Thursday, 29 March 2018

Easter in Spain


Locally known as Semana Santa (Holy Week), Easter is the most important celebration in Spain, and stands out for its epic elaborate processions and unique, age-old traditions specific to each region. The atmosphere that characterizes the festivities is usually solemn, the picture spectacular, and everything seems fully immersed in emotion. 

Like everywhere in Spain, the festivities begin on Palm Sunday (Domingo de Ramos – this year it’s on 9th of April) and last until Easter Monday (Lunes de Pascua), with the most dramatic and passionate parades held on Maundy Thursday and Good Friday.



Although each Spanish region, and even city and village, has its own particular customs and practices during this time of year, Semana Santa celebrations are nowhere else as elaborate and spectacular as they are in Andalusia, the sunny south of the country. Here, the most important Catholic holiday is commemorated with a week full of color, art, religious fervor, and extravagant processions. The most spectacular events take place in Malaga and Seville, where the streets are taken over by flamboyant parades and intricate religious displays depicting biblical scenes.



In Malaga, Semana Santa is celebrated with various religious and military parades accompanied by live marching bands, inviting incense, and floral scents, as well as lots of colour and cheer.



One of the most distinctive features is the presence of tronos – huge ornate floats that are carried through the streets of Malaga by hundreds of church members. These remarkable thrones are adorned with religious sculptures depicting Jesus or Mary, some created by renowned Spanish artists. The floats are festooned with flowers and candles and are the focal point of the procession. They are escorted by groups of penitents wearing long purple robes and women dressed in black and wearing mantilla - a black lace veil worn high on the back of the head. 



Other attractions are saetas singing by people on balconies along the procession route. The throne stops or slows down during this traditional religious song. Semana Santa processions parades from their church to the city’s cathedral. To spot the start of a procession, look out for the giant cross that is always carried at the front.


Saturday, 3 February 2018

Tiny houses


Nowadays tiny houses stopped being a novelty and started becoming a movement. For the past few years, talented designers and creative DIY’ers have playfully competed to create the smallest and most efficient homes in which life can truly be lived to the fullest. Here are some of our favourites.


1. Tokyo - modern & minimalist tiny house

It’s called the Reflection of Mineral. The 86.2 m2 floor area is spread over four levels, including a basement. Inside, the play of light on the angled surfaces provides visual interest throughout the day. Windows placed in the corners draw the eye along the long diagonals, increasing the perceived space. The living room window faces the intersection, taking advantage of the longest available view. Mirrored surfaces, openings between floors and large skylights all add to the feeling of spaciousness. This house is the epiphany of future sustainable housing not just for individuals and couples but for families as well, especially in areas like Tokyo where space is truly limited.




2. Finland - a comfortable cabin in the woods

Built from recycled materials for around $10,000 lakeside cabin in Finland is deliberately —and smartly — designed with a teeny-tiny footprint as to avoid building permits and bureaucratic red tape. Less than 9 m2 cabin consist of a loft for sleeping and storage, a ground floor lounge/living area, kitchen and bathroom. The house is designed to maximize the allowed area, plus boosting the capacity for great acoustics and natural day lighting. In addition to the tall window, there's an adjacent deck for a great view of the tranquil surroundings.




3. Australia - The L41home

Designed by Michael Katz and Janet Korne, the L41home is a sustainable, power-environment friendly home that really places the type in compact dwelling. Key features include an integrated building mechanical system, "the beating heart" with solar thermal capillary heating and cooling, and sustainable construction techniques, including non-toxic materials, LED lighting, zinc exterior cladding, a green roof, super-efficient windows and cross-ventilation.
As important, the L41 is intended to be mass produced, with the price declining as production goes up, making this a viable alternative to traditional-sized and conventionally constructed dwellings. This abode is ultra micro — only 20 m2.




4. Germany – Seelenkiste (Soul Box) Another Tiny Wooden Cabin

A group of three students designed a relocatable dwelling for one person, whilst building, they thought that it would be a good idea for it to be a spirit hut, meaning it would be placed in a secluded, rural setting to give the occupant quiet time in order to contemplate and self-explore. Seelenkiste itself is a relatively simple timber frame structure in which sections can be prefabricated, flat-packed and transported to the owners site. A small team is then able to assemble the different components to create the tiny retreat. Area is only 8 m2.



5. The oldest Little House in Toronto

It may look like a playhouse for children, but fully grown people actually live here! Built in 1912 by contractor Arthur Weeden, Toronto’s Little House, as its known, is only about 7′ wide, 47′ deep, with a total of less than 28 m2 of living space inside. The house has everything that is needed, a pull out bed, kitchen, laundry, lounge room, etc. Then house even has a small back yard.




Monday, 8 January 2018

The most beautiful andalucian village - Casares

WHITE VILLAGE OF CASARES




Casares is a magical beautiful white village with whitewashed, sugar-cube houses climbing the steep mountain hill. It is located fifteen kilometres inland of Estepona, to the west of Marbella, in the Malaga province of Andalucí­a. Casares was built 4035 meters above sea level where the views are so breathtaking you will think you are looking at a postcard.


HISTORY OF CASARES




Casares occupies a distinguished place in the history of Andalucía
The history of Casares can be traced as far as 100.000 years back in time! Then the inhabitants, the Neanderthals lived in caves in the Sierra de la Utrera and lived from hunting and fishing. It was an excellent area with caves, natural water springs and a rich animal life.
The Neanderthals where later replaced by the Homo Sapiens about 6.000 years ago who lived in the large cave called  ”Cueva de Gran Duque”. They seem to have been dedicated to (except from hunting and acgriculture) ceramic production. They made pots, which were carefully decorated as well as bracelets and necklaces.
Later the inhabitants moved out of the caves and built huts and with time created small villages  ”villas”.




The Romans settled down and created the village Lacipo just outside the current village of Casares. They built roads and advanced water systems and minted their own coins, which could still be found in the ground in the area as soon as 10 years ago.




Julius Ceasar is said to have given name to the village Casares. And he was the one contructing the “Baños de la Hedionda” where he took baths to cure his psoriasis. Still people cover their bodies with the mud from the sulphur bath and claim to get better health from it.




After the Romans the the Moors came and settled down about 800 years ago and they were the ones building the large fortress still existing on the top of the village as well as the mere part of the original village.
The strategic positions and excellent views has made Casares impossible to conquered for several intents as for example the Napoleonic trops. It also was one of the last villages to be christened after the moors.


PLACES TO SEE



Beside ancient castle, several churches and chapels you can find in Casares many traditional tapas bars and quaint cafes, most of them in the Plaza de Espana. 




It's great just to walk around to take in the serenity of the place and the winding alleys between the immaculately kept houses.




Climb up past Arrabal via Puerta Calle to the Castle. There is a cemetery located within the grounds of the Castle which is unique because of it's circular shape. There are whitewashed niches and this is a good place to rest whilst taking in the beautiful views.




There are a number of signed walks just outside the village. Some lead to the top of nearby hills where to can get even better views of the white village. Walk the Sierra Cristilina for natural beauty or you can take the popular walk down the river valley to Manilva.





Casares with its dominating view is a magical place to visit, and offers those who stay an authentic andalusian experience.


Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Sierra Nevada – Mountain of the Sun

The Sierra Nevada ski resort is located at Pradollano in the Sierra Nevada Mountains and is a perfect location for your next ski holiday in Spain. It has numerous runs of varying difficulties to satisfy all levels of skiers. Natural snow is supplemented by snow cannons on some runs, and many skiers are pleasantly surprised to find that, because of its southerly position, the air temperature is usually warmer than other resorts. Sierra Nevada is well known as the sunniest ski resort in Europa. Depending on the snow level, the ski season generally runs from the end of November or the beginning of December until the end of April or early May.




Come sun or snow, the Sierra Nevada is the place to take a walk on the wild side. Europe’s second highest mountain range after the Alps, the Sierra Nevada is home to wild, rugged mountains, fertile valleys and forests of oak and chestnut. Just a few miles inland from the Costa del Sol you would be forgiven for thinking you were on a different planet.





Those travelling with young children will find Sierra Nevada perfectly suited to a family holiday. The resort boasts an ice rink where you can get to grips with skating, and the Mirlo Blanco Activity Zone, which offers tobogganing, ski-biking and bobsledding, as well as mini skis and snowboards for little winter sports enthusiasts! For those seeking some much needed rest and relaxation, the resort offers a heated, outdoor pool, range of saunas and a well-equipped gym; while for those interested in trying some exciting outdoor activities, snowmobiling, sleigh rides and hiking are also popular options.





There is a surprisingly active nightlife in the Sierra Nevada resort. Spaniards have a reputation for being night owls and this it often attributed to a hot climate that encourages people to lie low during the day and come out only once the cool of the evening has set in. However, the winter scene at Sierra Nevada contradicts this - or at least proves that old habits are hard to break.





The beauty of a Sierra Nevada ski holiday is the sheer diversity of opportunities available: you could be skiing in the morning, but you could also be lazing on a soft-sand beach the same day afternoon! The white sands of the Costa del Sol are just a two hour drive away from the resort, so it’s certainly worth a trip if you fancy a break from all that snow! Of course, the magnificent city of Granada is also nearby, scattered with Moorish ruins and churches. With spectacular architecture and a distinctly Andalucian charm, it’s a fantastic place to spend a day or two.





The Sierra Nevada ski resort boasts stunning ski chalets, hotels and apartments. It is small in comparison to other European resorts however the facilities are considered top-rate and it has hosted numerous national and international ski and snowboard events. With its ancient villages, sublime views and remote isolation, the Sierra Nevada is the place to get away from it all.

How to get there!

The Sierra Nevada ski resort and ski station are easily accessible from both Granada or Málaga provinces. From Granada, it is 45 minutes by car or bus from Granada´s Estacion de Autobuse just south-east of Granada city, the provincial capital. It is about one hour from the airport. Visitors should also consider visiting the attractions in Granada city. If you're coming from Málaga airport, the ski station is about two hours driving and is not difficult to find if you head north, following the first to Granada and then to the Sierra Nevada "Estación de Ski".

Please visit www.sierranevada.es/en/ to get more information about local attractions :)

Sources:
www.andalucia.com
www.exodustravels.eu
www.homeaway.co.uk

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Our favourite restaurants

We want to share with you some of our favourite dining places in Manilva area. They are sorted by location and popularity. If you already visited them please share your feedback with us by leaving comment below this post.



SABINILLAS

There are a lot of restaurants along the promenade of Sabinillas that are suitable for small children as you can sit in a restaurant and they can play on the beach (within sight) or near playgrounds.


 LA CASITA

Fernando Pessoa.  

Argentinean restaurant.

+34 952-892-173   

www.lacasitasabinillas.com




CRUZ BLANCA

Plaza Ginebra.

Tapas / Spanish bar.

+34 952-892-672

www.facebook.com/cerveceria.cruzblanc




EL ESTRIBO   

Paseo Maritimo.  

Open:  Every day  7 - 11 pm

+34 952-89-37-88   

www.restaurante-el-estribo.negocio.site



MIEL

Paseo Maritimo.  

Cafeteria & Creperia.

Open: Every day from 10 am

+34 952-936-254  
www.cafeteriamiel.com





CASA DIEGUICHI

Calle Maria Zambrano 7.  

Seafood.  Loved by locals!

Open: 1 - 4 pm, 8 pm - late





PUERTO DE LA DUQUESA

One of Costa del Sol's nicest marinas. It’s a beautiful place to take walk along the promenade looking at the boats, have a drink or two in one of the bars and cafés or enjoy a dinner at night.



MACUES

Marina.  

Mediterranean restaurant. 

Open:  From 6 pm till midnight.

+34 952-890-395

www.facebook.com/Restaurante-Macues




CORK TREE

Marina – Upper level.

Irish restaurant & bar.

Open:  from 6 till late

www.facebook.com/thecorktreebar




IL CAPITANO

Plaza de la Fuente 15. 

Italian restaurant.

Open: Mon-Fri 7 pm-12 am, 
           Sat-Sunday 1 pm-12 am

+34 952-890-520
  
www.ilcapitanoristorante.com



LA TRAVIATA

Plaza Alta.  

Mediterranean cuisine.

Open:  Afternoons

+34 679 95 72 55



VICTOR GRILL

Plaza de la Fuente.  

Argentinean cuisine.

Open:  Afternoons

+34 951-273-623







MANILVA RESTAURANTS

Manilva Town is an attractive white village surrounded by countryside and contains many vineyards that grow in the slopes around the village.



DELFINES

Calle Alboran 2 / El Castillo. 

Mediterranean restaurant.

Open: Thu – Tue 1 - 4 pm and 7 - 11 pm

+34 952-890-231 

www.restaurantedelfines.com




MINI INDIA

Centro Comercial Los Hidalgos

Indian restaurant.

Open: All days 1 pm - 12 am

+34 951-276-638 / 663-383-054

www.miniindiaduquesa.es





MESON DEL CASTILLO

Plaza Miramar 12.  

Andalusian cuisine.

Open: Thu - Tue from 1 pm

+34 952-890-766   www.mesondelcastillo.com



CUBANGA

Beach next to Duquesa Port

Mediterranean restaurant.

Sun - Sat 10 am - 12 am

+34 607 56 27 12   www.cubanga.com 





MARLOWS FISH & CHIP

Centro Comercial Los Hidalgos

Fast food, British.

Open:  mornings & afternoons



CASARES RESTAURANTS


LA SAL CHIRINGUITO

Casares beach.   

Mediterranean restaurant.

Open:  11.30 – 22.30

+34 952-890-789   www.facebook.com/olelasal




ARROYO HONDO

Urb. Montes de Casares.   

Spanish restaurant.

Open:  Tuesday to Saturday





THE FORGE 

Carreterra de Casares.  

Andalusian cuisine.

Open:  Wed to Sunday

+34 952-895-120

www.forgesrestaurant.com




VENTA GARCIA

Ctra. MA 546. 

Spanish restaurant.

Open:  mornings & afternoons 

+34 952-894-191 

www.bookwow.es




LA CHOZA

A-7 Km 146 Casares

Spanish restaurant.

Open: Every day, closed on Tuesday

+34 952-890-925   www.ventalachoza.com




TORREGUADIARO RESTAURANTS

Torreguadiaro sits on un-spoilt Mediterranean beaches. Here you can find a number of Chiringuitos (beach bars), which offer food, drink, parasols and fresh seafood. And village has about 14 restaurants and bars with food to suit all tastes.



EL TRASMALLO

Avda. Mar del Sur.   
Mediterranean restaurant.
Open:  Tuesday to Sunday  12 am – 11 pm
+34 956-610-259  eltrasmallodeagustino.com





IL SONO

Playa de Cala Sardina. 

Mediterranean restaurant, Seafood.

Open:  from 11 am to 2 am

+34 619-837-306 

www.ilsono.es

 





PURA TAPA

Avd Mar del Sur.  

Spanish restaurant.

Open:  1 pm – 4 pm & 8 pm - midnight

+34 956-615-366

www.puratapa.es








LA VERANDAH

Urb. Playa Guadiaro.  

Mediterranean restaurant.