Back to the Roaring 20s!

There were Scandi-style celebrations as The View Marbella and Los Naranjos Golf Club organised a tournament and a 20s themed party to celebrate the return of the Scandinavian residents after the summer.

Every October thousands of Scandinavian residents return to the Costa del Sol, after spending the hot summer months in their own countries. This figure increases every year and is one of the  one of the most important communities in Marbella.

 

 

Since the 70s, when Scandinavian tourism first began in Spain with the first charter flights, the Costa del Sol has been a favourite destination not only to visit but to live.

The team behind The View Marbella, noted the high level of Swedish enquiries, the second largest behind the Belgians.

“In the last two years, these two nationalities have represented the majority of our clientele” remarked Simon Boxus, head of sales of The View Marbella. “In the past the market was controlled by the British public but since the news of Brexit broke, the Swedish and Belgian markets now head the majority of listings in the real estate market”.

Nordic buyers have been visiting the Costa del Sol for years and have extensive knowledge of the local real estate market, making them highly informed clients. Initially, the clientelle opted for the standard two bedroom house for use during the winter but  now they are looking for high-end housing with spacious rooms and modern architecture, with price ranges starting from one million euros for the apartments and 2.5 million for the villas.


More rain on the way as "Zombie" storm approaches

Storm battered Marbella is bracing itself for more rain on Sunday.

After the chaos of Tuesday's downpour that brought widespread flooding and damage to the town, Spanish Metrological Office AEMET issued a yellow warning for storms tomorrow from 7am-8pm.

The heavy rain is a result of Hurricane Leslie crossing the Atlantic Ocean heading toward Portugal and Spain. Forecasters saying the "Zombie" storm will bring heavy rain, high winds and dangerous surf to western parts of the Iberian Peninsula.

Forecasters said sections of Portugal will see near hurricane-force winds, while parts of western Spain are expected to be hit with tropical storm-force winds.).

Portugal’s weather service issued red warnings — its highest level— for high winds or dangerous coastal conditions for 13 of its 18 mainland districts, including Lisbon, where it said the storm’s effects will start to be felt around 6 p.m.

Looks like it's time to batten down the hatches. Again!


BREAKING NEWS: Double bomb blasts in drug feud

Marbella was rocked by two explosions last night as a fatal drug gang war re-ignited. Sources say the target was an alleged informant on the summers killings of "El Maradona" . More to follow....

 


BREAKING NEWS. Marbella placed on RED alert as storms continue

Marbella has been placed on Red Alert for extreme rainfall

Spanish Metrological Agency AEMET issued the warning of extreme weather until 9am, with between 50 and 150 mm of rain expected.

Inland Alhaurin El Grande was hit by floods as 120 mm of rain fell in two hours.

Under a Red alert, schools and colleges are closed, and all but vital travel is discouraged.

 


Rains bring chaos to Marbella. Again

Only last week Marbella mayor Angeles Muñoz was laying the first stone for yet another luxury hotel planned for the town and boasting about how Marbella was the ultimate luxury destination.

Yet less than five days later, October's heavy rains left the Marbella looking more Third World than Five Star, with tunnels flooded, streets turned into rivers and the A 7 blocked as cars became stranded in huge pools of water.

It isn't as if this has never happened to Marbella before. The scenes were reminiscent of the downpours of December 2016 that saw a woman drown in a basement "alternative club" in Cancelada.

It has been a bad week for infrastructure all round. On Tuesday a broken down coach on the road near Cortijo Blanco saw traffic queues of up to seven kilometres towards Estepona. Obviously there is no translation for "hard shoulder" in the Spanish road planning manual.

The rain is set to continue until Wednesday afternoon. At least it keeps the drug gangs inside..

Perhaps Marbellla Town Hall should look at promoting this yearly occurence as a sports tourism activity with SUP on the Boulevard San Pedro and white water rafting into the tunnel by Puerto Banus???

 

#Marbella


Department for Exiting the EU minister meets expat groups in Madrid

Robin Walker, Minister at the Department for Exiting the EU, was in Madrid last week to talk Brexit with Spanish government ministers and members of the business community.

He also took part in a roundtable discussion on citizens’ rights with spokespeople from groups representing UK nationals in Spain. Members of Brexpats in Spain, Bremain in Spain, EuroCitizens and ECREU were welcomed to the British Embassy by Deputy Head of Mission Tim Hemmings, where, as well as meeting with the minister, they spent time with different members of the Embassy and consular teams, discussing issues including health and social care, outreach and communications.

The aim of the day was to provide the representatives of the citizens’ groups with a greater insight into the work the Embassy network does on behalf of UK nationals, provide an update on the progress of the Brexit negotiations and respond to any questions and concerns.

Minister Walker said: “I was pleased to have the chance to meet with representatives of the British expat community and update them about what the government is doing to safeguard their rights post-Brexit.

I also valued the opportunity to hear their concerns about residency, pensions, onward movement and voting rights, and the uncertainty that many of them still feel about what Brexit means for them and their families.

Securing the rights of citizens has always been our top priority. The draft Withdrawal Agreement will secure the rights of UK nationals living in Spain, and Spanish citizens and their family members living in the UK. But, in the unlikely event we leave without a deal, the Prime Minister has confirmed that all EU citizens resident in the UK before 29 March 2019 will be able to stay. And I want British expats in Spain to know that, during my meetings, I have underlined how valued and significant it would be if the Spanish Government now offered them the same reassurance.”

British Ambassador Simon Manley commented: “There are 180,000 Spanish people living in the UK, and some 300,000 British people have chosen to make Spain their home.

The strong people-to-people links are at the heart of our bilateral relationship with Spain. That is why I am pleased that Robin Walker was able to meet with representatives of UK nationals’ citizens’ rights groups in Spain, as well as the Spanish Government.

Meanwhile, as the negotiations continue, both the Embassy and consulates will continue with the outreach events that we have planned through Spain, with some 20 events planned between now and the end of the year.

In the meantime, I continue to urge all UK nationals living in Spain to ensure you are correctly registered and stay up to date with the latest news, by signing up for email alerts and visiting the Living in Spain guide on gov.uk, and following our Brits in Spain social media channels, including on Facebook.”

 

Advice for UK nationals living in Spain can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/living-in-spain, alongside advice for those travelling and living in Europe here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/advice-for-british-nationals-travelling-and-living-in-europe.


It's Only Rock'n'Roll...

“Brownstein! It’s Fish. I’m in a jam session in bar in La Campana and have just been playing with Nader and Adam. We’re thinking of putting the band back together! Be up at Nader’s tonight for practice”

This was the voice message that greeted me as I blearily flicked on the mobile phone at stupid o’clock one morning. I had been standing in on the Breakfast Show as the regular presenter had been away on a cruise, hence the early starts that even surprised the cat, who looked up with a start and wondered what in the name of Odin’s Raven I was doing up at this unmentionable hour.

I took a long, hard, stubble filled look in the mirror. “Every time I think that I get out, they drag me back in” I muttered a la Pacino.

The thought of playing guitar with Fish, Nader and Adam filled me with no little trepidation. Back in the 80s, when we were all big hair, bigger shoulder pads and smoldering attitude, Fish and I had played in a band called Medicine Show, fronted by the larger than life and fabulously named late, great Brenton Macbeth Blackwood. Our chaotic but raucously fun career came to an abrupt end when Brenty, a devotee of The Doors, came over all Jim Morrison on us, drank a bottle of vodka before a major gig, and promptly passed out on stage halfway through the first song. The look of frozen fear that went between Fish on bass and me on lead haunts me still.

Having moved to America, Fish opened for Blue Oyster Cult in Florida as well as playing the Hard Rock Café in Bogota, which must have been quite a gig. Imagine an audience comprised mainly of Shakira and Tony Montana lookalikes and you get the general idea.

Adam comes from a long line of drummers, and I’d gigged with his multi talented brother, and also international photographer, Wayne back in the 80s. Since then Adam had moved back to New York and been in a couple of ‘bubbling under’ East Coast bands. And Nader is, put simply, one of the most amazing guitarists that I’ve ever met, plus being a brilliant friend – the new album is out on Spotify by the way…

And then there’s me. Since the vodka fuelled breakup of Medicine Show, I hadn’t picked up an electric guitar in anger for decades, happy to strum away on a battered acoustic, more comfortable behind the microphone in a radio station than on stage.

But Nader insisted that I come and play, as Fish was only visiting for a few days, so I duly found myself standing nervously in the rehearsal room in Nader’s beautiful house. He picked me out a suitable instrument from his ‘wall of guitars’ – I kid you not, his house is THAT cool - we plugged in, turned the amp up to 11, and off we went.

What followed were the most fabulous couple of hours, playing, catching up, reminiscing on gigs and generally having a great time. I may have been the least gifted musician there, but I probably had the most fun. Afterward we posed for the ‘Official Group Photo’ on Nader’s roof deck and I’m still grinning like a loon.

It may only have been Rock n Roll, but I LOVED it. Benicassim here we come… and we are available for weddings, court hearings etc...


Something for the Weekend - Book Review - "A Gentleman in Moscow" by Amor Towles

Alicia Duggan of The Bookshop reviews "A Gentleman in Moscow" by Amor Towles

Russia 1922. Count Alexander Rostov stands before a Bolshevik tribunal in Moscow charged with being an unrepentant aristocrat.

Avoiding the firing squad, however, he is instead declared a “Former Person” and sentenced to a life of house arrest at his current abode, The Metropol, a grand hotel opposite the Kremlin in Moscow.

Upon his return to the hotel he is unceremoniously removed from his grand suite and his life as one of the hotels most prestigious guests and is sent to live a small room in the attic with whatever possessions he can fit.

Despite his change in fortune Count Rostov remains a true gentleman and adapts to his new life with poise and dignity drawing on two pieces of advice from his late father, “The first was that if one did not master one’s circumstances, one was bound to be mastered by them; and the second was Montaigne’s maxim that the surest sign of wisdom is constant cheerfulness”.

Taking us from his incarceration in 1922 and following his life in the hotel through to 1956 the characters we meet as Rostov fashions a new life for himself are delightful and the story is charming and heart-warming.

Factually (mostly) accurate and fictionally beautiful, A gentleman in Russia is an exquisitely well written novel and is set to become a modern classic.

http://www.thebookshop.es/products/a-gentleman-in-moscow-amor-towles


Update: Body is that of kidnap victim

The body dumped close to Algeciras' Punto Europa yesterday was that of the young man kidnapped in Estepona on Tuesday night, police have confirmed.

The 29-year-old Spaniard's body was in a wheelbarrow yesterday morning. The victim's wounds indicate that he had been murdered.

Sources say that the young man was known to police and had convictions for drug and tobacco smuggling.

The victim was seized after a group of between two and four men chased him from the Mister Noodles restaurant in central Estepona at 10.45 pm on Tuesday night. The kidnappers fired several shots at the victim, sending bystanders scurrying for cover, before they caught him and bundled him into a BMW X5 which then sped off.

The body was found in Algercias at 12.30 on Wednesday and the suspected BMW X5 in nearby San Roque. At the moment all the signs seem to point to a settling of scores in the Campo de Gibraltar's drug scene.

 


BREAKING NEWS: Body found after Estepona kidnapping

Police investigating last night’s dramatic kidnapping from a busy restaurant in Estepona last night have found a body.

The body of a man was discovered this morning next to the Hospital Puento Europa in Algeciras with first reports of his wounds indicating that he had been murdered.

The kidnapping took place as the victim was eating at a Mister Noodles restaurant on Estepona’s Paseo Martimo after 9pm last night.

Witnesses report hearing up to 13 gunshots with people running for cover.

The victim was then bundled into a grey BMW X5, which then sped off.

Police think that this may be the latest in the increasingly violent settling of scores between drug gangs in the area.