The possibility of the Basque Culinary Center (BCC), the prestigious school of catering based in San Sebastian, opening in Malaga is back on the table after the agreement reached with the Diputación provincial authority in 2016 lapsed. That project did not materialise because the BCC felt insufficient space was being offered in the Térmica building
Five years later, the Basque catering college is once again showing interest in having some kind of presence in Malaga and has already held meetings in recent months with officials of the city council, as SUR has been able to confirm.
The mayor, Francisco de la Torre, has not denied the contacts, although he has been cautious when it comes to providing information.
"When I have a concrete answer, I will let you know," he told SUR. However, he also remarked: "I am for anything that improves education and training in Malaga."
The management of the Basque Culinary Center has confirmed relatively recent meetings with the city's councillor for Planning, Raül López, although they have not detailed what format this possible presence in Malaga will take, whether as a permanent training centre or a series of specific academic events yet to be defined. However, they have confirmed their interest in Malaga because of its "relevant role in the gastronomy sector at a national level".
According to the agreement that the BCC signed with the provincial authority in 2016, its intention was to open a higher education and specialisation centre for catering professionals. This centre was to start operating the following year, 2017, and would provide two master's degrees, two specialised courses plus a set of conferences and seminars for professionals.
The classes were going to be held at the La Térmica civic centre complex, a location that was finally discarded due to lack of space, and the Escuela de Hostelería de Benahavís, although other locations were not ruled out.
The commitment of the provincial authority to improve the training and specialisation of professionals in the kitchen was based on the importance of the hospitality sector in the city and throughout the province of Malaga. Gastronomy is one of the most important motivations for visitors who come to the province, as it generates a high degree of satisfaction among tourists, exceeding 90 per cent, according to studies by the Costa del Sol tourism board.