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Spanish museum targets culture-hungry visitors

A new wing of one of Spain's most renowned museums has been opened in Madrid as the city aims to tempt more culture-hungry travelers to take a holiday in Spain.

The Museo del Prado features works of art by Francisco de Goya and Velazquez and its latest architectural addition, which took six years to construct, was declared open by the Spanish king Juan Carlos last week.

Raphael Moneo, who designed and built the new wing of the museum, is one of the world's most respected architects and has won numerous awards for his work, and it is hoped that his latest creation will attract art lovers from across the world.

Business Week reported that: "The architect has modestly hidden his creation behind the Prado's historical wing so that only visitors entering the museum through the back entrance can see it from outside.

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Madrid plans to increase tourism

Plans that could see Madrid become a more prominent Spanish holiday destination for Indian tourists are being progressed, according to reports.

The India-based Kingfisher Airline company is considering making Madrid a major stop-over destination in Europe, which it is hoped would drive tourism industries in the Spanish capital.

Around 50,000 Indians set off for holidays in Spain each year and officials from the country's tourist board are hoping to see this figure increase by ten per cent annual over the next few years, reports Monsters and Critics.

Enrique Ruiz e Lera, director of the Spain Tourism Board for India, Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand, is quoted as saying: "We are in advanced talks with Kingfisher and hope to see progress.

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Ibiza now offering something for everyone

Ibiza has been a Spanish holiday attraction for many years and the island can now offer something for everyone, according to a recent report.

The Balearic hot spot is a Mecca for dance music lovers across Europe and the world, but when the party season is over there is much more to enjoy in Ibiza than purely its incredible nightlife.

Millions of Britons take holidays in Spain each year, but few destinations can boast a Unesco World Heritage Site, white-sandy beaches and a plethora of clubs and restaurants, as Ibiza can.

A review featured in the New York Times recently read: "Ibiza attracts party people of every age and demographic, from London fashionistas and Goa-style ravers to French bobos and the prime minister of Spain.

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Spanish plans for a 'greener, more natural' coast

Holidays in Spain could soon become an even more attractive prospect as plans are being made to give the country a greener and more natural coastline, it has been revealed.

Millions of people, including tens of thousands of Britons, flock to the Spanish coast on an annual basis and government plans have been designed that will aim to see these areas regain their natural beauty.

Local and regional authorities have still to give the various schemes the go ahead, but the plans have been welcomed by the environmental campaign group Greenpeace, reports the International Herald Tribune.

"It's a plan with good intentions but it doesn't set dates, it doesn't have a clear budget and it hasn't been given clear objectives,"
Greenpeace spokeswoman Maria Jose Caballero is quoted as saying.

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Online bookings 'more popular than ever'

Using the internet to book a holiday is now more popular than ever in Ireland, according to data released recently by the Central Statistics Office.

Thousands of people go online to search for villas with pools in Spain and for 1.3 million Irish travellers the internet was their first port of call when looking to plan a trip abroad during the second quarter of this year.

In fact, travel agents could be losing out on customers planning their Spanish holidays, because the latest figures suggest 13 times more people book their trips online than use a travel agent, reports the Irish Independent.

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Mild summer prompts winter getaways

Millions of Britons are expected to set off in search of some winter sun during the next few months after a disappointingly mild summer season, according to reports.

Many will be looking to enjoy luxury holidays in Spain after opting not to use up their annual leave allocation from their employers, travel website lastminute.com suggests.

Figures show that around 70 per cent of people around Britain still have the majority of their holiday allowance in tact and thousands look likely to make the most of it by going on a Spanish holiday.

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Majorca a top choice for Britons

Britons are continuing to holiday in Spain with the island of Majorca the number one holiday destination among travellers this year, it has emerged.

As reported by the American Chronicle, family holidays in Spain are set to increase in 2007 compared to last year, despite increased competition from eastern European countries.

Flooding across Britain during the summer months led to "mass holiday bookings" of Spanish holidays with Majorca continuing to be popular despite environmental concerns based on aviation.

The news comes after a disappointing summer was expected for Spanish holiday figures after an unseasonably warm April in the UK contributing to a slowdown in the market, the article notes.

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New tram system draws a crowd in Sevilla

Thousands of visitors attended the opening of a new tram system in Sevilla this week, which could help those on holiday in Spain to navigate their way round the city.

Typicallyspanish.com reports that the new metrocentro transport facility cost €80 million (£38.6 million) and will extend out across the consumer belt of the city.

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Travel insurance 'vital for holidaymakers'

Britons planning a sunny holiday in Spain during the winter period have been warned that taking out travel insurance is "vital".

Moneyexpert.com research has revealed that 28 per cent of holidaymakers travel uninsured, despite the average Briton spending £681.20 on extra items during their trip.

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Spain to host charity sporting event

Families jetting off to warmer climes next month for a pre-Christmas Spanish holiday may catch a glimpse of global superstar David Beckham on their travels.

The ex-Real Madrid player, who now resides in Los Angeles, is to play in a charity football match on November 19th alongside a number of international players.

The event, in aid of anti-poverty efforts and various charity projects, is to be sponsored by the United Nations Development Program and will feature Zinedine Zidane and Ronaldo as team captains.

With a capacity of 38,000, Malaga's Estadio La Rosaleda is set to be the location for the game.

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