating

Citing Latvian laws as showing less respect fundamental freedoms since 2017, CIVICUS, the international organisation promoting and monitoring civil society and citizen participation in democracies, has downgraded the rating of the openness of the civic space in Latvia from «Open» to «Narrowed».

Authorities to check Riga City Council member Frolovs’ possibly fictive employment in Getliņi Eko

Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau has commenced an inspection following Riga City Council deputy Juta Strīķe. In it, she detailed concerns about the possible fictive employment of city council deputy Vladimirs Frolovs in Getliņi Eko.

Jekabpils Council divides a pie, not duties; will the management change?

Disputes have commenced amidst the ranks of members of Jekabpils City Council – coalition member Kristīne Ozola from the National Alliance says behaviour of the city council’s management made her change her mind in regards to supporting the ruling coalition.

U.S. urges Moscow to address election, chemical weapons' and Ukraine issues

The United States government has asked the Kremlin to act on U.S. concerns on election meddling, the Salisbury chemical attack in UK, as well as the military developments in Ukraine and Syria.

Latvijas Krājbanka’s administrator recovered EUR 114,800 in March

The administrator of the liquidated Latvijas Krājbanka EUR 114,823 in March, which is 16.9% less than a month ago, according to the report published in Latvian Herald.

Basque militants ETA apologise to killed and injured readying for dissolution

ETA, the Basque military organisation that has fought for the establishment of an independent country in northern Spain and south-western France for 50 years, has apologised for causing harm to victims of its campaign.

Every second resident in Latvia has a loan, and every third – a missed payment

Last year, the number of private person loans had increased nearly 10%, according to the Credit Information Bureau’s data exchange system. Currently this institution’s data archive contains entries for 899 thousand assets in private persons’ contracts. 290 thousand private persons have missed some of their payments.

State Secretary: Latvia and China share good economic cooperation perspectives

To present topical issues of Latvian-Chinese economic cooperation to businessmen, as well as contribute to formation of new business contacts, officials have launched the Latvia-Ningbo Economic & Trade Cooperation Symposium, as reported by Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Wet summer boosted air travel via Tallinn Airport

In Estonian passenger aviation, a considerable 19% growth has been observed by the Tallinn Airport in 2017, which has explained the increase in passenger numbers partly with unusually bad weather conditions.

ABLV Bank urges FinCEN to withdraw «exaggerated accusations»

Lawyers of ABLV Bank, which is currently in the process of self-liquidating, urge US Department of Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network to withdraw its published proposal, which details how ABLV Bank’s management had allegedly used bribes to influence Latvian officials and breach sanctions against North Korea.

Stoltenberg: NATO has no plans to boost military presence in Baltic States

NATO does not plan to increase its presence in Baltic States, which have requested additional aid against Russia’s potential aggression, as announced by the alliance’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

Mass evacuation in Berlin to defuse 500 kg bomb

In Berlin, after an unexploded bomb weighing 500 kg has been discovered, part of the German capital is being evacuated on Friday, April 20, in order to defuse the World War II weapon.

Newest comments