Michelle Obama the First Lady lands in Southern Spain
Thursday 5, August 2010
Michelle Obama, First Lady of America, lands in the Costa Del Sol. What will they get up to in the popular Spanish tourist destination?
Marbella in Southern Spain has this week received one of its most prestigious visitors, the American First Lady Michelle Obama, and her nine year old daughter Sasha.
As President Barrack Obama celebrated his 49th birthday this Wednesday, his wife and daughter arrived in the Costa Del Sol, while the president spent his day in the States, as did the couple's 12 year old daughter Malia.
Though rumours of the president's possible arrival were rife, they appear to have been greatly unfounded.
The four day trip has been described by the white house as a private “mother-daughter trip with long-time family friends”.
The Obamas have arrived in their luxury hotel villa, having flown in on Wednesday by US Air Force. At the villa hotel there have been 60 rooms to accommodate the First Family and their substantial entourage of security and friends.
The hotel owner Ricardo Arranz confirmed the extent of the booking on Spanish on public radio station RNE, noting that everything had been put in place for their arrival. In recent days the roads have been re-paved, as new lights have been put in. The hotel has been flying the US flag in honour of the presidential family.
A large number of reporters and photographers have been staking out the hotel, awaiting the Obamas' arrival, and accompanying scoop.
In an interview with the Diaro del Sevilla daily newspaper, Arranz told the press that the Obamas had asked for “nothing special” instead simply asking for discretion.
Though First Lady and child are set to visit the city of Granada, the former spot of Moorish rule in Southern Spain, located 110 miles from their villa. There they shall see the Alhambra fortress-palace, the most visited tourist attraction in Spain, as well as the city's famous cathedral.
The two are also scheduled to visit King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia at their summer island palace in Majorca, a short flight from Marbella where they are staying.
There is a great excitement at the arrival of the Obamas in the Costa Del Sol, as it is a firm step in shaking a reputation of sleaze and corruption that has come from scandal over recent years.
In his interview Arranz spoke of the great responsibility he feels, “we feel a huge responsibility to ensure that all goes well because of the repercussions the visit is having, which could be good for this hotel and for all of the Costa del Sol,".
The Spanish PR firm Oak Power have estimated that over 50,000 press reports will be made regarding the trip, offering world wide publicity for the Costa Del Sol potentially attracting millions of tourists to the region.
The visit from the first lady and kin could be a good step in shunning the areas tarnished reputation as it takes it from the sleaze, back to the glamour that used to be associated with the region.
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