It seems that, after several decades politicians have decided to create a classification of rural tourism accommodation; and this just about 20 years after the start of the rural tourism boom, well, this is Spain. For people who are interested in starting for example an Agrotourismo, but never knew what this entails and what specifications should be met, this explanation can function as a handy guide to get a deeper understanding on the rural side of Ibiza and Spain in general.
Rural real estate falls under three specifications:
1. Rural Houses:
Rural accommodation in an independent building, attached or not to other buildings, with different numbers of bedrooms, which do not provide service included in the rates to its residents, with a common kitchen and not necessarily with separate bathrooms in each room.
2. Rural Hotels.
Rural accommodation in an independent building, attached or not to other buildings, with different numbers of rooms and that serve its residents, with bathrooms in each room. The services provided in these establishments are those of restoration and cleaning of rooms.
3. Rural Apartments:
Rural accommodations that are not independent, that is, share the structure of their building with other rural apartments or with private homes, with different bedrooms and that do not provide service included in the rates to their residents.
There are subclasses within these three rural classes, because there are differences in the way the product is marketed.
1. Rural Houses: According to the above definition, the different variations could be classified into:
Rural house by rooms: Those rural houses that rent their rooms independently and that may or may not have a kitchen for common use.
Complete rural house: Those rural houses that are rented in their entirety. This typology can be leased according to the number of people (per person) or with a closed price for the use in full. In the first case, depending on the occupation contracted, the tenants may be prevented from entering those rooms or rooms that are not going to be used.
In addition to that, depending on the characteristics of the construction, a defining name can be given, depending on whether it is an isolated construction (located in a field) or attached to other buildings (urban), or because of the geographical area and the local customs where it is located. In this way, the name could be defined by the different autonomies, constituting an addition to the national classification.
2. Rural Hotels: Here, in addition to the classification according to quality, as happens with the stars of the normal hotels, choosing a specific symbology for rural tourism, distinctions are made beyond quality, for example, in function of its location, the number of rooms, its age, etc. That is, if the hotel is isolated (in the field), if it is in the urban core (urban), if it has less than a certain number of rooms (charming or normal), if the construction is new, if the building a certain age (historical or new construction), or if it is a building constructed or not with materials typical for the area it is located in.
3. Rural apartments: in this class, the typology is smaller, basically restricted towards its quality and the amount of rooms you have. In this case looked is at the type of building, traditional or not, in which the rural apartment is located.
Furthermore, all rural accommodation can be classified according to their activity. Although all of the above can be considered as rural accommodation, they can be will receive a sub label as well. These sublabels are qualified in the Rural Tourism sub-sectors:
Rural Tourism: It would correspond to the purist and classic definition of rural house, rural hotel or rural apartment, that is, accommodations that bring the traveler closer to the typical rural traditions of the towns of Spain, Cultural Tourism and Religious Tourism (churches, synagogues, mosques and other religious buildings).
Agrotourism: Those rural accommodations that also carry out an agricultural activity typical of the area, that is, rural accommodation included in farms and / or livestock, where travelers can see the activity and / or participate in daily activities. This type corresponds to the stud farms, the agrotourism of the Balearic Islands and rural tourism in Navarra, for example.
Enotourism: Despite being able to be included within the agritourism, the accommodation in Vineyards, Wineries and Wine Routes have in Spain the sufficient economic and social importance worldwide, as to form an independent typology. The Accommodations in Bodegas y Viñedos (houses and rural hotels) and all the accommodations included in the Wine Routes correspond to this typology.
Ecotourism: Ecotourism is not only to know and visit the Protected Natural Spaces, but also to be able to coexist with local traditions, handicrafts, popular festivals and, in general, the daily way of life of the locals. In addition, ecotourism is actively protecting the environment, fair trade and accommodations with zero environmental impact or a low carbon footprint. This typology corresponds to those nearby rural accommodations or included in Protected Natural Spaces, the Ecological Lodgings (zero or reduced emissions), the accommodations specialized in bird watching, ornithological routes, and in general, the sighting of any other animal in the wild such as the wolf and the bear, among other emblematic animals, and finally, the accommodations that carry out environmental education activities, such as recycling courses, organic gardens, etc.
In conclusion, before wanting to start any type of commercial rural real estate activities, one should make sure to fall under the classifications as have been stated above.