Courtyard Cleaners Win Trips to Canary Islands

Moscow's 21 best courtyard cleaners have been awarded a vacation to the Canary Islands, City Hall said Monday.

The winners of the annual contest "Best Moscow Courtyard" will enjoy a two-week rest on the Spanish islands in the Atlantic Ocean in the first quarter of 2011, an unidentified source in City Hall told national news agencies.

Also in that time, 12 winners of a contest for the city's best agency chiefs will be treated to a vacation in the Czech resort Karlovy Vary.

The city-sponsored vacations will cost 4 million rubles ($130,370), the reports said.

The winners were selected after a three-stage contest between January and August. Their names were not released Monday.

Contacted by telephone, City Hall spokesman Igor Pergamenshchik merely said that Mayor Yury Luzhkov would officially award the winners at a ceremony Thursday.

Known as dvorniki, from the Russian word for "court," the cleaners perform work both inside and outside apartment blocks.

They are typically recruited from among the city's thousands of migrant workers from Central Asia.

In the meantime, City Hall also awarded the southwestern Obruchevsky district with the title of "most comfortable district," the reports said.

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