Friday, 10 November 2017

Iberian Adventures by Ian Gibson

The book Iberian Adventures was published in English in May 2017.
If you love Spain and want to know more about this fascinating country I can recommend you to read this book, written by an Irishman who fell in love with Spain in the 50ties and has lived in Spain since 1978.

I specially enjoyed the chapters dedicated to the first english hispanists of Spain like Henry Swinburne, Richard Ford and Gerald Brenan and of course the American, Washington Irving.
And the ones which tell us more about the first inhabitants of the Iberian peninsula.
The book with this beautiful cover

Book Iberian Adventures by Ian Gibson

is full of anecdotes about the discoveries Gibson made in the museum of Archeology in Madrid and his visits to historic places all over the pensinsula.

Gibson likes etymology  of words and affirms that the word Hispania, the roman name for Spain, means Land of Rabbits, the name being given to Iberia by the people from Carthago (important city on the tunesian coast in times of the romans).

Also he is interested in the special devotion in the spanish culture of the Virgen Mary. He affirms that he thinks the reason of the importance of the Virgin is that religions before christianity had their own goddess of fertility being very important in iberian culture. Small sculptures of the Godess Astarté from fenician origin are to be seen as the ancestors of the virgen Mary.

Astarté, godess of fertility, accompanied by a goose and a duck

These and innumerable other details, also about the origins of El Quijote the world famous book of Cervantes can make you feel dazzled by the knowledge of Gibson.

Gibson also writes about Federico García Lorca,  Machado and about the lack of contact between Portugal and Spain. He dreams about a future of Spain and Portugal becoming a part of a Federal Iberian Republic.

About Catalunya he remarks the lack of willingness of Rajoy to discuss and listen to the Catalans and he writes about his own relation with the editorial Planeta.

In the last chapter called 'Love Spain, sad Spain' Gibson writes about the virtues and non virtues of Spain and the Spanish.
About the sun, many times implacable, the sociability of the people and the noise they produce, the look of the Spanish straightforward in the eyes ......

The book ends with reflections about the Law of Historic Memory which was approved during the government of President Zapatero and the way the judge Garzón was removed from his position and the fact that still many of the rests of the victims on republican side have not had a dignified burial.

Gibson also talks about the lack of sensitivity towards culture shown by the government, comparing how the 400 years of Shakespeare and Cervantes were celebrated in 2016. Gibson insists that schools should teach more arabic, latin and greek so that future generations are also able to understand their rich inheritance.  

Ian Gibson is also the author of: Winds of the south (Viento del Sur) and other books about Federico Garcia Lorca, Antonio Machado, Ruben Darío and Luis Buñuel.

Photo of the roman mosaic of Hyppolitus' house in Alcalá de Henares

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

New system entrance tickets Alhambra

Last weekend the Patronato del Alhambra, the directing board of the Alhambra has presented a new reservation system of the entrance tickets.

Now you can order your tickets on the following site: The site is in Spanish and English. You can order up to 10 tickets and you print them out beforehand so you won't have to line up in front of the ticket office, which is a big advantage as you will not lose any time anymore.
At the other hand you will have to introduce the name, passportnumber, age, nationality and sex of every member of the group.
In this way the Alhambra council wishes to avoid fraud and will be able to check the identity of the visitors.

alhambra lions square

The normal entrance fee of the Alhambra dayticket is 14€ and you pay comission 0,85€ per ticket for reserving on Internet.

When searching for tickets today we discovered that there were no tickets available for october. Only for november. It seems that the system only allows you to reserve tickets two months in advance.

More information you can find on:

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Nice comment about our agency Le Chien Andalous

Yesterday we received this nice comment of a Dutch client that we love sharing with you:

Last winter we wanted to spend for the first time in Spain. Because we had quite specific requirements for our stay, I sought advice from someone who knew about it. Via I found Janny, who immediately gave us good advice and proposed three houses for free.
One of them fulfilled all our wishes on paper, so we arrived at the beginning of December - including our dog and partner who is doesn't walk well and is can't stand any cold.
The house was perfect. Practically all in all, very nice owners, and a beautiful setting in nature with the sea and a cozy village around the corner. With a lot of thanks to Le Chien Andalus we had a wonderful winter!

Las Negras beach

In Dutch:

De afgelopen winter wilden wij voor het eerst doorbrengen in Spanje. Omdat we nogal specifieke eisen hadden voor ons verblijf zocht ik advies van iemand die er verstand van had. Via vond ik Janny, die ons meteen goede raad gaf en geheel vrijblijvend drie huisjes voorstelde. Eentje ervan voldeed op papier aan al onze wensen, dus daar zijn we begin december naartoe getrokken. Inclusief hond en kouwelijke partner die slecht ter been is. Het huis was perfect. Praktisch helemaal in orde, bijzonder aardige eigenaren, en een prachtige ligging in de natuur met de zee en een gezellig dorpje om de hoek. Met veel dank aan Le Chien Andalus hadden wij een heerlijke winter!

Monday, 10 April 2017

Padel in Andalucia a combination of tennis and squash

Maybe you've never heard of it and you're not familiar with it but Padel in Spain is very popular. At many places you come across small courts, which are placed in a sort of glass cages. Here Padel is practiced. In Spain padel is after the football the most popular sport, even more than tennis and golf.

Padel is a kind of combination of the sports of tennis and squash. It is played with small thick rackets.

adidas fast court racket

The game can be played like tennis in singles or doubles. But the field is smaller, the scoring like tennis, and the ball can't go out. Just as in tennis there is a net at the a middle of the field, 88 cm tall. The playing field is completely closed off all around by walls 3 meters high, these are usually transparent. Experts say Padel is more accessible to the general public than tennis. The reason is that less techniques are needed.

Padel court Bubion

The sport was brought to Spain by Prince Alfonso von Hohenlohe who came into contact with it in 1974 when he was in Mexico. The godson of King Alfonso XIII and Queen Eugenia was visiting his friend Enrique Corcuera. Enrique played a sort of mini-tennis in a walled court. This small tennis court he had built himself because his garden was too small for a real tennis court. Von Hohenlohe appreciated the sport practiced by Enrique so much that he put two courts in the gardens of his Marbella Club Hotel, and adjusted the rules. Then he managed to inspire a lot of his friends and visitors to play the game.

Alfonso von Hohenlohe

Influence of Manolo Santana
Then at the end of the seventies, when the Spanish tennis legend Manolo Santana also got inspired by Padel by the sport became even more popular. Santana organized Padeltournaments and the sport became popular along the Costa del Sol. More and more clubs started their own courts. Padel spread from the south of Spain to the rest of the country. Now there are many courts across Andalusia, Murcia, Comunidad Valenciana and Catalonia where the sport has also become very popular in recent years.

Conquest of the world
The Argentine millionaire Menditengui saw at his friend Von Hohenlohe in Marbella how popular Padel was. He brought the sport to his homeland where Padel was also a success. The sport is today in extended over all South America, and on other continents. Worldwide currently about 6.5 million people practice this sport. More than four million of the sportsmen come from Spain.

Where to play
Houses with Padel courts nearby in Granada province:
Casa de la Luz in Bubión: in English, in French, In German, In Dutch
Casa Milagro in Bubión: in English, in French, In German, In Dutch
and all the houses in Orgiva.
In Bubión at this moment the court is to be used for free, in Orgiva you have to pay a fee.
Balls and raquets are sold in Orgiva: shop Sierra Nevada Outdoor

Source: Frans Mulder in Spanje Vandaag

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Nieuwe opinie over Casa de la Luz in Bubión | New review Casa de la Luz in Bubión

Casa de la Luz is een schattig authenthiek huisje. De eigenaren zijn ontzettend aardig en geven graag informatie over de omgeving en wat er te doen is. De Alpujarras waar Búbion in Iigt zijn schitterend. Je kunt er heerlijk wandelen en hiken. Kortom wij hebben er een fijne week gehad. Zorg in januari wel voor voldoende warme kleren en hout om te stoken!

Casa de la Luz is a lovely authentic cottage. The owners are very nice and provide information about the area and what to do. The Alpujarras where Bubión is located are gorgeous. You can go hiking and trekking. Overall we have had a great week. Advice: take in January enough warm clothes with you and gather wood to burn in the fireplace!

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Newly opened: Museum of Malaga in the ancient Customs Palace

Yesterday, 12 december 2016 was the long expected opening of the Museum of Malaga in the ancient Palace of Customs.
After nearly 20 years waiting finally the exquisite collection of fine arts and archeology of Malaga is on exhibition again for the public.

The palace contains over 17.000 pieces of which about 2.700 will be on exhibition. It comprises archeologal objects  from prehistory until the late eighties of the XXth century.

The superb neoclassical building of the Customs, with its palm trees poetically inclined towards the sun, forms a scenic triangle that crosses the most recognizable landmarks of the city, with the Alcazaba and the Cathedral as vertices. Perhaps for this reason it has been defended by the Malagueños, who not only perceive the imposing architecture, but also identify it as one of the few immutable corners of the capital.

Also, its old function, the one of building of customs, retrotrae to the neighbors to century XIX. It was then that the province reverberated throughout Europe as a thriving industrial center, when the alleys were changed by avenues and the more media fortunes of Malaga history - the Loring, the Larios, the Heredia - were amassed. This was the reason that it was necessary to build a palace on the seashore to administer prosperous commerce with the Americas.

Precisely at that time flourished in the city the plastic arts thanks to authors like Jose Gartner, Emilio Ocón, Bernardo Ferrándiz, Jose Denis Belgrano, Fernando Labrada, Antonio Muñoz Degrain, Jose Moreno Carbonero, Jose Nogales or Enrique Simonet.. These artist now have a privileged space in the new gallery. In this way, the collection of the Museum of Malaga links almost symbiotically with the building that contains it, with that time in which the waves caressed the stairs of the Customs.

Opening times:
The Museum of Malaga will be open from Tuesday till  Saturday, every day from 9:00 till 20:00, and on Sunday from 9:00 till 15:30.
The entrance fee is free for European citizens.
And the patio on the main floor will be open for everybody.
For visitors from outside the EU the entrance fee is 1,50€.

Monday, 21 November 2016

Museum of Glass, Malaga

The museum of glass (Museo de Vidrio y Cristal) in Malaga is located in a nice old cuarter called San Felipe Neri, not far from the Plaza de la Merced, in front of the church of San Felipe Neri.

The collection is located in a carefully restored 18th century Italian house where we can see the history of humanity by means of the glass.

The collection is private with more than 3.00 pieces of glass of different centuries, set in a beautiful setting with pictures, furniture and decorative objects of different centuries, inmersing the visitors in an environment close to the domestic context of the era.

The museum is open from tuesday till sunday from 11:00 to 19:00.

The tours are always guided 
Entrance fee: 
Adults: 6€
Kids from 7 till 12: 4€
Younger kids: free