|SOMETHING you've always wanted – your own lighthouse. |
This one at Cabo de Palos near Cartagena is one of over
300 being put up for sale by the cash-strapped Spanish Government.
There are some 387 lighthouses in Spain, but today only 50 or so of these still have full-time light keepers living at them – the rest have either been turned over to automatic operation that only require occasional maintenance visits, or have been replaced by more compact and cheaper-to-run lights.
The country's Ministry of Public Works put the rest up for sale or lease in early December 2013, and says it's been "inundated" with enquiries from those interested in turning the buildings into everything from permanent homes to holiday rental accommodation, mini-hotels, B&Bs, restaurants and even art galleries.
Some of the lighthouses date back two to three hundred years and have cottages or apartments large enough for several families to live in them, as those originally living in the larger ones also maintained other nearby lights; others had only basic facilities for single light keepers who worked weekly rotations.
Whatever new use they're put to today, those occupying or visiting them can be assured of grand views – including at some, regular, if fleeting, illuminated glimpses at night.