News about Seville

Below are some news topics of interest to visitors, students and people who have just moved to Seville. When possible I'll try to link to the news story in Spanish, but you should be able to get the information you need by reading the summary. Dates are listed by each story so you know when it's been posted. I've left the list pretty long as some topics, no matter how old, may be of interest. If you know of any interesting stories or news that should be passed along to others please send me an email.

The stories

Semana Santa Procession Schedule (March 23rd, 2010)
Canal Sur has launched the version in pdf format as well as a version for your mobile phone!

Seville San Pablao Airport to get WiFi (Sep. 28th, 2009)
Plans are in place to offer WiFi internet access in Seville's San Pablo Airport. No word yet on when the installation will be complete, but I do hope they will make it a free service!

Plaza Encarnacion to finish (Sep. 28th, 2009)
The progress made over the summer and into fall has been notable, with the last "mushroom" being worked on in the actual Plaza de la Encarnacion. While a recent bit of city publicity listed the end date for fall of 2009, I would bet my entire life savings (not much) that it will be into winter or spring of 2010. Still, the pieces are coming together quite nicely and you can finally get a feel for how the project will end.

Puerta de Jerez Metro station now open (Sep. 7th, 2009)
One of the principal stations for serving the city center was opened over the summer, making the metro much more practical. Some delays were the result of a collapse in the street when a newspaper kiosk fell several meters into a large hole, luckily without any injuries.

Dunkin Donuts!...no, wait, it's Duffin Dagels (May. 3rd, 2009)
While the Dunkin Donuts franchise continues to shy away from a Seville location (despite locations as close by as Granada), you may see some familiar colors when you get to the end of Calle San Eloy near the Hotel Melia Colon: the signs, donut racks, boxes, logo..and yes, the colors of the famous donut chain are now here! But this is a clever competitor, curiously named Duffin Dagels. I don't know what a Duffin or a Dagel is, but they have a wide selection of fresh donuts. Not the same as Dunkin Donuts, but it'll get you donut lovers through any craving.

The tram will connect to a train station (May. 3rd, 2009)
But maybe not Santa Justa as I had previously mentioned. In hard economic times many have complained that a large part of the tram line would overlap with the undergound metro, and objections have been raised about the tram connecting Santa Justa. I now do know that priority has been given to extending the tram to the San Bernardo train station, which is certainly smaller and perhaps not equipped to deal with an influx of tourists looking to use the tram to get to their trains. But it's nice to see the tram connecting to any train station in the city to give it more purpose!

Domino's Pizza replaces Pizza Hut (January. 15th, 2009)
Americans will of course recognize the names of the two largest pizza franchises in the U.S. While I have little details as to the takeove or buyout, we returned from a Christmas trip to the states to find that all of the Pizza Hut locations were converted into Dominos Pizza, and with plenty of publicity for Dominos stuffed into our mailboxes.

Flamencotickets.com (Sep. 7th, 2008)
If you are visiting Seville and want to book tickets to a flamenco show in advance, you can now do so through flamencotickets.com. The new web site is run by myself and Thorsten Wilde. Over a 1 month period we visited five venues, taking photos and video of each. We still have a few more to visit! For now you can visit and easily compare the venues by services, size and price and make your decision.

Final touches on the tram (Sep. 6th, 2008)
One of the first complaints about the completion of the tram line were the differences in the electric poles and supports from the original conceptual drawings. To finish quickly, plain looking (and much larger) poles were installed to support the electric lines. As well, the electric lines were a mess with a larger mass of wires affecting visibility. During the summer the smaller, more elegant looking poles and supports have been installed and the amount of wiring visible has been reduced. It certainly looks better when you stroll down Avda Constitución.

Plaza Salvador and Cuesta del Rosario under works (Sep. 3rd, 2008)
Now that the church is finally done, the city has moved on to the re urbanization projects that include the resurfacing of Plaza Salvador and the sidewalks on Cuesta del Rosario. These will be in the same style as the Plaza Alfalfa and other plazas nearby. I for one preferred the stones in Plaza Salvador, but we'll wait and see how it's finished to offer a final verdict.

The tram will connect with Santa Justa (Sep. 3rd, 2008)
Plans are being finalized to connect the above ground tram to the Santa Justa Train Station. Currently the tram runs from Plaza Nueva to the Prado de San Sebastian (close to the Prado Bus Station and the Parque Maria Luisa). The next leg will continue to Nervion and then head to Avda. Kansas City, adding several stops along the way until the final arrival at the train station. The next logical step is to complete to loop. Original plans had the tram connecting Plaza Nueva with Calle O'Donnell, then La Campana and finally Santa Catalina. If it ever gets that far it's just a short addition to link up to Santa Justa from the other side of the city, creating a loop.

Take the AVE to the airport...in a few years! (Sep. 1st, 2008)
In further efforts to offer better mass transport connections in the city, plans have been announced to extend the AVE to Sevilla's San Pablo Airport. Work is expected to be done around 2012. This will not only provide a way to link the airport with Santa Justa, the tram and city buses, but also offer a way for those from outlying towns and cities to directly connect via train to the airport. Maybe this will help in adding some more international flights!

Plaza Alfalfa finished! (Nov. 22nd, 2007)
After several months of work during the summer and early fall, Plaza Alfalfa is now finished. Traffic has been rerouted and we can now enjoy strolling through the plaza. More space for seating for a few bars is nice, although we miss Alfalfa 10, which would have worked really well in the new pedestrian plaza. (Instead we have a Salon de Juegos with smoked glass windows and doors, just about the opposite of what should be in the Plaza.) Rant over, the new Plaza Alfalfa features a small playground, some benches and modern lights (jury still out on the design of the lights). Over the last year or so we have seen a transformation of many plazas in Seville: Plaza Nueva (pedestrian and tram stop); Avda Constitución (pedestrian and new tram line); Plaza del Pan (new lights, benches and surface); Plaza de la Pescaderia (no longer a parking lot!); Calle O'Donnell (pedestrian now for a few years); Calle San Fernando (pedestrian and tram line along the University).

Seville's Tranvia / Tram (Oct. 23rd, 2007)
With the first leg expected to be operational by the end of September, like most city projects this is running behind. The last month there have been several tests to reduce the noise and vibration level. Word is when it's full the vibrations are still a little too much, especially for those with apartments along portions of the route. When making a turn into the Plaza Nueva I've heard screeching like nails on a chalkboard. I hope they get it worked out soon. The first leg will connect Plaza Nueva, Avda Constitución, Puerta Jerez, Calle San Fernando (the University) and the Prado de San Sebastian. Some ask what good is a tram with such a short route? Well, I would have hoped it would be longer, but there are a couple of things to know: 1) It will connect the Airport bus with Plaza Nueva: for 3 Euros total you can take the Airport bus to the Prado, then jump on the tram and take it to Plaza Nueva. As buses won't get you that far it is a nice option which gets you close to many hotels and hostals. 2) Eventually the tram will link up with the Santa Justa train station. When you arrive from by train you will (someday) be able to get right to the city center for 1 Euro. 3) Ok, so there are three things...the tram will work with the multi-pass for city buses (bonobus) so you can do transfers to get you into the city center.

Airport Bus (Oct.. 23rd, 2007)
Speaking of the Prado, the airport bus now has its closest stop to the center in the Prado de San Sebastian, just next to the bus station. The stop next to the Alfonso XIII hotel is for now (and perhaps forever…?) no longer being used. You can also get off at the Santa Justa train station and catch bus 32 to take you into the center.

Bikes are everywhere (Oct.. 23rd, 2007)
You can't help but notice the increase in bike paths all around the city center. Once the tranvia gets moving pedestrians may feel like they're in Amsterdam, trying to dodge all sorts of traffic (bike, car, tram and bus). Seriously, it should not be that bad, and I think this is a good development. Now the city has bikes to go with the bike paths, and at a very reasonable rate. For residents there is a 10 Euro annual fee, and any time you rent the bike you have up to 30 minutes free. Then 50 cents per half hour after that. For visitors it is also possible to rent for a week or just a day. You need a credit card and in the case of short term rentals you can sign up on the spot at the kiosks located next to the bike racks. For resident passes you can sign up online or at the office in the center. The system will freeze or debit 150 Euros from your credit card / bank account when you take it off the rack. The money should be instantly back in your account when you lock it back up.

City construction work update (Oct.. 23rd, 2007)
Seeing as my last update for the works going on in the city was 5 months ago, time for a quick update on where things stand:

  • Plaza Nueva: done. This seems to be the newest playground for small children. On a nice day there are hundreds of children with their families wandering about.
  • Avda Constitucion: done, and everyone seems to enjoy strolling down the new avenue.
  • Puerta Jerez: one side is done, with the part towards the river under heavy construction for the Metro underground.
  • Calle San Fernando: done, making for a pleasant walk from the Cathedral to the University and on to Parque Maira Luisa..
  • Plaza de la Pescaderia: done, and looking very good.
  • Plaza Alfalfa: a mess, and while they are behind schedule it appears it should be finished in a few weeks. When done the plaza will finally be pedestrian, as it always should have been. What a shame, or better yet, what a crime it was that Alfalfa 10, one of the best pastry and coffee shops in the city, was forced out. In its place? A Salon de Juegos, where you can play video games or gamble a little. That just sucks.
  • Plaza Salvador: as mentioned below the steps are now back and open for everyone to sit on. The church is scheduled to reopen in time for Semana Santa (mid March), and soon afterwards they will renovate the plaza in front of the church.
  • La Encarnacion: after some ceremonial progress and the erecting of two small parts of the parasols, things seem to have slowed down. Actually, they are making progress but it is all within the dirt pit where we can't see. I laugh when thinking that fall 2007 was once a target date for opening!
  • Parque Maria Luisa: after some road works were finished this is now back to it's pedestrian state. For a year traffic from one of the main avenues was being routed straight through the middle of the park. Now it's safe to return.

Plaza renovations in the center (Apr. 1st, 2007)
Aside from the metro works there are several “reurbanization projects” going on in many of the plazas. The Plaza de la Pescaderia, located between Plaza Salvador and the Alfalfa, joins the Plaza del Pan in a newer modern look. Work was finished just in time for Semana Santa. Plaza del Salvador is now back to its original size with the steps to the church now open for sitting! These steps were always an important part of the plaza’s atmosphere, where crowds spilled out of the two bars on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. While the church is still undergoing renovations the plaza is back to normal.
Meanwhile the traffic and pedestrian routes around Plaza Encarnación are also back to normal, making things a little easier to get around the center. The concrete towers which will hold the parasols, or mushrooms as we like to call them, are now finished and we can see the first steps in raising the larger structure.

Watch Semana Santa live online (Apr. 1st, 2007)
The Seville tourist office in conjunction with Giralda Television is offering a live feed of all of the processions in Seville this week. Just go to www.turismosevilla.tv and select the Semana Santa live feed. If you have a pop-up blocker it may keep the window from coming up. This site also has some great video about Seville. For a couple of web cams you can try the Ayuntamiento's latest two cams on Plaza Nueva and Avda. Constitución.

Starbucks continues to choke the center with it's coffee shops (Apr. 1st, 2007)
Soon it will be like downtown D.C., with a Starbucks every 4 – 5 blocks. A new location recently opened on Avenida Constitución, about 400 meters away from two other Starbucks locations. Lets count the locations over the last two years - and I’m sure I am missing one or two! Avda Constitución-Calle Alemanes (1), La Campana (2), Reyes Católicos (3), Avda Constitución in front of the Archivos de Indias (4), Puerta de Jerez (5), Nervión (6). And I know there are others – updates as soon as I find, to my disappointment, others…

Metro Centro work in the center (Apr. 1st, 2007)
When we talk about the metro works there are two ongoing projects: the underground Metro, or subway system and the above ground metro, known as the Metro Centro. The Metro Centro is an above ground tram system which has caused the most disruption in the zone closest to the major monuments. So, now an update on the works: Plaza Nueva was opened for Christmas, but works returned for a few months to correct a few problems. Now Plaza Nueva is completed as well as Avda. Constitución up until the Puerta de Jerez (Well, there are a few bits left to take care of, but this should be finished within the next 1 – 2 weeks). Puerta de Jerez itself is still quite a mess. Along calle San Fernando by the University the above ground tracks are being finished up as the work on the underground section will continue for some time. And there has been a lot of clean up work for Semana Santa, but don’t be fooled: areas which have been quickly cleaned up may be reopened to works after Semana Santa.

Finally, another Rayas! (Apr. 1st, 2007)
While I could never complain about the location of the best ice cream shop in Seville – its located 2 blocks from my house just next to Plaza Cristo de Burgos – many who lived in other parts of Seville had a long way to go to enjoy Rayas. The excellently timed opening (just before Semana Santa) of the second shop on Reyes Católicos is a welcome addition to center. The shop looks pretty slick as well.

Bike lanes everywhere; Rental bikes coming soon (Apr. 1st, 2007)
It’s hard to miss the bright green bikes lanes which have been popping up along the major ring roads. There is a plan to add over 50km of bike lanes around the center, and even more connecting outlying areas. Eventually you will be able to bike around the entire casco antiguo (old city center) and choose your point of entry to the city. The city is also working out a deal with a company to provide rental bikes at various points around the city center. Included will be affordable year passes allowing residents to “borrow” bikes and drop them off at other distribution points. While you wait for the new service, you can rent from www.rentabikesevilla.com. The advantage here is the drop off service to your hotel, hostal or apartment. And these bikes will fold up small enough that you can take them on the bus or put them in the trunk of a taxi.

Amena and Wanadoo become Orange (Oct. 11th, 2006)
Wanadoo's offering of internet, telephone and cable, or IPTV services has now been combined with Amena, and both have thrown out there names to become Orange. You may have noticed all of the stores around the center have already change their names. The new company can now offer the whole range of services in line with Telefonica and Movistar. And with a rising customer dissatisfaction rate, Wanadoo gets a chance at a new start with the new name.

Xfera to become 4th major mobile service provider (Oct. 3rd, 2006)
Having already signed infrastructure agreements with Movistar, Vodafone and Orange (formerly Amena) to provide roaming and 3G service, the next steps for Xfera are to launch service to the public!. Covergae for Spain's 4th mobile phone service provider should be best in the major cities and towns. No word yet on the official launch date, although it was expected in the 2nd half of 2006, and we are still waiting.

American Women's Club of Seville (Sep. 11th, 2006)
The American Women's Club of Seville is hosting its annual Coffee Morning to welcome members new and old into our 51st membership year! Join us at Centro Norteamericano on Calle Harinas, 16 & 18 on Friday, September 22nd from 11am to 1pm. Please bring a small dish of a savory or sweet treat to share. Membership dues are 25 Euros for the year. Learn more about the benefits of membership at the Coffee Morning. Membership is open to all English-speaking women of all nationalities currently residing in Seville. Hope to see you there! (No RSVP needed but you can reach us at awcseville@yahoo.com)

Restaurant news (June. 8th, 2006)
Ever changing because of the risky nature of the business, some new additions which I will soon have reviews on. TGIFridays will open up in the spot where Ribs (La Casas de las Costillas) was located. This is a poor substitute for what was a good place to eat with some American "charm" if you will. In the Puerta de Carmona on Calle San Esteban, a new Moroccan restaurant is slated to open. A new place for kebabs and gyros is open for a few months now on Avda Menendez Pelayo, just opposite the Jardines Murillo. And Starbucks continues their plan of world domination through coffee with a new location in La Campana, bringing a total of four American establishments in what was once a very typical sevillian corner of the city (other joints include: Burger King, McDonalds and Ben & Jerry's).

U.S. Consulate relocates (May. 13th, 2006)
While thankfully my visits have been limited, it was always a long haul to the consulate on Paseo de las Delicias near the river. Now the large building has been abandoned for a more cozy and central office in the Plaza Nueva, which should make things easier for those in need of some consular advice. The new address, with a combination of letters and numbers which could confuse the most experienced sevillano, is: Plaza Nueva 8-8 duplicado, 2ª planta, E2, Nº 4. Telephone: 954 218 571

Seville's big dig (May. 9th, 2006)
The plan for pedestrian only zones, meets public transportation, meets city center...It is quite a mess from the Puerta de Jerez to Plaza Nueva at the moment, with works for the metro, light rail and pedestrian only zones taking place at once. The goals are taking traffic out of the center, saving the Cathedral from pollution, creating a public transportation link from bus, train and metro stations to the center, and of course creating a more walkable city. For now entering the Plaza Nueva must go through Calle Zaragoza, and is open to taxis and residents only. Avda. Constitución is cut off from all traffic, for what looks like forever.

Contenedor - contain your happiness (May. 4th, 2006)
With several American imports by way of Taste of America in Madrid, Contenedor offers small "container displays" of foods from around the world. American's are happy with an interesting mix of items such as: Dr Pepper, Root beer, Newman's own popcorn and tomato sauce, cake and pancake mix, Big Red chewing gum and more. The products change month to month depending on what is available. Many hard to find international foods are also available with countries such as Morocco, Japan, Greece, Italy among others. The store is small, but there is always something which draws you in. Located on Calle Imagen opposite Iglesia del Valle.

XIV Bienal Flamenco (Apr. 28th, 2006)
With the dates set for September 13 to October 15, Seville's biannual event is taking form, although the bill is still not set. The event is always a draw, and the organization this year appears to be better than ever. This means September and October, which is considered high season for tourists, will be in heavier demand than normal. Certain to benefit is the new Museum of Flamenco Dance, which just opened it's doors on April 1st of 2006. If you are planning to visit for the event, or just to see Seville, you should start planning your accommodation now!

American Express Office closed (Apr. 23rd, 2006)
Experienced travelers have known for several years that the age of the traveler's check and carrying cash to exchange is over. With just about everyone carrying an ATM card with an international network, most now prefer to take money out at a cash point rather than wait in line at a bank or an office. Because of this trend the American Express office in Seville, formerly located in Plaza Nueva, has now closed its doors. While less necessary now, I always liked the additional back up (in extreme cases) of being able to cash a personal check if I had to.

Sleepngo.com - shared flats and hostals (Apr. 17th, 2006)
Are you looking to visit Seville, and want to room with someone who lives locally? Or maybe find a hostal that you can't normally find online? Sleepngo.com offers several choices for accommodation which are a little out of the ordinary, and certainly not available anywhere else. Run by Thorsten, who knows all there is to know about accommodation in Seville, these are cheap alternatives, and a good way to see the city.

Plaza Nueva bus stops moved (Apr. 5th, 2006)
On April 5th all bus stops from in Plaza Nueva and Avda. Constitución will be move to the Puerta de Jerez. This year the move is permanent, in preparation for the 17 April start date of the project to make Avda. Constitución a pedestrian street. This will help save the Cathedral from damage due to pollution from car exhaust, as well as make Seville a bit more walkable. This is also a larger part of a plan which will connect the new Metro stop in Puerta Jerez to bus stops and the above ground tram. Of course, these connections will take a few more years, even if they say the Metro will be done in late 2007.

Museo del Baile Flamenco (Mar. 4th, 2006)
On April 1st the Museum of Flamenco Dance, or Museo del Baile Flamenco, will open it's doors to the public. The plans are for permanent plus several changing exhibits, as well as facilities for instruction in small classes. The Museum can be found on Calle Manuel Rojas Marcos, just a few blocks from Plaza Alfalfa.

New aquarium for Seville (Mar. 1st, 2006)
In what is to be a major upgrade to the gardens and port along the Paseo de las Delicias, a new aquarium is being built which will have the largest shark tank in all of Spain. Along with the aquarium is redevelopment of the port with the intention of welcoming more cruise ships to the city. The gardens which run the banks of the river are also presently undergoing significant works. The aquarium has a tentative opening date of the 2nd quarter of 2007.

Seville's new Ferris wheel (Feb. 18tt, 2006)
From World Tourist Attractions comes Seville's newest ride, and it's not located in Isla Magica. Instead you will find the new noria, or Ferris wheel, located just across the avenue from the University in the Prado de San Sebastian. Using an enclosed gondola system for the cars, each has 8 seats, with the VIP car sporting additional amenities such as an LCD television, climate control and a phone. A good chance to get a great view of the city from somewhere else besides the Giralda.

Smoking ban - smoke free Seville? (Feb. 6th, 2006)
Everyone was going to quit smoking, and there was panic throughout Spain. They would be forced to the streets! Did the smoking ban have an effect? Yes, in all offices, even in tobacco shops, you can no longer smoke to your heart's content (although more than a few sneak a smoke in the back room). For many visitors and sevillianos there was hope for smoke free nights in bars and restaurants. The only problem? If the establishment is less than 100 sq. meters they didn't have to adopt a non-smoking policy. The result? I have yet to see a tapas bar which doesn't have a sign saying it is permitted to smoke inside. Still, there are changes: many restaurants now have non-smoking sections, and by law there are signs posted on the door to every establishment indicating if you can smoke, if you cannot smoke, or if there are smoking and non-smoking sections. And for the clubs (bares de copas) and late night bar scene? As of early February not even one owner had declared their establishments non-smoking.

Alfalfa pet market comes to an end (Nov. 15th, 2005)
Did the bird flu kill the Alfalfa market? Seems this is the excuse being thrown around for now, although many behind the scenes sight a long list of complaints by merchants around the plaza as well as some animal rights activists. No doubt the bird flu has scared some and perhaps this was the last straw, so to speak. For now we will miss seeing all of the dogs and cats every Sunday. We've heard rumors of the market being moved, but for now we hear it will no longer be held in the Alfalfa. Last rumor was a move towards the river in Torneo. Still no decision.

The fate of Calle O'Donnell (Nov. 11th, 2005)
UPDATE: A large cement planter blocking the entry from the Plaza de a Magdalena and my longer than normal taxi rides to Santa Catalina have made it official: Calle O'Donnell is now pedestrian only.

Taxi drivers took the streets a day after demonstrations to close Calle O'Donnell completely for traffic. This time the taxi drivers blocked the whole street and sat outside smoking, causing many problems for others driving in the center. As well the drivers were on a general strike so it was a rough Thursday for anyone needing a cab. I for one like the idea of no traffic through calle O'Donnell, and in fact would like to see the entire center shut off from cars, buses and taxis. That is until I own a car or need a taxi. As a pedestrian only citizen anything with a motor in the center is a nuisance, but there are some practicalities to work out, and certainly all of Seville city center cannot be pedestrian only.

Rentabikesevilla.com (Sep. 24th, 2005)
A new rent a bike service just started, run by Carlos Amarillo, called rentabikesevilla.com. They rent small, foldable bikes which are ideal for fitting into small places if you want to bring it on the bus or store it in your hotel room. They have home/hotel delivery, suggest routes and even offer a tour of the city with a bilingual guide. Give them a call or contact them online for more information.

Pedestrian streets growing... (Sep. 24th, 2005)
The finishing touches are being made to Calle O'Donnell, which connects Plaza Magdalena and Calle Tetuan. In keeping with the plan of making more streets pedestrian only, Calle O'Donnell is just part of a greater vision in Seville. Plans for Avenida constitución and areas around the Alfalfa will create more walking space, and more headaches for those looking to park in the center!

Encarnación is underway! (Sep. 24th, 2005)
Sometime in early August the trucks and cranes arrived. Now it seems every day there is construction in Plaza Encarnación. After more than 30 years it looks like there will finally be a market. Architectural design is still under scrutiny, but the bottom level has been given the green light. In two years we can expect the new market to be open to the public.

Flamenco-sevilla.com (April 3rd, 2005)
A new online flamenco store based in Sevilla has just launched. Flamenco-sevilla.com is run by Thorsten Wilde, my coworker at sevilla5.com. You can purchase online from several brock and mortar stores in the city, from guitars and dresses to shoes, castanets, accessories and more. There is also a mercadillo where you can buy music and other items. And if you want to sign up for flamenco courses at some of the best schools in the city they have all of the information.

Bus strike during Feria? (April 3rd, 2005)
Still not finalized, but looming over the Feria de Abril is a city bus strike. Considering the location of the Feria in Los Remedios, away from the center, this could mean a lot of extra walking for a lot of visitors and locals. There is still time for things to be worked out, and by the looks of things in Plaza Nueva - a tent city of striking bus drivers - they may get something done in time. Still, the strike is scheduled to go into effect the 11th of April, just a day before the Feria starts.

International foods in El Corte Inglés (March 8th, 2005)
For the entire month of March El Corte Ingles has installed a International Foods Fair of sorts on the 5th floor of the Plaza del Duque location. Foods from all over Europe which you can't generally find are on sale. The whole continent is covered and and the time is right for stocking up on a few items you shouldn't expect to see again, at least until next year.

Aladdin - new Middle Eastern Restaurant - opens (February 18th, 2005)
Located in the Puerta de la Carne in barrio Santa Cruz, Aladdin has opened it's doors. Serving up some standard fare such as falafel, kebabs, shoarmas (gyros) humus and more. All at very reasonable prices as well. A new pizzeria has also opened just a few doors down.

Sevilla Rock closes (February 12th, 2005)
Sevilla Rock, one of the largest music stores (CDs and DVDs) located in Plaza del Duque, closed it's doors for good recently. Aside from selling lots of music it was also a location for ticket sales for many acts which came to Sevilla.

Aire de Sevilla - Sevilla's Arab baths are open! (January15th, 2004)
Whether you live in Seville or are just visiting a trip to the new Arab Baths is well worth it. From the different tempertaure baths to the massages and teteria there is something for just about anyone looking to relax. The complex is on the site of an original Arab bath from centuries ago. You can find Aire de Sevilla on calle Aire in barrio Santa Cruz, open until midnight just about every night.

WiFi - it's in Seville and it's free! (December 26th, 2004)
Finally someone has stepped up and offered WiFi (wireless internet access) in an establishment. And best of all it's free! Head to Plaza Coffee Bar on calle Canalejas, just a few blocks from calle San Eloy and the main shopping district. You have to like the space and atmosphere in this place as well: they have three rooms, many with comfortable couches. They have art exhibits from local artists, film screenings every Wednesday, plus football (soccer) matches. They also serve coffee, pastries, beer and mixed drinks. The best part is of course free internet access if you have a laptop that uses WiFi. If you don't have a computer you can connect to the internet on one of three desktop computers at the cost of 1 Euro per hour.

Road closures in the center (December 23rd, 2004)
If you are driving to the center of Seville beware of the road closures at various entry points. These control points are set up to keep the streets pedestrian friendly during the height of the holiday shopping period. Residents and deliveries are allowed in but others will be turned away by the local police. Note that the hours of 15:00 - 17:00, plus after 21:00 there is no control and you may pass through without problems.

Sevilla's second Starbucks (December 20th, 2004)
We were invited to the grand opening of Sevilla's second Starbucks just before the Christmas holidays. The second location is in Nervion Plaza on the ground floor close to where the supermarket Mas y Mas is located. This is a little smaller than the first location on Avda Constitución near the Cathedral, but they are serving up the same coffee and pastries. For those seeking a smoke-free place to enjoy coffee they also have a non-smoking section.

Where can I buy Davis Cup Tickets? (November 27th, 2004)
Tickets through El Corte Inglés, although the link is pretty much useless at this point. There were only 3,600 available to the public in Sevilla, down from the 5,000 they expected. People lined up to buy them all in the morning. Now expect prices from resellers of up to 1000 Euros online. And expect thousands if not tens of thousands of fans to be in Sevilla who will never get in. More information about the event can be found on the Official Davis Cup page.

Fahrenheit 9/11 on Canal Plus- Monday October 25th (October 10th, 2004)
It is the world television premier in Spain! You must have Canal Plus to see it, and if you do and want to see it in English you should be able to change the audio (no word if it will be subtitled or not). If you miss it the first time around don't worry - it will be on again many times.

Real Betis vs. Real Madrid - Saturday October 16th (October 8th, 2004)
Real Madrid comes in limping from a what the fans consider a poor showing in the first five matches of the league schedule. Betis has improved as of late but still finds themselves at the bottom of the league table. Still, after a 1-1 draw against league leader Valencia this match should be a good one. Tickets can be purchased the day of or for a much higher price on Tetuan at the event reseller office. As a betico and socio I am looking forward to this match!

Seville Selected as Davis Cup finals site (September 28th,, 2004)
Just after the World Championship of Golf comes the Davis Cup finals in tennis, with the U.S. taking on Spain. The official press release from the International Tennis Federation:
London, ENGLAND, 28 Sep 2004 - The ITF announced that the Real Federacion Espanola de Tenis (RFET) has nominated Seville as the venue for the Final of the 2004 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas between Spain and USA on 3-5 December. The RFET proposal for the final is the Estadio Olympico de la Cartuja (Olympic stadium of La Cartuja) with a capacity of around 22,000 spectators with clay as the surface. The choice of venue requires ratification from the Davis Cup Committee, who will meet in Madrid on Wednesday. This ratification is subject to a successful site visit by the ITF. This is the first meeting between the two nations in a Davis Cup final. Spain, the 2000 champion, is contesting its third final in five years, while the USA is through to its first final since 1997. Davis Cup by BNP Paribas is the largest annual international team competition in sport with 137 nations entered in 2004.

Free internet in the center (September 23rd,, 2004)
If you don't mind the limited hours (10am-2pm; 5-8pm), and the limited usage (1 hour limit) then the new "cyber" tourist office on the corner of Plaza San Francisco offers a great service at a great price: free internet usage on one of 10 computers in the lobby on the bottom floor. To use the internet you need to give your last name at the desk in the back of the lobby and then you can surf away at no cost. Especially nice if you just have to check your email.

New Supermarket in El Corte Inglés de la Magdalena (September 22nd,, 2004)
This may be old news (relatively) but during the summer months of July and August El Corte Inglés renovated the basement of their Plaza Magdalena store to include a new, although smaller, supermarket. Before the only supermarket location for the store was in Plaza del Duque. It's nice to be able to buy groceries in either store.

Avda Constitución for pedestrians only! (September 10th, 2004)
In part to save the Cathedral from the damaging pollution and in part to make the center more pedestrian friendly, the ayuntamiento has declared that the project will go through without delays, making the part of the Avda. leading to Plaza Nueva a pedestrian street. Somehow they will continue the bus service to Plaza Nueva, although several studies must be completed to figure out the best solution. The project is likely to be finished in 2007.

Make cheap international calls from your móvil (September 6th, 2004)
Perhaps taking advantage of the new law for calling cards from a public phone (see below), Amena has stepped up to offer a calling card to their mobile phone users that makes calling the U.S., Canada and other countries as cheap as 0,04€ a minute. You purchase a card for 5€, then make a toll-free call from your Amena mobile phone and you can talk without losing money on your mobile phone's normal minutes. This is a change from other cards where you are charged the rate of a local call by your mobile provider, and then charged again on the calling card. For those of you without an Amena mobile phone you are out of luck for now, but I wouldn't be surprised if the other companies start to offer something like this soon.

New calling card law in Spain (September 1st, 2004)
Thanks to a student who found out the hard way and Jeremy over at multimadrid.com we get the news that a new law will make it much more expensive to use a prepaid calling card at a public phone booth. According to Jeremy, "as of August 1st, 2004, there is a new regulation in effect for ALL PREPAID CALLING CARDS when used from payphones in Spain. The regulation adds a 12 cent/minute surcharge to the calling rate when using cards from public payphones and this effects the 2.8 cent/minute rate of the "eurodirect" card ONLY when used from a public payphone. The rate from a public payphone in Spain is now 14.8 cents./min. Since this regulation affect ALL ALL PREPAID CALLING CARDS SOLD IN SPAIN, the "eurodirect" card is still the best and cheapest card on the market. The telephone companies who own the payphones in Spain got this regulation passed since they were losing a huge amt. of money due to the extensive use of prepaid calling cards." You can find out more at his site europhonecards.org

Eminem rumors are just that (September 1st, 2004)
Oh the buzz one web site can create. Seems a music site had posted that Eminem was coming to town to perform during the World Wakeboarding Championships and soon the news was everywhere. Universal, the artist's record label, has called the bluff with a press release that there are no plans (nor will there be) for Eminem to appear in Sevilla in October. They also pointed out that the site the article was posted on had no contact information - email or telephone.

Carmen in Sevilla is Cancelled in Sevilla (August 16th, 2004)
Did Sevilla turn down the repeated requests for more money to fund the show? Or did the director get sick? I've heard various rumors for why this grand event was cancelled but don't know the truth myself. The cancellation has proved to be a big disappointment for those who made travel plans and those who planned to host them.

Road closures in the center (August 5th, 2004)
Taking advantage of the slow summer months there have been numerous road closings due to work by EMASESA, the local water utility. Several roads in the center, both pedestrian and vehicle, have been blocked off as pipes are replaced. Add this work to the closing and rerouting of traffic for the new metro and Sevilla has become a mess to drive through.

Sevilla's first Starbucks (July 10th, 2004)
In it's continued plan for world domination through coffee, Starbucks has opened a location on the corner of Avda. Constitución just next to the Cathedral. Taking on local rival San Buenaventura across the street, Starbucks will be serving up baked goods alongside some 30 variations of it's brown beverage. I am oh so excited...

Blasts rock Madird's railway system (March 12th, 2004)
It's ugly and scary for anyone living in Spain and or traveling through it. Having moved through Atocha on many, many occasions it hits home and every hour the toll is worse. 14 of the victims are from 10 different countries, and I suppose we will know more about their origins and the stories of the 184 Spanish as time moves on. We are in the middle of 3 days of mourning - it is a sady day. According to CNN: "A coordinated wave of bomb attacks on Madrid's commuter train system today killed at least 198 people and wounded over 1,000 at the height of the city's rush hour. There has been no claim of responsibility in the bombings, but Spanish officials are blaming terrorists from the Basque separatist group ETA."

Ikea Fever (February 15th, 2004)
Ikea, Ikea, Ikea! There hasn't been this much excitement for a new store around here in a long time. Can you find someone who hasn't heard of Ikea in Sevilla? Open for the first time in late January business is going strong and Saturday afternoon's there can be a nightmare. While technically not in Sevilla, but in Castilleja, there are free buses which will take you there. Give it a few years and the inside of half the rental apartments will look the same.

Ruta de la Ceramica in Triana (February 7th, 2004)
In what will be the first of 6 rutas turisticas, or tourist routes, in Triana, the Ruta de la Ceramica combines more than 40 sites, including ceramic shops and studios, monuments and buildings in Triana. All dedicated to the azulejo!

New signs to go up on 100 of Sevilla's churches (February 7th, 2004)
Sevilla's churches will soon include historic information in the form of signs posted in four languages: Spanish, English, French and Portuguese. The plan is being put into effect starting in the spring to better inform tourists and locals about the history, art and architecture of the churches.

Encarnación excavations likely finished (February 6th, 2004)
Work really progressed the last month or so and unless their's a new discovery with the use of radar equipment, the work on the rest of the 3,000 meters of space will finish this week. Work on the market, which has waited over 30 years now, will begin around October and likely suffer from delays in the rainy months. Ruins include 4th and 5th century churches as well as 4th and 3rd century B.C. ruins from Roman times - you can finally get some information at the site with the new signs erected just within the site along the bus stop. (more information from 20 Minutos)

El Salvador church excavations reveal more information about the site of a mosque (February 6th, 2004)
More light is being shed on the remains of a mosque in which Iglesia Salvador was built upon. The land was likely an important religious site dating much further back than the Arab occupation as well. For now details are emerging about the old mosque, which stretched past the Calle Cuesta del Rosario. Archaeologists are taking advantage of the needed renovations of the church to further study the the mezquita.

More video on city buses (January 15th, 2004)
Riding the city bus as a tourist or a new arrival to the city is getting easier with video to entertain and help you during the ride. The new video screens will soon be on all buses, showing a map and announcing the next stop. Information on events such as concerts, exhibitions, theatre and more include the bus lines you need to take to see each one. Trivia and news on entertainment and sports gives you something to look at - just make sure you don't miss your stop!

AVE tickets to rise by 1€ (January 11th, 2004)
Ok, so it's just a Euro, but soon it will be 2 and then 3 or 4. But that's how it goes. The price increase is scheduled to go into effect soon.

Sevilla will be home of the largest Arab baths in Spain (January 7th, 2004)
Investing almost 2 million Euros, Sevilla will become the home of the largest functioning Arab baths in Spain. The baths, which follow successful models in Granada and Córdoba, will be called Baños Arabes del Aire in Santa Cruz, on the corner of Calle Fabiola and Aire. Renovations are underway in the 17th-Century house, including restoring the remains of an impressive former Arab bath discovered in the building. Roman pieces located at the site will be restored as well. The space will be approximately 1,200 square meters and offer services such as hydro-massage, pools, baths, showers, saunas, massages and various salons. Prices will likely range from 30-50€ depending on the service.

Sales, Sales, Sales (January 7th, 2004)
Starting today stores officially begin with their rebajas or after Christmas sales. Discounts will be found just about everywhere as stores try to get rid of their Holiday season merchandise. Sales will last through March 7th.

Streets in the center for resident traffic only (December 22nd, 2003)
Beginning a few days ago the streets in the center will be closed except for residents. Police are set up along the various entrances to keep the traffic flow at a minimum and keep holiday shoppers content. This should last until January 7th when the holiday season is over.

World Cup of Golf Coming to Sevilla in 2004 (December 15th, 2003)
It's now official after the mayor's signature - the World Cup of Gold will be in Sevilla! The event will be held in November of 2004 at the Real Club de Golf de Sevilla. If you need some help getting around during the World Cup of Golf check out Antonio Doblas' site - he's an official tour guide who can show you the city!

Triana Republica Independiente! (December 15th, 2003)
Triana, on the other side of the river from the center of Sevilla has a character of it's own, and many residents often think of themselves as from Triana and then Sevilla, or often Triana as it's own city, or republica. While most of it's just good fun they do take the distinct community and character of Triana seriously - so much so that the Ayuntamiento has presented the neighborhood with it's own logo - "hecho en Triana" - representing goods, services and historic sites in the district. The red "T" surrounded by a green circle should start popping up soon.

When do the airport taxi fixed fares go into effect? (December 9th, 2003)
Announced some time ago, the fixed fare to and from the airport has yet to go into effect...or has it? Despite calls to the Ayuntamiento and their claims that it has not officially been put into action some taxi drivers are beginning to charge the 15€ and 18€ fees to and from the airport. Is the fixed fee, or tarifa fija, a good deal? My taxi from the Prado to the airport cost a little over 13€, but depending on when you catch it and the time of day (traffic) it might cost more. It's probably a good deal only to keep you from guessing or worrying whether your taxi driver is doing vueltos por la ciudad while watching the meter climb. Update (February 4th, 2004) The fares went into effect officially on January 7th, 2004. Now you won't have to guess if you feel your being overcharged.

Taxi fares hiked (November 29th, 2003)
Taxi fares will make their annual rise this year, with an increase of 2.6% for general fares in 2004. Also approved was a 25% increase for fares in Semana Santa, yet another rate increase in fees during the holiday week, making it more expensive to eat, sleep, and get around town.

Christmas lights in Sevilla (November 20th, 2003)
The lights are going up throughout the city as I write this! Over 80 streets will be lit up in December - the most ever - some with the help of solar power. Most of the nativity scenes in store fronts will be displayed starting the first week of December. This and the fellows roasting chestnuts throughout the center should make for a festive Christmas season.

Archaeological Museum forced to temporarily close some exhibits (November 29th, 2003)
The Archeological Museum has been operating at half capacity from the absence of security guards due to sick leave. Exhibits such as the prehistoric room have been closed several days during the last two weeks due to lack of watchmen.

Columbus DNA Analysis begins (November 17th, 2003)
Tests are set for this week to determine whether Columbus' remains are in the Cathedral of Sevilla as claimed by some or in Santo Domingo as claimed by others. The series of tests will compare DNA of both sets of remains to that of his son's, Hernando Colon, because of the certainty of his son's final resting place. Within 2-3 months the tests will be completed, finally removing any doubt and allowing one place to claim the honor of his final resting place. Then again if neither set matches the mystery will begin again.

Bus strike on December 4th? (November 14th, 2003)
The UGT (labor union) division for transportation is possibly planning a strike for the 4th of December which will affect bus service. Other unions are likely to join, but nothing has been finalized yet. Update - we were lucky, and I don't know why but the strike never happened!

130 Million Euros for more green space in Sevilla (November 14th, 2003)
The Department of Environment and the city government have agreed to set aside 130,000,000€ to renovate and create existing parks in the city. A recent study found Sevilla was well behind other cities in Spain and Europe in amount of park space per person. In response the plans are in place to renovate the following parks: Parque Central del Polígono Aeropuerto, Parque de Guadaíra, Parque de la Glorieta Olímpica, Parque de Torreblanca and Parque de Alcosa.

Archivo de Indias Auctioned Off? (November 10th, 2003)
Criticism of the slow progress in renovating the Archivo de Indias continues. The building houses the world's largest collection of documents on the "New World" exploration, including Columbus' voyages. The most recent problem is the disappearance of marble and stone items which have been appearing online for auction. Local party politics has become part of the problem with the PSOE and PP trading accusations of who is responsible for the lack of control. No fixed final date has been set for reopening of the building.

Cirque du Soleil - Saltimbanco, coming to Sevilla (November 1st, 2003)
One of the many touring groups who form a part of the famous "circus" will be in Sevilla for two weeks in January. Only the folks at Cirque du Soleil can explain what Saltimbanco is: "a celebration of life. Conceived as an antidote to the violence and despair so prevalent in the 20th century, this phantasmagoria offers up a new vision of urban life, overflowing with optimism and joy. Saltimbanco is anything but linear; rather, it is a kaleidoscope, a whirlwind, an adventure in which anything can happen. Saltimbanco has its own special language, and its spirit is conveyed through voice, movement and music. For more information you can click here. And to purchase tickets here's the link.

Update on Plaza Encarnación Project (October 28th, 2003)
The government of Sevilla and Andalucia have come to an agreement which will allow the final phase of excavations en Plaza Encarnación. You'll be able to see more of the work as they've recently taken down the walls and put up fences which permit passers-by to see the ruins better. Two sections, one called La Casa de las Columnas (roman ruins) and another an iglesia paleocristiana, will soon be finished in order to begin construction of the new market. Work on restoring and preserving mosaics and other artifacts will now begin. Once completed the archaeologists will have only finished 20% of the entire area they wish to investigate.

Parque Maria Luisa changes coming soon (October 28th, 2003)
Parque Maria Luisa will receive some 10 million Euros to promote more cultural activities leisure activities in the coming year. The goal is to make the park more of a center of activity for the people of Sevilla, with cultural events and more being decided. Included in the plans is renovation of the land around the Plaza de España, Seville's third most visited site behind the Alcazar and the Cathedral.

Iberia announces new flights from Sevilla (October 28th, 2003)
Iberia will offer three new flights from San Pablo airport. Direct flights will run from Monday-Saturday to Santiago de Compostela (7:30am), Paris (9am, 2pm) and Zurich (9:05am). Air Berlin recently announced they will offer direct flights to 17 destinations in Germany starting in November and slated to run through March of next year.

City Bus ticket prices to rise (October 20th, 2003)
Prices for individual tickets, including the bonobus and monthly passes will rise up to 11% beginning in 2004. Individual tickets will rise from 0,90€ to 1€. The bonobus without transfer will cost 3,90€, while the price with transfer (transbordo) will cost 4,60€. Price for the monthly or 30 day pas will rise to 28€. More information.

Reduction in Sevilla-Madrid AVE Weekend Trips (October 18th, 2003)
Catching the AVE from Sevilla to Madrid during the weekend may be more difficult for a while. Due to the new leg of the AVE from Madrid-Lleida and the need for the trains to cover more ground, trips on the Sevilla-Madrid line have been reduced by more than 2,000 passengers per weekend. The situation is temporary as RENFE awaits the deployment of new trains currently being built. More information.

Sevilla-Cádiz highway A-4 will remain toll road until 2019 (October 18th, 2003)
Plans to make the route between Sevilla and Cádiz a toll free highway (via autopista A-4) will wait until 2019. This is much later than expected. More information.

Sevilla-Betis Match Sunday (October 17th, 2003)
The first match of the biannual derby comes to us this Sunday night at 9:30, when Betis takes on Sevilla F.C. in Sánchez Pizjuán Stadium. When it comes to fierceness of the rivalry think Duke-UNC, Michigan-Ohio State, Yankees-Red Sox, Raiders-Chiefs, Pittsburgh-Cleveland, Oklahoma-Texas. An additional 400 security guards and police have been called up to keep things from getting violent. No matter what colors you prefer if you plan to go to the match hide your team preference will making your way to the stadium to avoid any problems.

World Flamenco Fair (October 17th, 2003)
The 3rd annual World Flamenco Fair is coming to Sevilla next week. While there is a lot of trade show and business stuff going on you can also catch performances daily from October 23rd to 26th. Tickets to the Fair for the public are 8€. More information.

Cheap Flights from Seville to Germany (October 14th, 2003)
According to the newspaper 20 Minutos Air Berlin announced new flights from Sevilla San Pablo Airport to 17 destinations in Germany. The flights will begin in November and run through March with prices starting at 99€. Air Berlin plans to offer more flights from Málaga and Jerez as well. Whether the new flights will continue through the summer depends on their success during fall and winter. More information.

Kentucky Fried Chicken Arrives in Sevilla (September 28th, 2003 - updated October 12th)
Adding to the list of American fast food restaurants in Seville, Kentucky Fried Chicken has opened their doors and people are lining up for buckets of chicken. The ne KFC is on Calle Reyes Catolico near the Hagen Daz location as you head to the Tirana bridge. For those looking for fast food or other American chain restaurants Sevilla now has Pizza Hut, McDonald's, Burger King, and Ben & Jerry's.

Tarifa Fija, or fixed fee, approved for Taxi Trips to and From Airport (Oct. 9, 2003)
The Price Commission of Andalucia approved a fixed rate for all rides to and from the airport. Prices for travel during the weekday have been set at 15€, while nighttime, weekend and holidays will be 18€. Cab drivers complain the fees set were too little, while some consumers complain it's too much for some trips. For visitors it should make things easier. A start date has yet to been set.

See the Giraldillo up close (Oct. 9, 2003)
If you've been to Sevilla over the last four years and thought you saw the Giraldillo (the weather vane woman standing atop the Giralda) you're likely wrong: that was a copy. After 600,000€ and four years El Giraldillo has finally been restored and is ready to perch above the Giralda again, with the Archbishop's blessing of course. Before that you can see it up close in an exhibition between October 22nd and December 21st in the Reales Atarazanas, located next to the Hospital de La Caridad near the river.

Encarnación's Market will continue to wait (Oct. 9, 2003)
Looks like another year until the final plan will be ready for the construction of the mercado in the Encarnación. The current market, provisional since 1973, is located next to the future (and past) site where archaeologists are currently working on excavating ruins from Roman and Arab civilizations. The market is a sore point for many locals and even more so the people working in the market. After waiting almost 30 years for a new market with underground parking, the discovery of the ruins led the city government to trash the parking plan and delay construction until excavation of the ruins could be completed. The site, however, is said to be a significant find.

New portion of AVE route to open Saturday (Oct. 7, 2003)
The newest leg from Madrid to Zaragoza to Lleida opened today for a promotional run with politicians, RENFE executives and the press taking the first ride. Service for the general public will begin on Saturday, October 11th. The train will eventually reach Barcelona and France where hopes are to connect the entire line up to the Chunnel (arriving in the UK). Future plans include extending the line to Málaga. Take a closer look at the AVE.

Status of Iglesia Salvador (Oct. 7, 2003)
Work should begin immediately on restoration of Iglesia Salvador. 3 million Euros has been appropriated for the work. There still is no timetable for completion of the restoration and reopening of the church. More information

Mobile phone call prices to drop (Oct. 5, 2003)
In good news to mobile phone users the CMT (Consejo de la Comisión del Mercado de Telecomunicaciones) has ordered the three principal phone companies to lower their rates for inter company calls. This means calls from one mobile phone provider to another should drop. Vodafone and Movistar have been ordered to drop prices by 7%, while Amena has been ordered to drop rates by 12%. The European Union is also in the process of taking the three companies to court in order to lower prices of calls made to mobile phones from fixed lines.

Construction of Seville's metro underway (Oct. 1, 2003)
The long awaited and once abandoned metro (subway) project is underway, with the first part of the tunnel undergoing inspections in late September. The first line has a projected opening date of June 2006, which will likely change as the date nears. When finished, service on the first line will include 23 stops including the following areas: Montequinto (Dos Hermanas)- Universidad Pablo de Olavide- Puerta de Jerez - Plaza de Cuba - Avenida Blas Infante - San Juan de Aznalfarache - Ciudad Expo (Mairena del Aljarafe). More information

Kentucky Fried Chicken Arrives in Sevilla (September 28th, 2003)
Adding to the list of American fast food restaurants in Seville, Kentucky Fried Chicken will likely open their doors sometime in October. The restaurant will open on Calle Reyes Catolico near the Hagen Daz location. For those looking for fast food or other American chain restaurants Sevilla now has Pizza Hut, McDonald's, Burger King, and Ben & Jerry's.

Festival de las Naciones in Sevilla (September 26th; March 1, 2003)
Opened on September 25th in the Prado de San Sebastian, and to run for about a month. While a bit expensive the Festival de las Naciones is worth the trip if you're craving some foods you may have a hard time finding in Sevilla. Argentinean steaks, gyros, Mexican, Peruvian and other foods as well as some different beers can be sampled at various food stands. Almost all include seating and table service if you can get a table. Also part of the Festival are musical performances (generally during the evening) as well as small shops where you can by arts and crafts, furniture, and clothing from around the world.

Iglesia Salvador closed for repairs (September 20th; March 1, 2003)
Close to a month before Semana Santa a large piece of rock fell from the ceiling, prompting authorities to close the church for repairs. Expecting at least a year of renovations, archeological work has also been started to determine whether the site, as has long been declared, is the location of the first Christian church in Seville.

Canal Satelite Digital and Via Digital Merge (July 24th, 2003)
In what is likely good news for consumers, Canal Satelite Digital and Via Digital, the two main competitors in the satellite TV market, have merged their system and programming today. Now offering some 150 channels, the new Digital Plus will use existing hardware of the separate companies and it will likely be some time before the software platforms of both systems are merged into one. The bad news for consumers is less competition which could lead to price increases over the long run. More information on Digital Plus.


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