Category: Local

Shakira, the original and the best

Shakira Indian Restaurant boasts more than 19 years of creating delightful dishes here in the southern Costa Blanca. It has three ever-popular restaurants serving the Villamartin, Cabo Roig and Playa Flamenca areas.
Shakira Indian Restaurant takes pride in ensuring the most authentic taste in its Indian food and serves dishes to suit all tastes from mild korma and butter dishes through to Vindaloos and phals for those who prefer hot and spicy.
Shakira, Cabo Roig, is ranked number 1 on Trip Advisor, head and shoulders above its competitors. Taste, service and value are all key points emphasised in the official feedback from diners and its it these opinions that have culminated in the top positioning. However, all three Shakira restaurants are run on the same principals by the same family and so the tantalising tastes, excellent service and value for money are forefront of all three restaurants. All have an excellent reputation, built on word-of-mouth and many customers have been dining at Shakira since the first restaurant opened its doors.
The culinary teams have many years’ experience in professional kitchens, and this coupled with the support of the conscientious front of house team, ensures that all customers have a memorable dining experience. The chefs at Shakira pride themselves in using the most fresh and flavoursome ingredients so that the dishes created are always full of flavour and delicious.
The menu offers an array of dishes, with something for everyone. There is an extensive vegetarian selection and the option of vegan friendly dishes too. Each restaurant offers early bird specials and set meals for those looking for a bargain.
Bookings are now being taken for the New Year’s Eve celebrations, which includes a full firework display, open bar and DJ/Karaoke – which has become a tradition for Shakira in Cabo Roig – and all for just 30e. Be sure to book your table in advance to avoid disappointment! Call 965 322 811 or 679 007 199.

Coppola Hills

Coppola Hills restaurant is a family-run business and is making a statement in the Benimar and Rojales area with their home-made Italian cuisine. They have been open since April. The Coppola chain has received eight awards to date, three in Guardamar, three in Benimar and two in Ireland for the Best Italian Restaurant. Titles which they can add to their long list of success stories all the way down from Italy to Ireland then onto Spain.
Coppola Hills is run by father and son, Tony and Cristian. Both have a vast extensive knowledge due to running a number of culinary businesses since 1995.
It is plain to see why the Number 1 Italian Restaurant business on trip advisor over the last two years has received much acclaim.
The recipes for the traditional Naples style cuisine that were passed down by Grandma Antoinette Coppola to her daughter-in-law Catherine Coppola and then to her sons and daughter over the years have been combined with the expertise of Sicilian chefs to bring together incredible flavours from Sicily to Napoli. Customers have referred to Coppola cuisine as “impeccable”, the service “first class” and the portions “generous”.
Tony, Catherine and their children, Roberto, Cristian and Deborah have brought Italy to the Costa Blanca. Their children are now distinguished chefs too thanks to their Mother, who will make sure that the Coppola style continues to reincarnate itself through the years.
The menu offers a wide selection of home-made pizzas delicately forged in a stone oven and tagliatelle with lobster. There is a variety of meat and fish on offer that is cooked to perfection on the grill. The menu de la noche is a three-course meal that Tony highly recommends on the first visit to get an idea of the vibrant mix of flavours available.
The restaurant is located at the top of the tranquil hill which is the perfect setting to enjoy some Italian delicacies. Higher up than the bustling restaurant chains, the view from the top of the hill is quite enchanting.
Inside the restaurant there is a cosy two-storey open plan set-up whilst recreating an authentic Italian atmosphere. Outside there is a wonderful chill-out area to enjoy a cocktail or two. The Coppola family have grand plans for the future.
Find Coppola Hills on Facebook and Instagram with the handle @coppolahills to read more glimmering reviews or call them on 865524458 to book. They can be found at Calle Agata 2, Benimar II, Rojales

Breast Cancer Awareness Day

October is World Breast Cancer Month and local charity Maria and The Pink Ladies marked the event with an awareness campaign on Sunday 27th October at Zenia Bouevard. The event began around 12.30pm with a host of local performers taking to the stage to entertain the crowds: this included Keiley Page, Shannon Campbell, Lorna Michelle, ABBA Girls, No Limit, Chloe Leigh’s Cher tribute, David John Williams’ Rod Stewart tribute, Totally Dance Studio, Raquel Pena Flamenco Dance School, La Sal de Torrevieja. The event was hosted by Stevie Spit and supported by Sunshine FM.
Over the years this event has become well-known locally for its impressive balloon release. However, it was decided that due to the impact on the environment there would be no balloons released this year. Instead, in addition to private donations, visitors to the event were given the option to buy a rose for €2 which was then added to a mural wall on display at the event. The mural of roses formed the pink bow that is the global symbol of breast cancer awareness.
The proceeds from the event will be donated directly to Spanish anti-cancer charity the AECC and although donations were still being counted at the time of going to press, it is hoped the event will beat last year’s total of 2,632 euros.
Every minute a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer so don’t hesitate to self check, or go for a medical check-up, it might save your life.
Early signs of breast cancer can be a lump in a breast, a painful breast or armpit, or a discharge from the nipple. A doctor will most likely perform a manual exam and send you for a mammogram. A mammogram examination is painless and only takes about ten minutes.
If any of these symptoms do present themselves there’s no need to panic. Often, pain or a lump in a breast is perfectly harmless. The pain can be a sign of a cyst or the lump can be benign.
The money donated by Maria and the Pink Ladies is used by the AECC to fund its Early Detection Programme which provides subsidised tests for breast, cervical, ovarian, prostate, skin and bowel cancer. Appointments can be booked on the day or at the AECC office on the ground floor of Playa Flamenca Commercial Centre.

Help us help flood victims

Costa Blanca People is proud to present a fundraising afternoon in aid of local people affected by the recent flooding in the area as a result of the Gota Fria. The extravaganza event will take place at Villamartin Plaza this Sunday, 22nd September, and we would like to invite all of our readers and members of the local community to join us for a fabulous afternoon of fun and fundraising.
The event will be hosted by Stevie Spit and there will be a grand prize raffle and an auction to help raise money for those in need. The event will also provide a collection point for those wishing to donate clothes, dry or tinned food stuffs, bottled water, school materials or toiletries. As well as the fundraising there will also be lots of fun; with bars and restaurants serving food and drinks. There will be performances by some of the southern Costa Blanca’s leading entertainers taking the afternoon into the evening, including the fabulous Jersey Boys, Abba Elite, Jay Markwick, Paul Allen, Stuart Sinclair and Footwork Dance Studio.
All monies raised and goods collected will be used to help people in the local community and for this reason we have chosen to work with Help Vega Baja which will co-ordinate the distribution of the items where they are needed most and will present individual cases to its Crisis Committee who will allocate help as and where it is needed most.
If you can help with any of the above please contact Claire Richards on 607 03 11 13. We are particularly in need of raffle and auction prizes if anyone can help. For further information on Help Vega Baja or to apply for help or support contact 966 723 733.

To celebrate La Vuelta Carrefour Torrevieja prepares paella for more than 1,500 people

As the main sponsor, it enhances the activities in which its clients participate
Torrevieja, August 22, 2019.- Carrefour Torrevieja will live with his clients the celebration of La Vuelta in a very special way. The hypermarket joins the activities of animation on the occasion of the arrival of the race to Alicante, so it has programmed different activities, among which the free distribution, tomorrow Friday, of more than 1,500 portions of paella stands out.
The paella, made with products from the region, will begin to be distributed at 1:00 p.m. in the hypermarket parking lot. That same day there will be tastings of local products and the day will be brightened up with numerous raffles and children’s activities.
Carrefour, as the main sponsor of La Vuelta, has organized different activities to celebrate the passage of the race through the province of Alicante that will add to the animations scheduled for the Torrevieja hypermarket. Among other actions, it will carry out 7,500 tastings of typical products between the Vuelta de Torrevieja, Calpe and Alicante Park, will invite 4,000 people to breakfast at the stage outings of Benidorm and Ibi and will carry out solidarity and outreach actions, in which it will have the help of NAO, the robot with which the company conducts workshops on healthy habits.
In addition, the company organizes a sustainable race, since it has organized installed static bicycles in the Vuelta Park and for every kilometer that are made in them, Carrefour will donate one euro to WWF for the cleaning of a natural space in Spain.
The distribution company, which is the main sponsor of the race for the seventh consecutive year, places the customer at the center of all its initiatives, so it has also moved this position to its participation in La Vuelta. The chain has designed a global sponsorship that acts on several areas and in which the involvement of its customers and collaborators is sought. The company expects to exceed 2.5 million people who last year followed the activities of Carrefour and La Vuelta.

Baby Essence European SubChampions!

10 dancers and their teacher Paris Brumitt from Essence dance & Fitness travelled,along with their families, to Rome earlier this month. The Torrevieja based group competed in the Great 10 dancers and their teacher Paris Brumitt from Essence Dance & Fitness travelled, along with European Finals of Vive Tu Sueño alongside many other talented dancers from countries across Europe. After some sightseeing on the arrival it was time for Baby Essence to take the stage at Auditorium Del Massimo. These young dancers had qualified back in March in Madrid at the national finals, meaning they represented Spain in the European Finals where they placed with an amazing 2nd place and went from being intermediate to advanced level meaning they are now European SubChampions.
Paris said, “Words can’t describe how extremely proud I am of them all and the feeling of wining the European title for HipHop, with all the dancers being such a young age, our youngest being now 5 and the oldest 8 – it’s a great achievement to say they qualified and danced in the European finals but to say they are now champions is unbelievable!” Paris continued, “The whole team work extremely hard and all I can say is hard work sure pays off, there’s nothing better than seeing all their little faces light up on that stage when they dance and to see them all having the time of their lives doing something they all love, but when they get announced winners it’s incredible!”
“It has been a great season with levels and competitions getting higher and harder but everyone keeps working hard and upping their game and it’s safe to say this has been one of our best years and as I always say onwards and upwards – the hard work continues ready for next season! We shall be holding auditions the first week of September for everyone and anyone wanting to join and compete in our teams this coming season 2019/20.”
Por more information please contact principle Paris on 638591139 – or find the group on Facebook EssenceDanceAndFitness
Paris finished by saying, “I would like to say a massive thank you to everyone who has helped and supported us throughout our journey and season, specially all the parents, family and friends and our sponsors: CJBuilders, Quesada Fish & Chips, Comaskey Rentals, EcoCity Torrevieja, Avanza Mobility, CEIP Las Culturas & their AMPA team, Go Home to Spain.
From the bottom of my heart thank you everyone and a big big big well done to all my amazing little super stars!”

Police move swimmers from ‘salt pier’

Local Police in Torrevieja have taken steps to clear swimmers away from the Poniente lighthouse at the end of the ‘salt pier’ to stop young people jumping into the sea. On Friday last, officers cleared the area of around 30 youngsters who were at the dock at the end of the pier, enjoying the high jump into the sea. This area is supposed to be closed to the public and swimming here is not allowed due to the dangerous conditions. However, it is often used by thrillseekers who use the high platforms to jump into the sea below. Members of the public have managed illicit access to the jumping point since 2015 when works on the promenade began but were never finished.
Officials are concerned for the safety of swimmers, given that the people jumping into the sea from a great height and that they do so very near the entrance to the port – an area used by both commercial and recreational vessels. The pier itself forms part of an industrial are used for the transport of salt and water to and from Torrevieja’s desalination plant.
The promenade was supposed to have been constructed by Acuamed as ‘compensation’ to the town of Torrevieja for having to host the desalination plant. Works began in 2014 but were since stopped after arguments between the construction company and Acuamed. Only the final touches such as lighting, furniture and some other elements are needed to finish works, but the area has been fenced off since 2015.
The fences were erected at the start of the paseo between Playa Acequión and Los Náufragos. It is very common to see the lightweight fences lying on the ground as they are moved, not only by youngsters who want to jump into the water to swim, but also by residents and dog walkers who want to use the 700m pier as a promenade – despite the lack of safety railings and lack of separation between what would be the new pier and the potentially dangerous salt conveyor belt.
Torrevieja police officers have warned in a report to headquarters that access to the pier is open and uncontrolled. Torrevieja’s Councilor for Security, Federico Alarcón confirmed that the officers restored the fence and secured it with ties. Councillor Alarcón also confirmed that the town hall will contact the company in question to insist it adopts the necessary security measures to ensure that pedestrians and swimmers do not re-access the area.
In previous years during summer, Local Police have carried out patrols as part of their maritime surveillance in order to prevent people jumping off the so called ‘salt pier’. According to provincial newspaper Información, Acuamed has ignored the requests by the town hall to ensure safety measures (beyond flimsy provisional fencing) until works are resumed.

Shiro Donate Helmet to Injured Biker

When an N332 facebook follower had a crash on his motorbike, he found that his crash helmet was not adequate because it was not certified for use in Spain.
A lot of safety critical equipment must be standardised, and carry the appropriate credentials on a label. This standard is much like the British Kite Mark, and is a European scheme to ensure that items such as crash helmets are suitable for the purpose they are intended.
When the man had a crash on his motorbike he sustained serious injuries to his head, which may well have been avoided if the helmet he had been wearing at the time had been an approved type.
Because of the situation, the N332 group informed international crash helmet and glove manufacturer Shiro about the situation, and given their commitment to improving road safety, they donated a new crash helmet to the injured rider.
Members of N332 went to the rider’s house, along with representatives from Shiro, to present the rider with his new crash helmet, which carries the standard safety code “05”.
Always check that your equipment, whether it is a crash helmet, gloves, warning triangles, child seat, or anything else that is safety critical, is suitable for use in Spain and carries a homologation code.
For more information on driving in Spain, follow the N332 group on Facebook –
Mark Nolan

Calls for reduced toll for residents

The leaders of Orihuela and Torrevieja have called for a reduced toll to be available to residents on the AP-7 motorway in order to ease congestion on the N-332.
The mayors of Torrevieja and Orihuela, Eduardo Dolón and Emilio Bascuñana, have called on the Ministry of Development and the management company of the A-7 motorway to bring in a ‘soft toll’ which they believe would reduce heavy traffic on the N-332, which runs parallel to the motorway between Torrevieja and Pilar de la Horadada.
The request was revealed at the official opening of Avenida Dénia, a new section of road which links the CV-95 with the interior urbanisations of Orihuela Costa and, it is hoped, will also ease congestion along the usual route from Torrevieja to the south.
Both mayors were present for the opening of the new road and used the opportunity to call for a reduction in toll fees to residents of the area. Bascuñana said that from a technological point of view it is a completely feasible proposal. The AP-7 motorway, which connects Cartagena with Crevillente (where it connects with the A-7), has a unique toll system, which requires drivers to pass through two tolls of 3.95 euros (in high season) located only about ten kilometers from each other: one in Los Montesinos and another in La Zenia. The argument for arranging the tolls in this manner is that drivers pay for the use of the motorway from Crevillente to Los Montesinos or from Cartagena to La Zenia – which does nothing to solve issues for motorists who wish to travel from Crevillente to Orihuela Costa.
The consequence of this is that the ‘free’ sections are used by around 20,000 vehicles per day and drivers in the know then reroute to avoid the tolls. The toll section is used by under 7000 cars per day. It is used almost exclusively by vehicles on long journeys – those from Madrid – and residential tourists with housing on the coast. Although the number of motorists using the toll section of motorway has increased since the financial crisis, the parallel N-332 in Torrevieja serves more than 50,000 vehicles daily and almost 30,000 in Orihuela Costa.
The company Ausur was awarded the motorway management contract in November 1998 for fifty years and so, it will continue to manage these tolls until 2048. Local opinion is that Ausur does not want this section of the N-332 to be widened. In 2015, the company lost a Supreme Court appeal against the Ministry of Development in which it claimed that the widening of the N-332 between Pilar de la Horadada and Torrevieja and between Torrevieja and Guardamar would cost the company €311 million in losses between 2009 and 2048.
The mayor of Torrevieja, Eduardo Dolón announced at the new road opening this week that, “Once the summer has passed I intend to gather all the mayors of the municipalities of the Vega Baja region to address all the priority needs and demands we have”.
The mayor of Torrevieja highlighted, among many isses, the serious traffic and communication problems of the N-332, not only as it passes through Torrevieja but throughout the coastal area of the region, and in the nearby municipalities such as Los Montesinos, Benijófar, Rojales and San Miguel de Salinas.
Dolón hopes that all the municipalities of the Vega Baja can come together in an effort to “once and for all”, ensure that the needs of the region become a reality in the coming years.

Orihuela government formed at last

The Mayor of Orihuela, Emilio Bascuñana, and the spokesperson for Ciudadanos (the Citizens Party) José Aix, have finally reached an agreement to form an absolute majority government for the next four years in the municipality of Orihuela .
The Mayor said: “After many conversations a meeting point has been reached, which was always our only objective and that will allow us another four years of progress and development for our municipality.”
The Mayor highlighted the commitment to complete the Citizen Participation Regulation that was not fully developed in the last legislature, complete the list of municipal jobs, as well as work on solving the problems that exist in respect to of municipal planning with the advance in the General Urban Planning Scheme.
Another issue that will be addressed is the carrying out of actions that facilitate the revitalisation and regeneration of the historic centre of Orihuela, as well as promoting the municipality internationally and as a tourist destination.
“We must continue to pay special attention to the Urban Solid Waste Collection Service optimising resources in order to achieve a clean Orihuela with good services in something which is so basic and so essential,” said Bascuñana.
The Mayor also raised the issue of connection and infrastructure, saying these had special relevance in order to ensure the government is able to address the Emergency Services Centre for the Coast, ‘which the Generalitat did not want to face’.
He continued: “This government will continue to give absolute priority to active social policies and emphasising those sectors with the highest risk of exclusion, promoting employment. Mobility will be an area with special attention, as well as the pedestrianising of different areas such as the historic centre, along with systems such as bike lanes and greenways. There will also be a series of major projects to address large-scale projects.”
The Mayor explained that a ‘committee will be created through which all areas will be monitored with the objective that the Orihuela government is managed in a coordinated manner’.
Within the agreements already detailed, the Mayor’s office will be maintained by the Popular Party, the Local Government Board will consist of nine members, five for the PP (Emilio Bascuñana, Rafael Almagro, Sabina-Goretti Galindo, Víctor Valverde and Mariola Rocamora ), and four for Ciudadanos (José Aix, Luisa Boné, Mar Ezcurra and Ángel Noguera), and the role of Spokesperson of the Governing Board will be undertaken by the spokesperson for Ciudadanos.
Ciudadanos will maintain the areas it held during the last legislature such as: Infrastructure and Services, Culture and Youth and Beaches. This includes: Education and Citizen Security, Human Resources and Internal Regime, and Urban Planning and Territory.
The Mayor clarified: “The rest of the areas are maintained by the Popular Party and soon I will proceed to delegate the powers and reorganise them based on this new distribution.”
José Aix concluded that this agreement comes at the right time, “we have detected what worked and also those aspects that we can improve upon” and added that Ciudadanos “wants to offer people a stable government for the next four years, developing large projects and operating in a coordinated manner.”

There´s no place like home

“There’s no place like home” is the title being given to a fundraiser which aims to raise €14,000. The money is needed to bring Anne home to the UK for care after a stroke suffered while visiting Spain. Friends and family are hoping to pay for medical transport for Anne and on researching the cost of an emergency air ambulance, discovered that the cost can be as much as €14,000. A fundraiser is set to take place on Friday August 9th, from midday until 8pm, at Broadway – Uptown Quesada.
The event will feature live music all day from a variety of the area’s top local artists giving their time for free.

Kolted guitars stolen

Popular rock band Kolted were devastated this week when the band’s van was broken into and a number of valuable instruments stolen. At the time of the robbery, the band were playing a regular live gig in the Flamenca Beach Commercial Centre in Playa Flamenca. A spokesperson for the band told the Costa Blanca People, “They must have known what they were looking for – the windows of the van were smashed and they took very specific instruments. We were playing a gig at the time, so it is clear they knew that the van would be unattended.”
The incident occurred on Thursday night and the band are appealing for eyewitnesses who may have been in the vicinity of Playa Flamenca between the hours of 10pm and 1.30am when they believe the robbery took place.
The instruments stolen included a valuable Limited Edition Gibson Les Paul guitar (in pine with KOLTED printed on the front), a Sigma semi acoustic guitar and an Ibanez Special Edition bass guitar.
The police are looking into the robbery and fans of the band have been frantically sharing an appeal on social media in a bid to have the instruments returned. It is hoped that the distinctive nature of the instruments will prevent their resale on the black market but these hardworking local musicians just want their guitars returned.
The robbery comes as a huge blow as the band has just released its official music video for new single, Times Two.
If anyone has information about the robbery or the whereabouts of the stolen instruments, please contact the band on + 34 603 386 402.

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