Being fall in love of Marbella
Located on the Costa del Sol, in the stunning Andalusia, Marbella has been one of the best experience in Spain, along with Ibiza, Mallorca, Barcelona and Madrid. Every single city, village or region in Spain has its distinctive character, depicting a piece of a beautiful puzzle, so none of them can easily be replaced. With a shadow of melancholy for not being there now, I would like to share with you my fantastic experience in Marbella, putting away my thoughts and memories in this post on the best things to do in Marbella and its surroundings. There are many things to see and do in and around Marbella, and this makes it one of the best and most varied destinations in Spain. As for prices, however, do not be impressed by its reputation. Marbella is a luxury destination often compared to Saint Tropez, but the best part is that you can enjoy it without going bankrupt, which is a unique and extraordinary opportunity that not many destinations can offer.
Start with Puerto Banus, because this was by far my favorite experience in Marbella, or at least one that I’ve never experienced before. Puerto Banus is a marina located in the west of Marbella, a unique mix of nightlife, luxury cars, famous yachts and top shops. To make myself better understood by all those who have never been to Puerto Banus, I can tell you that in reality it is like a kind of opulent film scene, a place that most people dream thanks to movies. Without a doubt Puerto Banus has been a clear incarnation of luxury, that kind of good thing that you always believe cannot happen to you, like winning the lottery, for example. I do not even know how to start telling you about Puerto Banus, since it is definitely a place not to be missed. Puerto Banus is a playground for the rich and famous, where the side streets offer shops like Chopard, Roberto Cavalli and Hermès, while the streets in front are used by super luxury cars with custom Arabic plates, like a Batmobile or a white gold plated Mercedes.
I have seen many marinas during my travels in Europe and I have spent hours admiring the luxury yachts parked there, but I have never seen so many colorful fish floating around them as I have seen in Puerto Banus. It may have been the light underneath or perhaps some food coming out of there to lure them to show such a beautiful show. I could not understand it. However, besides the elegant yachts, the latest car models, the design shops, the variety of outdoor restaurants and the luxurious beach, there were also clubs.
Famous for its vibrant nightlife, Puerto Banus is a mecca for partygoers, as it boasts an incredible variety of bars, pubs, nightclubs and everything that offers alcohol. Paradoxically, the nightlife in this exclusive area was very different from the daytime: hundreds of tourists who crowd the streets, rich and poor, young and old, curious and not, all eager to immerse themselves in the lively atmosphere of this luxurious enclave. As in most of the Spanish tourist areas, there are dozens of “cheap bars” where partygoers usually take a couple of cheap drinks before the main party. Nevertheless, the area is full of special clubs that everyone wants to try at least once in their lifetime.
Marbella Old Town
The historical center of Marbella, or Casco Antiguo, is the sweetest memory. A place where I would like to live for the rest of my life. The charming old town boasts some of the most beautiful narrow streets I have ever walked on, enclosed by white buildings adorned with tiny flowered balconies and elegant boutiques on the ground floor. Plaza de los Naranjos is a collection of traditional outdoor restaurants and orange trees, things that seem to transform this place into a pleasure for all the senses. So, whether you choose to start a pleasant morning with a sweet orange fragrance and a Spanish Café with Hielo, or you want to watch the world while resting in the shade of a tree, you will find this enchanting and perfect little town. A real treat. As the sunsets, the calm atmosphere is over and Plaza de los Naranjos comes to life, transforming its decor into a vibrant scene of bohemian musicians playing their Spanish guitars for just a few coins, and barefoot ladies dancing flamenco among the tables. I could almost feel the pride and the passion in their eyes as I savored my delicious seafood dinner.
Located a few minutes drive from the center of Marbella, on a picturesque coastline, Nikki Beach is one of the best beach clubs in the world, but of course, I had no idea of this until I tried one. However, once arrived, it is not so difficult to realize it. Apart from the trendy atmosphere that floats in the air and the carefully chosen clientele, the thing that I liked most to be there is the fact that I tried all this without going bankrupt. First of all there is nothing in Nikki Beach that draws a clear line between ordinary people who spend their time on the beach eating homemade sandwiches and selected customers who usually arrive in their elegant yachts and take limited edition Champagne as if not there was a tomorrow. All swim in the same waves of the Mediterranean and sit under the same Andalusian sun.
I was lucky enough to be there during someone’s epic party because I had the chance to see with my own eyes how the rich and famous live and party. It was amazing! Shirts packed with drinks for a thousand euros, glamorous designer swimwear, the best DJs in the world, several journalists and dozens of yachts that shone in the sun. The fun part? We were a group of 9 people, and we had our party in their party, and it was great!
Marbella is not only nightlife. In fact plunging into the heavenly peace of the Bonsai Museum is a real pleasure. Thanks to its impressive collection, the museum is known as one of the best of its kind in Europe. The Bonsai Museum in Marbella is located in the Parque de la Represa, in the center of the city, and is a place for recreation for the whole family.
For most Europeans, Morocco is a different world, and booking a day trip from Marbella is almost mandatory. Think about it: arrive on another continent, sailing in the azure waters of the Mediterranean Sea, experimenting with new traditions, unusual tastes and sounds and different beliefs. This is certainly not something you do every day, but thanks to its location, Marbella offers you this opportunity, so you cannot miss it! The arrival of this trip from Gibraltar will be in Tangier, one of the historical cities of Morocco, and will include some wonderful places, a guided tour and a traditional meal. A great addition to your Andalusian holiday!
I admit I’m a shopping freak! I enjoyed shopping all over Spain, in fact I would put Spain at the top of my list of the best shopping destinations in the world. With the exception of some Spanish brands such as Desigual or Mango and the extravagance of the designers of Puerto Banus (Roberto Cavalli, Dolce & Gabbana, Chopard, Hermès, Louis Vuitton, Versace, Dior, just to name a few), Marbella does not really boast a great shopping area, but nearby cities like Malaga and Fuengirola are a paradise for every fashionista. Fuengirola is not too far from Marbella and you can get a bus to reach it without any problem. In addition to shopping, this town offers an enchanting beach, dozens of outdoor restaurants, a beautiful Moorish medieval fortress and a vibrant atmosphere.
The Seven in Puerto Banus was another landmark during my trendy holiday in Marbella. Beautifully designed in modern-oriental style, the Seven is a sort of “boutique club”, and certainly the best night club I’ve seen in Marbella. Not big or famous like Pacha, Space or Amnesia, the Seven has a unique personality. One thing that has particularly caught my attention was the music in the first place. I loved the way how house music was softened by live saxophone music, creating a very original and welcoming atmosphere. Then, I was fascinated by cocktails, and one thing I never thought I would say, I loved the women’s room. Yes, Seven has the most trendy women’s room in the world. Once inside, a lady offers to help you with anything. Also, the whole place looks like a beauty shop, with perfumes, cosmetics, hair products, accessories and everything at your disposal, you just have to put something in a bowl when you go out. Fabulous.