SPAIN The saga of the El Algarrobico Hotel at Cabo de Gata, Almería, has been going on for years. It was built totally illegally at a time when the government seemed to say 'anything goes' in the heyday of the country's building boom (the one that is now the cause of such desperate economic measures). The local town authorities, who gave it a permit in 2003 despite knowledge that its construction was not following the then current 1988 coastal protection laws ('no construction at less than 100m of the coastline'), appealed a ruling of last year that declared it illegal. But the Supreme Court ruled yesterday that it is an illegal structure. According to El País, Mar Moreno, the Andalusia government’s chief of staff, said the regional administration was waiting for the green light from the courts to “take a shovel and knock down the building.” If memory serves well, the Junta once took the position that everything was okay, and hoped it would open soon. Let us hope this is not a case of plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose ('The more things change, the more they stay the same').