The congressional term of the two main political parties – Labor held their annual conference in Brighton; the Conservatives, in Manchester – imposes a period of recess in the parliamentary activity of Westminster: the deputies will not have to return to their seats until next October 18. For this reason, members of the Government of Boris Johnson have justified that the prime minister took a few days off on the Costa del Sol with his wife, Carrie, and their 17-month-old son, Wilf. The family arrived on Thursday morning at Torre de Tramores, a luxury villa hidden in a 600-hectare estate in the municipality of Benahavís, north of Marbella (Malaga). They plan to spend a week there.
“In the last year and a half, [Johnson] has been on the verge of losing his life because of the covid, and his mother has recently passed away. It is normal that you have decided to have a little break. It seems very reasonable to me, ”said Kwasi Kwarteng, the UK Trade Minister. Curiously, it is Kwarteng who has had to face, almost in the first person, the supply crisis that has hit the United Kingdom. Only in the last few days has the fuel supply at the country’s gas stations begun to stabilize, after several weeks in which thousands of desperate drivers have queued for hours to fill the tank of their vehicles.
Britain is facing a lean Christmas, in which a shortage of workers, compounded by restrictive immigration laws passed after Brexit, threatens to keep supermarket shelves half-empty. For this reason, Johnson’s flight to Marbella, advanced exclusively this Sunday by the Mail On Sundayhas drawn harsh criticism from the Labor opposition and many British political analysts. “Marbella? What a charmer! I screw the businessmen, cut the welfare state and go on vacation “, he ironized on Twitter Alastair Campbell, who was former Labor Prime Minister Tony Blair’s press officer. “Is Johnson’s liar, lazy and incompetent really going to a luxury villa in Marbella when the country is going through a cost-of-living crisis?” Karl Turner. Downing Street sources have justified the escape of the prime minister because he was “exhausted”, after a week in which his main task was to deliver the closing speech of the annual Conservative Congress in Manchester.
Lady Di’s refuge
Torre de Tramores is an enclosure made up of an old 10-room farmhouse that has been completely remodeled and has an annex building for guests. The space also features a luxurious five-bedroom house about 200 meters to the east. Two swimming pools, Jacuzzi, helipad, tennis court, games room and many other amenities are at the Prime Minister’s disposal.
The Torre de Tramores houses, decorated by Jaime Parladé, stand next to an old Islamic building built in the 10th century and from which the estate takes its name. In fact, the gardens maintain the streams and ditches planned by the Muslim population, according to the accommodation website. Municipal sources have explained that it is owned by Zac Goldsmith, a party colleague, friend and member of Johnson’s government, where he serves as Secretary of State for the Environment. The property was acquired by his father, Sir James Goldsmith, a British magnate who also decided that this would be the place where he would spend the last days of his life. There he died in 1997 of cancer.
The place was also chosen by Lady Di to take refuge after her separation from Charles of England, which is why the British series The Crown is filming these days part of its fifth season in the surroundings of Marbella. British actor Hugh Grant also rested in this residence, nestled in a valuable natural environment just a step away from the limits of the recently declared Sierra de las Nieves National Park. The accommodation, which has all its dates reserved until next spring and is a stone’s throw from the exclusivity of Puerto Banús, has a dozen golf courses nearby.
The site is located just over a kilometer north of the urban area of Benahavís, whose mayor, José Antonio Mena, assures that he has no official information on Johnson’s stay. This town of 8,085 inhabitants traditionally tops the ranking of the richest municipalities in Malaga, with a gross income of more than 30,000 euros. The key to this lies in the numerous high-end urbanizations that are displayed by their natural surroundings, among which El Madroñal and, especially, La Zagaleta, considered the most luxurious in Europe, stand out. Benahavís was also the place chosen to rest for a few days by former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his family in 2012. In the municipality there is also one of the most exclusive hotels on the Costa del Sol, the Anantara Villa Padierna Palace, where Michelle Obama stayed with her youngest daughter, Sasha, during their visit to the area in 2010.