A hotel security guard on the island of Crete beat a man for trying to cross a beach where the hotel had filled with sunbeds and umbrellas and considered it as a “private beach.”
Under Greek law beaches are considered public property. It is worth noting that the incident takes place as local societies revolt against the blocking of free access to beaches by hotels and beach bars with thousands of sunbeds and umbrellas and “Reclaim the Beaches.”
Speaking to local media newkriti.gr, the victim, a tour guide who works in Heraklion, said that he attempted to cross the beach with company for a early morning swim at the nearby works.
He was beaten by the hotel security guard as he and his company tried to pass in front of the hotel beach in order to bathe in the adjacent public part of the coast.
“I’m a tour guide, I know where I can go and where I can’t. We didn’t intend to sit in front of the hotel sunbeds, we wanted to go next door and just had to walk past this section. It was around 4:30 in the morning, we crossed the rocks with the four girls and when the man who works at the hotel security saw us, he started shouting. I tried to explain to him that we will not sit at this point, but in vain”, the victim said about the incident.
Τhe company was frightened by the guard’s shouting and tried to turn back.
“The girls got scared and told me to go back, then he yelled at me, ‘come on…’ and I cursed him in turn. After we were out on the street he came and hit me in the face and while I was falling I also hit the pavement. The girls told me I passed out. After we got home and I saw the injuries I decided to go to the hospital,” he underlined.
Are there private beaches in Greece?
“No. Every business adjacent to a beach must maintain free access for bathers (if there is no other access) through its facilities. If in some way a business tries to obstruct citizens’ access to the beach (with deterrent signs, fences or guarding) citizens should contact the police. The only exception is the few organized beaches for which a ticket has been established”, the victim argued.
The tour guide is hospitalized, where he will remain until tomorrow, as he has broken the bone above his left eye.
What the hotel responded
The hotel management was also informed about the incident, which according to the tour guide replied that they pay very expensive rent to the municipality for the beach for this and they don’t let anyone to sit and is guarded.
It is worth noting that the access to the hotel beach is through a restaurant, which leaves the alley open every night.
After being discharged from the hospital, the tour guide is going to report the incident to the police.
For its part, the hotel speaking to neakriti.gr, maintained that it bears no responsibility for what happens outside their accommodation, that it has not been informed of the incident and that the security officer is responsible for the safety of the building.