Entitlement to paid annual leave must be regarded as a particularly important principle of EU social law, a principle expressly enshrined in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. The right to paid annual leave cannot be interpreted restrictively.
The Court also points out that the purpose of entitlement to paid annual leave is to enable the worker to rest and enjoy a period of relaxation and leisure. The purpose of entitlement to sick leave is different, since it enables a worker to recover from an illness that has caused him to be unfit for work.
Paid annual leave is a fundamental right? Freedom of religion is a fundamental right. Freedom of speech is a fundamental right. Paid vacation time from work? Come on. I wonder how John Adams and Thomas Jefferson would have reacted if someone mentioned that vacations were also an inalienable right that was endowed by our creator? The right to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and to get paid while wearing a speedo on the coast of Valencia?
And of course it should not surprise you that the President of the European Court of Justice is Vassilios Skouris, a Greek judge.