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THE COOLEST READ FOR THE SUMMER HEAT The original and only English-language investigative newspaper in Andalucía


olive press


Vol. 6 Issue 139

July 12 - 25, 2011

Paradise lost

EXCLUSIVE by James Bryce and Paul O’Connell

ON first appearances, he looks much like any other tanned tourist, or expat, enjoying the morning sunshine on the Costa del Sol. Spending his time completing crossword puzzles and reading books, Patrick Burke doesn’t appear to have a care in the world. But look closer and you will see two bags of belongings on the bench next to him. For after losing his job as a chef, the Briton can no longer afford to pay his rent and has been forced to live on the streets in Fuengirola. Now his former neighbours have voiced their

Appeal for help after expat chef loses job and is forced to sleep rough

LOST IN THOUGHT: Expat Burke sits on the bench that has become his makeshift home concerns about Burke’s well-being and have appealed to the Olive Press to

help reunite him with his family. “I know he has a son living

somewhere nearby, called Richard,” said neighbour Anne Sewell, 59.

The lunacy begins as ‘Borat’ hits Pamplona

IT may look like a scene from Borat but this Sacha Baron Cohen look-a-like is actually just one of thousands of tourists who have flocked to Pamplona to run with the bulls. The daredevil reveller certainly seems intent on becoming target practice for the half-ton beast. But don’t get your knickers in a twist he escaped unhurt. See page 10 for more.

“They are not in regular contact and Richard came looking for his dad recently when he couldn’t contact him by phone. He seemed worried. “That was before Patrick became homeless,” added the South African, who runs a travel website. “I think he needs to be made aware of his father’s plight. “Patrick seems to have some psychological problems. If you ask Turn to Page 4

‘Looky looky’ men face prison for attack on police

TWO Senagalese hawkers are facing a year and a half in prison for allegedly putting three police officers in hospital. The pair also face a €500 fine and deportation if found guilty of the attack on the police in Granada city.


They are due in court this month, after getting into a fight with the officers, while standing guard to protect fellow venTurn to Page 7


the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



The Olive Press - Number One for crime and investigations

Helicopter rides, holidays in Dubai and trips on speedboats... the days of the high life are over for handsome ‘Wild’ Brad Rogers after arrest in the Muldoon fraud case

BUSTED: The high-life has ended for Rogers (above and right)

The ‘Wild’ boy gets tamed EXCLUSIVE by James Bryce

SUPERYACHTS, helicopter flights and holidays in Dubai. These were just some of the perks enjoyed by Bradley Rogers as he got a taste for the high-life on the Costa del Sol. The 28-year-old experienced sailor spent his days providing yacht charters along with his British girlfriend Ruth Finney, 33 through his website The site features pictures of the couple enjoying a break in Venice, while a luxury yacht is used as the main shot on the homepage.

But those care-free days appear to be over, following Rogers’ arrest in connection with a multimillion euro escort and debt elimination scam. The South African is now in Madrid awaiting extradition to the UK after being picked up by police along with timeshare entrepreneur Toni Muldoon and a Scottish woman named Geraldine French. The good-looking lad had been living on the Costa del Sol for four years with his girlfriend and got to know Muldoon after working on his cruise boat, Caribbean Lady. Rogers is accused of acting as Muldoon’s right-hand man at the time the alleged offences took place, between July 2007 and November 2010. However, the South African owner of the Boma Bar in Alhaurin

Firestarter caught AN arsonist has been jailed for starting seven wildfires that swept through the Campo de Gibraltar. Following his arrest by San Roque police, a judge has ordered the man, who lives in the Guadiaro Valley, to be held in prison on suspicion of starting seven fires in the space of 15 days.

The flames destroyed 100 hectares of scrubland in the area and saw 150 families evacuated from their homes with Torreguadiaro the area most affected by the blaze. Meanwhile police in Velez Malaga also believe an arsonist is to blame for three recent fires in the area to the east of Malaga.

MOLL: Girlfriend Ruth and ‘Wild Brad’ website (left) el Grande, a regular haunt of Rogers, described him as ‘a lovely, sweet guy’. “He comes into the bar now and then and he’s always very polite. I think I met his parents once or twice, when they were here on holiday,” he added.

Gunned down in Torremolinos

AN Argentinean man has been shot dead in a Torremolinos street. The victim, aged 20, was shot at least five times in a hail of bullets. His body was found near a Peugeot 308 car with its doors open leading police to believe he may have been with others who fled during the attack. No witnesses have so far come forward although neighbours reported hearing gunshots at around 8.40am in the El Pinillo neighbourhood. Police believe it may have been drug related.


Rihanna’s not rocking in Rio POP star Rihanna has cancelled an appearance at the Rock in Rio festival in Madrid following the death of her grandmother. Clara ‘Dolly’ Braithwaite lost her battle with cancer the weekend before the festival forcing the singer to fly home to be with her mother. “Goodbye #grangranDOLLY get your beauty rest until I see you,” the star tweeted. The organisers of the festival have now promised to reimburse fans. The news comes after the Where Have You Been star was lambasted for her performance on a Swedish show on the day of her grandmother’s death with many claiming she was drunk.

The High Street queen-in-waiting

PRETTY: Kate wears blue €72 Zara dress the day after her wedding and (right) €88 tulip dress

SHE might be a queen-in-waiting, but Kate Middleton has shown once again she has no qualms about shopping in Spanish high street shops. Over the past 12 months the Duchess of Cambridge has stepped out in a teal dress worth just €75, coloured jeans costing €50 each and a beige sweater that put her back a measly €12.50 – all bought from Spain’s favourite clothes store Zara. Kate also owns two dresses by Libelula, a small label created in Tarifa by British designer Sophie Cranston, whose work has been heavily inspired by the rugged Costa de la Luz. A report however did find that Kate’s wardrobe for the last year – which also includes three pairs of Jimmy Choos and several items by fashion designer Alexander McQueen – cost a rather more princely amount of €130,000.

King of the castle Contestants come from as far as India for Marbella competition AN unconventional art contest is under way in which competitors use a natural material to create fleeting – yet astounding – sculptures. The International Sand Art Competition began on Marbella’s shores on Monday, with 10 artists from around the world working head to head. With the theme of ‘Secrets of the Sea’, the seven-day challenge features artists from Europe and Russia, as well as award-winning Indian sand artist Sudarshan Pattnaik. Pattnaik, who is fresh from winning first prize at the Copenhagen Sand Sculpture Contest in May with a 2.5 metre high mermaid, will certainly have his eye on the title. “This will be my second

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

appearance in Spain,” said the 35-year-old, who started working with sand at the age of seven and has since dedicated his life to the art form. “When I participated here six years ago I won second prize,” he added, referring to the competition in Valladolid in 2003.


“I want to create a sculpture to raise awareness of endangered sea life,” he told the Olive Press. Pattnaik’s previous sculptures include aids awareness pieces, Michael Jackson’s head and a sculpture of 105 Santa Clauses and Christmas trees on the beach in his hometown of Puri using a thousand tons of sand.


POONAM Pandey is not exactly a household name, probably owing to her trade. But the strip sensation, popular in India, has erupted on the Twitter scene. The star, who previously promised to take her clothes off for the Indian cricket team after they won the World Cup last year, is now being pressed by her fans to strip for Spain following their win in Euro 2012. While she has promised to ‘give a surprise soon’, the question remains: will she strip for Spain?

PRIDE: Pattnaik scooped first prize in Copenhagen

Bryan Ferry

GLAM rock king Bryan Ferry will perform in Marbella next Friday (July 20). The Sunderland-born singer, who made his name as frontman for Roxy Music in the 1970s, will be on stage on centre court at Puente Romano Tennis Club. Tickets available for €22 at



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



Never too late Don Miguel Hotel in Marbella is to reopen after eight years of closure, with 80 former workers finally receiving their unpaid salaries from 2004.

Coal cuts

Coal miners from Castilla y Leon and Asturias have reached Madrid after 17 days marching in protest over government cuts.

‘Lock’ sold Baroness Thyssen has sold ‘The Lock’ by John Constable for nearly €28 million, saying she is ‘not ashamed’.


Plea for homeless From Page 1

him about his son he doesn’t reply and just talks and talks about how he is looking for work. “However, he spends all day every day sitting in the same square, apart from the midday heat.” The good-Samaritan neighbour added: “He has a key to the outside door of our building, so he sleeps inside at night.


“I also give food and water to his dog whenever I can. “But we really hope the authorities – or a family member – steps in to help.” The property agency responsible for the flat rented by Burke confirmed he was no longer living there, claiming he had left voluntarily, unable to pay the rent. When the Olive Press approached Burke in Fuengirola town hall square, he appeared to be in denial about his plight. “I’m OK living off my Royal Mail pension and just want to

be left alone,” he said. An average of 159 people are being evicted every day in Spain as they cannot afford to pay their mortgage or rent. Some 82 per cent of these are living with children and classified as vulnerable. “People are losing their jobs, and we are seeing more and more homeless people of all nationalities on the streets,” Jeronimo Jimenez from the Red Cross told the Olive Press. His group has appealled for a homeless hostel in Marbella insisting there is an urgent need for more places for rough sleepers. When contacted by the Olive Press about Burke’s situation, a spokesman for the British Embassy said: “We would advise anyone that requires assistance of this nature to call the British Consulate on 902 109 356 or visit www.ukinspain.fco.” Are you family? Can you help? Email



TEFL trouble EXCLUSIVE: Olive Press exposes language school fraud catching out ‘numerous’ potential job applicants EXCLUSIVE by Wendy Williams A BRITISH teacher has been left nearly €1000 out of pocket after her dream job in Spain turned out to be a scam. In a cruel hoax, Yorkshire-born Josephine Ryder, 47, lost the money after applying for a teaching job at the London Academy in Granada. She was unaware that a job advert she had seen online had been taken by fraudsters masquerading as the language school. She parted with the money, following a Skype interview and being sent a bogus ‘contract’ for her new job. In total she transferred £653.08 (€824) via Western Union to cover the cost of her flights and accommodation. “I was elated, I had seemingly landed myself the ideal job with a small school in Granada,” explained Ryder, a trained English teacher. “I foolishly went along with all of their requests for money.” She only smelt a rat when, two days before she was due to fly, they told her there was a problem with accommodation and her flight was put on hold. Then they stopped replying to her emails and she realised it was a scam. “It turns out it wasn’t the real London Academy - it was someone who had got hold of their details and advertised the job,” she explained. Ryder, it turns out, is not the only person to have fallen victim to the scam. A discussion on English teaching website shows there have been numerous others duped. Meanwhile the ‘real’ London Academy


CONNED: Josephine lost €824 and (top) the academy has come forward to warn people and clear their name. “It appears that someone has copied all the information from our website and used it to create a bogus contract,” explained a spokesman. “Several people have called asking when they were due to start working. “I apologise to anyone caught up in this scam.” He added: “Under no circumstances send any money or offer your personal banking details.” The Olive Press was unable to contact the gang via a 958 Granada number, nor ‘Maite Perez’, who had her name on the contract.

Lottery scam clamp down A NEW Nigerian lottery scam has been closed down in Spain. Half a dozen people have been arrested in Madrid and Malaga in the online

Tapas trauma A TAPAS fair in Antequera came to an abrupt halt when a tree branch fell on four of the punters. One woman, 42, was rushed to hospital where she needed 15 stitches for a wound on her head and was diagnosed with head trauma. Meanwhile two others were taken to hospital with cuts and bruises.“It is a miracle no one was killed,” said an eyewitness.

scam which has taken over €1 million from over 500 victims in just one year. The fraudsters sent thousands of emails to people indicating they had won a million dollars and, in order to claim their prize, the winners had to forward €4000 to pay for the cover charges. The money was then collected through bank transfers at the post office in Malaga, where the swindlers used forged passports. The arrests follow an investigation launched at the end of 2011. At the time of the arrests, some ‘tried to flee through the window after flushing a large quantity of drugs down the toilet,’ revealed a police spokesman.

Close call for developer INFAMOUS Granada developer Tomas Olivo has been acquitted for crimes against the treasury. The businessman, who has previously been found guilty of domestic violence and land use violations, has been found not guilty of tax evasion after signing work contracts with Marbella Town Hall. He faced two-and-ahalf years prison and a fine of three million euros for the offence. However the judge presiding over the case has now ruled there is no proof of tax fraud.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012




the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


Charity starts at home THE Costa del Sol traditionally conjures up images of sandy beaches and glorious sunshine. But one thing you won’t see mentioned in the travel brochures is the issue of homelessness. The problem on the coast has already led the Red Cross to demand a homeless hostel in Marbella, but as our front page story ‘Paradise lost’ shows, the problem is spreading. The recession continues to force many out of work and subsequently for some, out of their homes, with an average of 159 people being evicted every day in Spain as they struggle with rent and mortgage payments. Charities such as Caritas are doing their best to support those in need. But there needs to be more emphasis placed on prevention rather than cure, with greater support networks in place to identify those at risk of becoming homeless. Family breakdown is widely regarded as being one of the key causes of homelessness, leaving expats living away from their families at particular risk. Charity, it seems, starts at home.

Bird’s eye view of hawkers Every day the beaches of the Costa del Sol are swamped with illegal street vendors selling their wares for a pittance. Dubbed ‘looky-looky men’- their efforts to avoid the long arm of the law can often resemble scenes from Laurel and Hardy. But behind the armfuls of ‘designer’ gear is a story often tinged with sadness – and many of these men have suffered appalling hardships and poverty. It’s no surprise that they have had several run-ins with the police which sometimes end violently. Although this aggression cannot be justified, the fact the hawkers must resort to their fists reveals something about the desperation of their situation. Let’s hope the sympathy and acceptance offered by most expats offers them some hope of a stable future here.

All the world’s a stage Nowadays everyone appears intent on finding their 15 minutes of fame. And with the advent of reality TV, YouTube and nonstop news coverage, there is no shortage of sensational storytelling on the airwaves. So why shouldn’t convicts (who are just being banned from cashing in) get a piece of the cake? Of greater concern, it seems, is the audience’s obsession with this sensationalism. The images that flood our TV and computer screens 24/7 have made people accustomed, and indeed desensitised, to tales of violence, debauchery and scandal. So when convicts relay their crimes, the fictional world of the Godfather is brought into reality – and people love it. In this climate, expression becomes nearly synonymous with exploitation while a prison cell becomes just another performance arena.


The original and only English-language investigative newspaper in Andalucía

olive press


Telephone: 951 166 060 or 691 831 399

Editor: Jon Clarke News Editor: Wendy Williams 689646049 Reporters: James Bryce and Eloise Horsfield Distribution: 951 166 060

SALES TEAM: West Costa del Sol Jane Jewson 673958858 Axarquia Charlie Bamber 661452180 Cadiz Elizabeth Gould 620 532 672 Ronda/San Pedro/Marbella Jon Clarke 691 831 399


HEY roam Andalucia’s beaches in the searing midday heat, offering trinkets, clothes and counterfeit gear to sunbathers – often making as little as €10 a day. Heralding from north Africa and sub-Saharan countries, the tens of thousands of ‘looky looky’ men, as they are pejoratively known, lead precarious lifestyles, living on the very edge of society. Sending the vast majority of their earnings to wives and children in Africa, they are usually left with little to spare and are forced to live in overcrowded squats or small flats, usually two or three to a room. Yet, despite being treated with absolute disdain by many holidaymakers – and sometimes even physically attacked – they are rarely less than good humoured, sporting smiles and gentle demeanours throughout their long hot days. Indeed, it comes as a big surprise to many beach bar owners and tourists alike, that this month two Senegalese men are about to go on trial for allegedly attacking three police officers in Granada last year (see front page). The pair are facing a one-anda-half year prison sentences and a €500 fine and deportation for allegedly putting the officers in hospital and even damaging their van. The men had been standing guard to protect ‘manteros’ who are so-called because they display their merchandise on mantas (blankets) which they can gather up swiftly in order to make a hasty exit if the heavies approach. But, this sort of incident is extremely rare, and most of the time the hawkers are good natured and accept it when their goods are seized. Of course, we must remember, these men are flogging their goods – often picked up from wholesale stores – without licences, often without


The Olive Press investigates the underworld existence of the tens of thousands of African street hawkers who ply their trade on Spain’s beaches the right to even be in Spain. success. Many of these goods are now Over in Murcia, Cartagena counterfeited and, as of this Town Hall has recently seized year, it has become more over a thousand articles serious to throughout download and May and June sell fake mer– including chandise and Anecdotal advice pirated DVDs, pirated CDs. designer suggests police fake Under Spanclothes, perish law, street fumes, watchsellers are re- attempts to deal es and sunquired to ob- with hawkers are glasses. tain a licence Meanwhile, half-hearted from their if local police town hall be- who work fore offering with the town merchandise halls - find an unlicenced to the public. vendor is also living in Spain “But each town hall has its illegally, their file will be own exact rules and it’s at a passed to the Guardia Civil. local level the issue needs to “It is them who deal with illebe controlled,” says a spokes- gal immigrants and deportaman from Spain’s National tion,” says a Nerja Town Hall Consumer Institute. spokesman. “It has nothing to do with us,” A Benalmadena policeman confirms a central govern- said: “Regarding expulsion, ment spokesman. some immigrants use the law Local crackdowns however when they want to go back to have had various degrees of their countries. They actually

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ask to be deported so they get their plane ticket paid for, even though the law should only be used against illegal immigrants who are minors.” Anecdotal evidence, however, suggests police attempts to deal with hawkers are somewhat half hearted, with one English teacher describing the ‘Laurel and Hardy’ sequence she saw near Playa Venus in Marbella. “I watched a policeman on a scooter skid to a halt by a group of them,” says Sally Adams, 31, who lives in the Genal Valley. “They all scattered and ran, some dropping their stuff on the way. The scooter gave chase and finally cornered one guy. “The policeman could have quite easily arrested him – he had him by the arm but was still on his scooter – but he hesitated too long and the guy got away again. “Clearly he was not that bothered about catching him.” Other witnesses report seeing police officers chasing the sellers as far as the beach, then giving up once their targets disappeared onto the unforgiving, hot sand. This is confirmed by talking to some of the men themselves.

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A campaigning, community newspaper, the Olive Press represents the huge expatriate community in southern Spain - 182,000 copies distributed monthly (90,000 digitally) with an estimated readership, including the website, of more than 500,000 people a month. Design and page layout: Luke Stewart Media S.L - CIF: Jackie McAngus B91664029 Urb Cayetano Arroyo, Buzon Admin/advertising sales: 13, Arriate 29350 Malaga Pauline Olivera Printed by Corporación de Medios de Andalucía S.A.

By Eloise Horsfield and Helen Pierpoint “I never have any trouble from the town hall,” grins 28-yearold Khalifa, a Moroccan who lives in Malaga and spends his days traipsing along Playa de la Rada in Estepona selling dresses. “I buy the clothes here in Spain where cheap, and sell them here and in northern Morocco,” he explains. “I go backwards and forwards between the two countries, spending about two weeks in each.” Nerja Town Hall recently however announced a clampdown on hawkers apparently fuelled by disgruntled shop owners. “We were receiving complaints from local business. I don’t know how many though,” a town hall spokesman explains. While there have been no arrests so far, 500 articles have been seized in a matter of weeks – mostly fake Ray-Ban sunglasses, but also counterfeit Ralph Lauren polo shirts and even massage equipment. But while some businesses are obviously put out by the presence of hawkers – with one chiringito owner in Estepona complaining ‘I pay loads of taxes and they don’t’ – the Olive Press found most bar owners to be tolerant.



“We haven’t got a problem with them,” said Georgia Kirby who says eight hawkers per day come into her parents’ bar, Olas, on Playa Burriana in Nerja – a tourist hub where much of Nerja Town Halls’ efforts are being targeted. “If you ask them to go, they go. “The only ones that annoy us are the ones playing music. We are a sports bar and they tend to come in just as the football is about to start,” she added.

‘They have to jump in bushes and throw their merchandise in bins’ Diane Salters, owner of Blue Med, also on Playa Burriana, is also tolerant. “I’m fine with them. They are really nice people and I’m happy for them to come in. “I’m surprised about the crackdown by Nerja Town Hall – I’ve been on holiday in places where it is far worse.” One San Pedro woman, who does not wish to be named, feels so protective of the

Conveyor belt of 18 hawkers Helen Pierpoint spends an afternoon getting up close and personal with the ‘looky looky’ men of San Pedro beach ON a windy Saturday afternoon in June, I spend three hours on San Pedro beach, just west of Marbella. No sooner have I made myself comfortable when I am set upon by a guy sporting a huge grin on his face, a pair of red sunglasses as well as three hats. ‘’Looky! Looky! You want, lady?’’ he asked, showing me armfuls of ‘designer’ sunglasses, hats, handbags and watches. I have to smother my urge to laugh. And as the afternoon progresses, I am approached by no fewer than 18 similar hawkers – it is a bit like a conveyor belt. I soon find myself making conversation with the men and am myself pleasantly surprised by their manner. From a range of countries in Africa from Senegal to Sudan and from Algeria to Tunisia, some speak Spanish and others French, with most speaking English. One 23-year-old from Gambia chats to me with ease and is particularly friendly and engaging. “What I make per day depends,” he says. “I usually make no more than €10 on average.” Another is somewhat more cagey when I ask where he comes from. “Espana, Espana!” he cries, before rushing off as fast as he can manage, given his heavy load.

Hawkers face prison From Page 1

dors displaying merchandise on blankets. When the three officers approached in Granada’s busy Acera del Darro area last May, a fight broke out, with the accused men allegedly kicking, punching and headbutting the police officers. They are also charged with causing €681 in damage to the patrol car which took them to the police station. Last month five Senegalese hawkers accused police officers of beating them while they were being held in custody in Alicante. Several campaigns have recently been conducted by town halls in southern Spain including Cartagena, Nerja and Marbella in an attempt to control the activity of illegal hawkers.

CHEAP: Street sellers flog ‘designer’ sunglasses hawkers that she even hides them in the attic of her seafront restaurant. “I hide them from the police and give them drinks. They’re not doing any harm,” she says. “Local police are putting such a clamp on them. It’s like a fox hunt and I feel sorry for them. They have to jump in bushes and throw their merchandise in bins,” she says. “And, on top of that, the Brits love them.” Again, in the hawkers’ defence, Dutch journalist Caroline van Soelen – who is currently making a TV documentary on them - says many actually held down proper jobs in their previous country before heading to Spain. “They are actually operating illegally through lack of choice,” she explains. “They come here for a better life, but it ends up being a worse one.” Benalmadena-based Van Soelen interviewed dozens of ‘looky looky’ men after being shocked about notices she found on various websites warning British tourists against hawkers. “Many of them simply want to be legal,” she said. “One guy said he used to be a taxi driver in Ghana and wanted to do the same work here. The Spanish authorities told him he’d be able to get a licence within a year – but six years later he is still waiting.” She continued: “In general they feel sad about how they are treated. Many people ignore them completely. “The thing I find most upsetting is that they don’t see their families.” Indeed, Abdou, who sells handbags on Benalmadena beach, has not seen his family in Gambia for six long years. “I don’t want to go back until I have made some money,” he says, holding back tears. But once he has paid the rent on the flat he shares with four other sellers, plus food, Abdou – whose wares are regularly confiscated by the police

– has nothing left to send home, let alone travel there. Khalifa, however, has managed to find his own solution to this particular problem. “I have a wife in Morocco, and a girlfriend with two children in Spain,” says the 28-yearold. It is then, no surprise, that he currently enjoys his life alternating between his native village near Marrakesh and the bright lights of the Costa del Sol.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



Record drop in house prices SPAIN’S house prices have suffered their most severe drop since records began, according to official statistics. Prices fell 12.6 per cent year-onyear for the first quarter of the year, beating the previous worst figures of 7.7 per cent recorded in the second quarter of 2009.


Property prices have already been slashed by up to 30 per cent since the beginning of 2008, with a further drop of 25 per cent predicted before the market begins to recover.

TOWERING HIGH: The 178m skyscraper

Sevilla escapes UNESCO’s black list THE controversial Pelli Tower will not put Sevilla’s old town on UNESCO’s ‘danger list’, the World Heritage Committee has decided. During the hour-long deliberations in Saint Petersburg, in Russia, Sevilla mayor Juan Ignacio Zoido argued it would be legally impossible to stop construction.

He stressed the €300 million tower had ‘full compatibility’ with the town’s World Heritage status. The Committee stressed that Sevilla would only be excused if more legislation was introduced to stop further skyscrapers from being built. The situation will be re-assessed in 2013.



My flight woe Expat concern as flights increase in anti-social hours, even before new runway opens

DISTURBED: Sheila Saville at her home

A sobering victory SPAIN’S footballers may have sealed their place as icons in their home country following their European Championship triumph. But it seems not everyone is a fan, with the alcoholsoaked revelry of some of the country’s most influential role-models leaving one drug addiction charity with a sore head. “Players have become almost mythical forces in Spain today, especially among the young,” said Ignacio Calderon from the Foundation Against Drug Addiction, which campaigns against under-age drinking. “They transmit their behaviour to young people and should not have been celebrating their win with alcohol.”

A BRITISH expat has spoken of her despair at the never-ending noise created by planes flying at anti-social hours on the approach into Malaga airport. And Sheila Saville, 65, from Benalmadena, insists the problem is likely to get a whole lot worse now that Malaga has opened its second runway. Saville, who has lived in Spain with husband David for 15 years, insists that dozens of planes are increasingly coming in late at night and early in the morning. She says the number has increased dramatically over the last few months and is affecting her sleep. “It is terrible, I have never heard anything like it,” explained Saville, who is used to low-flying aircraft over her property, being on the normal flight path. “We counted 20 planes between 10pm and 11pm one evening recently. “It is permanently noisy as

EXCLUSIVE by James Bryce the sound of an approaching plane begins before the previous one is out of earshot. “It starts getting bad in the afternoon but goes on until about 1am and then starts again at 7.30am. “It is totally out of my control. I’ve tried contacting the airport but I just get an automated message,” added Saville, originally from Leeds. Her main concern is that the new €400 million runway opened recently will make the situation even worse. The airport has admitted it hopes to double capacity over the next year, with more direct flights already coming in from the US. “It is good for Spain but they are not thinking about the residents.” Despite several calls to the airport, the Olive Press was unable to get a response.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



‘Like being stabbed’ Expat describes Pamplona goring

ROUGH RIDE: Victim Tarff lines up before the Pamplona bedlam begins

A BRIT gored during the infamous Running of the Bulls festival in Pamplona has compared it to being ‘stabbed with a large knife’. Liam Tarff, 29, was gored in the left leg on the third day of the annual San Fermin bash alongside fellow Brit, 20-year-old Nick Couchman who was gored in the right leg. The incident happened after the half ton animal, fittingly called Runaway, broke free from the pack just before entering the bullring. The pair were transferred to hospital wrapped up in blood-soaked bandages. “It was like being stabbed with a large knife,” he revealed from his hospital bed. Meanwhile, the first person to be injured this year was a local man, aged 73, who was gored in his right leg and is now recovering in hospital. The week-long festival, which features in Hemingway’s novel Fiesta, sees thousands of people running ahead of six fighting bulls through the streets of Pamplona.


Vaccine hope for dogs VETS on the Costa del Sol are hopeful that a new vaccine against a disease that affects around a third of dogs in Spain could help tackle the problem. Leishmaniasis, also known as Mediterranean disease, is an infectious disease transmitted by sand flies that can

Pay cut plan will save jobs ESTEPONA Town Hall has agreed to abandon plans for mass redundancies if the workers collectively agree to a pay cut of 23 per cent. Mayor Jose Maria Garcia Urbano made the offer after meeting with trade unions on Saturday. It is estimated the move, which will protect 176 jobs, will help the town hall save €5.6 million.

cause dogs to suffer hair loss, skin sores and even kidney failure. The problem - which is particularly bad in southern Spain - also affects humans, with an outbreak in Madrid affecting over 200 people in March. The most common method of treatment for canine leishmaniasis is a collar containing an insecticide that has proven to be 86 per cent effective. But now vets believe a new vaccine could pave the way for more effective management of the disease, which is thought to affect between 30 and 35 per cent of dogs in Spain. “It is too early to tell how effective the vaccine will be,” a veterinary nurse at the Pointer Clinic in Estepona told the Olive Press. “But we are optimistic that it will help with prevention.”

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



Taking flight BRITISH Airways is to introduce up to 10 new weekly flights between Gatwick and Malaga.

Light returns The A-7 has finally been lit up through Estepona after nine months of darkness.

Drug stop

THOR SHOWS SENSITIVE SIDE ON MADRID TRIP THE Avengers actor Chris Hemsworth has been showing his softer side. The Australian star, who plays Thor in the hit film, was spotted taking a stroll through Madrid with his wife, Elsa Pataky, and new baby daughter India. During their outing, the famous family enjoyed a visit to the Thyssen Museum, did some shopping and dined out with Elsa’s mother, Cristina Medianu.

Police are clamping down on drug traffickers in Cadiz, the gateway for 50 per cent of Moroccan hashish into Spain.

Big colony A NatWest bank survey has estimated there to be 940,000 Britons living in Spain, ranking the size of its British expat community third after Australia and the US.


the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



Expat furious after his account is frozen for two months

BANK BATTLE A BRITISH expat is up in arms after his bank froze his account to incoming money for no good reason. Glenn Cruickshank, 55, a retired financial software

By Eloise Horsfield

expert, had his Unicaja account in Nerja frozen for seven weeks due to new

OIB advisor was dropped by bank for ‘severe violation’ A DODGY financial adviser accused of ripping off expats in Spain was struck off from his role as a broker for a major European bank, it has emerged. David Driver, boss of Offshore Investment Brokers (OIB), lost his job with Scandinavian lender Syd- FLASHBACK: Last issue bank in 2008 after it accused him of trying to persuade its customers to sell their existing investments in favour of products they promoted. The agreement - seen by the Olive Press - made clear that providing advice to customers about products and services were solely matters for the bank. In a letter to the pair, the Danish bank cited ‘a severe violation of our agreement and an irreparable loss of trust’. It follows the news that expat customers of Driver through his Estepona-based firm OIB have formed an action group.

regulations. He insisted that this was despite providing the bank with all the information it asked for. “I have emailed them my bank statements showing the capital and interest we earn,” said Cruickshank, (above) whose sole income is the interest from his savings. “I’ve given them everything they have asked for but they just don’t reply,” said Cruickshank. “They have treated me with no respect.”


Unicaja insisted the move came because of new regulations forcing banks to have clear information on the exact economic activities of their clients. A spokesman was unable to explain why it had taken so long to reply to Cruikshank’s. He said: “We cannot provide personal information about our clients.”



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

Sheik down By Rund Abdelfatah

A TEAM of ‘fake sheiks’, who tried to hoodwink several Spanish football clubs in an investment scam has been disbanded. Some seven people have been arrested after clubs,


‘Fake sheik’ scam closed down after conning leading football clubs including Getafe and Espanyol, were duped by the conmen masquerading as wealthy Arab investors. The elaborate scam involved the men dressing up as ‘fake

Giant fundraiser AT just eight years of age, Curtis Thornton is almost a veteran fundraiser. The Sabinillasbased lad has raised €510 completing a two kilometre mountain bike ride to help save the endangered ‘giant’ donkey. Curtis decided to take on the challenge after visiting the giant donkey breeding sanctuary ANCRAA, in Estepona, and falling in love with Delicia, one of the last of her breed. SAVIOUR: Curtis Thornton

sheiks’ to pose as investors from Egypt and Dubai. The alleged fraudsters managed to hustle Getafe, in particular, out of sizeable investments. In one scheme, they paid a Brazilian waiter to pose as an affluent Arab sheik for meetings with the clubs. But the operation, based in Barcelona, began to unravel when Getafe realised cheques issued by the presumed Arab sheiks – totalling a hefty €10 million and intended to ‘buy’ the club – were found to bounce.


Unfortunately this was after the clubs had paid large sums of money – believed to be in the millions - to the fraudsters, who insisted they needed it in order to set up the investment. The money was paid to show that the clubs were solvent. By the time the clubs realised they were being scammed, the swindlers had already made their exit. Police have arrested seven people, six from Spain and one from the Dominican Republic.

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True newshound

WE hope that Bono can sniff out a good story. For the newshound is a keen Olive Press reader, according to his owners Roger and Theresa Goff, in Arriate. Immediately tailing the story of ‘Google’, who brings her owner Liliane her fortnightly Olive Press in Tarifa, we see something of a theme here. We want to see your weird and wacky Olive Press snaps! It is now Silly Season, so we want to see all your unusual photos of the Olive Press? Who reads it? Where? What uses does it have? We would love to see – please send them to

Royal project Saudi prince given the go-ahead to build 1,500 homes and ‘six-star’ hotel near Estepona

DEAL: Saudi prince

A GREEN light has been given for the Saudi Royal Family to build a total of 1,477 homes near Estepona. The project, which includes a six-star hotel, is planned for the El Paraiso area. Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz, a frequent visitor to the Costa del Sol, got planning permission from Estepona Town Hall for the de-

By Helen Pierpoint velopment. The prince, who is successor to the Saudi throne, originally applied for planning permission in 2008. The project will net Estepona Town Hall €2 million in planning fees which it says will go towards infrastructure projects. The plan will now have to be approved by the Junta. Prince Salman shares his Estepona residence with an entourage of 100 people affiliated with the royal family and is often seen cruising the Med on his yacht. He is due to visit the resort this summer.

Illegal homes process up for debate in Mijas

NEARLY 3,000 homes in Mijas have moved a step closer to being legalised. The town hall is asking the public to comment on its plan to make them eligible for the process of legalisation. While around 2,800 homes out of 4,000 illegal homes are eligible, this still means that 1,200 homes could remain illegal. They will only have the chance of becoming legal if they are not located on protected land, have no proceedings against them and are over four years old. Following the one month-long public comment period, the report will be submitted to the Junta for final approval.

Please help my pets Alcaucin cancer patient seeks help for abandoned dogs and cats


Cash reward for accused ex-mayor By Eloise Horsfield A FORMER mayor has been compensated to the tune of €3,000 after being cleared of fraud and corruption charges. The payment to former Velez

Former Velez boss awarded damages after waiting eight years to clear his name

Malaga boss Antonio Souviron, comes after the case took so long to come to a close.

Art in a majestic setting


WOMAN who set up an animal shelter despite having cancer is desperate for volunteers to help her foster abandoned pets. Teresa Dainty (above) has continued to expand her charity, despite being diagnosed with breast cancer in October 2009 aged just 43. “My doctor said, ‘Let’s see if we can get you to 45’ – and now I’m 45 the challenge is to get to 46,” says Dainty, originally from Northamptonshire. Dainty has seen her Axarquia Online Animal Rescue, set up in 2011, grow fast. It came while she had to endure a partial mastectomy, full lymph node removal as well as a year of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. She was later told the cancer had spread to her spine. “It has helped to keep me active,” she explains. “It is something to take my mind off things.” The charity, which has raised over €1,500 and, so far, cared for dozens of animals, now needs foster carers to look after pets waiting to be rehomed. “Even if it just for two weeks, it is really useful. We have been inundated with animals that need rescuing.” adds Dainty, who manages to hold down a full-time job in disabled hotel Las Piedras. To help, visit

A TWILIGHT art event inaugurated by a former UNESCO Director General is to be held at a thousand-year-old Moorish castle. SaloArte, a free three-day experience at Salobrena Castle, is designed to showcase local art and promote tourism. It will be inaugurated on July 26 by Federico Mayor Zaragoza, who led UNESCO for 12 years from 1987.

Due to procedural delays it took eight years to finally find him innocent. He was first charged in 2001 after planning boss Sofia Villen accused him of blocking a bonus on her salary. It was not till April 2008 however, that the former doctor, who previously taught at Malaga University, was acquitted at Malaga Court.


“The delay is excessive for this procedure,” admitted a spokesman from Spain’s General Council of the Judiciary (CGPJ). “Many believe there is law, but no justice,” said Souviron. “I say, justice always ends up prevailing over law.” The €3,000 – plus interest – is negligible in comparison to the €60,000 Souviron had requested in compensation.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

Battle against domestic violence

Suspect wounds

A COMMITTEE has been set up to counter the ‘social blemish’ that is domestic violence in the Axarquia. It comes after an unusually high number of call outs in the first six months of the year. Malaga’s Equality Department was called out 54 times from January to June to assist women at risk of psychological and physical abuse.



The committee’s first meeting was held at Algarrobo Town Hall and attended by several Axarquia mayors and councillors. The aim of the group is to ‘face up to the reality of domestic violence’ and help victims escape from the gender violence cycle.

Talked about town Sally Harrison takes a ride up to majestic Comares



OMARES is probably the most talkedabout village in the Axarquia. From almost anywhere, you can catch sight of this town perched atop a mountain some 735m above sea level. There is a clear Arab influence in Comares – which comes from the Arabic word for castle, Qumarix – with at least three original Moorish arches towering over the streets. You cannot help but notice blue ceramic footprints with Arab motifs, crafted by the women of the village. A pair of footprints is often found in front of monuments or colourful ceramic plaques, inviting you to stop and take notice.

This can be seen at the Plaza de los Verdiales, a monument to the panda de verdiales, bands of local men who play lively music. Comares has its own style of verdiales, and a statue of a band member wearing typical dress stands proudly in the square. A village shop sells everything from bread to mouse traps, and up the hill lies the 1505 church of La Encarnacion, with its eight-sided tower. Worry not if you are a bit peckish – a local woman is bound to appear selling honey, raisins, almonds and sweet homemade wine.



A NERJA man has been arrested for 10 robberies after seeking treatment at a health centre for ‘suspicious’ injuries, which he received while breaking windows and locks.

Six youths have been arrested for vandalising a park in Rincon de la Victoria, causing €1,500 in damage.

Web fame Nerja has been chosen to host a Sex and the Citystyle web series about the issues faced by women in their 40s.


the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

BORDER CHAOS MORE border checks by the Spanish are being blamed for a long hot summer of delays getting in and out of the Rock. Gibraltar officials have also cited an increase in tourist traffic and RAF training exercises, which have added to the long delays. Tourists and businesses have complained to the Olive Press of waits of up to three hours each way when arriving by car. The problem came to a head on Friday when the runway was repeatedly closed to allow military planes to land and take off, causing huge tailbacks in both directions. “It took me three hours to get into Gibraltar,” insisted Gerard Kelly, 60, from Marbella.

Motorists often waiting up to three hours to get in and out of the Rock

TO avoid the queues in and out of the Rock, the Royal Gibraltar Police provides detailed daily traffic updates via its @RGPolice Twitter account. Generally, peak hours are from 9am to 1pm to enter Gibraltar and 4pm to 8pm to leave, although this can vary on a day to day basis. Often it can be a little quicker to go in around 9.30-10am,

An Olive Press guide on how to beat the queue

EXCLUSIVE by James Bryce “My wife ended up getting out and walking in and lots of drivers were giving up and turning round. “I have never seen it this bad, I’m surprised there weren’t more arguments. It is very bad for tourism. “A British policewoman told me it was air traffic and that there may have been a problem with a Hercules,” he added. Vejer Hotelier Anna Garcia, who regularly travels to Gibraltar to collect supplies for

than at 10.30-11am, say. RGP advises people to always carry water with them and to carry food for children, especially babies. Those with disabilities can avoid queuing by using the extra lane on the southbound

her business, added: “The last couple of months are the worst I have ever seen it and, it has been regularly taking more than two hours to get in and out,” she said. The final straw came when their last trip, last week, took three hours each way. “Next time we will park in La Linea and walk in.” The delays are being seen as bad news for both business and tourism on the Rock. One bank executive, who asked not to be named, told the Olive Press: “This has all come out of the fishing dispute. “The Spanish police are de-

carriageway - and identifying themselves to police officers who will direct them accordingly. One top tip is to pay the small fee - a euro or two - to park your car on the patch of wasteground by the border, or put your car on a meter, and

GRIDLOCK: Cars are being held up by tougher Spanish checks


Gib IN BRIEF Standing firm CHIEF Minister Fabian Picardo has vowed he will never hand over ‘a grain of sand, a drop of water or a breath of air to Spain’.

A tyring journey

Briton Martin Atton has raised €1,000 for charity after completing a 22-day bike ride from Gibraltar to Somerset.

liberately slowing everyone down, it is a major abuse of our civil rights and is very bad for business. “Who in their right mind is walk in. There are buses right from the border to most parts of town if you don’t fancy walking, although you can be in the heart of the town in 15 minutes. Beat the queues coming out by perhaps going for a late beer by the waterside or even the cinema – in English – where most films begin from around 6pm to 8pm.

going to return to Gibraltar when they have spent six hours getting in and out.” When contacted by the Olive Press, a spokesman for the Royal Gibraltar Police admitted: “The frontier queues have been made worse recently by increased Guardia Civil searches. “On top of this there is currently a two-week RAF exercise, due to end next Friday, which is causing problems. “There are 10 Tornados taking off and landing as well as the regular commercial flights so as you can imagine, it has created a huge bottleneck at the border.”

Pompey it up

Portsmouth FC will play Gibraltar at the Victoria Stadium on July 20 as part of their pre-season tour with tickets on sale on the day of the match.

Music nights

Gibraltar’s four-week Summer Nights 2012 programme is set to run every Thursday and Saturday from July 21 until August 16, from 8.30pm in Casemates Square.


the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



DON’T ROCK THE BOAT GIBRALTAR has hit back at accusations it is using ‘delay tactics’ over the fishing dispute after a meeting was cancelled at short notice. Representatives for Spanish

By Helen Pierpoint

fishermen in La Linea and Algeciras claimed Gibraltar was ‘making fools’ of them

I’ll be blowing back in!

By Emily Batty RENOWNED musician Dan Moretti has vowed to return to Gibraltar after praising the ‘friendly’ locals following his performance at the International Jazz Festival on the Rock. The saxophonist joined a stellar cast for the three-day music bonanza, which also featured Gibraltar-born Elie Massias. The skill and sweet harmonising of the instruments, which soared through smooth and energetic rhythm sections, was nothing short of exceptional.

after a meeting between a Spanish oceanographer and members of the independent commission set up to handle the dispute failed to take place. But officials on the Rock insist the no-show was simply a ‘diary issue’ after the Spanish gave just two days notice. “The working group is still within the original timeframe of 60 days,” a Government spokesman said. “When the Government receives the report, it will have the scientific basis for an informed consideration of possible action.” Meanwhile Spanish fishing spokesman Pedro Maza said: “We want the commission to complete its report and for Gibraltar to come to a decision whatever the outcome.’’ The talks come amid continued clashes between Spanish fishermen and Gibraltar police, with Spain’s Minister for Agriculture Miguel Arias Canete vowing to continue offering ‘full protection’ to its fishermen.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012




the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


Dear Olive Press

ANDALUCIA RESERVOIR LEVELS This week: 66.97 per cent full - Same week last year: 88.28 per cent - Same week in 2002: 58.96 per cent AIRPORTS Gibraltar 00350 22073026 Granada-Jaen 958 245 200 Jerez - 956 150 000 Malaga - 952 048 844* *For English press 9 Sevilla - 954 449 000 EMERGENCIES Police Guardia Civil Medical service Fire


091 062 061 080

EURO EXCHANGE RATES 1 euro is worth 1.2377 American Dollars 0.7965 British Pounds 1.2558 Canadian Dollars 7.4413 Danish Kroner 9.5968 H Kong Dollars 7.5190 Norwegian Kroner 1.5697 Singapore Dollars

Regarding the article, Spain’s not working (or is it) in issue 138, the current situation encourages employers to expect employees to ‘freelance’ so they have no legal responsibility towards them but then present them as fully paid up members of staff. Of course, the poor employee is then left with the problem of how to pay an absolutely outrageous autonomo fee on top of a MINIMUM tax rate of 25 per cent and live on the remainder of what wasn’t much of a salary in the first place. It is a national disaster waiting to happen. Paellataffy, via the Olive Press website

A personal appreciation Internationally recognised as a sculptor and painter, it is my privilege to have known Bayard Osborn, who died last month, as a man, a father to his children, and a husband to his wife. One of my first memories of Andalucia is pelting down the hill from Jimena, where

Bayard lived before Gaucin over 40 years ago, in an open car full of Pilar’s gorgeous daughters, headed for the beach at Alcaidesa. His driving was erratic but fun. At the time, Bayard and Pilar shared parts of a former convent in Jimena with my mother, to whom they were very good friends for many years. Sitting out on a well worn terrace, drink in hand, conversation was always interesting, always stimulating. Bayard had a way of provoking me into thinking, which at age 21 was disturbing. It was only much later that I was able to appreciate it and be grateful to a highly intelligent man. One day I caught him standing at the arched entrance to the cloisters in a blue dressing gown that was a little too short for him, clutching a dish full of dog food. He was in full cry: “A***hole! A***hole! C’mon, boy!” That was his name for his dog, who adored him. It later became ‘Ajo’, when my mother took the animal over when Bayard and Pilar left Jimena for Gaucin. She thought it might be easier to explain to the neighbours. These are just a couple of

fond memories of Bayard, who died recently at 89. My deepest condolences to Pilar, Margaret, Io and Nicolas, and to his stepdaughters Isabella, Lucinda and Consuelo. Alberto Bullrich, Jimena

Last stand at the OK Corral I was doing my weekly shop at Iceland in Puerto Banus the other day and wanted to pick up the latest edition of the Olive Press as I always do. But I couldn’t get to it because there were all these piles of the Euro Weekly News parked up in trolleys in the way, completely swamping the Olive Press stand! I thought you might like to see the evidence and try and fight your way out! Shelley, Puerto Banus

Jumbo flight I write with reference to the new runway at Malaga (issue 138). Apologies for my selfishness, but as a regular California-Andalucia traveller, I hate wasting time and money transferring at London’s overcrowded, overpriced, under cleaned airports, and I love the idea of new, direct jumbo flights into Malaga. For a while now, we’ve been seeing airline ads in the US touting upcoming direct Malaga flights. Alun Whittaker, US

Two Old Fools give thanks I just wanted to say thank you for running my ‘Chickens’ extracts. I’m really grateful to the Olive Press for publishing them and have had some nice feedback. Victoria Twead, author Chickens, Mules and Two Old Fools ED: Readers can still enter the competition to win an e-book by answering the following question correctly: In the first extract Two Old Fools go house hunting, what is the name of their estate agent and where is he from? To find out, read the extract online at www. Please send your answers to news-

taurant and do a full review as the restaurant is a real gem in that area.

I have a restaurant selection for your Dining Secrets website. I work in the hospitality industry and have found myself based in Gibraltar at present and have struggled to find quality, well priced, good service restaurants in Gib. However just cross over the border to Las Trebedes restaurant in La Linea, and what a find! It is family run, with exceptional gourmet tapas, very well priced and excellent friendly service. Having travelled extensively, this is right up there! I suggest you go to the res-

Jessica, Gibraltar

What a find!

New A.C.E in town Would it please be possible to give our club a mention in your excellent newspaper? We are a charity fund raising social club and wish to publicise our new location in Calle San Roque, Estepona. The American Club of Estepona was forced to move by a disastrous fire from its previous location but is now firmly established in its new premises and chose July 4, American Independence Day, as the ideal time to show it off with an official opening. Michael Moss, Club President


Letters should be posted to Urb. Cayetano Arroyo, Buzon 13, Arriate 29350, Malaga or emailed to letters@ The writer’s name and address should be provided. Published opinions are not necessarily those of the Editor.


ll about

July 12, 2012

Wendy Williams (above) is blown away by the magic of Tarifa, Europe’s southernmost point



osta de la Luz

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

21 21

A 16-page Olive Press special supplement

Where the wind blows

T is the southernmost point of Europe. Where the Atlantic Ocean crashes into the Mediterranean, where the Levante meets the Poniente, and where the narrow Straits of Gibraltar are all that separates Europe from Africa. For those who have read The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, Tarifa, at the top of Andalucia’s stunning Costa de la Luz, is protagonist Santiago’s final destination

before he embarks on his journey to discover his ‘personal legend’. It is certainly fitting that this magical town, at the gateway between two continents, and a world away from the built-up Costa del Sol, is a fitting setting for the start of the book when Santiago faces a crossroads in his life. Here, inside the walls of the Moorish castle of Guzman el Bueno - first built in

the 10th century on the ruins of a Roman fort - Santiago contemplates his meeting with the King of Salem. “At the highest point in Tarifa there is an old fort, built by the Moors. From atop its walls, one can catch a glimpse of Africa,” we are told by Melchizek. From this vantage point the old man urges Santiago to follow his dreams when he was about to give them up.

TOUCHING DISTANCE: On Tarifa island, a statue of Jesus looks across to Morocco’s fabled Pillar of Hercules

Standing here looking over to Morocco so close you can actually see the houses on a clear day - it is an inspirational view. And with the wind in your hair you get a real sense of what Tarifa is about. “It is the closest point to Africa,” explains Argentinean Victor, who runs the town’s best fish restaurant La Pescaderia. “It is just 14km and a lot of people come just to see the southernmost point of EuTurn to Page 22


the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


Costa de la Luz special

From Page 21

rope. “People come from all over the world,” adds the former architect who has lived in Tarifa for 13 years. The name Tarifa is actually taken from the Berber warrior, Tarif ibn Malik, the first of the Moors, who created a bridgehead here in 710, before going on to conquer most of Spain. Interestingly Tarifa is also sometimes credited with being the origin of the word tariff, since it was the first port in history to charge merchants for the use of its docks. What is certainly known is the area remained under Muslim control until 1292 when the Christian king Sancho IV finally conquered the city. The eye-catching main gate into the town was built following the Christian reconquest, and was more recently re-

Timeless town

VISTA: Moon rising over Africa, while (inset) typical Tarifa street scenes stored in 2000 to include a shield showing the legend of storming of city by Sancho the brave. Two years later in 1294 a Muslim army besieged the fortress of Tarifa which was successfully defended by

Alonso Perez de Guzman – known as Guzman El Bueno who preferred to sacrifice his son rather than give up the castle, even throwing his own knife down to the besiegers to fulfil their threat. But while the Christians may

have won control of the town the Moorish heritage is still very much a part of the fabric of Tarifa. This is, of course, helped by its close proximity to Morocco and the fact that this is one of the main crossing points between the continents. You see this influence in the locals, food and clothing on show in the town. Tarifa today is a veritable melting pot of nationalities, cultures, and heritage, which is what makes the town great. It is an attractive, laid-back town with a relaxed vibe and an arty, international scene and a buzzing nightlife almost seven days a week in summertime. Part of this comes from the large presence of surfer types, who flock here for the sun, and most importantly the wind, which is key to the identity of the town. For much of the year, either the Levante (from the east) or Poniente (from the west) is blowing, which is ruinous for a relaxed lie on the beach – unless of course you know the sheltered spots - but has transformed the town into a veritable windsurfing and kitesurfing Mecca. The town boasts the very best conditions in Europe for these sports, and there are plenty of people who come to make the most of it including Santos, 28, a kite surfer who is half-Moroccan, half-Colombian, and one of several people who stopped me on my sojourn around the town to offer me lessons. “I came here for the wind and to teach kitesurfing; it is my job and my hobby,” he explains. “Tarifa has a good vibe. It really is a kitesurfer’s town with lots of people coming to learn or to practise.” Last year, Dutch pro rider Ru-

Costa de la Luz special

ben Lenten became the first and only kitesurfer to make the terrifying jump over the pier to the island from the Mediterranean into the Atlantic Ocean. Standing on the pier that separates Playa Chica and El Balneario, this feat certainly struck me as impressive. But I was unable to contemplate it for too long for fear of being sandblasted while regretting my decision to wear a skirt instead of shorts. Instead I dropped down into a hidden spot among the rocks just off the causeway which was perfectly sheltered and allowed me an unrivalled view of the kitesurfers and the white sandy beaches that seem to stretch for miles. It also obscured the view of the slightly incongruous, Castillo de Santa Catalina which perches on a hill overlooking the southern point. Alongside the many Moorish buildings this castle - which served as a quarantine station during the plague epidemic and later converted into a gunpowder store before being nearly destroyed during the

War of Independence in 1811 - looks somewhat out of place. In 1928 the commander of the navy asked to have the castle re-built to compliment the lighthouse and there is currently a project to restore it. Looking past the castle along the coastline a lot of the buildings look a little down at heel but one only needs to turn one’s head towards the sea or to the rolling green hills inland to see the charm of the place.

Come 9 o’clock and the town comes alive with bars appearing out of nowhere Moreover its locals – most of whom are friendly and open - are walking advertisements for the benefits of outdoor living, boasting glowing complexions. In addition to watersports the area offers a lot in the way of

hiking and biking, and is also famous for its bird watching – sitting on the main migration route – and fishing – with bluefin tuna the main aim for artisanal fishing fleets. A walk down the Alameda will also bring you face to face with numerous people encouraging you to go whale and dolphin watching in the straits. And that is just by day. Come 9 o’clock and the town really comes alive with bars seemingly appearing out of nowhere. The nightlife in Tarifa is surprisingly buzzing for a town of this size with more than 100 bars littered about the place. The people living there really seem to know how to get the best out of life. After a day in Tarifa I came away feeling happy and relaxed, and the traveller in me was more than a little tempted to follow in Santiago’s footsteps and hope on a boat to Africa. Instead I got back in the car and took a last glimpse of the setting sun against the backdrop of Morocco as I made


’LL be honest, Chiclana de la Frontera always seemed a bit of a carbuncle to be avoided en route to the laid back beaches of Conil and El Palmar or the elegance of Vejer. But since moving to the town, I have started to discover those hidden gems that only the locals know about. You know, the ones that rarely make it into the guide books. One of the best, is the old abandoned fishing village of Sancti Petri, which sits on a spit between the estuary and the ocean and is slowly being rehabilitated. If you head out early - or on a cool day - you can walk through the protected marshland that separates Sancti Petri from the town.

Days out:

It is a haven for migrating birds, with a distinct sense of peace as you make your way along the paths between the labyrinth of pools. As you leave the marshes behind, you find yourself strolling along the river, with dinghies bob in the estuary and seagulls lazily glide by. The fishing village itself was abandoned when the tuna

Tour of Sancti Petri Island, from €22, includes train around park and boat trip to island (tel 661 858 203) For just a boat trip and tour of island, from €10pp (Cruceros Sancti Petri. Tel. 956 100 324 / 617 378 894). For kayak tours: €10. 676 363 718

factory closed down years ago, and is only now being restored. There is only limited access at present, but you do get to see it in its authentic glory. At the end of the spit, a CocaCola sign heralds the entry way to the fisherman’s association, where you are guaranteed the best of the day’s catch and at the best prices. Coming round the end of the spit, you arrive at the marina, where cabin cruisers and sail boats nestle together in their moorings. If you’re feeling energetic you can rent a boat from the

23 23

Coast with the most VIRGIN: Beach at Barbate and (bottom) Vejer church

FIERCE: Brave Guzman el Bueno my way past the many windmills that lead you out of the town. Safe to say Tarifa swept me off my feet, both metaphorically and literally, even if I am still finding sand in my clothes.

Perfect Petri Wendy Andersen on the hidden delights of her hometown of Chiclana

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

ALLURE: Sancti Petri island, the abandoned village (inset) and (below) marina

kiosk or attend classes for kayaking, surfing, kite surfing, basically anything on the water. You can also take one of the cruises out to Sancti Petri Island, which is dominated by the foreboding castle which dates back to 1610. (See box below for prices and contact information) Keep walking past the fishing village and you will reach the golden sandy beaches that this part of the coast is famous for. If the waves are very high and you have young children the river side of the beach offers calmer waters, and there is a lifeguard service. A bit further along as you join the ocean proper, you have the full waves for surfing and general frolicking. The breakwater that separates the two, a long stretch of rocks that nearly reaches the island of Sancti Petri, offers hours of fun to children obsessed with collecting crabs from rock pools.


HE Costa de la Luz, or Coast of Light, stretches for 200 kilometres from Tarifa to the Portuguese border, near Huelva. Taking in Spain’s most important national park Donana, it includes the famous sherry towns of Sanlucar de Barrameda and El Puerto de Santa Maria, as well as the famous city Cadiz. But, what most people, think of, when you mention the Coast of Light is the stretch from Tarifa to Chiclana. A windswept flood plain, fringed by long dune beaches and crowned by a series of austere ‘cubist’ towns, which were built by the Moors. There are literally miles of mesmerizing and largely unspoilt sandy beaches, ideal for a bucket-andspade break away from the over-built towns of the Costa del Sol. Sightseers will be spoilt by the numerous sites from the famous Trafalgar lighthouse – off which the crucial naval battle once took place - to the historic fishing village of Sancti Petri and the white-washed streets of Conil. The two main towns are Tarifa – a Mecca for kitesurf-

ers – and Vejer, a hip and alluring escape, where cabinet ministers and celebraties occasionally rub shoulders. And then there are the hidden gems, like exclusive Roche, where Madrid’s captains of industry take their holidays, and Zahara de los Atunes, the sleepy fishing village, which is fast garnering a reputation for its food. And still there is more, with El Palmar claiming to have the best surfing waves in Andalucia and Europe’s largest sand dune, at over 30-metres in height in Bolonia. And don’t forget Canos de Meca – the fun capital of the region – or gritty Barbate, whose fish restaurant El Campero is among the best in Spain.


the olive press - July24 12 - 25, 2012


Costa de la Luz special

ITTLE by little Vejer de la Frontera has become one of Andalucia’s culinary points of reference. Like a slow-cooked pork belly, the beautiful white town has slowly fused the ingredients together to rival anywhere else in the region. I have never eaten badly in this gastronomic paradise and both in the town and in the nearby villages of Patria, La Muela, Santa Lucia and Canos de Meca there are at least a dozen eateries that would do well anywhere in the world. And the bottom line is; if the food’s not good enough, the restaurant won’t survive. “We set the bar high,” explains James Stuart, boss of celebrated hotel and restaurant La Califa. “There is plenty of competition between restaurants and all of us keep taking the level higher in order to get ahead.” So what has made this small Cadiz town into such a foodie

DINING CAPITAL Mecca? Much of it is due to its nearby surroundings, which produce some of the best quality ingredients in the world. The obvious examples are sherry, fish and the wonderful pork and beef from the classic brown ‘retinto’ cows, which you often see wandering around the nearby hills. Of course the amazing blue fin tuna, caught nearby in Barbate, Zahara and Conil, is spectacularly good and the vegetables available from the huertas near Conil are also of a high quality. Another reason for its culinary success is down to the types of tourists who visit the town, which has seen a distinctly better heeled crowd than its nearby rivals on the Costa del Sol. “And best of all, they come all the year round,” explains Pablo Brea, who swapped his advertising job in Madrid a year ago to open the restaurant Vera Cruz in the town. “We don’t just rely on beach-

CHARM: Califa’s patio, while (left) Javier from Garimba and (right) Damian and Pepi at La Brasa es,” he explains. “And many of the people who visit are keen food lovers, who come here specifically to eat.”

This is and the rateurs, France,

certainly the case huge mix of restauwho herald from Denmark, Britain

and the north of Spain have helped to put together a rich and varied offering for them. Frenchman Damian Giroud at long-running La Brasa de Sancho typifies the mix. He and his wife Pepi have turned their elegant, historic home into a delightful dining experience, highly rated on Trip Advisor. “We hope we know what it is that makes people’s holidays great, good service and, above all, good food,” he explains. His near neighbour Javier Duenas, at newly-opened Garimba Sur, which takes up a quarter of the emblematic

Adjust, change and create

A new book will chart how a Danish couple created Vejer’s most exciting restaurant WHEN they set up their restaurant Patria high in the hills above Vejer six years ago, Thomas and Ase Donso knew it should be based on the different seasons. “Every time we visited a local market we were so thrilled and inspired at the sheer quality of ingredients,” explains chef Tomas. “The joy of cooking is all about what’s in peak season,” he continues. “There is no need to import anything from far away.” It is why the Danish couple only have a small menu a la carte. “It is all about being able to adjust, change and create, according to what our suppliers can provide locally. Be it wild asparagus or rabbit, or bulls’ heart tomatoes or artichokes.” Now a wonderful cookbook is set to tell their story – how they went from obscurity to number one on Trip Advisor for the area - through a series of stunning photos and with 50 of their favourite recipes. “It will chart what it has been like moving to a foreign country and raising children and working here,” explains Ase.

Costa de la Luz special


Dining Secrets of Andalucia editor Jon Clarke traces the reasons why Vejer de la Frontera has become a true frontier for cooking

Plaza de Espana is also understandably doing well, with a fine mix of ingredients and style. Having studied hosteleria in Madrid he is one of the key reasons the town took off as a culinary destination. “It all began in the late 1990s when Javier and his partner opened their famous restaurant Trafalgar,” explains Stuart, whose stylish hotel Califa conveniently put up the new influx of foodies across the square. “It was the start of the food revolution and we opened our restaurant in 2002 to give them some competition.

For me the three key points of reference for Vejer’s culinary success are Trafalgar, Califa and Castilleria, run by Juan Valdes, who is a very good chef.” But it is on the outside of town in the most obscure of locations that the bar is really being pushed higher and higher. Take a ten minute drive up to Patria to find out why Tomas and his lovely wife Ase are currently topping all dining polls. A stylish spot, overlooking fields down to the sea near Cadiz, the ambience is second to none. While the menu is compact, the regularly-changing specials are becoming increasingly experimental and always look delightful. “A lot of our success is the fact that we use so many vegetables,” explains Dane Tomas, who lives next door with his family. A laid back chap, who spends his spare time surfing, he sums it up perfectly: “We know we have to constantly evolve and create new things if we are to keep up with the excellent quality in town.” Later this year they will have their first book published on their success (see panel left).

TREAT: Vejer has the freshest ingredients such as these retiro cows and (top) Juan Valdes from Castilleria

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the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


Costa de la Luz

A whale we go Tarifa is a fantastic place to go whale and dolphin watching, writes Rund Abdelfatah


HERE the Mediterranean hugs the Atlantic Ocean, man meets the world’s biggest mammals – an encounter vital to their survival. The geographical enclave is prime real estate and orca whales and fishermen alike rejoice at the large number of blue fin tuna, which promises a feast for both. They also share the water with many others: pilot whales, sperm whales, fin whales and dolphins, just to name a few. Best of all, these majestic creatures need not be admired only from afar. Turmares Tarifa is dedicated to the art of whale watching and the mission of conservation.

Seeing a sperm whale wave hello with its tail is always a fantastic experience It offers tours that unveil the intimate lives of the inhabitants of the sea. Watch a mother orca with her young calves, or a massive fin whale – the second largest animal in the world – break the surface with a resounding blow. And seeing a sperm whale wave hello with its giant tail is always fun. The company boasts a 95 per cent sighting success rate and, in the rare case that whales are not sighted, a second trip is guaranteed free-ofcharge. The two-hour tours leave from Tarifa and run twice a day, all year. For more information, visit

ALL ABOARD: See whales and dolphins up close

Costa de la Luz special

Walking guide Guy HunterWatts suggests a great shady summer walk around Caños de Meca



Surf & turf GREAT HEIGHTS: Walking on the edge


OR the heart of summer I am always looking for good places to walk and La Brena forest is a great place for a cool stroll. This circular walk gives you the chance to sample the Parque Natural de la Brena and then along the spectacular cliffs which rise 100m above one of the best beaches in Andalucia. You start by following shady sandy paths towards San Ambrosio, before heading on towards Barbate via a broad forestry track through the stone pines to the cliff path that leads back to Canos past the Torre del Tajo. This part is the walk’s highlight and I’d recommend building in time for a leisurely picnic (from autumn to spring at least) at one of the viewing points just beyond the tower. I’ve graded the walk Medium/ Difficult not so much for the distance covered but rather because of the additional effort required when walking on sandy paths. You could shorten the walk by taking a taxi from Canos to the Punto de Informacion that is to your right as you arrive in Barbate coming from Canos along the A2233. You’ll see signs here marking the beginning of the cliff path.

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STUNNING: A view of Trafalgar Lighthouse

Caños de Meca Circuit THE NITTY-GRITTY Distance: Time required: Rating: Total height gain: Map(s): Water:

The Walk

The walk begins outside Hotel Madreselva which you pass as you head east through the village on the A2233. From here head east past a row of palm trees. Reaching a 3.5T sign turn left. The road soon arcs left. Just past the 14km sign, cut left along a sandy track following a sign Sendero Canos-Torre de la Meca. After running west the road contours right as it passes beneath the Torre de Meca. Reaching a three-way junction bear right past a chain that blocks vehicle access. The track climbs gently as it runs eastwards: views

19 kms 5 hours Medium/Difficult 225m IGN 1:50000 Barbate 1073 (12-47) No springs so take plenty

open out above the treetops. Shortly beyond the top of the rise you pass a sign marking the path up to the Torre de la Meca. (35 mins) The track runs on due east. Just before reaching a metal gate and the Majadales del Sol picnic area, cut hard left along a sandy track. Marker posts lead you on through the forest. Reaching twin posts, one marked 31 angle right and continue in an easterly direction. Passing a firebreak the path runs downhill, adopting a northeasterly course, and eventually leads through a green gate (1 hr 10 mins) beyond which you reach a picnic area. Angling slightly left you pass a sign Sendero Torre de Meca then, passing stone tables and benches, you reach a tarmac road. Cutting left along to the road you cross a cattle

grid then after some 650m reach a junction where a sign points left for San Ambrosio. Ignoring the sign carry on along the track which arcs right, passes a sign prohibiting access to lorries, then reaches a fork. (1 hr 25 mins) Keep right along the main track (ignoring a sign left for Palomar de la Brena) which you’ll now follow without bifurcating for a little over 2kms. At first you follow a pylons but these soon angle away to the left. Reaching a junction by an information board about El Pinar de Pinos Pinoneros (1 hr 45 mins) turn right away from the main track. Passing a line of animal pens the track runs on through the pines before crossing a cattle grid then reaching the A2233. Angle right across the road, cross a stile then cut left along a broad sandy track parallel to the road. After 300m the track angles right. After 50m you reach a junction. Angle left and continue on parallel to the A2233. Just as the track angles back toward the road you reach a cattle grid. Here angle 45 degrees to the right then after 75m cut right through the scrub and drop down to the sandy bed of a gulley. Here cut left and follow a narrow, sandy path down towards the sea. The gully widens: head on down the easiest path to reach the Barbate-Caños cliff path. (2 hrs 20 mins) From here head west past a steep cliff face, parallel to the sea: you’ll occasionally see white and green waymarking. The path leads on past a sign explaining about the Pinares Costeras, or the coastal pine

forest: it was planted between 1895-1926 to stabalise the dune system. 200m past the sign you reach the Torre del Tajo. (2 hrs 50 mins) Be sure to visit the two miradors to its left and right for the finest cliff views of the walk. Continuing towards Caños you reach a junction where the pole fence that has been to your left comes to an end. Head straight on. The sandy path now runs slightly further from the sea. As Cape Trafalgar and its lighthouse come into view the path divides.

Take the higher option which leads past a second sign about Pinares Costeros. Here angle down left then once more right towards Canos and Hotel Mar de Frente. Passing behind the hotel you reach a signboard describing the path to the Torre del Tajo. Here cut right up a stony track which bears left along the northern edge of the village before descending to the A2233. Turn left then right to return to the start point of the walk. (3 hrs 45 mins)

Coastal Walks in Andalucia (ISBN 9-788489-954939) by Guy HunterWatts, is available at and most local bookshops. It contains a selection of 50 stunning walks close to southern Spain’s Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines. For more details visit



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Costa de la Luz

Ze of bl


TANDING at the pass, with orders flying out by the minute and waiters baying for dishes, Jose Melero exudes an impressive Zen-like calm. It is not surprising this seasoned chef turned down a career in the air force to run his famous fish restaurant. For on a busy summer day he can be serving more than 350 people... and over the three months of summer around 18,000 meals. A haunt for celebrities, politicians and chefs from all over Spain, El Campero is best known for its amazing blue fin tuna. Cooked in almost 30 different guises, that include tuna lasagna and three types of tuna salad, you can even eat the heart and eggs, a delicacy, which come in at around 300 euros per kilo. There’s mormo, medallones, contramormo and tarantelo, but the best cuts are morillo and ventresco, which cost around 50 euros per kilo. And Melero – often dubbed ‘the master of tuna’ - is scru-

Jon Clar famous

THE MASTER: Balding Jose Melero runs a tight ship while (top) a tuna hau pulous about where he gets the endangered fish from. “We never buy tuna less than

30 kilos in weight and mostly around 10 years old,” explains Jose. “We are extreme-

ly careful and we fr degrees -


HIDDEN amid a sea of Mediterranean pines on the site of a former army barracks is one of Andalucia’s best art installations. The Montenmedio Foundation for Contemporary Art (NMAC) near Vejer is one of Andalucia’s prime showcases of work by established and emerging global artists. Mostly made for the park, the pieces are either dotted around the forest or, in the case of film, video or photographic works, found in the converted barracks buildings. Art parks can be found all over the world, but the foundation’s shrewd selection of artists makes it one of the best of its kind. If you are looking for an introduction to contemporary art outside the sometimes intimidating, hallowed space of the art gallery, NMAC is a great place to start. And in July and August this year there are special guided tours.

True cottag

THERE is a dist heart of Vejer. Aside from text there is a fanta with all its own Run by a worldl to the extreme Best of all, thou where Manolo G age of 16. Still using 1950 Manolo was ev wedding. Congr


z special

en and the art f serving up lue fin tuna

rke reviews one of Andalucia’s most s fish restaurants El Campero

– so we can use it all year round.” He adds: “I think the rules on catching blue fin tuna need to be strict and I think they are finally starting to bear fruit with numbers picking up again.” He has spent over two decades perfecting his art, having first set up a restaurant in Barbate’s port with his father. Now in a modern place in a rather nondescript ul and (right) a ‘degustacion’ square, El Campwho we buy it from ero is a four-speed operation, reeze it at minus 60 with everything from formal or ‘calidad sashimi’ dining room to bar tapas.

ge industry

tinct whirring of machinery in the

tile weaving and jewellery workshops, astic t-shirt shop La Pajarra (right) n original designs. ly local couple, the place is colourful and great value. ugh is the local printer Graficas Leon, Garcia has been working since the

0s German machinery, local lad ven working (left) a day before his ratulations.

And on a Tuesday lunchtime in July the place was packed to the gills. Top tips... the traditional tuna encebellado, or stew, was delicious served up with oregano, onion and pepper, while the carpaccio of tarantelo with wasabi was superb. Best of all though was the tartare, which comes from the tuna’s tails. It literally melted in the mouth, like good tuna is meant to. Oh, to eat lunch here everyday. El Campero Restaurante, Avda. de la Constitucion, local 5C, Barbate 956 432 300 www.restaurante

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


Costa de la Luz special


RIVE along the main road west of Tarifa – or up by the Trafalgar lighthouse, near Vejer – and on a windy day, you will be for a real treat. Like a day out in rural China, you will see dozens – sometimes hundreds – of large colourful kites bobbing up and down and weaving around in the prevailing winds. Zoom in and you will soon realise that practically the whole of the stunning dunebacked Valdevaqueros beach is dominated by the high adrenelin sport of kitesurfing. It has literally taken the area by storm and over the last decade the traditional sport of windsurfing has been massively blown out by this fashionable sport. To keep up with the craze over 50 schools cater for tourists who want to buy or rent equipment. The best include Hot Stick, run by friendly Tilo, and Etik kiteschool, run out of the famous O’Neil shop in the heart of Tarifa. “It has certainly become one of the key economic dynamos of the town and brings in a lot of money,” explains Julian, from Etik. “It brings in a lot of income and helps to make the town an all-year round holiday destination.”

Riding the wind The Costa de la Luz is one of Spain’s top spots for kitesurfing – and good for diving too, writes Jon Clarke

The progression in the sport is fast, but it is important to take lessons and get the

right introduction into safety systems. Otherwise it can be dangerous.

A standard kite course is about three to four days, after that you will be able to prac-

Costa de la Luz special


Flying high with kiteyoga IT is not the most obvious combination. But Flavia Vieira has come up with an ingenious course mixing kitesurfing and yoga. After 10 years teaching yoga and five teaching kitesurfing, the energetic Brazilian has united the two disciplines to maximize kitesurfing performance, enjoyment and to help avoid injuries.

“The lesson starts on the mat, flows to the beach and ends on the mat,” she explains. “It is not yoga plus kitesurfing, it is kiteyoga.” She believes the yoga helps both ‘flexibility and calmness of the mind’, which helps students to progress in the kiting. “I aim to prepare not only the body, but the mind for the practice of kitesurfing. It offers tools to practice the sport more safely and consciously.” She also stresses that, above all, students need no experience of yoga or kitesurfing to take the course. Call Flavia on 620 891 399 or visit www.etik. es/en/cursos-de-kitesurf-tarifa/curso-de-kitesurf-con-yoga

tise on your own. Famed as ‘the Wind Capital’ of Europe, it is unsurprising that Tarifa’s Valdevaqueros Beach occasionally hosts the World Championships. Alongside Diamond Head in Hawaii and Fuertaventura in

the Canaries, there are no other places that rival it for constant winds, either the Poniente from the west or the Levante from the east. The best wind for kitesurfing is the Poniente, which comes in from Portugal. It measures

ACROSS THE WATERS TARIFA has fast become one of the key stopping points en route to Morroco. With just 14km separating the two continents, taking a ferry across only takes 35 minutes. Since 2000, FRS have been operating fast ferry crossings to Tangier, as well as from Algeciras to Ceuta and Tangier. The ferries take cars and organise an exciting range of short trips for anyone wanting to sample the flavour of Africa. Visit for more information.

between two and five on the Beaufort scale and brings in a cooler breeze from the sea. It also happens to be the dominating wind in Tarifa. The best wind for windsurfers is the Levante, which comes from the south-east from Africa. It normally builds up for a few days and at its peak – when everyone gets sent mad – it can reach up to eight or nine on the Beaufort scale.

Among the best things to spot are moray eels, octupus and scorpion fish A variety of other companies organise activities in the area, including Yellow Sub, which organises a variety of diving trips around the straits. There are dives out to numerous wrecks in the area and, as the area is now a protected natural park, divers are bound to see numerous fish and sometimes dolphins. Among the best things to spot are moray eels, octupus and scorpion fish. The visibility is always good and the temperatures stay at between 15 and 20 degrees. “We get a lot of people coming up from the Costa del Sol as we have the best diving around,” says Italian Enrico Demelas from Yellow Sub. “We can offer short learner dives and four and five day PADI courses for those who want to go in depth.”

Visit, and

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the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


Costa de la Luz

Where to eat


UCKED into the ancient walls of Tarifa are a string of the region’s best restaurants. Highlighting the melting pot of the town, here you will find Argentinian, French and Italian restaurants all jostling for attention. Two of the best – La Trattoria and La Pescaderia - are curiously run by former architects, both drawn from their native countries by the allure of Tarifa. “There was something very special to be near the mythical pillars of Hercules,” explains Paolo, whose Italian trattoria serves up classics including Osso Buco and sauteed provolone cheese with honey. But the keen foodie also knows how to serve up a fresh sea bass. “I do it in a light white wine sauce with oregano and fresh tomatoes,” he insists. On this showing I was not going to argue. Next door, La Pescaderia – the town’s best fish restaurant – is certainly able to compete, in particular with his fabulous blue fin tuna menu. A massive tuna fan, boss Victor goes out of his way to prize

The coastline

the very best specimens out of the clutches of the Japanese. “It is vital as our clients absolutely love it,” explains the friendly Argentinian. At the other end of the paseo, next to the theatre you should look out for the excellent duo of Entre dos Aguas and Lola Mora, run by a friendly father and son. Both have a Mediterranean flavour, while Entre dos Aguas now has its own charcoal grill and a great range of pizzas. The same family also own a brilliant Argentinian Patagonia, just around the corner

Jon Clarke enjoys a food tour along Andalucia’s tastiest costa

in the heart of the old town. This fine spot run by brother Rodrigo and wife Patricia is atmospheric and charming in equal measures and naturally has the best steaks in the town, not to mention great empanadas. Nearby you will also enjoy Bamboo if you are looking for fresh salads, snacks and fruit juices and a fabulous chiringuito to recommend is Buen Estar, which is just about to open on the beach near the

island. It is the southernmost restaurant in Europe and has been set up by three friends with over 50 years of catering experience between them. Another great spot is Tesoro, a secret hideout in the hills, in Betijuelo, near Bolonia (see map). Run by fabulous couple Jesus and Juana, this must be the most beautiful place to eat lunch in Spain, with amazing views across the


Tarifa is slowly developing a great area to ‘tapear’ in the street Guzman el Bueno. In particular look out for Bar El Feo, being run by an enterprising trio of local friends. Tapas are surprisingly adventurous and brilliant value. Created by Jesus (right), who has worked at some of Sevilla’s top restaurants’, the best include mini langoustine burgers and ‘milhojas’ of courgette with goats cheese. Across the road Tapa Boca is also a great place to try.

Where to stay

Stylemeisters’ dream


OR stylemeisters, the Costa de la Luz is a dream. The entire coastline is full of cool, hip places to hang out and relax. Over in Vejer, it is hard to beat Hotel la Casa de Califa, which is easily one of Cadiz’s most striking buildings, its main doorway adorned with a shell. The Moorish building sits around a charming central patio, where guests take breakfast and dine under candlelight each evening. Equally inspiring is the wonderful Hotel Sindhura, which overlooks rolling hills and fields, right down to the coast, near Conil. Owner Ana – a Buddist – has created a genuinely Zen-like retreat, which now has a superb restaurant to match. There is certainly an underlying ambience to the place and it is extremely good value. Nearby, right on the beach, in Canos de Meca, you might also want to consider Madreselva, which is set around a central courtyard and has a nice pool for the kids to splash in. A short drive inland and you will find the charming hotel La Vista in the fascinating white town of Medina Sidonia. Well sited for visits to all the main towns, including Jerez, Cadiz and Sanlucar, La Vista is run by friendly couple Gary and Kirsty Biston, and counts its own excellent restaurant and superb comfortable rooms. Best of all though is its amazing pool, easily one of Andalucia’s finest.

Costa de la Luz has a wealth of hip places to stay

In Chiclana there are also plenty of big brash options, but few beat the earthy Casa de la Dehesa, hidden in a charming hamlet 15kms inland. Over in Tarifa there has also been a huge explosion of good places to stay over the last few years. In the centre of the town there are a couple of superb options including the super cool Posada la Sacristia, as well as the good value Posada Vagamundos, which sits in a tiny alley, with calm, comfortable rooms (assuming you stay at the back). Another brilliant option is Escondite del Viento (hideout from the wind), which is a stylish little place also in the heart of town. Whilst the hotel is modern it has retained the original charm of the building and boasts little extras like DVDs in the room, a great film library, and sweets in a little bag placed on the bed at night with a ‘sweet dreams’ note and details of temperature and wind speeds the next day. And last but not least if you are looking for somewhere good to stay en route to or from the Costa de la Luz, you should try Meson de Sancho on the main road to Algeciras. While right on the main road you will find the hotel surprisingly calm and quiet, and there are a great selection of bungalow suites, not to mention stunning views towards Africa.

Costa de la Luz


for cuisine TALENT: Steak masters Rodrigo and Patricia at Patagonia and (right) chef at Bamboo Straits and incredible retinto steaks and tuna. On the subject of blue fin tuna, Andalucia’s best place to eat it must surely be El Campero in the workaday fishing town of Barbate. Here, Jose Melero has catered for celebrities, politicians and fellow chefs for two decades and runs the restaurant with military precision (see centre spread). In Vejer you have one of Andalucia’s top culinary towns

(see page 24). Restaurants include Vera Cruz with top chef Jose Manuel Perez, from Asturias, as well as the amazing El Jardin de Califa, which sits in an atmospheric candlelit patio in one of the town’s most evocative buildings. Full most nights in summer, it also does well in the winter and has a good mix of international dishes, with a middle eastern theme. Another brilliant spot, Brasa

de Sancho, is run by friendly Pepi and French chef Daniel, who trained with Michel Roux, no less. Their charming terrace overlooking emblematic Plaza de Espana is fabulous at night. A new addition is the amazing Garimba, with its charming tables out on the same square and serving up a delicious range of dishes and tapas. These include a perfect ‘hojaldre’ with two types of tomatoes, smoked sardine, onion and balsamic, which explode in the mouth. Having poached chef Juan Tabares, from El Campero in Barbate, it has just got better and better and continues to impress. Near Vejer in Santa Lucia you must be sure to visit Castilleria, whose terrace is one of the most romantic in Spain, and where dynamo Juan Valdes serves up the best meat dishes in Cadiz province.

Improved Practically next door is authentic Venta el Toro, where you eat whatever the owner’s aunt is cooking that day. Nearby, in Patria try to visit Restaurant Patria, where Thomas and wife Ase are fast garnering a reputation as having some of the best food in the area. Another much improved place to eat nearby is the attractive Sindhura hotel, which has a fabulous dining room looking down to the coast near Conil. It is a wonderful spot to eat and the menu is varied and tasty. Another continually reliable place to eat is Meson de Sancho on the main road from Tarifa to Algeciras. A historic spot, owner Rafael runs a tight ship and maintains standards in the height of recession. Finally Oasis bar in Barrosa, Chiclana is a friendly spot for the local English population and always has plenty of special events.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


Costa de la Luz

Costa de la Luz special


Frontera-line teaching A NYONE wanting to learn Spanish in a traditional Andalucian setting should

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Frontera, students are offered a learning experience that combines state of the art technology with a culture that


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has been centuries in the making. Set in an 18th century mansion right at the heart of Vejer’s historical quarter, Spanish is taught to advanced level by experienced, motivated staff. Modern computer technology, including WiFi, is always available but learning is not confined to the classroom. Students are encouraged to interact with the culture through organised visits to nearby Tarifa and Cadiz, as well as Sevilla and even to the Moroccan city of Tangiers. Sporting opportunities are certainly not in short supply either with a range of activities offered from kitesurfing and diving to hiking in the spectacular nature reserves. A beach is never far away if you simply want to relax and enjoy the sunshine. With an average class size of five students, La Janda offers personalised teaching both in and out of the classroom. La Janda ensures students have the best experience possible with teaching that goes that little bit further. Visit more information


the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

la cultura


the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

37 37

July 12, 2012

Picasso fake

A GROUP of people have been arrested in Sevilla for trying to sell a fake Picasso for a million euros. The foursome, which included a well-known antiques dealer from Madrid and three men from Sevilla acting as intermediaries, were picked up after trying to sell Buste de Jeune Granon to various galleries and auction houses. The painting, which the Picasso Museum has since confirmed is fake, was also accompanied by a false authentication certificate in the name of the painter’s daughter Paloma Picasso. The arrests come after police launched an investigation in Barcelona last May and traced the painting to Sevilla.

REVENGE BY THE BOOK Codex Calixtinus found in the home of an electrician a year after it vanished A 60-YEAR-OLD electrician has confessed to stealing the Codex Calixtinus out of revenge against church officials for firing him. Police recovered the 12th century literary gem - that served as the first guide to the Santiago pilgrimage – in the home of

million, a collection of sacred objects, and a set of keys to the temple where the Codex is housed, has now confessed to the crime. He claims he acted out of revenge after By Rund Abdelfatah church officials fired him and failed to Manuel Fernandez Castineiras a year af- pay €40,000 which he claimed as comter it vanished from Santiago Cathedral. pensation. The unlikely culprit, who had kept the Codex stored away in a plastic bag on a Million dusty shelf along with a staggering €1.2 Investigators, who searched several houses in the area before they came knocking at his door, believe Castineiras acquired the million euros by taking money from the collection box and the melodies of vocalists Lynn and pocketing other valuable objects in the Maggie fill the amphitheatre. church over the course of more than two Guests are invited to pack their decades. own picnic for the concert which Police records also reveal the electriwill take place in Parque Torre Lecian, who attended mass daily at the Caoneras, Benahavis on August 25. thedral even while the investigation was Admission is €10 with all proceeds ongoing, had a close relationship with going towards Cudeca and Chilthe caretaker of the Codex, Jose Maria dren with Cancer UK. Diaz, until the two experienced a falling out shortly before the theft.

Some enchanted evening GET ready for a night to remember. The Two Sopranos music company has joined forces with the Marbella Dance School to present Picnic in the Park. The al fresco concert, being hosted by Maurice Boland, will see ballerinas dance across the open stage as

what’s on


stepona Until August 14. Estepona Port Business and Internet Centre presents The Works of Mike Emeney and His Class. Mike will be displaying his popular works interspersed with those of his pupils.


uerto Serrano, July 20-22, Fiesta y Romeria Santa Maria Magdalena, fiesta culminating in a pilgrimage in honour of the town’s patron saint, known locally as ‘Malena’.


erja, July 17-22, Festival International de Musica y Danza Cueva de Nerja, this festival takes place in one of the most unusual venues in Spain, 20,000 year old caves, and welcomes performers from around the world including Pasion Vega on July 21, and the Russian ballet on July 20.

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la cultura

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

Im-press-ed! A RECENT survey has revealed how Spaniards’ feel towards social institutions such as the government, the banks and the press. Metroscopia, the organisation which carried out the survey, has found that Spanish confidence in the Press, scientists and the police have increased while the banks, political parties and bishops have encountered more disapproval compared with last year.


54 per cent of Spaniards approve of journalists, 83 per cent of the police and 90 per cent of scientists. Public opinion of the Press is on a par with that of the King of whom 56 per cent of Spaniards approve. On the other end of the scale, only 9 per cent of the public currently approve of the political parties in Spain, 16 per cent of the bishops and 11 per cent of the banks. According to Metroscopia, 64 per cent of Spaniards are in favour of letting the banks which had a hand in the economic crisis go bust.


ORDS such as ‘blog’, ‘friki’ and ‘sushi’ have now been added to the Spanish Royal Academy’s online dictionary. In a recent update – which marks the fifth since the website’s inception in 2001 – words and phrases including ‘blog’ and ‘bloguero’ (blogger), ‘chatear’ adapted from the English ‘chat’ and ‘espanglish’- a hybrid of English and Spanish, have been officially recognised. It points to a growing trend of English words becoming adapted into Spanish in a linguistic invasion known as ‘loaning’. Between September 2007 and December 2011 the additions and alterations to the dictionary have totalled 1,697. English first began to creep into the Spanish language when football became popular in Spain. Words like ‘penalti’ and ‘corner’ became commonplace as Spaniards looked to the birthplace of football to dictate how they would describe the game. Moreover as travelling abroad became more affordable and communication became easier, British

‘Espanglish’ becomes official Helen Pierpoint discovers why the Spanish are ‘loaning’ lots of our words

BLEND: A scene from 2004 film Spanglish with Adam Sandler and Paz Vega and American cultures began to arouse Spanish curiosity. In the last 10 years, the number of ‘loans’ has skyrocketed with the arrival of the internet, satellite TV and an increase in American

and British products being imported abroad. ‘El sandwich’, ‘trendy’ and

‘email’ are among hundreds of words added to the Spanish dictionary.

Loan words

Anyone learning Spanish will no doubt have encountered a few ‘false friends’ at one time or another. These are words that are seemingly similar to English, but have very different meanings, for example, embarazada which means pregnant and NOT embarrassed. There are also plenty of English ‘loan words’ which are English words which have now been incorporated into everyday Spanish, but not always with the same meaning. Here we take a look at a few of the English words used by the Spanish in the right, and the wrong, way… English: Piercing Sandwich Esnob (snob) Overbooking

Relax Gin tonic Breikdans (break-dance) Gol El chat Pop

English with a twist: Kinky often used to mean someone on the periphery, who generally uses drugs and is out of work, it can also mean petty thief. Friki a geek or a nerd Smoking a smoking jacket Footing jogging Tennis trainers

According to English professor Zac Tobias, the reason English words have become so popular is that ‘certain English words express a lot with a little’. Indeed, many white-collar workers in Spain nowadays prefer to say ‘email’ instead of ‘correo electronico’ as it takes less time and effort to say. But what is interesting is that various English ‘loan’ words used in everyday language in Spain would be unrecognisable to an Englishspeaker.

English words have become popular as they express a lot with a little Many words must be respelt and modified to suit the Spanish language. For instance, the ‘smartphone’ has become ‘esmartphone’ as Spaniards struggle to pronounce words beginning with ‘s’. ‘Friki’ -meaning nerd - has become a noun instead of an adjective, and ‘fashion’ is used as an adjective to describe someone with good fashion sense. Despite its eagerness to keep with the times, Spain ranks poorly when it comes to the number of people who speak English. It came 24th behind Norway, France and Portugal in a recent survey.

la cultura

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012 39 39

Finding my inner cowgirl Wendy Williams visits the Wild West set, where spaghetti westerns – and more recently Doctor Who – were made


O one will set foot in this hell. Except you and me,” declared Tuco, in 1966’s The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. But it turns out he was very wrong. Ever since the Italian director Sergio Leone descended on the area to make his iconic Spaghetti Westerns, the Tabernas desert - which sees around three days of rain a year - has been flooded by film aficionados. As I drive through the desert scenery, in Almeria, I am struck by how much it resembles the Wild West of my imagination. Right on cue I round the corner and find myself confronted by a handsome cowboy who doesn’t look in the slightest bit out of place. He flashes me a smile and points me in the direction of a dirt track where I can just make out a series of Indian tepees. The only difference between this and the iconic films is his Andaluz accent. I am spending the day at Fort Bravo, one of three mock-up Western towns in the area the others being Western Leone and Mini-Hollywood. It is easy to see why this out of the way place, 6,000 miles from Hollywood, was for 15 years a Mecca for filmmakers. It was here that Leone re-

YEEHAW: Wendy faces danger while spending the day riding around Fort Bravo vived the western genre with his iconic Dollars Trilogy, famously scored by Ennio Morricone. It was also where a young TV actor named Clint Eastwood was made into a movie star. Today Fort Bravo comprises a fort, a ‘typical’ Mexican pueblo and the classic Western Main Street, complete with its own gallows and fake storefronts for banks, hotels, and the county jail. To get into the swing of things I was driven round on an old school horse and carriage before channelling my inner cowgirl and riding on horseback around the set and surrounding badlands. The set itself was bought in the late 1970s by Valencia stuntman Rafael Molina, 59. Today, it is the only one of the three ‘Wild West towns’ that is still used as a set, albeit less frequently than in its heyday. Most recently the popular Dr Who series shot an episode there using the façade of the central bank. And several of the stuntmen, seen performing in the shoot outs and saloon brawls on a daily basis, have starred in adverts. But as more and more people began to visit the set Molina began to transform it into a tourist attraction to cash in. He initially charged just 25 pesetas (10 cents) a visit but the theme park side of things has slowly begun to takeover. “There was nothing here in the beginning,” explains Molina, who has worked with many famous people, and once shared his breakfast with John Lennon, who he mistook for a ‘smelly hippy’. “Sergio came and saw some-

thing. He was an artist and his decision to film here was either really crazy or really intelligent. “But you could make it into anything; the scenery could be Mexico or America.” He continued: “They were very bad years in the beginning. The Italians came with very little money, and no one knew if it would work and then suddenly the Americans saw how successful the films could be.

They were ushered off the bus into the saloon at gun point with their arms in the air “I think the films have a bit of everything, love, vengeance, everything you see in the street; it was real life but from another era when there were strong laws and good versus bad. “At the height you would have three or four film crews arriving at the same time. You would do one film after another. “Then the tourists started coming and it keeps growing as we give the people what they want.” And it certainly seems to be working. Minutes after I arrived a big group pulled up on a tour bus and it was clear they loved every minute, from the moment they were ushered off their bus and into the saloon at gun point with their arms in the air and grins on their faces. This of course is the same swinging saloon door that was made famous in the worldwide Pepsi commercial a few years back when foot-

ball players Raul, Beckham and Roberto Carlos all took part.

The real highlight though is the mock shoot-outs and barroom brawls which thankfully don’t take themselves too seriously and play up to all the stereotypes. Those taking part are trained stuntmen rather than actors and though the shows are undoubtedly kitsch they make good watching. “It is hard work and we work long hours but I love it,” explains Alberto Morales Ruiz, 31, a stuntman from Cadiz who trained on a course set up by the studio.

“We change the shows a bit everyday and we switch around the roles a lot although I always seem to be the person that gets killed as I have more experience,” he laughs, assuring me it doesn’t hurt when he is being dragged along the ground behind a galloping horse. “The key is to keep turning!” I am reliably informed. But I think I will leave that to the experts. Instead I wander off in search of a handsome cowboy to whisk me off into the sunset.

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the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

ALAMEDA Mobile Home Park • Posada Tempranillo • Petrol Station • Casa Benito ALCALA Conexions • Hotel Torrepalma • Library • Tourist Office • Optico Real • Hotel Zacatin • Estate Agent Andaluz • BP ALGATOCIN BP Service Station ALHAURIN el Grande Alhaurin Golf • La Boma Rest. • 1st and 2nd Tabacconist • Annas Butchers • Christinas Paper Shop • Arte Hair • Martins Paper Shop • British Supermarket • Posh Pets • Cudeca • ALHAURIN de la Torre BP • Las Brisas Restaurante • Montemar Restaurante • Lauro Golf ALMUNECAR Spar Supermercado • Tourist Office • El Faro Bar • Olivares Shop • Danny s Bar ALORA Harveys • Tropicana • Repsol Petrol Cudeca • Zalea Bar ALOZAINA Petrol Station ANTAS Frandi • The Full Swing • El Poligono • Costa Cars ANTEQUERA Lidl • La Veronica • Antequera Golf • Tourist Office • Hotel Plaza San Sebastian • BP • Hotel Las Villas de Antikaria ARCHIDONA Cepsa Garage • 3R Café /Bar • Mercadona Garage • Sunset Estates ARDALES Paco’s Bar ARRIATE Petrol Station ATAJATE Andalazar BEDAR Town Hall • Empalme • Cajamar Olive BENADALID Los Labros BENAHAVIS Canela Cafe /Bar • Amanhavis BENALAURIA La Molienda BENALMADENA COSTA Super Save • Hapenny Bridge Pub • Kiosko Puerto (Marina) • Tourist Office • Paloma Library • Irish Time Bar • Xanit Hospital • UK Foods BENAMARGOSA La Vaqueria BENAOJAN Meroil • Papeleria Ruiz • Hotel Molino del Santo• Cuatro Paradas BENAVISTA Bowls Club • Card Shop • Ibex Insurance • Grumbles • English Butcher • Costa Less Supermarket • Plaza Hotel • Dog House • Brubecks • El Paraiso Golf •Petrol Station • Kids Kingdom • Agro Jardin • Calpe School • Pegotty’s Fish & Chips • Experience Group BENAMACARRA Hotel Cortijo Bravo BUBION Supermercado Coviran CABOPINO Pina Pinaka • Cabo Pizza • Sportsmans Bar • Cabopino Camping • Garage • Shebeens Pub • Paper ShopSupermarket • Plaza Bar • Alberts Restaurant CABRA Tourist Office CADIAR Pagamenos CALAHONDA Age Care • Party Party • The Pit Shop • Sol Finders • GT Mc Kenna Butchers • Internet Café • Mercadona • Spikes Hairdressers • RBL • Club Naranja • Plaza next to Paper Shop CALYPSO MPA Estates (Bryce) • Inspirations Haidressers CAMPILLOS Kiosk • BP Petrol Station CAPILEIRE Supermercado Coviran • Bar CARTAMA ESTACION Aguamania • Topres CASABERMEJA Petrol Station CASARES Arroyo Honda • Venta Victoria • Venta Garcia • Villas and Fincas • La Tienda •Mi Cortijo • Muebles Gavira CHICLANA LHD • Monopoly • Oasis Bar • Tourist Office • Posthouse COIN Tourist Office • Cudeca • Guerreros • Insurance Office • Bohem Rest. • Internacional • La Trocha • Chain • Leslies • BP • Buyrite • Robertos COLMENAR CO2 • Bar Campesino COMPETA Todo Papel • Pavo Real and Restaurant • Sugar and spice • Alicats CORTES Camping el Salitre • El Gecko • Mary Becker • La Fuente CORTIJO CABRERA Restaurant


Covering the costas and inland to eight provinces And here’s how our rivals fare:

CORDOBA Bodegas Campos • Hotel Casas de la Juderia • La Fragua CUEVAS DEL BECERRO Petrol Station DIANA Royal Nordic Club • Man Friday Supermarket • Super Market • Aud Dublin • Big BlueBox DUQUESA PORT Paparazzi Neswagents • Supermarket • Las Gallerias • English Butcher • Duquesa Golf Club • Marlows Restaurant • Souvenir Shop • Gaston Golf • Manilva Properties • Monte Duquesa Sq • La Bella Vista Camping • Clubhouse Bar • Duquesa Estates • Castillo Foreign Resident Centre • Macues Restaurant • Penguin Bar El CHORRO Olive Branch BB • El Kiosko • Hotel Posada el Conde • Rest. Boca Bella EL FARO El Faro Supermarket • Carlton Bar EL ROSARIO Bar • Bar • Town Hall ELVIRIA Martys Hairdressers • Bio Nature Shop • Town Hall • EIC School •Beach House Restaurant •Aventura Amazonia •El Lago Restaurant ESTEPA BP Garage ESTEPONA Hospiten • Best Coches • Arte Escuela Ecuestre Restaurant • Pointer Vets • Eden Bar • Laguna Village Entrance • Terra Sana Digi Print • Optica Machin • Carrefour • Longmans Bookshop • Fergussons Bar • Cudeca Bar • Dune Bar • Furniture World • Padel and Sports • Techo Aluminio • Lidls • Amapola • Tourist Centre • Estepona Golf • International Club of Estepona • Costa Nature • Albayat Resort • Muebles Gavira ESTEPONA MARINA Sailors Cafe • Business Centre EportBic Universal Estate Agents • The Irish Fiddler Marlow Chip Chop FRIGILIANA Hotel Almazara FUENGIROLA Iceland • Camping Fuengirola • Scotties

Butchers • Salon Varieties • BP • Specsavers • Cudeca • Dunnes Stores • Yorkshire Linen • Speedy s Garage • RMDC Glass • Euro Market • St. Anthony s College • Tamisa Golf Hotel FUENTE DE PIEDRA Bar Rebujito • Corner Bar • Diane’s • Donkey Sanctuary GARRUCHA Clinica Veterinaria GAUCIN Repsol Petrol Station • Hotel Caballo Andaluz • Pura Vida Health Shop • Benassim Deli • Fructosa • El Convento • Casa Antonia • La Fuente • El Puente GIBRALTAR Bray Properties • Café Fresco • Kristina Szekely • Laziz Rest. • Ipanema Rest. • O’Reileys • Ocean Village Express • Ibex Insurance • Morrisons • Savills • Rock Hotel • Elliot Hotel • Sacarellos • Icc Shoping Centre • Chamber of Commerce • Cafe Solo • Copywrite • Café Rojo • Colourworks • MH Bland • Sovereign • Rolex • Caleta Hotel • Ibex Insurance GRANADA Airport • Hotel Macia Plaza • La Romanilla • Hotel Fontecruz Granada • Metro Bookshop • Hannigans 1 • Hannigans 2 • Tourist Office • El Catrachod • Jardines de Zoraya • La Alacena de Andalucia • Hotel Palacio de Santa GUADALMINA Tricky Rickys • Bookworld GUARO Petrol Station IZNAJAR BP • The Yoga School • Sueños • Los Cuatro Vientos Bar JEREZ Los Jandalos • Tourist Office JIMENA DE LA FRONTERA Cepsa• Papeleria Los Garabatos • Bar Cuenca • La Tasca • Hostal Anon • Bar Oba • Estate Agents • Casa Henrietta JIMERA DE LIBAR ESTACION Bar Allioli LA CALA DE MIJAS Corner Café • Lions Charity Shop • Pensioners Bar • Internet Café • Papeleria

Quetzal • Captains Bar • Zurich Office • BP Garage LA CALETA Papeleria las Colonias LA HERRADURA The Hideaway Bar • Libreria Coral • La Tartana Hotel LA VINUELA Hotel Vinuela LANJARON Ambienza • Cafe Bar Health • Tourist Information • Los Llanos LAS BUGANVILLAS Victor’s • Cactus LECRIN VALLEY E.S Leman Gasolina LOJA Cafe Continental • Repsol garage LOS GALLARDOS Unicaja • Subministros Ridao • Gas station • Camping los Gallardos LOS ROMANES Camping Bar LUCENA Carrefour Pet Shop • Hotel Bronces • B.P near the fire stn. MALAGA CITY British Consulate • Café Andino • Dunkin Coffee • Hotel Tribuna • Pizzeria el Laboratorio • Restaurante Vino Mio • Hotel EL Pintor • Calle Brusseles • Celtic Irish Bar • Café con Libro • Picasso • Robert Boyd • Hotel Don Curro • Hotel Molino Larios • Tourist Office • Hotel Vinci MALAGA AIRPORT Helle Hollis • Car Parking Malaga • Easy Park • Aena Information Desk • Monarch MANILVA Kwasi Cafe • Curtain & Bedding • English bookshop.Manilva Solicitors • Dr Santos Centro de Balud • Fathom’s Bar • Natura Garden Centre • Vets • Eden Gift Shop • Visage Hair Salon • Coast to Coast Properties. MARBELLA La Cuisine • Casa del Te • Hotel Fuerte • Hotel Morada la Hermosa • Town House Hotel• Villa Marbella Hotel • Swans International School • Vergola • Puente Romano Hotel• Polo House • Absolute Café

• Deli next Door • Casa Mono • Casanis• Lawbird MIJAS PUEBLO Tourist Office • Town Hall • BP Garage MIJAS ROAD World of Furniture • Centro Idea Danish Centre MOJACAR Gas station • Masko • Habana Koi • Marina de la Torre Club • Costa Coches • Kasbah Romantic • Sal’s Diego Ortega • Pippas • La Collera Paco • El Olivo • Comptoir de la Crepe • Jolly Lemon • Total entertainment • Tomas • Mojacar Estates • Beachcomber • H Puntazo • Trufibar • Clinica Dental (Parque comercial) • Kimrick • Parador MOJACAR PUEBLO Centro de Arte Municipal • Thao • English Library • Bar Pavana MOLLINA Bar Margarita • And Estates • Brit Shop • Lazy Days Mobile Home Park •Saydo park MONDA Paper Shop • Petrol St. MONTEFRIO Alan Russell MONTE HALCONES One stop café (Ronda road) • Irish café MONTEJAQUE Hotel Montejaque • Las Casitas MOTRIL Aki • Café AL Campo • Tourist Office Los Moriscos Golf • Bar/ Rest Moriscos • Ideal Papeleria • Gran Elba Hotel NERJA Hotel Carabeo • English Book Shop • Supermercado Iranzo • Dancers Bar • Smiths Bookshop • Tourist Office • John the Barber • H2O Bar • Keyhomes Estates Agents • Team Estate Agents Mojito Bar NUEVA ANDALUCIA Aloha News • Garden Bar • Yanks • Wilsons • Alberts • La Sala restaurant • Mad Hatters • Terra Sana • N10 Hotel • RWK furniture OLVERA Petrol Station • Dynos • Olvera Properties • Via Verde • Rest. El Puerto


ORGIVA Indoor Market • Camac • Internet Café • Alpujarra Supermercado • Baraka PAMPANEIRA Hotel • Gasolinera PERIANA Cantueso PITRES Camping • Bar • Bar PIZARRA Kiwi • Aliprox PRIEGO DE CORDOBA Tourist office • Kiosko maribel Cepsa garage x2 PUENTE DON MANUEL Petrol Station • Moreno’s • Petts Dentist • English Shop • Arkwrights • Bar Atilla PUERTO BANUS VIPS • Gift Shop (Port) • Moneycorp • Mumtaz • Jacks • Bookworld • Iceland • Cravings • Kristina Zekely • La Sala • Starz Cafe PUERTO REY (VERA) Club Deportivo • La Esquina RINCON DE LA VICTORIA Tourist Office • Hotel Rincon Sol Anoreta Golf RIO FRIO Hotel Almazara RIOGORDO Coviran RIVIERA DEL SOL Miraflores Bowls Club • La Terraza Supermarket • La Terraza Paper Shop RONDA Molino del Puente • BP • Almocabar • Bar San Francisco • Tourist Office • Siete de Copas • Atrium • Chocolate • Casa Ortega • Osaka • TragaTapas • Hotel Maestranza • Hotel Colon Hotel Polo • Hotel Don Miguel • Locutorio • Serrania Services • Libreria Dumas • Huskies RUTE Estanco SABINILLAS English Bookshop • Eden • Hairdresser • Coast to Coast • Bar • Lidls SALINAS Casa Monolo • Meson Estacion SALOBRENA Hotel Salobrena • Correos • Tourist Office • Café Goya • 1616 Books • Abyla Papeleria • Restaurante Flores • Café Emilio SAN PEDRO Tourist Office • Passion Café • TRE Radio Station • Staysure • Book Shop by N10 SAN ROQUE San Roque Golf Suites Reception area and golf clubhouse • Okay cafe • Supermarket SIERRA DE YEGUAS Kiosko SOTOGRANDE GUADIARO Newsagent • Corner Café • Lemon Tree Café • Estate Agent • English Butcher Shop • Sotofiesta • Terra Sana Business Centre NH Hotel • Abbeygate Insurance • Mara Rest. • Anglo Wines • Lidls • Videola • Irish Pub • Hairy Lemon •La Terrace •Cafe Ke TARIFA Tourist Office • lidl • cafe central • hurricane hotel •hotels in centre TEBA Meson de Diego TOLOX Cross Road Bar TORRE DEL MAR Papeleria el Faro • English Bookshop Pasatiempo • Expatriate Help Centre • Lukuma • Baviera Golf • Las Yucas • Cudeca TORREMOLINOS Tourist Offices x 3 • Cudeca Town Centre Baileys Pub • BP Garage (Towards Benalmadena) •others TORROX Russels English Shop • Sol y Sombra • Light of India • El Pino English Shop • Tourist Office TRIANA Bar Triana TURRE Fundraiser • Chili • Zambra • Super Turre • Casa Diego • Total entertainment • Tio Tomas UBEDA Golden Poppy English Center UGIJAR Juan’s Bar and Bookshop VEJER Bookend, Hotel Califa, Tourist Office, Castilleria VELEZ MALAGA Garden Centre La Palma • Eroski Centre • Bar Jamaica • Dunnes VERA Iceland (Suzzanne) • Galasa • Terraza Carmona VILLANUEVA DE ALGAIDAS La Bodeguita VILLANUEVA DE ROSARIO Bar • Bar • Town hall VILLANUEVA DE TAPIA La Paloma Rest. VILLANUEVA DE TRABUCO Ronnies • La Plaza • La Rubia • El Rincon de Teresa • Trabuco Books YUNQUERA Petrol St. ZAHARA DE LA SIERRA Al Lago


Top Dollar

Danske you very much!

A BREAKTHROUGH has been reached for defrauded expat Euan Armstrong, 73, whose legal battle against the biggest bank in Denmark has garnered increasing support from similarly affected expats in Spain. The Fuengirola Court of First Instance has now agreed to investigate his case against Danske Bank after initially dismissing it last year.


As the Olive Press reported, the Scottish expat was left almost penniless when the bank persuaded him to use his €2 million Malaga home as collateral in an equity release scheme. Meanwhile the Equity Release Victims Association (, set up by Armstrong and Ian Sherdley to warn Brits about such schemes, is now a recommended site by the British Embassy in Madrid.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

41 41

Expats horrified after being charged €200 to send a cheque to the UK A BRITISH couple are warning other expats about hidden bank charges after Barclays charged them nearly €200 to send a cheque to England. Sue and Les Holland, from Estepona, made a cheque out in euros to a friend for €1,761.43. But when they received their bank statement the couple, who have since closed their account, were shocked to discover they had been charged an additional €176.45. “We queried this and they told us the English bank had returned our cheque to Barclays in Estepona, via a ‘gestion de cobro’, to ensure there was sufficient money in our account,” said Sue,

Cheque charge is ‘extortionate’ from Lancashire. “We want to know why this charge was made without

any warning. “They insisted it was just normal procedure. But the

charges are extortionate. It is disgraceful.” When the Olive Press con-

TAX WARNING FOR EXPATS EXPATS are being warned they could be hit with hidden taxes when legalising undeclared assets as part of an amnesty. Under the terms of the Spanish government initiative, individuals and businesses will be required to pay 10 per cent of the value of their assets or cash.

But one Costa del Sol-based legal firm is warning Britons they could be subject to additional charges on certain possessions, which must be declared by November 30. “The amnesty refers to income and company taxes, but not other taxes. Therefore, it implies that the taxman

could claim other taxes such as VAT for transactions not declared in the past,” said Denise Moloney, from Manilva Solicitors. “We recommend people be careful and delay acting on the amnesty until the Inland Revenue has clarified the tax implications next month.”

tacted Barclays a spokeswoman informed us it was a standard charge. “We are unable to comment on this specific case without all the information but we will look into it. “In general the amount depends on the kind of account you have and the kind of cheque it is. “There are a lot of ways to send money to another country, this process is more seucre and for that reason more expensive.


the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

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EARLY-MORNING email checking has led to longer working days, a survey has found with British employees putting in the most hours of all. Research by technology company Mozy has found increased mobile phone usage has made it easier for bosses

e50,000 pays income e325 per month X 2 years

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e80,000 pays income e656 per month X 4 years


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These are illustrative rates correct at going to press

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MILLIONS of customers across Spain are set to be hit by a rise in the price of electricity, natural gas and butane. The 20 million customers supplied by the Tarifa de Ultimo Recurso (TUR) will see an average increase of 3.95 per cent on their electricity bill. Meanwhile, the price of nat-

ural gas has risen by 2.26 per cent which translates as an average increase of €14.89 a year. A cylinder of butane will now cost you €16.45 on average, an increase of 5.92 per cent or more. The price rise comes as Spain tries to tackle its massive debt crisis.

to bother their staff when they are not in the office. The average UK worker checks their emails at home at 7.17am, launching them into work mode seven minutes before their European and American counterparts. And it is not until 12 hours later – at 7.02pm – that they finally put down their mobiles and stop thinking about their job.


But while more bosses are hassling workers later in the day, they are also becoming more tolerant of lateness and using office time for non-work-related tasks such as brushing teeth and shopping online. “The lines between work and personal life are becoming more and more blurred as one aspect of life merges with the other,” said a spokesman.

Top Dollar

Dole queue drop SPAIN’S unemployment figures dropped by 100,000 in June, the third consecutive monthly fall, according to the Labour Ministry. The cut in the number of people claiming unemployment benefits - down to 4.6 million - is the largest margin ever recorded for the month of June. But Spain still has the highest unemployment rate in the eurozone, 24.4 per cent at the end of March, with 52 per cent of under 25s currently out of work.

Bailout breakthrough

SPAIN is to receive €30 billion of a rescue package by the end of the month. The agreement, designed to bail out the country’s crippled banks, was reached after nine hours of talks in Brussels aimed at preventing Europe’s fourth largest economy needing a fullblown state bailout. The loan will be set for a maximum of 15 years with the interest rate among other conditions to be set on July 20. Spain will also be given more time to cut its massive deficit to below 3 per cent of GDP.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

Road to Riches, by Richard Alexander


ARCLAYS Bank has recently been found guilty of manipulating the interbank lending rates, netting huge profits for themselves as a consequence. And a wholesale mis-selling of complex ‘interest rate swap’ instruments – to 28,000 business customers – has also emerged in the last fortnight. To cap it all, Barclays’ chief executive Bob Diamond has just resigned under pressure for these and other scandals that happened ‘on his watch’ – and will now potentially benefit from a huge settlement as a consequence. You can be forgiven for thinking the world has gone a little mad. On the bigger stage, looking at the Eurozone lurching from summit to summit, was it really a case of 20th time lucky with a solution that will work? I am not given to pessimism, but I really don’t think we are any closer to a lasting solution just yet. The latest summit may have ended on a positive note. It allows the Eurozone rescue funds to buy Italian and Spanish debt in the form of government bonds, without the money passing through the respective governments. This resulted in the value of the Euro immediately, rallying by some two per cent. But will it last? The rally was based on the reduction in Spanish yields which dropped from seven per cent to 6.3 per cent, with Italy

Has the world gone mad? Finance guru Richard Alexander offers sound planning advice in times of banking turmoil

dropping below the six per cent level. These rates remain very high but since they are not sustainable in the longer term, more needs to be done. The biggest problems for the man in the street are that all the numbers being bandied around in relation to banks and government borrowings have far too many zeros on them to allow anyone to really understand what it all means. And yet, they have a direct influence on not only our day-to-day lives but our financial planning as well. As we are often told, recovery will be slow and long-term planning is necessary to see sustainable growth return. In many ways, the same is true of financial planning and in particular, those reliant on income from invested capital or pension funds to meet everyday needs. Those with sufficient capital to be certain that even at very low interest

rates. They are generating sufficient income for immediate needs, and leaving some behind to let the capital grow, are in an envious position. Most do not have that reassurance. The main problem with relying on this type of investment is that, in real terms, when you allow for inflation, the value of the capital is going down each year – even for those who are not spending all the interest. Strategically, the financial planning approach needs to be more adventurous. Break down your needs into ‘nice to have’ and ‘need to have’ and think of your estate planning in terms of ‘immediate future’, ‘medium’, then ‘long term’ and ‘eventual’. You may not be able to cover all bases straight away, but by taking a more more realistic, structured approach, you can ensure your ‘need to haves’ are met before working on the ‘nice to haves’.

Richard Alexander Financial Planning Limited is an appointed representative of L J Financial Planning Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority in the UK. Contact him at


Don’t bank on it! A TOP economist has warned that the Eurozone crisis is graver than the collapse of the Lehman Brothers which plunged the global economy into recession four years ago. Peter Praet’s statement comes amid soaring borrowing costs in both Spain and Italy.


Fears are also growing that Spain will need a fullblown state bailout on top of the enormous €80 billion rescue package for its battered banks. Analysts have said it will take months to thrash out a package that will prop up European banks with taxpayer money. Meanwhile Spain is on the edge of the abyss. “Things could get much worse before they get better,” warned senior economist Andrew Kennigham.

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the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


Top Dollar




S the true extent of toxic loans to property developers and speculators grows, and the prospect of more banks going down the path of nationalisation (or insolvency) becomes a serious possibility, customers are naturally asking themselves one question: will my money be safe here? The answer depends on the type of product or service you have taken out with the bank, and on the assumption that regardless of what happens to some lenders, the Bank of Spain will remain. As a rule of thumb, the Deposit Guarantee Fund offers two types of guarantees - ‘distinct’ and ‘compatible’ - both covering cash deposits up to €100,000. Distinct covers cash deposits held in savings accounts, while compatible relates to securities and other financial instruments held by banks as depositors, or entrusted to them for the purpose of investing them. Outside of the above the Deposit Guarantee Fund will wash its hands of any responsibility, as we saw with the Lehman Brothers case. Now

Spanish Bank customers: will our deposits be safe?

let’s have a closer look at other situations that we can find ourselves in: Debt issued by banks such as bonds, deben-

tures or promissory notes, which generally offer higher returns, is not covered. Nor are pensions, investment

ASK ANT Let Antonio answer your queries Q.

Our landlord has indicated he wants to sell the apartment, but we have been here 15 months and our contract expired four months ago and was not renewed. We have paid a deposit, our rent is paid on time every month and utility bills are up to date. What is our position? In Spain, rental contracts have a minimum duration of five years, mandatory on the landlord and optional on the tenant. This means that unless there is a clause in the contract that stipulates that the landlord may need the property for his own use, you are able to extend your contract until that term expires (provided of course you are paying on time). On the other hand, a landlord that uses unlawful means to try to expel you from the property should be reported to the police.


Q. A.

My brother and I share ownership of a property in Spain. If my brother passes away without a will, can I stop his wife from using our apartment? The designation of inheritors in a situation where someone dies without a will is determined by the law in the person’s country of origin. For example, a property belonging to a British expat would be distributed according to the provisions of UK law. The intestacy procedure to designate the inheritors can be done in Spain or the UK, and it is this process that will determine the right to receive ownership to the apartment, or a share of it, and with it the right of use. To avoid the above uncertainties we always strongly recommend that a will is drawn up.

funds or the controversial preferential shares. Most banks, including foreignowned ones like Barclays or Lloyds, are Spain regulated and are subject to the above protection. Yet a few EU-owned banks opt for a ‘passport scheme’, such as ING or Espirito Santo, where customers have to rely on protection offered by their home nations. The value of shares deposited with the bank (the IBEX companies for example) is not affected by the bank running into problems, as the bank only manages these. While it would be great if your mortgage debt disappeared with the bank, this will certainly not happen since mortgages can be sold to other banks which will then enforce the original terms and conditions. Despite the Bank of Spain having to offer financial help to seven lenders - most notably Bankia - clients have been able to operate normally with their savings account. Let’s just hope it stays that way.

Ahoy there boaties!! AHOY there, boat owners! Liberty Seguros, the top expat insurer, is offering all the best protection for your

much-loved vessel – ensuring a safe and smooth venture towards the horizon. Boat insurance is manda-

Seas the opportunity A BRAND new distributor for Sealine boats has hit the Costa de la Luz, offering a range of products from the SC29 to luxurious T60 yachts. Andalucia Land & Sea SL, which works closely with Sealine Costa Blanca, not only offers new boats but also ensures second-hand vessels are prepared for sale and are easily found by potential buyers. The new Sealine distributor, based in Puerto de la Duquesa, promises competitive pricing and confidence to its customers. It represents the area from Malaga to Gibraltar. See

tory, and with deals to cover sail and motor boats, Liberty Seguros’ packages cover death, bodily injury and damage liability – essential if you are held responsible for an accident. You will also be covered for solicitor fees, medical bills and lost wages you may incur if things don’t quite turn out to be plain sailing. Meanwhile, for car insurance, the multi-lingual company is now paying €60 cash back to new clients taking out a fully comprehensive deal and €30 to third party insurance customers. See www.libertyexpatriates. es for more information.

Top Property


Give my deposit back Company Property4Abroad accused of withholding monies for defunct developments AN expat is warning buyers to beware of a property company he claims has kept thousands of euros in deposits. Currency broker Hassan Amundsen, 42, claims he was defrauded by Property4Abroad out of €3,000 after he tried to buy an apartment in Manilva. “Basically the company just keeps the deposits and fees for property purchases that never get off the ground,” claimed the father-of-two from Norway. “I paid a deposit of €3,000 for an apartment in 2009. The mortgage was meant to be pre-approved and should only take a month but after a year still nothing happened. “Eventually the company

By Wendy Williams stopped answering my calls and emails and I still haven’t been able to get my deposit back. “Once in a while I get a reply from someone promising to pay me back and blaming other people but it always comes to nothing,” he said. “I eventually did a search on the internet and there are others who also claim to have lost out as well, some for a lot more money than me.” He continued: “I contacted a lawyer who said it would be easier if there was a group of people to make a joint complaint and I have been trying to contact oth-

LOST OUT: Hassan Amundsen ers in my situation. “I just want to stop them from doing this and warn people.” But when the Olive Press contacted Anne Williams and Steve Lee, who own the business, the couple denied the accusations. Claiming they are acting in an ‘honourable’ way, they insist they have begun to pay Amundsen back, as well as various others. “The developer for Hassan’s property went bust and the property was sold off to first one developer and then another,” explained Lee. “The company, Property4abroad, has not traded for a long time and went into liquidation for a whole number of reasons including the theft of money by a lawyer.

“I spoke with my lawyer some time ago and I told him that if anyone was owed money I would personally pay it back. “Hassan and I agreed a repayment schedule last month and he has already had the first payment. Far from trying to run away I have been acting in an honourable way,” he added.


Amundsen however, is adamant that he has not received any money. “We have had these agreements plenty of times before without getting anything. “In fact I have 455 mails from them claiming that my money is safe and that I will be paid back in full. I doubt that now.”

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



46 46

n Buen



.......................................................... A fine mess the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

Pumping up the prices

THE cost of fuel in Spain has zoomed up in five years. It is estimated that fuel pump prices have increased by more than 60 per cent since 2007.

Too posh to wash

Expats forced to shell out €1,000 in car tax and speeding fines over unregistered vehicle A BRITISH expat has been left with a hefty bill after being forced to pay four years of outstanding fines on a car he sold in 2008. Richard Oswald, from

Coin, offloaded his Peugeot 206 in a €5,000 part-exchange deal, which included a fee to have the ownership of the vehicle transferred.

Spaniard on road to recovery A SPANISH F1 test driver is continuing her recovery in hospital after losing an eye in a crash last week. Maria de Villota sustained life-threatening head injuries in the accident, which occurred after she hit a support truck during testing at Duxford Airfield in Cambridgeshire. The 32-year-old Marussia driver was in a critical condition after undergoing extensive surgery but is now described as serious but stable. The Madrid born driver only took up her role as a test driver for the F1 team in April, as reported by the Olive Press.

By James Bryce But the paperwork was inexplicably never completed and he and wife Leigh, who moved to Spain in 1993, have now had to shell out €1,000 in unpaid car tax and a speeding fine incurred by new owner Christine Birne. “We found out during a visit to Coin Town Hall that the change of ownership had not been registered,” Oswald told the Olive Press. “However the fines had been incurred and we were the mugs expected to foot the bill.


“We have been told that Birne insured it in 2009, but the insurance company did not check who the registered owner was. “To our mind this is a form of identity theft, as someone is incurring debts and fines in the name of another person,” added the 60-year-old, originally

GUTTED: Richard and Leigh Oswald from Essex. The Oswalds insist they have tried on various occasions to trace Birne, who also lives in the Coin area, but have so far been unsuccessful. “We have even spotted the car while out driving but have so far been unsuccessful. We hope she will get in touch with us, as it might be a genuine error on her part.” Meanwhile Coin Town Hall insists they will not have to pay any more fines, despite the new owner still not having the car registered in her name.

WEALTHIER drivers are more willing to drive around in dirty cars than their poorer but prouder fellow motorists, according to a survey. Only one in 17 car owners from professional and managerial backgrounds wash their vehicle once a week, compared to one in 12 from lower-income backgrounds. Three per cent of the 18,080 AA members surveyed admitted to washing their cars just once a year or not at all.

Car blast probe BOMB experts are investigating the cause of a mysterious car blast which left a man with severe burns. The explosion occurred when the driver attempted to start the car in a street in Malaga. The man escaped the vehicle, which was engulfed in flames, before being treated in hospital for burns to his arms and hands. Police are now investigating whether or not the blaze was caused deliberately.

WIN WIN WIN! Signing up to Get-on-Side GREAT IDEA: Get-on-Side

For those expats who dread having to drive on the ‘wrong’ side of the road, the Olive Press is offering its readers the chance to put their worries aside. We have teamed up with Get-on-Side, the creator of a reversible sign that attaches to the dashboard and uses the reflection in the window to remind motorists which side they should be on. We are giving away five sets of Get-on-Side reversible signs to readers who can answer the following simple question: In the article ‘A good sign for foreign drivers in Spain’ on our website, what proportion of the world’s drivers does Get-onSide creator Stephen Ferrada claim drive on the left? A. One third B. Two thirds For a chance to win, send your answer to newsdesk@ no later than Friday July 20.


............................ The Olive Press’s monthly transport column

Don’t take your eyes off the road

THE UK tax authorities hope to make millions helping European authorities track down British drivers who have incurred fines on holiday. Most victims are likely to be families returning from holidays in Spain and France unaware they have committed an offence. Brits on holiday in Spain can be hit with fines for speeding, parking offences and not wearing a seatbelt.

It is estimated that British motorists cough up €950,000 a year to pay for European penalty tickets. Meanwhile, 2,500 Brits a month are being contacted with fines after they return home from trips to European destinations such as Spain. “There is nothing worse than having a penalty notice follow you home from abroad,” said a spokesman from the AA.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


off handicap 20 followed closely by Herbert Raven with 44 points off handicap 15. Michele O’Sullivan triumphed for the ladies with 33 points off handicap 22 with Joy Champion coming home second with 32

prepared the hampers and well done to everybody!

WINNERS CUP he Winner’s Cup was held early November. To qualify, you had to have won either a monthly Stableford, a monthly Medal or an Honours Board event in the last 12 months. With nearly 60 players trying their best, Herbert Raven (our current Vice Captain) came home for the men with 38 points off handicap 15 and Ali Easter for the ladies with 33 points off handicap 12. Well done Herbert and Ali!



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


In the swing of it

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Spain’s ‘Ryder Cup’ AN expat golf society has held the latest in a series of qualifying rounds ahead of a mini ‘Ryder Cup’ event to be held in November. Forum Golf Society based in Albox, Almeria - braved temperatures of 43 degrees during the competition, held at Lorca Golf Resort. Terry Moore won with a score of 38 points, with Dave Sharp second (36 points), followed by Geoff Hebb (35), Paul Douglas (34) and Fran Elam (33). The annual two-day Ryder Cup event is a keenly fought contest between Forum and rival society Marina Members. Visit www.forumgolf for more information.

he Santa Maria Annual Charity Golf Event was held on the 9th December. The day involved an AM AM golf competition played off the white tees (best 2 scores count per hole), closest to the pin prizes, longest drive prizes, lunch, a raffle, a grand auction and a prize giving ceremony. A full field of 21 four-man teams made an early shotgun start before being wined and dined in the main clubhouse. The overall team winners were “The Caddymasters” with a fantastic score of 101 points (David Mosely, Mark Webber, Fernando Ortega and Pepe Gago). In second place were team “Siesta Time” with 86 points (Chris Day, Mike Smith, Tim Swift and Villen Mehilenin). Just beaten into third place were team “Mixed Bag” with 85 points


points off handicap 23. Thanks to Glenis Harley who

(Dave Roberts, Andy Walker, Jason Tucker and Kane Tucker). Nearest the pin prizes were won by Olav Maaland and David Mosely and longest drives were won by Andy Walker and Greg Peel. The sponsors are too many to mention but special thanks goes to the Management of Santa Maria Golf & Country Club who again provided the complete golf course and all the buggies for the event.


Teeing off for Seve

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Tribute tournament for Spanish golfer Seve Ballesteros

CELEBRITIES are among thousands expected to take part in a month-long charity golf tournament in honour of Spanish legend Seve Ballesteros (above) who died last year. ‘Seve Day’ will see amateur golfers go head-to-head with professionals and famous faces including Harry Redknapp, Chris Eubank and Jeffery Archer to raise money for cancer research. The event will culminate in a final at The Belfry on October 28, where finalists will be in with a chance of winning a trip to the US Masters. To enter, competitors must play a qualifying round of 18 holes on any European course and submit their Stableford scores on the Seve Day site by July 31, with all results posted online. The top 72 full handicap Stableford scores from across Europe will then be invited to play in the Seve Day final. The event has been organised to raise money


A BRITON is attempting a world record 360 holes of golf in five days to raise money for charity. Stuart Ball, an Army captain based in Hampshire, will walk between 120 and 140 miles, hit 720 putts, and swing his clubs 1,280 times during the challenge. “I am very excited and nervous about the goal I have set myself,” Captain Ball said. “I have played golf intermittently since I was 18, but have never had a lesson, so although I am physically fit, the actual golf is a bit of a challenge.” The aptly-named Ball, an officer in the Royal Logistic Corps, is hoping to raise €25,000 for two military CHALLENGE: Captain Ball charities in the UK.

COMPETITORS: Eubank and Archer and (top left) Redknapp for the Seve Ballesteros Foundation, set up to help fight brain cancer, after the five-time Major winner died from the disease last May aged 54. The Spaniard won the Open three times, the Masters twice and helped Europe win the Ryder Cup four times before captaining them to victory at Valderrama in 1997. For more information visit: www.seveday. com.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012


HEN I first arrived in the Plaza Mayor – it seemed like any other bigscreen experience. However, although the blaring sound system and carnival atmosphere felt familiar, the flavour was unmistakably Spanish. For instance, it was pipas instead of pies, hip-swinging rather than fist-throwing and with kiddiewinks on every corner – it felt more S Club 7 than Combat 18! Even the riff-raff rubbed shoulders with the elite – though I did notice some of the richer senoras chaining their Prada purses to their Rosary beads.

In Mad Dog’s goodbye column (he’s becoming a teacher)...

vs. the Euro ‘12 Final

Most Spanish of all, however, was the way the organisers – who’d spent hours erecting the screen, laying out chairs, rigging up audio-speakers, etc – had neglected one teeny-weeny detail. By kick-off it was still daylight and nobody could see a damned thing because of the

glare. Mierda! As techies scratched their heads and bickered among themselves, the saying ‘couldn’t organize a piss-up in a brewery’ sprung to mind. Still, at least nobody was trashing town like rioting Rangers ‘fans’ did when their big-screen died during the 2008 UEFA Cup Final. No, the saving grace here was the Spanish chicks all pouting for iPhone pics and suck-

ing suggestively on passionpink lollipops. It was blatant sexuality and worked wonderfully well at appeasing the wild-eyed hombres. Blimey, they must have used machinery to squeeze themselves into those second-skin Levis which made each appear to have bursting soccer-balls for bottoms. As darkness fell a cheer rang out as people glimpsed the pitch and players for the first

two and possibly three thin people trying to make their escape. Let me provide some context for my question. A woman of substantial proportion, my guess is something in excess of 20 stone, sat on the sofa (reinforced, I hope) and complained that doctors should not refer to her as being obese because she had no obvious deleterious medical conditions.

Never mind the observable evidence that (a) she took up the space of two standard sofa sitters, and (b) she was wearing a marquee as a frock. The facther heart was pumping sufficient to drain a substantial area of wetlands seemed to elude her. A representative of the medical profession squirmed on the other side of the sofa as he tried to mitigate the situ-

ation by saying that doctors had to be aware that the wrong use of language might offend their patients and could put strain of the doctor/patient relationship. This woman is lucky that I graduated in law and not in medicine. Were I her GP I would have felt bound to tell her that her weight was not only a danger to herself but also to the public at large. She could, with ease, have joined the Territorial Army as a road block. If nothing else, I wonder if she had ever considered the hernias she might induce when the inevitable coffin bearers attempt to lower her chunky remains into the ground. Of course, I speak from the position of never having to worry about my own weight. My personal physician advises me that I have the perfect weight for a man six feet four inches tall. For this reason I have long regretted that I am only five foot eight.



ID my ears deceive me, or did I listen, on a recent breakfast news programme, to a massively overweight woman objecting to medical practitioners using the word “obese” when referring to her corpulent condition? It is often said about fat people that there is a thin person struggling to get out of their bodies. In this instance I think that there were at least



IT is impossible to turn on a TV or radio without being confronted by reports on the crisis economica that has blighted Europe in recent years. Share prices tumble as Greeks protest at austerity measures; the unemployed march in Madrid; civil servants protest in London about cuts to pensions; French farmers dump truckloads of manure in the Champs-Elysees for no reason whatsoever. Across Europe, confrontation between governments and workers in the public and private sectors is becoming commonplace. Frankly, one must have some sympathy with the protesters. They are worried about redundancies, they fear for the buying power of their pensions, they lament any reduction in publicly-funded institutions such as health services or lending libraries. News media are littered with commentators from both sides of the argument: govern-

ments insisting austerity is the only path to economic growth; workers’ representatives adamant that they will not, cannot, accept further cuts. The Jeremy Paxmans and John Humphrys in the media circus stoke the embers of disagreement until they flare into a fire storm of negative invective before turning to the next scripted item, usually something banal about the price of eggs. An yet obody has asked any of the protestors against austerity cuts the most salient question of all: If we don’t make cuts, where should the money come from to maintain the status quo? No doubt every politically aware protester will have his or her own answer but they are not in government, they are not held to account at the ballot box for their opinions, they don’t have to balance the books.

Disgruntled of Andalucia (formerly of Royal Tunbridge Wells)

time, and the only thing worrying me was the outcome of the match. Granted, my support for La Roja isn’t as strong as it is for ‘In-gerland’ – that’s primal. However, I do feel passionate and protective over Espana and when everyone back home associates you with a country you don’t want some ‘Wops’ leaving you with egg on your face. Everyone from Mark Lawrenson to Boris Becker had lampooned their ‘negativity’ and one Italian newspaper dubbed them ‘terribly boring’. Obviously, not wishing to disappoint, Spain started the final ‘boringly’ by ONLY scoring two world-class goals inside the first 45 minutes!

Cue mass hysteria with macho bear hugs, second-skin Levis splitting at the seams, and Prada purses springing back from fully-extended Rosary beads. At half-time, Buffon tried rallying his troops by giving them the ‘hairdryer treatment’. But it was to no avail, like the rest of us, the Azzuri knew they were Up Shit Creek without a gondola in sight. In the end everything went to plan and Spain lifted their third successive trophy.

Anniversary bondage... not in my book!

Feminists must be turning in their pantsuits over the success of E.L James’ novel – 50 Shades of Grey. 500 pages of bondage, female submission and degradation. And guess what? Women of all ages and social status can’t seem to get enough of it! I bet Germaine Greer’s not a happy bunny though - or should that be rampant rabbit? Honestly, I never knew that ‘fisting’ was such a romantic event until I randomly opened a page of this ‘bonkbuster’. I’ve obviously been wasting my time with flowers, wine and chocolates. So, now that S&M has penetrated mainstream culture don’t be surprised to see M&S (which incidentally is S&M backwards – cue Twilight Zone theme) jumping on the bandwagon: i.e. by introducing ‘flattering’ gimp masks and floral fisting mittens. God help us!

Thoughts of the fortnight Every time I enter Carrefour or Mercadona the white and dark rums are always side by side. It’s like racial harmony… in a bottle. We could learn a lot from the rum world! Or have I just been drinking too much of the stuff (…..hiccup)? Meanwhile, I fainted in the curry house when I heard R.E.M had split up. ‘That’s me in the korma!’

Follow me on Twitter @Mad_Dog_Column

50 the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012 50

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the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012




the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



With the average person in Spain discarding 160kg of food per year, Rund Abdelfatah looks at those turning waste to their advantage WITH supermarkets closed and rubbish bins lining the streets, their work begins. Sifting through discoloured containers, members of Comida Basura pull out fruits, vegetables, pastas and cereals, gradually assembling a feast. These bin dwellers live by the motto ‘one man’s trash is another man’s treasure’, working on an ideal of anti-consumerism and antiwaste. “The aim is to try to promote moderate, responsible consumption. We don’t have unlimited resources

Hungry for ‘junk food’ and we have to share with those who need it more,” said group member Miguel Carreno. With nearly 22 per cent of

the population currently living below the poverty line, the average person in Spain continues to waste 163 kg of food each year.

Old wine A 2000-YEAR-OLD bodega has been discovered underneath a wine museum. The exciting find was made by archaeologists at the Museo del Vino in Ronda after local residents insisted there was an old wine cellar below the building. Believed to be of Roman origins, the cellar will now be incorporated into the museum. Meanwhile, coins found inside the bodega have been sent to the municipal museum for dating.

In response, the movement has expanded its efforts to include an element of community service, converting the recovered food items into a communal meal. While most of their activity is concentrated in Madrid, they hope to spread to cities throughout the region.


SCAVENGING: But why on earth not?

As their chosen struggle becomes an imposed reality for many in Spain today, the movement gains momentum. Though inspired by the ‘freeganism’ movement in the U.S., the Comida Basura has assumed a uniquely Spanish persona, geared towards the issues that plague Spain. And with a long road to recovery ahead, the group may be a saving grace for many in the months to come.

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012



Very a-peeling!


NDALUCIA is often considered the gardener’s cornucopia, producing a range of fruits and vegetables throughout the year. And it is no secret that the region produces the best citrus fruits in Europe. Other foods grown in abundance here include the tomato, melon, pepper and cucumber. In fact, Andalucia – which has one of Spain’s largest rural populations - provides 30 per cent of the European fruit and vegetable market, a figure which rises to 80 per cent in the winter, given the province enjoys a massive 2,800 hours of sunshine a year. The region is so varied in its fruit TEMPTING: Local market produce offers better quality and value than supermarkets and veg because of its inland. South America, Africa and One chemical used exideal climate, which ranges Because of this, and helped Asia. tensively in supermarkets from the subtropical on the by the current economic cri- All this extra travel uses up is 1-methylcyclopropene coast to the more temper- sis, more and more of our which has been shown to ate, mountainous regions more Andalud e p l e t i n g block the development of cians are now oil resourc- flavour. Appearance growing their es, adds Genetic technology may own food in to climate improve the growth and apand taste may huertas comuchange and pearance of our food, but nitarias - the can burn a the noticeably blander taste not always be equivalent of hole in your of the tomato bears testaBritish allot- in harmony with pocket as ment to its unpredictable ments. travel costs and sometimes damaging produce Tending to your must be influence on the natural own garden added to qualities of our beloved fruit can be cheaper the price of and veg. than relying on your local food. High-quality foods sourced supermarket for your week- Moreover, supermarkets from local farms can be ly greens. may offer out-of-season bought in local markets Many modern supermar- products but the nutritional which abound in Andakets rely on transported value and flavour of these lucia and for a better goods from other continents foods is often lacking. price than you may think. to satisfy their customers This is due to the chemi- The Olive Press took a increasingly demanding cals applied to the imported trip to a fruit and veg tastes. fruits and vegetables de- market in the Malaga vilSadly, many people opt for signed to keep them fresh lage of Arriate to compare lower quality foodstuffs that during long periods in stor- prices with a nationwide must be transported from age. supermarket.‘’Most of our

TASTELESS! THE mystery surrounding why many modern-day varieties of tomato lack flavour compared to traditional ones may have been solved. Spanish researchers participating in an international study found the ‘cardboardy taste’ of modern tomatoes was due to a reduction in sugar content. A mutated gene introduced in the 1950s to improve the appearance and durability of tomatoes may have inadvertently affected their quality, according to the study. The investigation has shown that the mutation hampers photosynthesis of the plant- a process vital to

production of sugars. This may lead to a decrease of up to 20 per cent in sugar levels of the fruit.

BLAND: Modern tomatoes

Air fare HIS career is certainly taking off. Dani Garcia is already racking up the Michelin stars, now his gastrobar La Moraga has been named one of the top five airport restaurants in the world, according to a CNN report. It describes the restaurant, found in Malaga airport’s Terminal 3, as a ‘stylish gastrobar serving contemporary tapas, desserts and more substantial creations’, which has achieved ‘the hitherto unthinkable by turning the airport into a foodie destination’.



the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012

A recent study into the ruby-red modern tomatoes ‘cardboard-y’ taste has shown appearance and taste may not always have been in harmony, here Helen Pierpoint takes a look at how we can improve our flavour experience by choosing locally sourced natural produce…

A great place to unwind

The Olive Press compared prices (in euros) of fruit and veg per kilo in both UK and Spanish supermarkets and local shops fruit and vegetables come from Almeria or Granada.’’ explained the shop assistant. Many of the prices are either neck-and-neck or similar to those quoted from the supermarket Mercadona, whose range cannot boast of the same home-

grown quality. ‘’We’re not really feeling the crisis here because we get good business from the locals.’’ In industrial farming insecticides, herbicides and pesticides are applied more often than not as an effec-

tive and economical way of maximising production. But the chemicals are poisons which often affect many different species in the area which interact with the pests targeted, reducing biodiversity. There may even be traces in the food we buy at the supermarket. But in Andalucia farmers are starting to return to their roots, using centuriesold agricultural methods that work with the environment instead of against it.

Many of the local shop prices are neck and neck with Mercadona For instance, biological pest control has replaced the use of chemicals in many areas. 50 per cent of all Andalucian fruit and veg are now grown with the aid of this natural form of pest control which relies on predatory species to target pests without harming the plants. This number increases to 100 per cent in regards to Andalucia pepper production. Such agricultural methods are environmentally friendly and sustainable, coupling high quality with environmental harmony. So next time you fancy making gazpacho soup, freshsqueezed orange juice or even a summer salad, try your local market or simply select the locally-produced in-season fruit and veg from your supermarket. A small change in your shopping can make a big change in your flavour experience, not to mention in your wallet!


the FREE

the olive press - July 12 - 25, 2012 56 Foul play SIX British women have allegedly been raped in Ibiza in the last month, most saying their attackers were also British.

olive press

Telephone: 951 16 60 60


ETA has reaffirmed its commitment to maintaining a ceasefire and criticised the Spanish government for ‘rejecting dialogue’.


Sky-high tax Spain has imposed a new airport tax in an attempt to balance the books, forcing airlines to raise costs for passengers.

July 12 - July 25 , 2012

WEEK with an online ad reaching thousands for just


Spain football idol Iniesta never intended to donate €300,000 Euro 2012 fee to fire victims


Ex-judge Baltasar Garzon, who was given an 11-year ban from judicial work by the Supreme Court, has opened a lawyer’s office in Madrid.

Onwards and upwards in 2012 with 182,000 papers (90,000 digital) and around 150,000 visits to the website each month… The Olive Press just keeps growing! Sell your property THIS

HAPPY DAYS: Iniesta with new wife Anna Ortiz and a plane over Valencia fires IT was seemingly an act of astounding genorosity and perhaps not surprising for Spain’s most popular foot-

No saint after all

ball player. When Andres Iniesta – Spain’s midfield dynamo – returned from the team’s

glorious win at Euro 2012, he apparently offered to donate his €300,000 winnings to victims of the huge Valen-

BRITISH FOOTBALLERS VACATION IN IBIZA ANDY Carroll, Joe Hart and Michael Carrick have traded in their football boots for flip flops. The trio were among a number of the English

squad who have been spending a day on the beach in Ibiza after their Euro 2012 exit. Their day of sun was followed by a night of partying at an Ibiza hotspot owned by Wayne Lineker, brother of former England striker Gary. And joining them in their antics were stars including Tulisa Contoslavos of the X-Factor and actresses Charlie Brooks and Jessica Lowndes.

cia fires. Already a multi-millionaire, the Barcelona ace was said to be giving the sum to help the hundreds of distraught homeowners, evacuated after wildfires tore through the region. Heralding from next door Albacete, it seemed like an extemely touching gesture, after 45,000 hectares were destroyed. The only problem was the Valencia-based journalist who wrote the story got the wrong end of the stick. After putting it on his Twitter page the news spread, appropriately, like wildfire, making Iniesta even more of a national hero in a matter of hours. Until came the stout denial from Valencia Town Hall.


“We didn’t say anything like that,” announced a quickly cobbled together press release. “Even if Iniesta had decided to make a donation, we would not have told the press because we cannot comment on donations made by individuals.” Finally, Iniesta himself was drawn into the claim, with a firm – and final – denial. “No, it’s not true,” confirmed the midfielder. “I don’t know where that idea came from.” After all, perhaps he needed the money for his glamourous nuptials marrying Anna Ortiz, in Tarragona, at the weekend. Attended by fellow players Lionel Messi and Cesc Fabregas. He probably needed it to pay for the champagne bill.


Magician scores hat-trick

SPOOKY: Illusionist ‘Dynamo’ A BRITISH magician has won over €12,000 by predicting how Spain would win Euro 2012 with astonishing accuracy. The illusionist, known as Dynamo, even forecast that Spain would win by two or more goals against Italy. He correctly guessed the quarter-final, semi-final and ultimate winners live on British TV. The winnings will be donated to The Teenage Cancer Trust.

Fist and chip brigade EX-HEAVYWEIGHT boxing champion Tony Tucker is officially part of the Costa ‘fist and chip brigade’. The boxer, who was in Spain to promote his new gym, dropped into Marlows Fish and Chips Restaurant near Duquesa to sample a ‘dynamite’ cod and chips with mushy peas. “It was great to learn more about his fights with Mike Tyson, Lennox Lewis and Buster Douglas,” said owner Steve Marlow.

HEARTY MEAL: Tucker with Marlow

No part of this publication may be used or reproduced without the explicit permission of the publisher. While efforts are made to ensure the authenticity of advertisements and articles appearing in The Olive Press, the publisher does not accept any responsibility for claims made, nor do contributors’ opinions necessarily represent his own. Copyright Luke Stewart Media S.L 2012

Olive PressNewspaper - Issue 139  

The original and only English-language investigative newspaper in Andalucia

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