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Roddick presses forward into third round at Cincinnati

Defending champion Andy Roddick made it through a difficult opening set to beat Spain's Fernando Verdasco 7-6 6-2, securing himself a place in the third round of the Cincinnati Masters.

Verdasco, ranked 35 in the world, saw two chances to break Roddick's serve in a tense first set.

But the American won the tie-break 7-3, and went on to cruise to an easy victory. Roddick, seeded third, will be up against either 16th seed David Ferrer of Spain or the unseeded Czech, Radek Stepanek in the third round.

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'A Late Dinner': Rediscovering the culinary delights of Murcia

Visitors returning home from a stay in the beautiful huerta, or garden of Murcia can now relive the gastronomic pleasures of their holiday with a new book, A Late Dinner: Discovering the Food of Spain by Paul Richardson.

Published this August, a late dinner takes its readers on a highly flavoured journey through Spain and its cusine, from coastal fish, to the dishes made by mountain shepherds, to the inspired creations of world-class chefs in cities such as Barcelona and Madrid.

Delicacies such as jamon iberico, Cadiz fish, Navarre asparagus, morcilla, and Catalan calcotada are all vividly brought to life, presenting the reader to a banquet of delights that will make them wish that they were still on holiday.

But the lush and fertile plains of Murcia retain a special place of the author, who has lived in the country since 1990.

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Luxury Spanish holidays to reach new heights

Holidaymakers looking for luxury breaks in Spain will soon find that the sky's the limit, as a firm of Spanish architects have announced they are to build a 'Galactic Suite' – an opulent hotel in outer space.

Space tourists with the £2 million necessary for a three-day stay in the orbiting hotel, should be able to enter earth orbit sometime in 2012. Once there, they will pass above Spain roughly every 80 minutes, witnessing 15 sunrises each day.

At present, visitors to Spain already enjoy the height of holiday comfort in lavish hotels and golf resorts such as La Manga, which boasts five-star accommodation set in the hills of Murcia.

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Longer holidays for British workers, but still lowest in Europe

A change in EU regulations means that the minimum amount of holiday entitlement for workers in the UK is set to rise to 28 days from April 2009.

New European laws will force companies in the UK to stop counting the current total of eight bank holidays as part of the EU 20-day minimum. The TUC says that up to six million workers may benefit from the changes in the law.

The UK entitlement will go up in two stages, and will be raised to 24 days from October 2007.

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Tiger Woods wins US PGA championship

Tiger Woods has won the US PGA championship, giving him his 13th professional major title and putting him only five behind the record of 18 majors, held by Jack Nicklaus.

The 89th PGA was the hottest major golf championship ever recorded, and at one point Woods had seen his lead reduced to just one stroke after a three-putt bogey on the 14th.

However, Woods has gone on to lose a tournament when he has led by more than one going into the last round, and the 14th was as close as the competition got.

"I did some serious yelling at myself going to the 15th tee," the champion said.

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ABI: Travel insurance important even for short breaks

Travel insurance is recommended for short breaks, the Association of British Insurers (ABI) said today.

Missing baggage, flight delays, cancellations and other potential threats to your luxury break in Spain or family holiday are all covered under most policies, said ABI spokesperson.

Heathrow airport has been in the news recently for the high number of baggage lost this summer, and InsureandGo, the travel insurance company, reports it has seen a huge increase in claims for lost baggage so far in 2007 compared to 2006.

Those looking forward to playing golf or tennis at luxury Spanish resorts such as La Manga should make sure their bags are covered by insurance.

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Gwyneth Paltrow to host Spanish cookery show

Gwyneth Paltrow will be sharing her love of tapas and other Spanish food with the public as she co-hosts a cookery programme on American TV.

The star of Sliding Doors and Shakespeare in Love has fond childhood memories of family holidays spent in Spain, and is a big fan of Iberian cuisine.

"I eat all that (Spanish) stuff. The crazy fish things, the eels, I love it all," she exclaimed.

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AA: take care when hiring a car in Spain

Breaking down on the road can put a strain on a family holiday at the best of times.

But many car rental companies operating in Mediterranean countries, including Spain, do not even provide a breakdown number to call in the event of an emergency, according to an AA survey.

AA public affairs chief Paul Watters said: "Holidaymakers must accept that a hire car, like any other, may experience a problem. But it probably doesn't even cross their minds that rental firms could abandon them without an emergency number, or not provide them with the essential legal equipment.

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Cheaper phone calls for holidaymakers

From 29th August, holidaymakers in European destinations such as Spain will enjoy cheaper rates when they call home on their mobile.

Thanks to new EU regulations, holidaymakers can relax in their luxury Spanish villa or five star resort, safe in the knowledge that they could be paying up to 69 per cent less to make calls from a foreign destination, and up to two thirds less to receive calls while abroad

However, not all customers will be automatically switched to the new, cheaper roaming tariff, according to uSwitch.com, the price comparison website.

Subscribers who already have a mobile roaming package will not be switched over to the cheaper tariff until 30th September, unless they demand the new tariff from their mobile operator.

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Duchess of York takes a Spanish holiday

Spain is the destination of choice for those seeking a luxury holiday fit for a royal, as the Duchess of York enjoys a holiday in Malaga.

Sarah Ferguson, the ex-wife of Prince Andrew, has been enjoying a Spanish holiday with her two daughters: 18-year-old Princess Beatrice, and 17-year-old Princess Eugenie.

Like the thousands of other Britons who enjoy family holidays in Spain each year, the Duchess is enjoying the sun and the sand..

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