Sep 292012

Here in San Sebastian, today marks the end of a weeklong international film festival established in 1953. Locals are all a twitter with celebrity. A three star Michelin restaurant is around the corner from our accommodations and according to the young concierge who checked us in, numerous “famous” stars were noted going in for dinner as she waited for the bus. One Spanish couple in a pintxos bar, apparently well lubricated with Rioja, wanted to believe that I was Jaime Lee Curtis so enthralled with cinema are they.

The historic charm of San Sebastian is based on it’s building boom and popularity with European royals who spent summer months here throughout the last half of the 19th century. This “Belle Epoque” continued as Spain’s Queen Maria-Christina installed her summer court in the local Miramar Palace on the bay. Evan Franco spent 35 summers on this Bay of Concha always referring to it only as San Sebastian, never Donostia, its Basque name. Throughout World War I moneyed Europeans took refuge here enjoying luxury hotels, casinos and theaters.







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