Shaken and stirred in Costa Adeje

The X Costa Adeje Cocktail Competition will also be a qualifier for nationals and in parallel the borough will host the Costa Adeje Gin & Tonic Schweppes Trophy

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The Adeje council have announced details of the X Costa Adeje Cocktail Competition which this year will also be a classification round for Federation of Spanish Barmen’s Associations – F.A.B.E. At the same time the Costa Adeje Gin & Tonic Schweppes Trophy will also be taking place.

During the presentation of the event, which takes place on Friday February 27th, the mayor Jose Miguel Rodríguez Fraga was joined by Jorge Marichal, president of Ashotel, the provincial hoteliers association, and Antonio Mesa of the Tenerife Barmen Association. The mayor said it was excellent to be able to support this event which “is another way of promoting the destination as a leader in all aspects as this is also closely linked to tourism, which is about much more than beds and occupation statistics but also about the innovation within the sector”.

Jorge Marichal said he was delighted “to support gastronomic initiatives which worked to improve and diversify tourism and demonstrated the professionalism within the sector. Antonio Mesa said this was an event in which quality and innovation were the main ingredients in the cocktails that would be presented.

This year the event will also be a qualifier for the national cocktail competition which will take place in October in the hotel H10 Costa Adeje with the best bar men and women in the country and the winner of that competition will subsequently represent Spain in the world championships in Tokyo later this year.

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This year there are three categories, the Long Drink, Barman (27 years +) Barman Junior (-27 years) and the rules laid down by the organisers are very strict in terms of balance of alcohol and other ingredients to be used.
In parallel the Schweppes Trophy is being held with technique and taste the keys to the winning drink.
There will also be a master class with Vito Calculli, Italian barchef and mixologist based in Adeje, considered one of the leaders in innovation in the cocktail world. His workshop will be based on the elaboration of cocktails made with sea water and seaweeds, served for the first time in Spain, which, in the eyes of the experts, promote a new aspect of cocktails as a promoter of balance and the fusion of autonomous fresh Canarian ingredients. He has said that he is happy to speak English as well as Spanish during the masterclass if translations are needed.

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The mayor said “the council have also supported these kinds of events which bring added value to our borough and the Costa Adeje destination while also helping professionals within the gastronomy sector.”

The events, in the grounds of the CDTCA, will be open to the public.

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Council invests in cemetery upgrades

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The cemeteries included in the renovations were in Fañabe, Armeñime, Tijoco Alto (Cultural Centre) cemetery, and Tijoco La Hoya.

The councillor with responsibility for the borough’s cemeteries, Esther Rivero Vargas, has given details of a number of improvements in recent months in the installations in Adeje.

The council has spent over €3,500 on the project. According to the councillor, “we are working, in the best way possible, to upgrade these areas that are used by people during very emotionally difficult times. For that reason we want to make these changes, and have bought new furniture and equipment (for the rooms used by the families in mourning before a funeral, etc.) as well as carrying out small repairs where necessary in each of the cemeteries.”

Among the work completed was the renovation of fire extinguishers, new kitchen fittings, modern and comfortable furniture, heating and air conditioning as well as other improvements. Each of the borough’s crypts has a small kitchen area, bathrooms and a room where family and friends will spend time together in the day and night before the funeral, often sitting with the coffin of the deceased.

The councillor commented, “The maintenance of these areas is hugely important because they offer an essential service during what can be very sensitive times for the affected families who are suffering the death of a loved one. Bearing that in mind we see it is very important that these areas are in the best possible condition to give people the comfort they need at this time”.

The cemeteries that were included in the renovations were in Fañabe, Armeñime, Tijoco Alto (Cultural Centre) cemetery, and Tijoco La Hoya.

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Don’t Panic – dial 112

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We are in good hands!
The British Consul in Tenerife recently organised a very useful trip for some of English language journalists to the 112 Emergency Call Centre in Santa Cruz, and I have to say a more useful few hours I have rarely spent.
Yes, we all do know that there have been occasions when the police may not have responded well to an emergency call, or an ambulance took too long to arrive on the scene, but having met the people who take your calls and dispatch and dispense aid and advice, I really believe we are in safe hands. And for every bad news story there are so many good news stories and lives saved that are never heard about.
The centre is run with a rare combination of top level efficiency and immense humanity. When a call come, and they deal with thousands and very few pranks, it goes first to a dedicated team of men and women who will take the basic information – who you are, where you are, and why you are calling….as they are talking to you they are already filing the details into a central computer and performing a type of ‘triage’ assessing the urgency and to whom they may need to pass the call.
And what’s more, there is always someone on call who speaks English, French, Italian and German as well, or course, as Spanish. Calls can be made from any phone (land line, call box, mobiles without credit) and the calls are free.
The operator’s call filing means your details are now in a central computer system and the nature of the call (fire, accident, medical emergency, etc) is queued in the system and displayed on a series of large screens around central control. There is an overall supervisor who is keeping an eye on the details at all times. Given the automatic protocols in place, if your call is a medical emergency the operator has probably already dispatched an ambulance and passed you directly to the medical team, or a fire brigade or rescue boat, depending on the emergency.
There is always a doctor on hand to talk to you, advise you and take you through any medical procedures. During the visit we heard of a life-saving call whereby the onsite doctor, over the phone, talked a father through reviving a young baby who had stopped breathing. Managing to calm down a hysterical parent and coach them into saving the life of their infant is no mean feat, and in this case the child was breathing by the time the ambulance had arrived.
The centre’s supervisor is also taking split-second decisions that could prove lifesaving. For instance he or she will decide very quickly whether they need to call out the ambulance, fire brigade or helicopter. This will be based on the nature and location of the emergency as well as other salient factors (cost is not considered a salient factor!). All in all the centre works at maximum speed to ensure that the right help is dispatched to the correct location in as short at time as possible. All the information and subsequent activity is logged as well. The centre also has extra personnel on call in the case of extra demand on the system, and with two offices running, one in each Canarian province, and the possibility of call transfer, the queuing system means few calls are left waiting for too long,
One of the reasons we were invited to the centre, apart from showing us the centre at work, was to impress upon both residents and visitors the importance of remembering the number 112 – and to use it and not 999 in the case of a genuine emergency. Furthermore, 112 is a European number and the European Union is obliging all members states to move towards using this number nationally too so that in the case of an emergency, no matter what EU country you are in, you won’t have to look for a strange number in a panic. In fact over 9,000 foreigners used the number requesting assistance last year, and according to the centre’s statistics since the introduction of a multi-lingual service they have seen an increase by 27% of international calls.
When not to call 112
To ensure the system operates at maximum efficiency it is also important to know when not to call 112. For instance, they are not a weather alert service, and they do not, ever, make decisions about school closures. What the controllers do during a state of emergency is coordinate the relevant information and pass that onto the authorities who do make those kind of decisions (schools, road closures, etc).
According to our helpful guide in the 112 Canarian centre, one of the many good reasons the number was chosen is that children of five and over can count to 10 so 112 is a number that can be memorised by them in the case of a home emergency where they might need to make the call. It’s no harm to help your child learn the number when they reach the right age – after all, it could be them saving your life one day!
(Thanks to the team from the British Consul for organising the visit and the very helpful staff at the 112 centre for taking time out to show us around.)

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Amor Adeje-style

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Love is in the air and in the local shops too!

The department of local economic development in Adeje is encouraging romantic shoppers to look locally when they are choosing a gift for their significant other.

In collaboration with the Adeje Impulsa project and the programme for employment-based training councillor Ermitas Moreira García, has developed a programme of commercial incentives for the year with the objective being the strengthening of local businesses. Saint Valentine’s Day falls perfectly into the programme and during the week there are a series of workshops for kids throughout the town from 4pm to 7pm daily. Today, Wednesday they are in Los Olivos, tomorrow at the Troya Tourist Information point in Costa Adeje, in Parque de Las Torres on Friday and the Farmer’s Market on Saturday, with activities throughout the morning.

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According to the councillor, “the activities will help promote love within families, among friends, respect and friendship at work and at the same time contribute to the local economy”.

Adeje’s shops are taking part in the campaign offering a series of special offers, discounts, gifts, etc – look for those shops and establishments with the campaign display. Shopping locally has the added bonus of being nearby, offering comfort of shopping close to home, and with a personalised service and friendly faces.

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Failte romhat – Adeje welcomes Irish Ambassador

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The Irish Ambassador to Spain, Mr David Cooney, paid a courtesy visit to Adeje this week where was officially welcomed by the mayor, José Miguel Rodríguez Fraga as well as invited members of the council, local business representatives and members of the resident Irish community.

The mayor spoke of the important links that tourism can develop, not just economic, but in terms of cohesion and personal development. He said the Irish community had grown in recent years and of the benefits of on-going exchanges.

Ambassador Cooney, who was accompanied by Madrid Consul Caoimhe Ní Chonchúir and the Tenerife based honorary consul, Ward Woods, said he was delighted to meet members of the Irish community here who were contributing to the local community, “who want to make a contribution to their adopted home, not just for the Irish but for all the people of the borough.” He also referred to the fact that Adeje is home to people from up to 120 different countries, “a mini united nations”, with the people of the town at the heart of it, “who make this place somewhere that people want to come and visit and stay.”

The Ambassador also said that he was struck by “the extraordinary links between Ireland and Tenerife and the contribution that they and their descendants had made to the history of this island”, and thanked the mayor and guests for the welcome they show to Irish tourists and potential residents and that they had shown to him.

Following an exchange of gifts the Ambassador signed the visitor’s book and was delighted to take time out with the mayor to visit the Convento de San Francisco, the Plaza de España and the Santa Ursula church. As a recent Ambassador to the Vatican he told Adeje parish priest Fr Honorio of his interest in churches and statues and was particularly struck by the detail in the church in Adeje and congratulated the mayor on the effort in saving the building many years ago.

This is the first visit of Ambassador Cooney to the Canary Islands. He arrived in Spain in September of last year to take up his post of Ambassador of Ireland. He was previously Ambassador to the United Kingdom and, before that, Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York. He also served as non-resident Ambassador to the Holy See between 2012 and 2014.

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