Most reports about the US First Lady trip to Spain focus on her shopping and beach time. The part of the story that is missing is the location itself. Barcelona newspaper describes the Michelle Obama vacation place like this:
The Spanish resort of Marbella, often associated with Arab princes and crime lords, geared up Tuesday to welcome US First Lady Michelle Obama, with authorities eyeing a boost in tourist revenues…
Marbella, where Arab royals maintain vast properties, lies on what the British press has dubbed the “Costa del Crime” because of the large number of fugitives reputedly hiding out there.
You can read a BBC report about the life on Costa del Crime here.
The White House distanced themselves from the following report in the Spanish press:
Later on Saturday night she was due to attend a star-studded charity gala hosted by Hollywood A-listers Antonio Banderas and Eva Longoria at her five star hotel the Padierna Spa.
More than 400 tickets have been sold for the Starlite Gala at 1000 euros each
A number of controversial guests were expected to attend including arms dealer Adnam Khashoggi, who has long owned property in Marbella.
And by arms the author meant weapons, not bare shoulders.
Lynn Sweet from the Chicago Sun Times checked with the White House and reported:
The East Wing told me Saturday, “They are not hosting or attending a charity event. There is an unrelated event taking place at their hotel with some big movie stars expected, but the first lady is not going, nor is she on any host committee.”
Completely unrelated, the day after Michelle Obama came back from her vacation at Costa del Crime, the US announced plans to sell F-15 fighter jets to Saudi Arabia. Needless to say Israel was not charmed by the idea.
On the picture: F-15C Eagles are parked on a ramp July 23, 2010, on Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas, U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Vernon Cunningham