Wednesday, 9 July 2014

FM40 TRAVEL - My Favourite Places in Marbella

We have been visiting Southern Spain for many, many years and our favourite places are detailed in my posts from last year, here and here. We still favour our two favourite beaches, Trocadero and Aurora and the beach club El Anlca. All three are more traditionally Spanish, run by Spanish families and suit us as a family (rather than Champagne spray parties that take place at Ocean Club  I will leave that for the young ones my Pangea and Nikki Beach days are well & truly over.) I do think the setting of Ocean Club is fantastic and if I was to come with the girls then maybe.....but then again I don't fancy sunbathing in a full face of make up and breathing in all day, so maybe not.

Here are my favourite places to frequent (or wish to - in the case of the Hotels) in Marbella,  

Beaches & Beach Clubs

Trocadero is located in the heart of the golden mile a 2 minute walk from Marbella Club Hotel, it's décor bears a blend of African, Balinese and colonial touches. You can either rent out a sunbed on the beach or relax on the comfy sofas that are on the periphery of the restaurant or just dine in the restaurant. On weekends the cool factor is raised with a live DJ with chill out music perfect for a lazy day sunbathing. Culinary offerings are delicious including traditional paellas and risottos ( the blue lobster rice is a classic) fresh fish and seafood delights, the Thai style fresh fish being a favourite of ours, not to disappoint meat lovers there are plethora of charcoal grilled meat dishes. 

We really love the ambience of the place and the friendly attentive waiters ( who all adore children and make a fuss of them and even nicer when they recognise them with a big welcome! ) I would always recommend to book if you wish to dine during busy times. During the summer school holidays there is a craft lady who makes things with the children at a small charge and can give you 2 hours of peace.


This is located just past Puerto Banus in front of the Los Granados apartments, again just a nice beach they have made improvements this summer with new beds and that come with a fresh towel, which is great with two children, less things to cart down to the beach. Beautiful kept restaurant and bar area, with fresh flowers and vintage hanging hearts. 

We had this amazing paella on our last day at Aurora. 

El Ancla 


This place is a beautiful setting, I fully reviewed this last year, here. I as said then we read about this place in the Sunday Times travel section, 50 things to do before you for die about 2 years ago, "eat paella at El Ancla", however I would say the clams are a must!

Sitting on this terrace to eat with the sea views are just breath taking.

Villa Tiberio

One of the best known restaurants in Marbella, located on the golden mile next door to Marbella Club Hotel. This Italian restaurant is set in glorious roman gardens with a picture gallery wall of all its famous diners. You are always guaranteed a evening to remember (even spotting a celeb or 2 ) with a very attentive front of house team including the owner Sandro Morelli.

Another restaurants I would recommend, Serafina which is in the prestigious  Puente Romano Hotel, it is run by Sandro's sons Marco and Carlo. Serafina looks divine, we went for a drink in the Puente Romano Hotel before going to Villa Tiberio and next time we go to Marbella we are definitely going to eat there, having had past wonderful experiences at Marco and Carlo's previous restaurants.

I must say the improvements the Puente Romano Hotel have made to their quality of choice in dining are excellent with the addition of Spain's 2 Michelin star chef  Dani Garcia and Serafina now sitting along side their famous Suite and Sea Grill.

Los Bandidos
This is located in Puerto Banus itself (next door to Louis Vuitton) This is for a special evening I would say not totally children friendly, if your children are over 6 I would say fine. It serves the best of European cuisine and is fabulous for people watching. I would say booking is a must to avoid disappointment.

For children friendly casual dining well you can never go wrong with Picasso's again situated in the port.

If money was no object Puente Romano Hotel and Marbella Club Hotel would be my choice of Hotels.


I was very excited to see the middle of the front line of the Port getting some glamour and class back with some top named shops such as; Maje, Escada and Hoss Intropia.

But I do love the markets for fresh fruit and veg,

and how cute are these Liberty print espadrilles I spotted at the Market, would look so cute on a teenager with denim cut offs.

No trip to Marbella would be without a visit to the Old Town,

I absolutely love wondering around the little streets and our favourite fresh restaurant is there, cant miss it, the menu is tiled on the wall outside ( just don't be put off by the Coke Cola plastic chairs, we love fresh fish in Spain especially our children who cant get enough of  Almejas and Gambas )

We always seem to go to Old Town on a Sunday night which I love as its busy with Marbella people who have been to church and spill out onto the cobbled streets and then wander for a bit of Tapas.

See you next time Marbella.

Annmarie xx


  1. Lovely post Anne Marie and I am always amazed at how people go to the same place but see it so differently. Some great recommendations for us this year, after going for ten years and sometimes more than once a year, I am amazed I have never heard of some of these places but am determined to break out from the pool area this year! and explore a little further. I must admit I would never go back to Picasso again after two bad experiences and will still fit in a visit to La Sala for the pork belly xx

    1. Thanks Sharron, I forgot you had a bad experience at Picasso. Break away from the pool area..... We never went to La Sala this trip. x

  2. Ooh this post makes me long even more for our summer holiday Annmarie. We've never been to Marbella but if we do I now know where to visit! It sounds & looks as if you had an amazing holiday.
    Jane xx
    My Midlife Fashion

    1. You go to my other favourite place Majorca. x

  3. Thank you for the wonderful little tour around Marbella Annmarie! You have definitely sold these lovely places to me! xx

  4. Sounds lovely and so different to the Marbella I visited many years ago. One question, how do you keep the children entertained? I'm not sure my young son would be able to sit through nice restaurant dinners.... etc? I don't want him to be glued to the iPad!

    1. To be honest we didn't go out in the evening that much ( we have the luxury of staying at a family members apartment, so we BBQ a lot this holiday) - my 4 year old is excellent in Restaurants, however the 22 month not so good she gets restless and doesn't want to sit in the hairchair. So we did lots of beach days at beaches that had good restaurants and dined there about 5ish. The nights we did brave it, sticker and colouring books and my little boys phonics flash cards worked a trick! The I-Pad only comes out in an emergency!!! x

  5. Great trip report Annmarie. Haven't been to Marbella in years but would love to go back. The beach restaurants look fab!

  6. Love, love Marbella.We stay in a resort near-ish to Marbella and love to visit. We have been going for years and years (kids love it too) with lots of family and friends but sadly this year it is not to be. Everyone is off doing their own thing :(. I will miss it terribly. Hubby and I may have to plan a trip later in the year. Great recommendations!!!.x

  7. Oh it takes me back, we went here when my eldest was 4 months old and he is now seven! He was asleep in the buggy every night when we had dinner, and it was such a special holiday! Must go back now that I've read this fab post xx

    1. Oh I remember that pushing them around with the blanket thrown over the pram......fab. now its a different story! x

  8. Looks fabulous....have been to Spain loads of times but never visited Marbella.My daughter was there two years ago and loved it:) Hope you are enjoying the week!
    ~Anne xx

  9. Just fabulous. Stunning photos! Lynne x


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