Obamas set for a real Spanish welcome

LAST UPDATED: 5 Aug, 2010 @ 17:58
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Obamas set for a real Spanish welcome

By Wendy Williams

AFTER all the rumours and speculation surrounding their trip, Marbella is happy to welcome America´s First Lady Michelle Obama and her youngest daughter, Sasha, 9, to the resort.

Mother and daughter, who arrive today, will be spending their holiday in the luxurious Hotel Villa Padierna, known to be the best hotel in Spain.

The White House continue to deny claims that the President will be joining them to celebrate his 49th birthday.

But many are holding out hope that Michelle will indeed be joined by her husband in the five-star resort.

A large American flag hangs proudly in the entrance next to the Spanish flag, ready to greet the guests on their arrival.

And it’s no wonder the resort is so happy to welcome such distinguished visitors.

The Obamas are the most high profile visitors the resort has seen for a number of years and join the likes of Frank Sinatra, Cary Grant and Laurence Olivier in putting Marbella on the map.

Having the First Lady here is definitely a boost for the area and perhaps signals a new age for the Costa del Crime.

It has been estimated that her trip, the subject of huge media frenzy, will generate 800million Euros in Spanish revenue..

For a resort which has been associated with criminal gangs and corrupt officials, the Obama family choosing to spend their holidays here is definitely cause for celebration.

However, the huge billboard designed to welcome the family disappeared overnight on Monday.

According to Imagen Consulting and Compremosa Sur, who erected the sign, they were told to remove it at the request of the town hall.

But, whilst the billboard may no longer say it, the message from the resort is clear: “Welcome Obama Family, Thank you for choosing Marbella”.

6 COMMENTS

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  1. Hmm, couple of points worth mentioning. Firstly, Marbella IS a resort of criminal gangs and corrupt officials (past tense not required).

    Secondly, not many people know that the US Office for Consular Affairs had a “Special Circumstances” section that
    warned prospective travellers of Afro-American origin about coming to Spain, and in particular mentioned that the police “suffer racial prejudice which could lead to the arrest or detention of Afro-Americans who travel to Spain”.

    The advice was quickly removed from the website before Mrs Obama’s visit, needless to say lol. Spain remains a place of much institutional racism.

    It has been reported that Spain could make some 800m euros from The Obama’s visit, and it shows what a pathetic state of affairs Spain is in when they have to rely on a first lady of another country in order to earn some income.

  2. I have been living here on the Costa del sol for over 20 years. I have never herd the expression Costa del Crime. What progress was made by the Obama family to help tourism here I guess you can kiss good-bye with your once again negative scum smearing pathetic journalism, and I do use the word journalism very loosely here..
    Why don´t you go find another job? May be some thing that won´t feed your manic, vicious ego so easily.

  3. Thank you for looking after the interests of African-Americans , Fred. But it’s a pedestrian argument. Racial profiling is a part of life in the U.K. and the U.S. In fact, Obama has periodically joked about being pulled over by U.S. police before for “being black while driving.”

  4. You’re welcome Niko, I was just pointing out events in Spain over the past few days. Your comments are all quite correct. One does not need to be an expert to know that race is not an issue in human behaviour at all; behaviour is down to upbringing, education and opportunities (and many other things besides e.g. justice, health etc.)

  5. That figure of 800m was extimated by the Spanish authorities, mainly as free advertising. It is something they can only enjoy, it does not mean that Spaniards would starve without it, mired in their economic crisis. In anycase, a reason for them to be grateful to Michelle Obama and her choice. Yes, local corrupcion related to a construction boom is a topic here in Spain (at least they admit that), and we know the racist events related to bad behavior in stadiums and some sports -and now the police-, widespread by media mainly in UK (even the police case, concerning the US). The funny thing about the virtuous UK, investing so hard in denouncing Spain faults(football, Hamilton… and now the police), is that it does not prevent it of being also a big offender, at least one far worse than Spain: what in Spain can be largely seen as braggery and bad taste, in UK is seriously taken by the real “polite and quiet” racists, who would never admit or joke about that, but whose acts delate them.
    Sorry for my mistakes: being an italian, my English is not that good.

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