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Typical street in Paceville
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Located west of St. Julian's, Malta, Paceville (sometimes abbreviated PV) is the name given to an informal district heavily populated with nightclubs, bars, pubs and restaurants, and is an important nightlife hub on the island. Paceville is located between Spinola Point and Dragonara Point, delimiting Spinola Bay and St. George's Bay respectively.
Paceville traces its origins in the 1920s and 1930s when prominent lawyer and developer Dr Giuseppe Pace (1890–1971) built a few seaside residence in the area of St. Julian's known as 'il-Qaliet', the small bay between the Dragonara Peninsula and Portomaso. Some of these residencies are still there today, although they are now surrounded by the multi-storey apartments and hotels in the area.
Pace's houses were initially rented out to a number of British servicemen who were stationed in the nearby St. Andrew's and St. George's barracks. In the period between the two World Wars, some of these early Paceville residence started to be rented to the Maltese as well. With the arrival of locals in the area of St. Julian's, Dr Pace decided to finance building of a chapel run by the Augustinian fathers. In Dec. 2000 an adoration chapel. known as the Millennium Chapel was inaugurated and two years later an adjoining complex known as WOW ("Wishing Others Well"). This serves the needs of various voluntary groups that offer free community services to callers from all over Malta; the WOW chapel is all day and night. Prior to the construction of the chapel in Paceville, the Augustinian order in Malta had already built another chapel as well as a convent in St. George's Bay, dedicated to St Rita. These buildings too are still standing and are located just behind Bay Street.
The areas around Paceville after the war were mostly farming communities surrounded with fields, and Paceville itself only had a few restaurants. Unlike today, parking in Paceville was relatively straightforward as people used to park their cars in fields, one of them being the field on which the St. George's Park hotel was built.
The Sheraton opened its hotel in the Dragonara Peninsula. Prior to its transformation, the Dragonara Hotel served other purposes. Originally it was the summer residence of Malta's wealthiest banker, Marquis Emanuel Scicluna, known as ic-Cisk. In times of war, the palace was converted into a military hospital and headquarters of voluntary services. It was redeveloped as a casino, and has now since been redeveloped again in the 1990s by Westin Hotels.
At around the same time, a number of bars and clubs started to open in the area in view of the increasing number of British servicemen and tourists living in St. Julian's, St. Andrew's and Pembroke. Throughout the years, bars, clubs, discotheques and additional hotels were developed.
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