King Felipe Renounces Juan Carlos I’s Inheritance
King Felipe VI has renounced his rights to his father, the retired King Juan Carlos I’s inheritance and has withdrawn the latter’s stipend paid to him from the Royal household. The Rex Emeritus receives €200,000 a year before tax, since the 82-year-old father of the current monarch has continued with as much Royal duty as his health and age allow since he abdicated in favour of his son in June 2014.
HRH Felipe’s main reasons for doing so are the result of the anti-corruption prosecutions having opened an inquiry into an alleged donation of €65 million from a foundation based in Panamá, linked to Juan Carlos I, to an account in the name of German former aristocrat Corinna zu Sayn-Wittgenstein. A Countess by marriage, but no longer so since her divorce in 2005, the businesswoman now known by her maiden name of Larsen is, or was, a close friend of the retired King of Spain; although speculation has been rife in the media for many years that there was more to it than mere friendship, but this has never been confirmed.
In October, the Swiss prosecution required Spain’s National Court to provide audio footage of a meeting between Corinna Larsen and former commissioner José Villarejo in London in 2015 in connection with Juan Carlos I’s accounts in the central European country. Villarejo had been remanded in custody in November 2017 for spying or blackmail. Swiss prosecutors believed that US$100 million paid by Saudi Arabia’s King Abdul Aziz al-Saud ended up in an account in Panamá in the name of the Lucum Foundation via the Middle Eastern monarch’s accountants in Switzerland, Dante Canónica and Arturo Fasana, whom they believed to be ‘front men’ working for Juan Carlos I.
Spain’s anti-corruption prosecution had launched a probe into possible back-handers for awarding the job of building the high-speed AVE rail line to the holy city of Mecca to a consortium of Spanish companies, back in 2011. It was then suspected Juan Carlos I had transferred €65m of this US$100m to Corinna Larsen back in September 2012, at around the time the retired King suffered public revulsion from the Spanish public after being photographed hunting elephants in Botswana.
Felipe VI has also agreed with his father that he will no longer receive his annual payment as a Royal – €194,232 before tax, which also has to cover his expenses, such as staff wages. His outgoings will be less since he formally gave up his public duties as a Royal in June last year – even though he still works in a private capacity for charities of which he is patron. Despite his stipend being stopped, Juan Carlos I will still retain his condition as a Royal and will still go by the title of ‘King’.
The Voice’ Presenter To Leave His Worldly Goods To Underprivileged Children
Jesús Vázquez, a popular Spanish TV presenter has stated in his will that his entire estate will go to underprivileged children. He has been involved in charity campaigns and events lately, including working with the United Nations’ High Council for Refugees (UNHCR), for which he is a goodwill ambassador.
The 54-year-old from Ferrol, Galicia has also worked with AIDS charities and for children at home and in the third world. According to a recent interview with the magazine Pronto, the X-Factor and Bake-Off Spain presenter wants to know that, after he is gone, children who most need it ‘will have a new school or health centre or hospital because of him’ which will ‘help them to have a better future’.
Murcia Is Home To Europe’s Biggest ‘Hanging’ Swimming Pool
Europe’s largest and the world’s second-biggest overhanging swimming pool has opened in Murcia at a height of 30 metres (98′ 5”) above ground.
Designed by Manuel Clavel, the artist himself was the first to take a plunge when it was officially opened to prove it was safe – but it is still not necessarily recommended for those with ‘no head for heights’.
At 42 metres in length – half of which is suspended in mid-air, jutting out from the front of the building – the only larger one of its type on earth is the Marina Bay Sands infinity pool in Singapore, on the roof of the hotel.
The one in Murcia is at the Odiseo Leisure Centre; a casino with a restaurant and bar on the city’s main Avenida Juan de Borbón and which is run by the Orenes Group. Although it looks much taller, the Odiseo building is five storeys high, not including the two lower-ground floors used as a car park. Its iconic swimming pool has cost €30 million to design and build and is expected to attract at least 300,000 visitors in the first year alone. This said, it has not been confirmed how much will be charged for entry, but it will certainly be one of the safest and most fun ways to take a rooftop selfie!