‘CHOCOLATE and whisky’ are the ‘secret’ to a long life, says 102 year-old British expat. 

Ivy said ‘103 feels no different to 102’ at her birthday bash. Photo: Age Concern Benalmadena

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Dudley native Ivy Rhodes, born on February 11, 1921, has been living in Benalmadena for some 40 years, where she is now the oldest expat resident – and is about to turn 103. 

She lives alone but has a thriving social life and is part of many clubs including Age Concern, Merry Go Round, Social Club and Eagles Club. 

Ivy eats at the same restaurant every day, Domandas, and attributes her longevity to her unusual diet. 

“I’m still here because I like whisky and chocolate. Milk chocolate bars,” she said. 

The expat often enjoys her favourite tipple at Rincon Mary, her nearest bar. 

Age Concern Benalmadena held a party for Ivy on Monday, February 5.

Ivy celebrating her 100th birthday in 2021. Photo: Ayuntamiento de Benalmadena

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The group meets every Monday in the Bonanza area of the town, where they play games and chat. 

Ivy has been attending the meeting for many years since her move to the Costa del Sol. 

She moved to the area after retiring from her job as an Administrator at Columbia Pictures, where she worked for some 11 years. 

During her time working in London’s glitzy film industry, she developed a love for theatre and in particular, the actor Ivor Novello. 

In the 1980s, she visited some friends who had bought an apartment in Benalmadena and fell in love with the area. 

She quickly bought her own house and began living the expat dream. 

Mayor Juan Antonio Lara and the Advisor for Foreign Residents, Presi Aguilera, also attended the party. 

They were visiting as a part of a tour to local expat groups to learn more about their needs.


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