The town of Puerto de la Cruz has always been an example in the history of the Canary Islands tourism as a pioneer of tourism development. It is a mature and expert destination, which however has suffered from the consequences of time and, despite its undoubted value, needs a major renovation. Taking advantage of the upcoming creation of a new harbor area, Menis proposes the complete regeneration of the entire waterfront, which, together with a new multifunctional area around the waterfront, would achieve a large-scale urban regeneration. In this sense, the project will recover the original position of the waterline disappeared since the 50s and 60s when a containment wall and a maritime esplanade were built for safety and protection reasons.
To achieve this, the project will use - and this is its core concept - the Canary Islands Stream (La Corriente de las Islas Canarias) in order to build a water layer with a varying width between 25m and 40 m. What is the Canary Islands Stream? It is the natural current of the Atlantic Ocean that runs from East to West and turns from the Canary Islands to the Caribbean, and from there to North along the US coast to the North Pole and then down to England, Portugal and gets back to the Canary Islands. This current explains the Canaries climate on both sides of the Ocean and it actually helped Columbus to discover America.
The project conceived by Fernando Menis directs the stream naturally, pacifying it, in this way, allowing water sports and activities in a controlled area. Otherwise, due, to the strong Atlantic Ocean, you could not even think of such activities; at Tenerife North, swimming or any other water sports use to be dangerous in certain times of the year, especially in wintertime. This ingenious use of the Canary Islands Stream adds a high value to the harbor and it also produces a second beachfront facing the volcanic mountain El Teide, Spain's highest peak. Besides by using the stream, Menis intends to restore the close relation the old town of Puerto de la Cruz has historically had with the Ocean. Formerly the water reached to where our design intends to conduct the stream, bringing the water back to people again and recovering the historical profile of the town.
Behind this water layer and parallel to it, multi-purpose buildings will be built to transform the harbor into a whole new public area to offer leisure and economic activities. This will be a new core of the economic and urban recovery designed to facilitate social cohesion and cultural activities. The program of this set is more than a simple mix of functions; the aim is to achieve an organic connection between the old town grid and the harbor; to connect individual spontaneity, participation and educative entertainment with commerce and gastronomy. The set will contain: public squares, public promenades, a shopping mall, a sailing school, a beach club with a pool on the deck whose bottom is actually the transparent ceiling of the underneath rooms, a night garden, parking, a 360 º viewpoint, restaurants, an open air Auditorium, flowers and gastronomic market and a fish market.
Menis’s design includes a new beach as an extension of Playa Jardín (The Garden Beach) designed by César Manrique in 1992. There are a number of features that distinguish the new beach from the existing one: it is a privileged natural viewpoint since it looks at the spectacular volcanic mountain El Teide. Moreover, because it faces south, its users will be protected from the cold trade winds (Los Alisios) and big waves; bathing will be accessible and easy for everyone, throughout the year. The new harbor breakwater will also "support" the beach, which makes its construction sustainable and will help maintaining the sand in place in a natural way. Local volcanic black sand will be used. Between the beach and the town, there is a greenery layer that covers a parking underneath. Among the natural trees there are artificial trees (lampposts) able to harvest sun energy during the day to use during the night for the lighting.