Tag Archives: cinema

Seville | Film Festival 2015


The 12th Sevilla Festival de Cine Europeo (SEFF 2015) comes to town on Friday, November 6, for a nine day stay until Saturday, November 14. The primary organisers are the Institute of Arts and Culture of Sevilla (ICAS), and the Institute of Cinematography and Audiovisual Arts (ICAA), with the support of the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union. It aims to bring together performers and professionals from the world of cinema, with journalists and critics, financial providers and the general public, and to showcase the best of contemporary European cinema.

The core of the Festival is the competitive sections of different categories of films. The main Official Section is for the year’s most important new European films, the winners receiving the Gold (first prize) and Silver (second prize) Giraldillos. Among the films on show will be “Bitter Well”, “Berserker”, “Toxic Love”, and “The Foreigner”. Other sections include New Wave and New Wave non-fiction for new talents and fringe cinema, short films, Spanish cinema and cinema for younger viewers. There will also be awards for Best Actor, Actress, Director and Screenplay. The principal venues will be at Cines Sur in Nervion, the Alameda Theatre, and the Lope de Vega Theatre, where you will also be able to see special screenings, tributes and retrospectives.

There will be opportunities for roundtables and seminars with leading figures from the world of European cinema, and exhibitions and concerts with cinematic themes.

For lovers of cinema planning to visit the festival we still have a range of quality holiday apartments available in the historic centre of Seville.

Seville European Film Festival 2014

seff 14 cartel-001
painter Curro González evokes Fellini for this year’s edition of the SEFF

Friday November 7 sees the beginning of the 11th edition of the Sevilla European Film Festival, an annual celebration of the best of European cinema, which will run until November 15. It’s a meeting place for professionals from all parts of the industry – writers, critics, actors and producers – as well as for the public, who have an opportunity to see something of the film world in action away from its most commercial aspects, and to interact with film-makers in forums and round tables.

The core of the festival is the competitions for best films by categories. Most important is the official section award, the Gold Giraldillo, won last year by Alain Guiraudie’s Stranger by the Lake, but there also documentaries, short films and new-wave sections, among others, and awards for best actors, directors and scripts. Nominations for the European Film Academy Awards are also made during the festival. In addition there are lots of special screenings, retrospectives and tributes, and cinema for children and young people to foster both imagination and critical perception.

Principal venues are the Teatro Lope de Vega, Teatro Alameda, Cines Nervión Plaza and CineZona Sevilla Este, and the full program can be found here.

If you’re here for the whole week it’s well worth renting one of our apartments, and giving yourself a comfortable base for all your sightseeing and film-going.

Seville | Things to do When it Rains

Although Seville enjoys around 300 days of sunshine a year, from time to time, particularly in winter – for example, like this week – you can get relatively long spells of wet weather. But it would be a shame to let that spoil your holiday, so we’ve come up with a list of suggestions for things to do for those rare occasions when the sun isn’t shining.

rainy plazaPlaza de la Alfalfa

Go to the cinema
The Avenida 5 Cines complex in Calle Marques de Paradas shows current movies in original versions. Curl up with your favourite stars and never mind the weather. Check the programme here (it changes every Friday).

The Museum of Fine Arts
One of Spain’s most important art museums with works by all the Spanish old masters including local boys made good Velazquez and Murillo. It’s in a lovely old building that was once the convent of the Order of Merced Calzada de la Asunción. Well worth taking a couple of hours.

The Cathedral
The Cathedral is on your list anyway, and you don’t want to waste good sunshine time indoors, so visit it now. It’s the biggest Gothic cathedral, and third largest church, in the world, but it isn’t just big, it’s actually rather interesting, with the tomb of Christopher Columbus, lots of gold, and a stuffed crocodile.

eating in the rainGo Shopping
Another of those activities that normally keeps you indoors when you’d rather be outdoors. Take advantage of the fact that everyone else is still at home to shop in peace. You don’t even have to buy anything unless you really want to.

Tapas Bars
Find a nice cosy tapas bars and order up a round (or two) of food and drinks. Sit where you can watch the poor unfortunates outside hurrying past with their umbrellas, and feel suitably smug because you’re on holiday. Or put your own umbrella to good use like this fellow and defy the elements.

The Antiquarium and Encarnación Market
Going topside may not be so great in the rain (though there are some nice bars up there), but going down under the “mushrooms” in the Plaza de la Encarnación takes you to the Roman ruins and museum. Marvel at the mosaics, columns, walls and wells while listening to the rain on the roof. If you’re there in the morning you can also take a stroll through the Encarnación market on the main level. This will work up your appetite ready for lunch.

Stay at Home
It may be the last resort, but you’re staying in a warm, comfy veoapartment, and there’s something primevally satisfying about being indoors and listening to the rain outside. So grab a book and a glass of wine, turn on the telly and settle down for an hour or two. The sun will be out soon enough.

Seville | How To Beat The Heat

Metropol Parasol in Plaza Encarnación

It’s barely midday, and already the thermometer is reading meltdownºC. The sun is shining relentlessly, and even the mad dogs have called it a day. Well, okay, it’s not that bad, but Seville does get seriously hot in July and August, and even though you’re already wearing sunscreen and loose clothing and drinking lots of water you’re probably thinking this is a good time to be doing something that doesn’t involve walking around in the mid-afternoon sun. How right you are, and here are a few tips for things to do.

First, and perhaps most obvious, is to find a nice air-conditioned bar and order up a round of one, or both, of those two Sevillano summer staples, Gazpacho and tinto de verano (summer wine). Gazpacho is a cold tomato and cucumber soup, thickened with softened bread, that has been called the “Spanish coca-cola” by super-chef Dani Garcia. An alternative is ajo blanco, a cold soup made from ground almonds and garlic, that has been around much longer than the introduction of tomatoes from the new world. Tinto de verano is a mixture of red wine and fizzy lemonade served over ice, usually with a slice of lemon. It’s like sangría but lighter and more refreshing, and won’t mark you out as a tourist.

Second, go shopping. Not the sort of shopping that involves struggling around with half a dozen heavy bags, but the sort that involves taking advantage of the fact that the shops are air-conditioned to browse as much as you like without having to buy anything (unless you really want to).  Nervión Plaza and the various El Corte Inglés department stores are perfect for indulging in a little retail therapy in air-conditioned comfort.

Take in a movie. The Avenida 5 Cines in Marques de Paradas shows films in original version – and is air-conditioned throughout.

Museums and monuments. The Alcázar palaces and gardens offer plenty of places to take refuge from the sun. Or you could try the Archaeological Museum and the Museum of Popular Culture in the late afternoon, and stroll back through the Maria Luisa Park as it starts to cool down in the evening. Casa Pilatos has shady gardens, and Casa Lebrija a cool Sevillano style patio. You get to look at some cool stuff, too.

If you have kids, the Isla Magica theme park has lots of watery rides and other amusements. A bit pricey, but there’s a discount for only going for the afternoon.

Ice-cream. There are several good ice-cream shops to choose from, including a Ben & Jerry’s in the Campana, but for the best locally made ice-cream in town head for Rayas next to Plaza Cristo de Burgos or Fiorentina in Zaragoza street.

In the evening take advantage of the breeze at higher altitudes and visit one of Seville’s rooftop bars. Roof, atop the Hotel Casa Romana, has a nice eclectic menu and views of the city centre and Metropol Parasol. Both the Doña Maria and the Fontecruz hotels have great views of the cathedral where you can enjoy a cocktail and watch the sun go down.

Of course there’s no place like home, and cooling off in your own veoapartment swimming pool.