Area Guide Marbella

MArbella Area Guide

It’s without a doubt that Marbella is one of the most well-known and glamorous destinations on the whole of the Costa del Sol – and perhaps in Europe. Marbella’s reputation extends beyond its beaches, prestigious resorts, and lively nightlife. Beneath the surface lies a rich and diverse tapestry of cultural and historical heritage that is waiting to be explored.

With a diverse mix of nationalities amongst its population, which now sits at over 155,000 people, Marbella covers an area of almost 177 square kilometres, making it one of the largest municipalities on the coast. Its larger-than-life nature is what makes the area so attractive to both residents and tourists alike. With its extensive 28 kilometres of pristine beaches and an extensive array of amenities including upscale shopping, sports facilities, and other indulgences, Marbella offers a lifestyle like no other on the Costa del Sol.

Located in and around the municipality of Marbella are four prestigious sports marinas, a remarkable selection of 21 golf courses, and a myriad of tennis and padel clubs, catering to enthusiasts of various sporting endeavours. Enhanced by its upscale dining establishments, boutique shopping, and rejuvenating spas and resorts, Marbella is a real haven of sophistication and relaxation, making it a prime choice for discerning travellers and residents seeking an idyllic retreat in the heart of southern Europe.

You might be mistaken for thinking that Marbella is strictly all glitz and glamour, but there is so much more that this area has to offer. Take a stroll and stop for a drink around the old town area, with its orange trees and narrow streets, or soak up the atmosphere around Plaza de los Naranjos, one of Marbella’s most famous squares, packed with bars and restaurants. Don’t forget to make your way to the Mercado Municipal de Marbella (Municipal Market), featuring a hearty mix of fresh ingredients, delicious foods and handcrafted goods. There truly is something for everyone in Marbella!

Marbella Area Guide

Marbella’s Location

Marbella is one of the most well-served resorts for transportation on the coast, with an extensive transportation network that serves both the municipality itself and the wider area, connecting you to the rest of the Costa del Sol with ease.

Málaga-Costa del Sol International Airport (AGP) is just 40 minutes away by car, and the smaller Gibraltar Airport (GIB) is just over an hour away, with both airports providing convenient connections to the US, UK, Europe and internal flights within Spain.

For those looking to explore Andalucía, as well as the rest of Spain, Málaga’s Maria Zambrano rail station offers rail connections to a range of destinations around the country, including Seville, Granada, Madrid, Barcelona and many more.

Local train lines seamlessly connect the western Costa del Sol with the heart of Málaga, with planned expansions set to enhance this mode of travel even further.

Marbella’s bus station, towards the north of the town centre, offers a wide range of services over the Costa del Sol and beyond, including destinations such as Benalmádena, Estepona, Fuengirola, Granada, La Línea and Gibraltar, Ronda, Seville and Torremolinos.

Marbella and the entire Costa del Sol are well-connected by modern motorways, including both toll and public roads such as the AP-7 and the more scenic N-340 (A-7), which runs along most of the coastline.

Marbella’s History

Marbella’s history dates back to the Paleolithic era, with significant influences from the Romans, Visigoths, and Arabs. After being taken by the Catholic Monarchs in 1485, the town expanded beyond its walled castle enclosure. In the 19th century, it became a hub for the iron and steel industry, but faced economic challenges until tourism revitalized its economy in the mid-20th century.

The city underwent a dramatic transformation in the 1940s and ’50s to accommodate to growing numbers of tourists, attracting investors like Alfonso de Holenlohe and José Banús, who developed projects like Puerto Banús. In the 1980s, major Arab investors further contributed to Marbella’s growth, with King Fahd building a palace and the construction of the Marbella Mosque. Today, Marbella stands as a testament to its rich history and ongoing development as a premier destination.

Areas in Marbella

Marbella East

The eastern region of Marbella boasts popular developments like Cabopino, Las Chapas, Elviria, El Rosario, Los Monteros, Río Real and Marbesa. Los Monteros and Las Chapas emerge as prime destinations, boasting expansive plots and secluded surroundings. El Rosario has blossomed into a sought-after community that offers superb local amenities for locals, as well as a growing reputation for luxurious private villas. Meanwhile, Elviria stands out for its abundance of conveniences and services, including many bars and restaurants, as well as high-end hotels and beach clubs. Marbesa offers residents peace and tranquillity with its beachside location, with a myriad of facilities just a short drive away. Cabopino boasts some of the best beaches on the Costa del Sol, with its incredible dunes and charming port area, lined with plenty of bars and restaurants. Families here benefit from proximity to esteemed educational institutions such as the English International College and Colegio Alborán, alongside some of Marbella’s best beaches.

This side of Marbella is also home to renowned establishments such as Nikki Beach and the luxurious 5-star accommodations of Hotel Don Carlos and Hotel Los Monteros. Golf enthusiasts can indulge in world-class experiences at premier courses like Marbella Golf and Country Club, as well as Santa Clara Golf, making it an ideal area for both relaxation and recreation.

Properties in the east of Marbella vary widely and include luxurious and opulent villas, contemporary apartments and penthouses, townhouses, and country houses and villas inland.

Marbella Town

With a different vibe to other areas within the municipality, Marbella town is a metropolitan area that offers the best of both worlds. Whether you’re looking for a city landscape or more traditional Spanish vibes, you’ll find a great mix of both here.

Connected to the seafront promenade by the central Alameda Park and the Avenida del Mar adorned with captivating Dali sculptures, the Old Town is steeped in rich heritage and cultural allure. Meanwhile, the expansive seafront promenade, stretching from Bajadilla Marina in the east to San Pedro de Alcántara in the west, offers a picturesque route for leisurely walks, spanning around 15 kilometres. Towards the western end of Marbella, elegant tree-lined boulevards host some of the city’s finest apartments, accompanied by a plethora of amenities including shops, sports facilities, health centres, and gourmet restaurants, ensuring a vibrant and convenient urban lifestyle.

Marbella’s Golden Mile

The Golden Mile is the epitome of luxury within Marbella’s esteemed real estate market. Serving as the opulent thoroughfare linking Puerto Banús to the heart of Marbella’s town, it is revered as the domain of the affluent. Here, beachfront penthouses and villas are secluded within their own lush grounds and offer unparalleled views over a secluded stretch of the Mediterranean coastline, enveloped by illustrious hotels such as the iconic Marbella Club and Puente Romano.

Renowned for its grandeur and extravagant ambience, this district serves as a vibrant hub for the global elite, comprising high-profile entrepreneurs and royalty, who indulge in a sophisticated lifestyle. From relishing culinary delights in Michelin-starred restaurants to indulging in pampering sessions at esteemed spa centres, the Golden Mile offers a plethora of daytime diversions, including unwinding at exclusive beach clubs.

As night falls, the scene transforms into a playground for revellers, with exotic nightclubs beckoning guests to let loose. Additionally, luxury shopping experiences await in Puerto Banús’ premier designer boutiques, while leisurely strolls along the marina provide yet another avenue for relaxation amidst the bustling cityscape.

Sierra Blanca

Situated at the foot of the iconic La Concha Mountain in Marbella, Sierra Blanca is one of Marbella’s most prestigious residential areas. This gated community offers unparalleled views of the coast and the mountains and is often called the ‘Beverly Hills’ of Marbella, and for good reason.

Sierra Blanca is renowned for its timeless Andalucían style, boasting picturesque traditional mansions set amidst expansive gardens within each property. While Mediterranean charm permeates the area, the influence of Sierra Blanca’s diverse international community is evident in the architectural styles of many homes. In recent times, there has been a notable shift towards modern design aesthetics. Residences in this upscale urbanization typically exude regal elegance, featuring a minimum of three floors, private gardens, and swimming pools.

Sierra Blanca often attracts high-profile individuals and celebrities seeking privacy and sophistication. The peace and calmness, coupled with the fact that Marbella is just moments away by car, is what makes this area a real gem.

Cascada de Camoján

Nestled amidst the foothills of the iconic La Concha mountain, Cascada de Camoján is one of the most prestigious areas on the Costa del Sol. Here, grandiose luxury villas, many boasting panoramic views of the sea stretching toward Africa, are contained within expansive plots enveloped by serene pine forests, offering the coveted seclusion sought by discerning homeowners.

This coveted privacy does not entail isolation—a rarity in the realm of opulent residences nestled within sprawling gardens. Properties within Cascada de Camoján are highly sought-after by a discerning international clientele, as they lie just a short drive from the vibrant amenities of Marbella, along with the renowned restaurants and golden beaches of the esteemed Golden Mile. Moreover, the allure of Puerto Banús, renowned for its designer boutiques, bustling nightlife, and luxurious yacht moorings, is easily accessible from this prestigious enclave.

Puerto Banús

Puerto Banús is the ultimate playground for the affluent and those yearning for luxury living. Renowned around the world as the capital of luxury, this upscale marina boasts a collection of the Costa del Sol’s trendiest boutiques, vibrant nightlife venues, and exclusive dining establishments, catering to discerning tastes and extravagant lifestyles.

Ever since its inauguration in 1970, Puerto Banús has drawn inspiration from the charm of Mediterranean coastal towns in its aesthetics, but its ambience is undeniably international. Created as a haven for luxury yachting and indulgent shopping sprees, it stands as Marbella’s flagship endeavour, elevating the city onto the global stage.

Due to Puerto Banús’ smaller size in comparison to other areas nearby, properties often come at a premium and are mostly comprised of luxury apartments. However, you may find the odd villa dotted around the area.

For more information on Puerto Banús, please head over to our Puerto Banús Area Guide.

Nueva Andalucía

Just a stone’s throw from Puerto Banús, you’ll find the laid-back locale of Nueva Andalucía. The area is rich in amenities, featuring a great selection of fine dining options, as well as more relaxed establishments, perfect for a coffee date or a lazy lunch. It’s also home to the Marbella Arena, the former bullring, which has been transformed into a multidisciplinary space with the ability to hold concerts and events, as well as a commercial zone that plays host to a selection of restaurants and other services.

You’ll find a vast range of properties in Nueva Andalucía, everything from modest apartments to sprawling villas. It is perhaps one of the most diverse property portfolios in all of Marbella.

For more information on Nueva Andalucía, please head over to our Nueva Andalucía Area Guide.

San Pedro de Alcántara

Heading towards Estepona from Marbella, you’ll be transported back in time upon reaching San Pedro de Alcántara. The most noticeable difference here is the traditional Spanish atmosphere in comparison to its neighbours, enjoying a more authentic Andalucían vibe thanks to its iconic white-washed houses. The town centre provides the perfect setting to experience authentic Andalucían life, accompanied by a diverse array of shops and services. From charming boutiques to essential amenities like pharmacies and clinics, opticians, and banks, the town ensures convenience at every turn.

In recent years, San Pedro de Alcántara has become a hotspot for dining and socialising, boasting a vibrant culinary scene. The old town is packed with tapas bars, cafes, and traditional restaurants, while the Boulevard and Paseo Marítimo areas offer a diverse selection of gastronomic delights, ranging from Spanish and Italian to Korean, Argentinian, and much, much more.

Unlike other areas of Marbella, San Pedro de Alcántara offers a diverse range of properties, including many that are more traditionally Andalucían style properties, as well as contemporary apartments, townhouses and villas. The property choice here is extensive!

For more information on San Pedro de Alcántara, please head over to our San Pedro de Alcántara Area Guide.

To find out more about Marbella in general and the frequently asked questions about Marbella, head over to our Why Buy in Marbella page.

Why buy with Winkworth?

When considering real estate ventures in the vibrant municipality of Marbella, Winkworth is your premier choice. With a rich legacy of delivering unparalleled service and exceptional results, Winkworth offers a personalised approach tailored to each client’s unique needs and aspirations.

Our team of seasoned professionals brings a wealth of experience and intimate knowledge of the local market, ensuring that every transaction is executed seamlessly and efficiently. Whether you’re seeking to buy, sell, or invest in Marbella’s dynamic property landscape, Winkworth is your trusted partner every step of the way, dedicated to achieving your goals and exceeding your expectations.