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Sunday, 11 September 2016

Hotel Marqués de Riscal is a work of art in Basque Spain

There are literally thousands of hotels all over Spain, but only a few catch your eye in such a dramatic fashion as the Hotel Marqués de Riscal, brainchild of Frank O. Gehry. 

The hotel makes an incredible architectural statement as it looms in all its weirdness and wonderfulness over a traditional Basque town. As for the architect, Gehry was labeled by Vanity Fair as “the most important architect of our age,” and looking at his work it is easy to see why. The Canadian-American Pritzker Prize-winning architect, based in Los Angeles, has been responsible for some truly incredible work, like the titanium-covered Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain, and other award-winning work worldwide. 

Right in the historic heart of the medieval town of Elciego in Spain’s Basque country and surrounded by older stone buildings and endless vineyards, the hotel looms with color, curves and artistic lines. However, it is not just the exterior that shows Gehry’s genius. On entering the hotel the tilted walls, cathedral-like high ceilings and zigzag-effect windows continue this trend, making the hotel into not only luxurious accommodations, but also a work of beautiful art.

The hotel has 43 rooms and suites and offers two restaurants, namely the Michelin-starred Marqués de Riscal Restaurant and the chic Bistró 1860 restaurant both of which offer a deluxe gourmet experience.

For a room with a real view, the guest lounge is on the top floor, offering comfortable leather sofas, a cozy fireplace for cold winter months and a variety of reading material. The adjoining terrace gives views across the surrounding wine-growing areas to the mountains, as well as the fascinating and medieval village of Elciego itself.

As an additional treat, Hotel Marqués de Riscal offers an exclusive spa experience at the Vinotherapie® Spa by Caudalie, an establishment offering relaxation and also health and beauty treatments relating rather appropriately to the grape. For instance, there is the hydrotherapeutic Barrel Bath, where guests can soak in an exfoliating grape marc, as well as the Winemaker’s Massage, to increase blood circulation and improve muscle tone, among many other relaxing offers. The spa has won three international awards for excellence over the years and is well worth a visit. There is also a well-equipped gym to help guests keep fit and in shape during their stay.

The surrounding area is fascinating too, with the rolling hills as a background and the expansive vineyard, which actually dates back to 1858, making Marqués de Riscal the oldest winery in the region. There is plenty to learn about the wine-making art on several tours available of the area, as well as enjoyable wine tasting events.

Guests can explore their surroundings using the complimentary bicycles offered by the hotel - visit the charming village of Elciego and its winding streets or take a picnic in the countryside close by including, naturally, a bottle of Marqués de Riscal wine.

For anyone wishing to have a rural experience in the vineyards of Spain, together with a stay in a luxurious and unique building, Hotel Marqués de Riscal in Elciego is a fascinating choice.

Monday, 29 August 2016

Red flag! Fuengirola beach closed after shark alert

Just after 12 pm on Sunday, the red flags were raised on Fuengirola beach, packed with holiday makers enjoying the last weekend of August. 

It turns out some bathers had spotted what looked like a four-meter-long shark swimming in the shallow water just off the beach and immediately reported the sighting to lifeguards.

The Guardia Civil immediately sent out a patrol boat, searching along the coast for the shark and by 5 p.m., no further sightings had occurred and the beach was once again reopened for swimmers.

Shark sightings are unusual off the beach in Fuengirola - in fact, you are far more likely to be inundated with jellyfish. However in July, a swimmer was bitten by a shark when swimming off a beach in Elche, Alicante.

Source: The Local

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Sigourney Weaver to be honored at San Sebastián film festival 2016

Sigourney Weaver is set to receive the Donostia lifetime achievement award at the 64th San Sebastián film festival, according to organizers on Tuesday.

The festival runs from September 18-26 and Weaver will receive the honor on September 21st when her new film, “A Monster Calls” is screened at the film festival. The film has a Spanish director, Juan Antonio Bayona, and also stars Felicity Jones, Lewis McDougall and Liam Neeson.

This isn’t the first time Sigourney has attended the film festival in the Basque resort city. She was at San Sebastián back in 1979 with the release of “Alien” and again in 1999 for her role in “A Map of the World.”

According to a press release by the festival organizers, the Donostia lifetime achievement award acknowledges a North American actress whose name has been included in some of the largest productions of the last few decades with directors and moviemakers such as James Cameron, Ridley Scott, Roman Polanski, Mike Nicholls, Peter Weir, David Fincher and Ange Lee.
Sigourney Weaver became famous back in 1979 for her lead role as Ellen Ripley in Ripley Scott’s sci-fi film, “Alien.” She is also well known for her roles in the various sequels, “Aliens,” “Alien 3” and “Alien: Resurrection.” She was also recognized in her Oscar-nominated role as Dian Fossey in the film “Gorillas in the Mist.”

Since then Weaver has also starred in the original “Ghostbuster” films, as well as James Cameron’s “Avatar,” among many other appearances on screen and stage.

The Donostia Award was first launched in 1986 and has recognized Hollywood Golden Age greats such as Bette Davis in 1989, weeks prior to her death. Since then the award has been presented to high-profile figures in Hollywood and European cinema, including Al Pacino (1995) and Michael Caine and Robert de Niro in 2000.

[Photo by David Shankbone/CC BY-SA 3.0]
[Source: The Local]

Thursday, 9 June 2016

'Por el cumplimiento de los acuerdos:' Fuengirola municipal workers take to the streets

Workers at the Ayuntamiento de Fuengirola (municipality) took to the streets again on Thursday June 9 protesting the fact that PP mayoress, Ana Mula, is not keeping her promises.

This is the third protest the writer has personally seen in Fuengirola on the Costa del Sol in the last couple of years, and while in 2011, 15M revealed the huge salary increases handed out to local Councillors, ordinary workers like firefighters, local police and other municipal workers first took a dip in salary and have been promised an increase ever since. It just isn't happening.

If anyone would like HD photos of the protest, please comment below. Si desea copias de las fotos, comentar a continuación.

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Luxury Costa del Sol mansion formerly belonging to Prince up for sale [Video]

Prince's former luxurious and spacious villa in Marbella on the Costa del Sol in southern Spain is up for sale for a mere €5.3 million ($5.9 million).

Have a look inside Prince's former home in the video included below and read more about it here.