For many, the first attraction on the Costa del Sol is its Mediterranean shoreline dotted with beaches, coves and panoramic views. Beach clubs, fish restaurants and chiringuito beach bars form a part of life here, and they stretch from Mijas Costa to Sotogrande, marking a succession of coastal zones each with their own ambience and characteristic charm. One such area is the New Golden Mile, so named for the luxurious resort hotels and residential complexes that line sections of its shoreline.
The New Golden Mile is a coastal area that extends between Guadalmina and San Pedro Alcántara (which fall under Marbella) to the east side of Estepona. It’s an area of very private beaches marked by fantastic views across the Mediterranean to Gibraltar and North Africa. A coastal pathway, which connects ever larger sections of it, will eventually link the entire littoral of the Costa del Sol – and already it provides a fantastic setting for those who stroll, jog, cycle and walk the dog.
Do so and you will come across some wonderful beaches, water sports facilities, outdoor exercising areas and also the opportunity to partake of the good life at beachside chiringuito bars, restaurants popular for their fish and seafood, as well as trendy beach clubs. Here is a selection of places to try.
Spiler Beach Club – Kempinski Hotel
The five-star deluxe Kempinski hotel and spa is a luxurious resort whose terracotta architecture by Melvin Villaroël creates an evocative seaside presence. Its beachside fine dining beach club is an exercise in quality and refinement, for those who like to enjoy style, service and relaxation by the sea.
Laguna Villa is a small but highly elegant beachside mall with Polynesian-inspired design. In addition to a number of boutiques and eateries, it is home to the charming Claro Beach Club and the more on-trend Puro Beach, both high quality establishments that blend food, drink and sunny relaxation, and do it with style.
More down to earth in the classic beach bar-restaurant tradition, Velerin is a delightful discovery not made by everyone yet. This wooden establishment right by the sandy stretches offers delicious Mediterranean fare at excellent quality-price value, along with a thoroughly relaxing setting ideal for family gatherings.
This iconic hippie chic beach bar in the classic Tarifa-inspired tradition has recently been transformed from the eternally popular wood-and-bamboo structure it once was to a new bricks-and-mortar restaurant a little further off the beach, apparently for ‘environmental’ reasons. Though the permanent structure looks all the more urban for it, unfortunately, with it has gone much of Sonora’s original charm.
For a more down to earth, affordable and authentic experience, try Cosmo Beach, a pleasant beach bar and restaurant that offers food and beverages served with a smile and at great value. There are no sun beds available, but instead a very natural and peaceful section of beach devoid of any pretence yet endowed with lovely views.
If you follow the leafy residential roads to this secluded beach club and restaurant you will almost have reached Guadalmina at the eastern end of the New Golden Mile. Salduna Beach has a stylishly understated air about it, with good cocktails and quality modern food that focuses on freshness. It’s a great place to meet and socialise, or simply snack in-between relaxing on your sunbed, and forms just one of a broad range of options in this section of the coastline.