Exchange rate 1105

Costa del Snow!

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We heard the weather warnings but laughed… until waking up this morning that is! Yes it really was snowing along the Costa Blanca – not much in Benidorm, although if you check out the forecast for tomorrow it shows Benidorm is due some! Forget the shorts and flip-flops… although I did see many this morning walking around the Rincon area and pack your winter woolies instead. Just look towards the mountains framing Benidorm and you can clearly see the snow capped tops.

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Dee Kelly coming to Benidorm

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Not long now till the very first Benidorm Tattoo Convention takes place in the resort…. and one of the special guests that will be attending is Dee Kelly – remembered and better known to many as White Dee from Benefits Street. The three day convention is taking place over the busy St Patrick's Day weekend, when the resort turns into a sea of green and on the Sunday, it is the crazy Spanish fiesta of San Jose, which sees the Burning of the Fallas at midnight. It will certainly be a very busy weekend here!

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Fake football shirts confiscated

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The Guardia Civil have seized counterfeit sports goods with a street value of over €30,000 from four shops in Benidorm. 664 football shirts from Barcelona and Real Madrid as well as branded Nike and Adidas tops were confiscated and four people arrested. Fake goods are widespread here in Benidorm, especially at the weekly markets, where you can easily purchase ‘designer’ handbags, sunglasses, watches, logo t-shirts and premier team football tops.

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Benidorm welcomed in 2017

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The last day of 2016 was a glorious one in Benidorm – beautifully warm with plenty of people on the beach catching some rays. It's quite astonishing how warm it was even compared to the Costa del Sol, where apparently it was coat and scarf weather!
Once again the Town Hall put on a party to bring in 2017 down on the Levante promenade – and it was packed. Thousands turned out – residents and holidaymakers, armed with bottles of cava, hats, streamers and poppers.

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Repeat offenders!

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I am not referring to the criminal fraternity by that statement, but those that keep coming back to Benidorm again and again. Normally it’s the glorious weather that brings them here, but that was rather hard to believe last weekend. Although we have desperately needed rain here – the reservoir at Guadalest was virtually a quarter full back in the summer, it was gentle continual rain we needed to allow the water to gently absorb. Instead what we got was a torrential unrelenting downpour lasting over 3 days, which washed away everything in its path. Video clips on social media highlight the destruction that Mother Nature unleashed – dustbins floating along the Avd Mediterraneo, manhole covers blown off, cars being swept along residential streets and sadly a death in La Cala. Yet on Tuesday morning the sun was back out and shining again – it is almost surreal how it can change so quickly from one day to the next.

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'The Fat One" ... must be time for El Gordo!

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There is exactly a week left until the El Gordo Christmas lottery is drawn on December 22. El Gordo, meaning "the fat one" is an annual event held in Spain and sends Spaniards into a state of hysteria. I have never known such a gambling nation and queues form outside lottery shops and kiosks daily in the lead-up to the day. It is managed by the Government under "Loterias y Apuestas del Estado"- the Spanish lottery organization. 30% of the ticket sales go to the Government in taxes and the remaining 70% is paid out in prizes, meaning the more people that play the bigger the jackpot. It is a win win situation for the Government as any winnings over €2,000 are also subject to a 20% tax.

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Leroy Merlin opens in Finestrat

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The new Leroy Merlin opens in Finestrat tomorrow, a haven for DIY enthusiasts – and as a special promotional offer, are offering 15 per cent OFF all purchases made on the day! The Mayor of Finestrat Juan Fransisco Perez and the Director of Leroy Merlin Spain, Ignacio Sanchez officially inaugurated the store today, ahead of tomorrow’s grand opening.

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Benidorm's first Tattoo Convention

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Body Art or inking – normally referred to as tattoos, were once the reserve of bikers, sailors and criminals, but now widely accepted in society. Figures show that one in three young British adults have at least one, with many emulating celebrities such as David Beckham, One Directions Harry Styles, Angelina Jolie and Cara Delevingne. But if you think it’s only the young who have them done then think again - actress Susan Sarandon had her first at the age of 61. There are numerous tattoo and piercing studios here in Benidorm, much like many typical towns and cities across the UK – but one thing that has been missing here is a Tattoo Convention. Over 400 are held worldwide every year and in 2017, Benidorm will host its first ever, over the St Patrick’s Day weekend - which also coincides with the Spanish Fallas

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Compensation culture spreads to Benidorm

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The growing compensation culture, prevalent in the UK has spread – and evidence is emerging on a weekly basis of illicit practices occurring here in Benidorm. Spanish hotels are hitting back at so called ‘unscrupulous British lawyers’ for enticing holidaymakers to make claims against them, actively encouraging people to claim for anything ranging from thefts to food poisoning. They offer to act on their behalf on a ‘no win no fee’ arrangement - professing to win thousands of pounds in compensation. These so called reps, usually those in their early 20’s mingle with hotel guests around the pool, dressed in swimwear so as not to attract attention from hotel staff.

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Benidorm did Fancy Dress!

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Benidorm did it again, seeing thousands turn out for the annual British Fancy Dress Day, which always takes place the day after the official Benidorm fiesta ends. The beginning of the week was marred with grey skies and rain – coincidentally, the same as last year, but this morning the sky was a perfect blue and the sun was certainly shining down to greet all those who descended for what has been deemed Europe’s biggest fancy dress party! The entire Calle Gerona was closed to traffic, as were many of the street running off it, giving revelers free reign to party… and boy, do the Brits know how to party!

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It’s fiesta time in Benidorm

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Fiestas feature strongly in Spanish culture and every year towns and villages up and down the country celebrate at various times of the year - and Benidorm's is virtually upon us. The annual fiesta is a celebration of the local Patron Saint, which for Benidorm is the Virgin of the Sufragio and San Jaime Apostle (they have two) and religion features heavily. The event dates back to 1740 when an image of the Virgin was found in the remains of a burnt out fishing boat, which was taken up to the church. A re-enactment of this is played out every year on the Poniente beach on the first official day of the fiesta – which is this Saturday, 12 November at about 5pm followed by a procession up to the San Jaime church at the top of the Old Town.

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UK Cabaret Club in Benidorm re-opens

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Despite unfounded fears that Brexit would have a negative impact on holidays the reverse appears to be true for Benidorm. Hotel bookings by the British are already 16 per cent up on this time last year, proving that a devaluation in sterling will not put many off coming back. To reinforce this message, last night the Presidente Hotel re-opened the UK Cabaret Club (formerly called the Comedy Club) – and the first night was buzzing.

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Benidorm Palace rocked!

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The Palace was a total sell out last night with virtually every seat taken – it’s been a while since I’ve seen even the very back row jam packed. Liverpool funnyman Stan Boardman opened the show and quickly had the entire venue roaring with his not always so politically correct gags which everyone loved. After an interval the fabulous Walk Like a Man quartet took to the stage, suited and booted, to a rave reception from the entire room and many ended up dancing in the aisles.

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Poppy Appeal launches in Benidorm

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The 2016 Poppy Appeal was launched in Benidorm yesterday with a spectacular parade, led by the Torrevieja Pipes and Drums along the Levante promenade – making for an incredible backdrop. The sound of the bagpipes drew crowds off the beach and spectators lined the route, applauding as they passed. The immaculately turned out Standard Bearers followed – including one lady this year and behind them two gentlemen who rightfully earned the biggest applause and respect from all, the Chelsea Pensioners, wearing their distinctive scarlet coats and medals.
The Mayor, Toni Perez walked behind, accompanied by the Vice Consul Sarah Munsterhjelm, Lt Col David Whimpenny, Captain Paul Lencass, Mr Nigel Hails – Chairman of District North of RBL in Spain and Robin Hargrave – the Poppy appeal co-ordinator. The parade finished at the end of the promenade and officials took to the stage, where The Rev Ray Andrews, Service Padre gave a prayer of thanks to start the ceremony.

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Quote of the day

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Latest Comments

  • Benidorm´s El Cisne rastro

    Geoffrey Parkes 23.07.2017 17:42
    Hi. Can anyone tell me who the guitarist/singe r was on July 20th 2017? He was fantastic.
     
  • Buying medicine in Spain

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    Can you buy librium over the counter in Spain four detox
     
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    The dsrk haired guy in the photo is psrt of the gang. I was robbed just down the road from the Police ...

News Snippets

  • Unusual Kit Kat flavours +

    Nestle are opening a factory in Japan to keep up with demand for exotic flavours of Kit Kat. Around 30 varieties have been introduced there including wasabi, soy sauce, green tea, custard pudding & ginger and sake rice wine. But you'll be coughing up substantially more than you do in the UK - these alternative ones cost around $13!
  • Card fee racket +

    From next January, rip off card fees imposed by many airlines and shops are to be banned - and also include American Express, Apple Pay and Paypal transactions. It will hit local authorities such as DVLA, who charge a £2,50 flat fee to use a credit card, which in 2010 generated an estimated £473 million! Currently Flybe charges 3%, Swinton Insurance 2.5% and Ryanair 2%
  • Parents be warned! +

    Schools across England & Wales will be issuing fines to parents of children who are persistently late for school. This follows on from fines issued for unauthorised absences such as taking holidays during term time. Some have already introduced the scheme, which offer a 50% discount if paid promptly otherwise doubled then prosecution could follow.
  • BA fees +

    British Airways - once dubbed Britain's favourite airline have enraged travelers by following in the footsteps of the low cost carriers. In order to guarantee sitting together, which includes families with children, customers are having to pay for seats - £7 for short and £20 for long haul flights. They have already done away with free refreshments... maybe they are having to claw back the millions it cost when the complete BA system failed recently!
  • McDelivery +

    McDonald's and UberEats have teamed up to trial a home delivery service in London, Nottingham and Leeds. Customers living within one and a half miles of one of the 22 select restaurants will be able to order their Big Mac's and fries between 7am and 2am which will be delivered by Uber drivers via the food app.
  • Rip Off fees +

    Brits using their debit or credit cards abroad are losing around £60 per person for each trip by opting to pay in £ sterling rather than euro's - ALWAYS pay in local currency. Third party currency exchange providers add on between 6-10% per transaction then on top of that, your bank will charge a fee for using their card abroad. Over £20 billion is spent on debit and credit cards and a further £2 billion of foreign currency is bought back each year.
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Sat Aug 12 @20:00 -
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