Costa Blanca news. April 23. This week includes news from Costa Blanca, Murcia and Valencia. This week includes a familiar face returning to Benidorm, the sale of a film set, a party in Javea and a bold bull. Published on Thursdays.
Costa Blanca news
Costa Blanca in Boston
The Costa Blanca is headed to American for the first time next month, to participate in the NAFSA fair, in Boston. NAFSA helps to promote language learning and shared experiences. This time Alicante language school will be representing the area. NAFSA (Association of International Educators) is the world’s largest non-profit association dedicated to international education and exchange. NAFSA’s 10,000 members are located at more than 3,500 institutions worldwide, in more than 150 countries.
Additionally, the autonomous agency of the Provincial de Alicante will also be present at events like Expovacaciones in Bilbao, or Naturiva ‘The Summer Festival’ in Madrid.
The itinerary begins on Wednesday May 6 in Calp , where the Board will attend the fair interactive MITM Euromed, a focus on tourism promotion incentives, meetings, conferences and congresses that is held annually for numerous professionals and industry experts.
Two days later, agency technicians will travel to Bilbao to participate in Expovacaciones with the aim of encouraging more Basque visitors to the Costa Blanca, for which the province is, in many cases, their second home.
Councillor for Tourism, Joaquín Albaladejo, stressed the importance of attending such events and added: “In recent years we have changed our way of participating in tourism fairs. This is a new way of working that allows us to establish a closer relationship with the end users and professionals to strengthen and open new markets. ”
The province is also set to welcome, in May, a group of travel agents from Terramar, which will visit various Alicante towns to see first hand the offer of the Costa Blanca.
In addition, the tourist agency has organized a roadshow in Oslo in Norway to sell the variety and quality of tourism in the province and especially its gastronomy.
In the second half of the month, the Board Costa Blanca participate in Madrid in Naturiva ‘The Summer Festival’, a specialized active tourism, leisure and adventure, on the Day of Spain in Bordeaux and ARATUR event, salon industry benchmark in Aragon.
Film studio sell off
In just a few days the Ciudad de la Luz film studios in Alicante are to be sold off in several lots.
The facilities were once described by Hollywood director Ridley Scott as: “the best facilities in the world.”
The studios were originally built for €265 million from the public purse. However, the European commission has ruled that all €265 million has to be repaid. The ruling came after Pinewood Studios in London, home to the James Bond franchise, complained to Brussels in 2007 that subsidising first the studios, and later individual productions, amounted to unfair competition.
However, unlike many of Spain’s failed projects, the Ciudad de la Luz could still bring jobs and investment to the area.
Interested parties include Francis Ford Coppola, director of the Godfather trilogy and Apocalypse Now, his right hand man Michael McKay, and Fred Fuchs, who ran Coppola’s American Zoetrope studios for 12 years. The three men are heading up a consortium of US investors who are prepared to pay off the complex’s €80 million in debt and then use it to produce television series and movies. McKay said: “We want it to become a global point of reference for high technology, applying digital image’s infinite possibilities to cinema, video games and new platforms.”
The fly in the ointment is the EU ruling. It forces Valencia to sell to the highest bidder. A local businessman, Isidro Bernabeu, claims he has the backing of 2,000 Chinese businesspeople who wish to turn the site into the “Las Vegas of Alicante”.
The Valencia government plans to sell it the studio off in half a dozen lots with the aim of keeping at least some of it for film-making.
A bull up the bum
A bull runner has been gored by a rampaging bull at a bull-running festival in Spain.
The man attempted to get away at an event in Teulada but the bull had other ideas, shoving one of his horns where the sun doesn’t shine. Witnesses said the man got to his feet and limped towards medical crews. he was not thought to be severely hurt.
A spokesman for the bull said: “I’ll get him next time!” (yes okay, we made that last sentence up).
Madge is back
A source at the Benidorm set has confirmed that 77-year-old actress Sheila Reid, who plays Madge, will be back for the next series of the hit ITV comedy show.
Sheila Reid has been spotted filming scenes on the Spanish set. Her return will come as a surprise to the ITV show’s many fans who saw her disappear to Las Vegas in January along with her on-screen family. Mind you, as they prepared to jet off to Las Vegas, Madge told them to “never say never” about a return to Benidorm in the future.
It was an emotional farewell when Madge and the Garvey family left in January, with cast members and crew donning t shirts emblazoned with “Adios Los Garvas”.
Madge was headed to Las Vegas to collect a $30 million inheritance from her deceased husband, along with her lawyer – American Buck A. Roo, who was played by former Will and Grace star Leslie Jordan.
She was accompanied by her daughter Janice (Siobhan Finneran), grandson Michael (Oliver Stokes) and Janice’s husband Mick (Steve Pemberton) – although there is no news to suggest they will be returning too
A new family joins the Benidorm cast for the upcoming series which is currently being filmed in the coastal resort. Characters from the new family are played by Julie Graham (from Doc Martin), Steve Edge (Phoenix Nights) and Bobby Knutt (Emmerdale).
Filming is currently underway for seven episodes to be screened in early 2016.
Unesco status for Benidorm?
Benidorm is currently campaigning to convince the United Nations’ cultural agency, UNESCO, that Benidorm deserves to be made Spain’s 45th World Heritage Site.
If accepted, Benidorm would join the ranks of such sites as the Great Wall of Chine, the Taj Mahal and the F¡Great Barrier Reef. However, first Benidorm needs the backing of the Spanish Government and UNESCO.
Leire Bilbao general manager of Visit Benidorm said becoming a World Heritage Site would “mean a lot”. Bilbao enthused about the resort explaining that it appeals “to all age groups and to many different people,” and is “environmentally sensitive.”
The popular resort has grown from a sleepy fishing village with just 3,000 inhabitants during the 1960s to a huge tourist mecca attracting 1.7 million visitors annually.
Responsible firework use
Police officer Manuel Moreno Mas has been touring Denia schools, educating youngsters on the responsible use of fireworks during the Fallas and Easter. Denia police have been providing these school workshops since 2009
The workshops are aimed at students aged 11 and 12. This year a total of 337 students at Sagrado Corazón, Montgó, Paidos, Alfa & Omega, Pou de la Muntanya, Cervantes, Pare Pere de Jesús Pobre and Xara college benefitted.
The workshops consist of several lectures in the classroom to raise awareness of existing regulations, the peculiarities of pyrotechnic products, tips on their use without risk and basic knowledge of first aid; in order to educate students about responsible use while fun.
At the end of the talks, in the school courtyards, demonstrations with various fireworks were carried out with supervision.
Com Sona l’Eso
Javea is preparing to welcome 1,440 youths to participate in Com Sona l’Eso, the annual meeting between students and teachers of music from a total of 52 public institutes from Valencia, the Balearic Islands and Catalonia. With them, and their families, the weekend expects a flood of visitors for excursions, food and accommodation, said Councilman Antonio Miragall, which has advanced to expect 100% occupation.
The main event of this meeting is the show that will take place the evening of Friday, April 24, on a big stage already taking shape in the Plaza de la Constitución. Teachers from IES Antoni Llidó, Quico Moragues and Carles Femenia, have organised the show, “Yesterday?” With the music of the Beatles they will revisit the 1960s and major milestones. A large choir of 1,250 young people, a band of 130 musicians and a corps de ballet and soloists complete the line up. The show is Friday, from 22pm, in the Plaza de la Constitución. Admission is free.
The mayor, José Chulvi, said that when Javea was approached to host this event, “We did not hesitate a moment because we saw it as a cultural opportunity.” The mayor added that it has become a great challenge because of the 900 participants who had last year, this 2015 are 1,440 who have signed up. To provide accommodation for many people and their families has required considerable involvement and collaboration between the school, the council and other bodies including the local police who are responsible for security.
Com Sona l’Eso has been celebrated for 16 years, each time in a different area.
There is a public meeting on Saturday April 23 at 12.30pm for the current PSOE government to present their candidates for the upcoming elections.
The meeting is at the Port cinema.
The invitation, from Jose Chulvi, reads: “Dear friend. I invite you to gather with us, so that together we can continue the good work we began four years ago. For this reason I would be pleased if you would join us on Sunday 26th April at 12.30pm for the presentation of our candidates at the Jayan Cinema, Xabia Port.”