The grief-stricken parents of a nine-year-old girl who died after eating ice cream in Costa del Sol had only just checked in, according to reports.
The British schoolgirl suffered an apparent severe allergic reaction to the holiday treat on Saturday and died at a hospital in Malaga, Spain, two days later.
It has now emerged the family had been at their beachside resort in Mijas for a mere couple of hours before tragedy struck.
The parents, who are understood to be travelling with two other children, had flown out to enjoy a half-term break.
After checking in to their accommodation, it is believed the family dumped their bags and took a short trip to a nearby shopping centre.
Is is here the unnamed youngster is understood to have eaten an ice cream and gone into anaphylactic shock.
The devastated parents are now being comforted while they make arrangements to repatriate their daughter’s body.
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They have been offered counselling by managers at Club La Costa World, a sprawling holiday resort overlooking the Med a short drive from Fuengirola.
A well-placed insider said: "The girl’s poor parents had only just arrived at the resort the day the tragedy happened.
"They checked in just after midday, dumped their suitcases and went off to a nearby shopping centre.
"She was suffering when she got back to the resort but it was only when they sat down for something to eat when they returned that she really started to fill unwell.
"They decided to order a takeaway up to their room instead but things took a turn for the worse before they left the restaurant.
"Staff intervened and gave the girl first aid while an ambulance was called."
Another source said: "The family are still at the resort and are being offered professional support.
"They are obviously suffering immensely.
"The complex is packed with Brits at the moment because of it being half-term back in the UK.
"They were looking forward to a family holiday in the sun and they’re struggling terribly to cope at the moment. It’s all so fresh they’re still in a state of shock."
It was initially reported the drama had happened on Friday, although a spokesman at Costa del Sol Hospital near Marbella where the girl was initially admitted later said the alarm had been raised on Saturday evening.
The youngster, who the resort said was eight before confirming later she was nine, died on Monday afternoon at the Materno Infantil Hospital in Malaga.
A local paper said she was allergic to milk and nuts.
A spokesman for the Costa del Sol Hospital, where the girl was first taken, said: "She was admitted on Saturday evening with anaphylactic shock.
"She was revived and transferred to the Materno Infantil Hospital in Malaga around midnight the same day."
A well-placed source said he believed the youngster had gone into cardiac arrest after being rushed to the hospital.
A spokesman for the hospital in Malaga where the youngster died, added: "A nine-year-old foreign girl died at this hospital on Monday afternoon.
"She had been transferred here on Sunday. That’s all the information I have."
A spokesman for a regional emergency response coordination centre confirmed the alarm was raised just after 9pm on Saturday.
He said: "We took a call at seven minutes past nine on Saturday evening from a hotel resort in Mijas saying there was a girl who couldn’t breathe.
"The patient, a nine-year-old girl, was taken to the Costa del Sol Hospital."
Although initial local reports pointed to the girl eating the ice cream at her holiday complex, resort managers later issued a press statement saying she had eaten it elsewhere.
A spokesman said: "CLC World Resorts & Hotels would like to offer its heartfelt condolences to the family following the loss of their daughter on 18th February 2019.
"Having eaten ice cream at a local commercial centre, the nine-year-old girl suffered a severe allergic reaction.
"Despite the best efforts of doctors, CLC World staff and the emergency services, the young girl was placed on life support but subsequently died.
"CLC World Resorts & Hotels would like to thank its staff and emergency services for their quick and appropriate responses and continuing support for the family at this difficult time."
The nearest shopping centre is Miramar Shopping Centre in Fuengirola, but managers there have not been able to pinpoint the premises where the youngster is thought to have eaten the ice-cream and it is not clear the business believed to be involved is even aware of any problems.
A judicial investigation has been opened by a duty court in Malaga.
Court sources were unable to offer any information on Wednesday on the state of the ongoing probe.
It was not immediately clear if the girl’s parents have any grounds to file a formal complaint over the incident and have already done so.
Regional council officials said they were not in a position to make any immediate comment.
A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesman said: "Our staff are supporting the family of a British girl following her death in Spain, and we are in contact with the Spanish hospital services."
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