Even Michelle Obama's Vacation Stirs Controversy

The first lady and daughter Sasha will meet King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia.

August 04, 2010, 11:56 AM

LONDON, Aug. 4, 2010 -- First Lady Michelle Obama arrived in southern Spain with daughter Sasha for the start of a five night stay at a luxurious 5-star resort in Marbella. But this holiday is not without some controversy.

Just before her arrival, the State Department removed from its website a warning to African Americans about racism among Spanish police.

According to a version of Bureau of Consular Affair's Country Specific Information for Spain and Andorra that ABC News found cached online from last week:

"We have received isolated reports that racial prejudice may have contributed to the arrest or detention of some African-Americans travelling in Spain. Recently, two African-American U.S. Government employees were questioned by police in Barcelona for no apparent reason. One was detained and suffered physical injuries in the process."

The paragraph, in a section called Safety and Security, which also has information about the Basque terror group ETA and the 2004 bombings, was only removed in recent days after calls from Spanish media about the first lady's visit, according to British reports

Apparently the incidents of racial profiling took place over a year ago and the State Department is saying they are no longer relevant.

The Obama family's oldest daughter Malia, 12, is at summer camp, the first lady and her 9-year-old daughter, Sasha, are soaking up the rays in Marbella, located on southern Spain's Costa del Sol.

Residents of Marbella appeared to be excited that the two were coming to visit, posting a red, white and blue billboard that read, "Welcome Obama Family! Thank you for choosing Marbella!"

The first lady and Sasha are relaxing at the five-star Hotel Villa Padierna, situated in the mountains, boasting views of the Mediterranean and even the African coastline on clear days.

Michelle Obama Will Meet With King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia

The mother-daughter pair will spend four days at the resort, where rooms range in price from $330 per night for a standard double to $6,600 per night for a villa with private gardens. The Spanish media reported that 30 rooms have been booked for the Obama duo and their close family friends.

A destination of choice for Arab sheiks and Saudi princes, the hotel's design is reminiscent of an Italian villa, and it has the amenities to match its glamorous appearance. The resort offers three 18-hole golf courses, a racquet club with two tennis courts, access to a private beach club and a 21,000-square-foot spa.

The white-washed buildings, cobblestone streets and quaint boutiques of Old Town Marbella are just a 20 minute drive from the resort. There, you can see the works of Salvador Dali and Pablo Picasso at the Museo del Grabado. If you want to devote more time to Picasso, his hometown of Malaga is less than an hour away by car.

Michelle Obama is reportedly taking time out of her short stay to meet Spain's King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia.

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