Longoria, the village, ready for Longoria, the TV star

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The Independent Online

More than 400 years after her ancestors left for the Americas, "Desperate Housewives" star Eva Longoria can expect a joyous welcome when she visits the remote northern Spain village that bears her name.

The village of Longoria, home to around 60 people whose average age is 70, lies in the green hills of the Asturias region.

Eva Longoria plans to visit next month to retrace her roots back to the place which her ancestors are believed to have left in 1603 to try their luck in the Americas.

"The Longoria name comes from Asturias. I'm going to Oviedo (the provincial capital) with my parents in November. They've always wanted to see where our family came from," the 34-year-old US actress, who is married to French basketball star Tony Parker, told People magazine recently.

The announcement did not go unnoticed in Belmonte de Miranda, the municipality of which Longoria is part.

"We saw it in the press. We now want to know exactly when she's coming," said the mayor of Belmonte de Miranda, Roberto Perez Lopez.

"What's certain is that we will organise the best welcome possible for her. I was thinking about organising a reception and giving her the title of 'ambassador at large' of the village, and perhaps giving her a municipal badge," he told AFP.

"Her ancestor, Lorenzo Suarez de Longoria, took the name of Longoria from the village, as many immigrants at the time did. There are now a lot of Longorias, especially in Mexico and in Texas, like Eva's family."

One house that belonged to her ancestors remains, "the most beautiful and oldest" still in the village, and is now the home of a retired couple, the newspaper El Mundo said.

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