Hi guys! I´d like to start this, my new year message, by wishing all of our friends and the many fans and followers of MarbellaAzul.com a happy and prosperous 2017.
I would particularly like to thank all those people (you know who you are) who have helped us spread the word about the website since its launch in 2014. This year, our aim is to confirm MarbellaAzul.com as Marbella’s premier information website and build on the success of our events calendar, restaurant guide and the business directory.
We are of course extremely grateful for all your likes/shares and follows on social media and this year we will be developing our Facebook and Twitter pages to widen the website´s popularity.
We believe 2017 is going to be a great year for Marbella´s residents and our many visitors. It would be great if you join us on this amazing journey!
Thursday 23 July 2015 saw the official opening of the Ambrosia Gourmet Market in Puerto Banús, Marbella. More than 400 people atended, including Marbella Azul and RTV Marbella’s “Marbella Now” programme.
Marbella’s new mayor José Bernal, Manuel Garcia (Concejal de Fiestas) and Manuel Osorio Lozano (Concejal de Hacienda) were there representing the Ayuntamiento along with many other Marbellís lucky enough to get an invite to this prestigious event. Other attendees included the vice president of Malaga Ayuntamiento Francisca Caracuel and Patricio Baeza (Honorary Consul from Hungary in Malaga) offering support for one of Ambrosia’s partners who is Hungarian.
Ambrosia Mercado Gourmet will be opening for business in Marbella on 24 July 2015 at 09.00. It is located in Urb. La Alzambra in Puerto Banús, right next door to the Iceland supermarket and it will be offering gourmet and luxury food to all of Marbella’s residents and visitors. There is good parking and it even offers a children’s play área.
Ambrosia’s aim is to provide something of times past, making food shopping enjoyable again and enabling the customer to taste and learn about different foods from different countries whilst buying the produce and drinks.There are fourteen different areas offering Iberian specialities including meat, fish and a bakery. There will also be national and international delicatessens offering Japanese sushi, Thai cuisine and Iberian ham and cheese. There is also a cerveceria with indoor and outdoor seating offering food and cocktails.
A press conference was held at the Melior Vasari Business Centre in Puerto Banús today for the Ambrosia Mercado Gourmet owners Antonio Ortiz and Gabor Somlai to present their latest project. The event was attended by the new mayor of Marbella, José Bernal and Marbella Azul were there to bring you the news and images.
A carajillo is a Spanish drink that combines coffee with brandy or rum. It is thought to date back to the Spanish occupation of Cuba in the 16th Century when conquistadors combined coffee with rum to give them courage before going into battle – the Spanish word for courage is “coraje”.
There are a number of ways to make a carajillo. The simplest way is to pour brandy or rum into a cup of black coffee. Another popular variation is to heat the spirit with lemon, sugar and cinnamon and then add the coffee.
The Orange Tree Restaurant in Marbella’s Casco Antiguo (Old Town) has become a firm favourite with residents and visitors, returning time after time for this amazing fine dining experience.
You will enjoy the warmest of welcomes from owners Frank and Irene who opened the restaurant twelve years ago. You can dine inside the restaurant and enjoy its contemporary modern lines or outside soaking up the atmosphere of being right in the heart of the Old Town. The menu is both international and creative and it is changed every six weeks to keep it fresh and seasonal.
Becketts is a well established restaurant in the centre of Marbella and a dining venue popular with both residents and visitors. Opened in 2004, it has recently celebrated its 10th anniversary. In 2014, Becketts again received the Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence. Over the years, it has played host to a number of celebrities including Liam Neeson, Antony Worral Thompson, Rebecca Loos and Sir Alan Sugar.
Becketts offers international cuisine to an excellent standard under the watchful eye of chef and owner Marc Quinlan. They offer a wide selection of specials to suit all tastes and there is also a three course Early Bird menu between 6pm and 8pm.
The Playwright opened its doors in February 2011 following the success of its sister restaurant Beckitts in the centre of Marbella. The owners of this restaurant are offering a unique experience with fine food and regular entertainment. Judging by its popularity, they have clearly succeeded in both.
The Playwright is a great place to pop into just for a drink. There is a large whiskey collection, with some dating back to the early 1800s. Alternatively, you can enjoy a perfectly served pint of Guinness. Here, you can enjoy a delicious meal with a selection of wines carefully chosen by wine expert Charlotte Rodríguez. The food is freshly prepared daily by their award winning chef and his team. And, with the excellent entertainment, this is a great venue for a great evening.
Peperoncino is probably the most authentic Italian restaurant we have visited in Marbella. We love it and we have been there several times. Daniella, Fabrizio and her staff will welcome you warmly and they are extremely attentive. They will ensure that your visit is one to remember.
The restaurant is tastefully decorated and the tables are beautifully laid. The outside terrace is a great place to enjoy a typically Italian lunch or dinner. The lighting and the decor create a wonderful atmosphere. The starters are well worth considering. Everything is light and fresh, leaving room for home made pastas and an array of different sauces. You won´t have tasted flavours like it. They also offer a full menu of meat and fish dishes.
L´Angolinos is one of our favourite restaurants – during the winter and the summer. The owner has decorated it in a very individual way. Apparently, her favourite colour is purple and it features throughout the restaurant. The tables inside and out are beautifully laid out.
The inside is very quaint and a wonderful place to eat during the winter months. The walls are covered in interesting photographs. The terrace is shady and comfortable and the colour theme continues in the garden. There is even an old bicycle which has taken on the purple theme. The Menu del Día is excellent and very good value. It is three courses plus a glass of wine and a cup of coffee.
We were delighted to finally make it to Sloanes Bistro last weekend. This elegant restaurant in Elviria (a few kilometers to the east of Marbella´s town centre) offers a very intimate atmosphere and it really is beautifully decorated inside and on the terrace. It´s great in the summer and off season and there is clearly great attention to detail on the table settings.
We were given a very friendly welcome by Nicola and all of her staff. The menu is varied with seasonal specials and you can choose to have two or three courses at a set price – both good value for money. Presentation is clearly important and it arrives piping hot – especially the fish pie. We enjoyed all three courses.
We visited the American Bistro in Central Marbella last week. It was early evening, because this area gets very busy after 9 pm – particularly at this time of year. Av. Miguel Cano has recently been pedestrianized and it is now a very popular area of Marbella with a great atmosphere to enjoy a meal or a few drinks.
The American Bistro has a very varied menu and we will certainly be returning to try other ítems on the menu. On this occasion, I had fillet steak with fries – it was cooked as ordered and nicely presented. Roz had the steak wrap – it included strips of fillet steak, mushrooms, onions and peppers. It was so huge I had to help her out!!!
MarbellaAzul.com were delighted to be invited by Maureen and Laurence Benezra to view their newly opened gallery in Benahavis. It’s a modern gallery, located in a quiet residential area on the La Quinta Golf urbanization. The courtyard is a tranquil setting, complete with orange trees and a relaxing water feature.
The gallery is a bright and contemporary space housing an eclectic art collection of outstanding quality. We were given a very warm welcome by Maureen and Laurence. And we were delighted to see the care and attention given to the placement of every painting and sculpture.
MarbellaAzul.com’s Roz James was delighted to be offered an opportunity to interview the charismatic Sandro Morelli at his Villa Tiberio restaurant on Marbella’s golden mile.
Sandro bought Villa Tiberio in the late 1980s. It was a rundown villa with gardens resembling a wilderness. But, under the watchful eye of Sandro, the villa and its gardens were lovingly restored and the restaurant opened in 1989. Sandro suggested we have a look round the gardens before starting the interview whilst he gave his gardener some instructions concerning some new plants. The restaurant is surrounded by trees, palms and semi tropical vegitation covering approximately 6,000 square metres. As you wander the walkways, enjoying the cascading waterfalls and fountains and admiring the strategically placed statues, it seems like an oasis of calm in the centre of Marbella.
MarbellaAzul.com’s Roz James was delighted to have the opportunity to interview Kara Robertson from the Boardwalk in Marbella about the Costa Christmas Collections for 2016.
Kara is totally dedicated to her charity work. How she manages to fit everything in whilst running a successful restaurant and having a family life is a mystery. But thankfully, she does find the time with the help of her husband Gary Robertson, her sister Charlie and Sera Jane of Que-Será.
The Talk Radio Europe Telethon will be taking place again this year from 10 am to 7 pm on 25 November. You can hear the Telethon on your radio: 91.5 FM Costa del Sol East or 91.9 FM Costa del Sol West or 98.7 FM Gibraltar & Sotogrande or you can click here for TRE online.
MarbellaAzul.com caught up with Martin Nathan (Chairman of Talk Radio Europe) and asked him what we can expect from this year’s telethon and how people can participate.
We were delighted to have an opportunity to interview the charismatic María Bravo following the press conference for this year’s Global Gift Gala at the Hotel Gran Melia Don Pepe in Marbella. María, who was born and grew up in Marbella, is the co-founder of the Global Gift foundation which has raised $millions for worthwhile causes. She has been living and working in the USA for the last 27 years as an actress appearing in films and on TV. She is now more involved in production and her passion for philanthropy – effecting real change in the world.
On the 7th and 8th of September, three renowned Michelin starred chefs cooked together to create a 12 course culinary extravaganza at the 5* Kempinski Hotel Bahia Estepona. Jaume Puigdengolas from Skina, Diego Gallegos from Sollo and Mauricio Giovanini from Messina each cooked four amazing courses and Ana Núñez, Head Sommelier of Kempinski Hotel Bahia expertly paired them with wines.
Each dish was spectacular, and often surprising, such as the depth of flavour from the Sisho leaf and apple tartar from Skina, which managed to be both light, yet complex and was the first time most diners had sampled this Japanese leaf. Other highlights from Skina included Amberjack fish cooked in yogurt and served with textures of beetroot, a chestnut mushroom ravioli which was meaty and rich and full of umami, and their Yuzu snow which was both creamy and light and bursting with a citrus tang.
Internationally renowned artist Alexandra Spyratos very kindly agreed to be interviewed by Marbella Azul at the Kasser Rassu Gallery (opposite the Marbella Club on the Golden Mile) where she is exhibiting her work until 31 July.
Alexandra is currently exhibiting more than 20 pieces of her beautiful, bold canvases of African wildlife and you can visit the gallery from Monday to Friday 11.00 – 14.00 and in the evenings by appointment.
Lucy Faye has an amazing voice! She is without doubt one of the best singers working on the Costa del Sol at the present time. We were therefore delighted when she agreed to be interviewed by MarbellaAzul.com.
Zoe Louise is a popular performer in and around Marbella. As soon as she could walk and talk, Zoe Louise Hughes was singing, performing and entertaining her friends and family.
“I can’t go a day without belting out a tune!” she says. Zoe is a seasoned Marbelli. She holidayed here when she was young and she has lived here from the age of 11 when she spent a whole summer playing with a computer game and recording herself singing. She enjoyed it so much, she convinced her mum to send her for singing lessons. And she hasn´t looked back since.
Pablo Melgar is one of the best saxophonists in Spain. He is also known internationally. Pablo studied the saxophone from the age of ten at the Conservatory of Music in Málaga. Whilst there, he combined his musical studies with the practical experience of playing in the youth band “Miraflores Gibraljaire”. This helped him develop as a classical saxophonist.
In 1999, he left the band and took time out from his saxophone. He spent a period of time concentrating on different instruments – strings, percussion, keyboards, etc. This gave him a broader view of performance, composition and arrangement.
Paul (the Piano Man) Maxwel is an accomplished performer who performs regularly in Joy’s in Puerto Banús. He was born in Gloucester in England, but he has lived in Andalucía since he was a child. He now lives in Marbella.
He loves to entertain. His energy and enthusiasuim is legendary and he puts it all into every performance. He is a gifted pianist with a powerful voice enabling him to thrill his audience with a vast selection of musical styles. He never disappoints. Paul performs regularly at Joy’s in Puerto Banús and other Marbella venues such as the Marbella Club and the Hotel Puente Romano.
Mel Williams is a professional entertainer who has been working on the Costa del Sol for over 40 years. Mel arrived in Spain in 1974 to become Entertainments Manager for Holiday Club International. He continued working, preparing shows and performing for eight years before arriving in Puerto Banús where he worked the clubs and started to build a reputation.
In 1984, he opened his own beach bar (aptly named “Mel’s”) in San Pedro de Alcántara and then the legendary “Banana Beach”. He performed regularly at both places, along with countless other well known acts. But there is much, much more to this “Camberwell cockney crooner”!
Nikki Rae is probably best known on the Costa del Sol for her tribute to Adele. She has loved singing from a very young age. She was just five years old when she starred in her school´s musical. And she has been singing ever since. She says “When I sing, I forget all the problems life throws at you. I’m at my happiest when I´m entertaining people.”
Like many of us, Nikki first came to Marbella when she was a child. And it has always held a special place in her heart. “To now be living and working here and doing what I love best is something very special.” Nikki performs at a number of places on the Costa del Sol, including La Sala Banús. She is probably best known here for her tribute to Adele, but she also performs songs from the 1960s to the present day and loves singing ballads and soul.
Antony Wolfson is an internationally renowned vocalist living and working in and around Marbella. His success in Marbella is amazing! In less than 12 months, he was performing at the very best 5 star hotels most nights of the week.
He is currently resident entertainer at the Hotel Los Monteros, the Marriott Marbella Beach Resort, the Hotel Guadalmina Spa & Golf Resort and the Alanda Club Marbella. A check on Tripadviser will tell you how popular his shows are.
Eva Piñero has worked as a professional entertainer in the Marbella area for 13 years. Her career began when she went to London to learn English and shared a room with a dancer from Madrid who was working in Flamenco clubs. Eva’s life then changed completely.
She has a strong and vibrant voice that is full of passion. She captures the hearts of all of her audiences. Her parents and her six older siblings all love Flamenco. She grew up listening to the music and says it is in her blood. Her father was her biggest influence. Despite being Flemish, he passed his passion for the art of Flamenco on to Eva and her brothers. Eva is very adventurous and says travel is one of the best ways to grow personally and professionally, learning about different genres of music, languages and cultures.
Los Piratas are a Flamenco group working on the Costa del Sol. Over the last couple of years, they have been busy recording their first álbum and working on their repertoire. Los Piratas are José Antonio Fernandez Ortiz (Vocals), José Antonio Lobato Luque (Percussion) and Bernabe Lomeña Mena (Guitar) – three friends who have a passion for music and extend that passion to all who enjoy an evening with them.
There are hard working musicians at many venues in Marbella where they combine work with their busy family lives. Los Pirates create a party atmosphere with their music, playing current Flamenco and encouraging their audience to dance and sing. There is never a still foot or hand with Los Piratas.
Marbella was packed again this week with walkers from around the world arriving to take part in the 6th Marbella 4Days Walking – an event which originated in the Netherlands, where around 50,000 walkers take part in the Nijmegen Vierdaagse every year.
This year, the terraces of the Puerto Deportivo in Marbella came alive to the sound of a brass band playing an amazing selection of popular tunes. In addition, there was an evening fiesta in the Plaza de la Iglesia in Marbella’s old town offering a wide range of entertainment. MarbellaAzul.com was of course there to bring you all the news and images.
A beautiful September morning and a clear blue Marbella sky welcomed the cyclists to this year’s Día del Pedal at the Plaza del Mar terraces on Sunday. MarbellaAzul.com was of course there to bring you the news and images.
DJ music helped build the atmosphere for this wonderful event as participants registered and received their water bottles and nicely designed T-Shirts. It’s important to remember that this is not a race. It’s just a good reason to get together for a cycle ride around Marbella that is available to everyone. This year, a special circuit was set up at the Plaza del Mar’s entrance by the Ayuntamiento and the Association CADI for children and adults to try out the specially adapted bikes and handbikes.
The sun was shining here on Sunday as Marbella’s Paraguayan community gathered on the Paseo Maritimo in front of the tourist office to celebrate the 205th anniversary of Paraguay’s Independence. MarbellaAzul.com was of course there to experience the atmosphere and provide images for you to enjoy.
A large crowd gathered at midday to hear the opening speeches from representatives of the Hispano-Guarani Asociación. These were followed by the national anthem and a brief history of Paraguay by Pedro Emilio Zulín Rojas – Cónsulate General of the Republic of Paraguay in Málaga Miguel Luna,. Marbella’s minister of tourism then provided some words of welcome.
Saturday evening in Marbella seemed a little surreal, as the 501st Spanish Garrison of Imperial Stormtroopers marched through the streets to tremendous acclaim. MarbellaAzul.com was of course there to find out what was going on!
They started their march in the old town, crossed the Avenida Ricardo Soriano (passing basketball matches taking place on the main road next to the Parque de Alameda), headed south down Avenida Miguel Cano and ended up by the La Mafia Restaurant in Avenida Antonio Belón for a photocall with Star Wars fans.
We were as usual delighted to be invited to this year’s La Sala by the Sea “White & Gold Party” on Friday, the traditional start to Marbella’s summer season. The invitation promised a great atmosphere, live music and much, much more including canapes from their Thai inspired menu.
From the minute we arrived, the invitation started to live up to its promise with music from DJ Scott Strutton filling the night air. The venue was of course decorated with white and gold. Vases of pure white feathers and crystals adorned the tables and there were crystal and feather lights hanging overhead with white and gold sails around the central bar.
The International Folklore Festival returned to the terraces above the Puerto Deportivo in Marbella for the sixth time on 15 April. It is always a firm favourite with residents and visitors, bringing traditional dance, colour and energy to Marbella from around the world. MarbellaAzul.com was of course there on all three days to bring you the best images from this wonderful festival.
The opening ceremony took place on Friday evening and it was attended by Karina Parra (Director of the Festival) and Miguel Luna (Marbella’s Head of Tourism). This year’s festival was even bigger than last year, with a total of 21 groups from 12 countries and over 600 participants.
St Patrick’s Day Weekend in Marbella began with the weather not being quite as kind as it could be. But, as usual, the luck of the Irish soon came through and the clouds parted just as the festivities began. MarbellaAzul.com was of course there when Marbella’s Mayor José Bernal Gutiérrez arrived to offer his support for the event and the Irish Association’s very hard working organiser Tom Jennings from the Golfer Bar.
When he arrived it was raining heavily and there was a cold wind, but we all managed to find a good dry spot for the photo call. Attending with the Mayor was Oti Gª Díaz-Ambrona from the International Residents Department and Miguel Luna from Tourism.
German residents and friends celebrated the 25th anniversary of the reunification of Germany here in Marbella on 3 October 2015. The party celebrating German Unity Day (Tag der Deutschen Einheit) was again held in the centre of Marbella on the Paseo Maritimo in front of the tourist office, next to the Glorieta fountain. It was arranged by the Ayuntamiento de Marbella and the German Lions Club.
There was a wonderful turnout and the canapés were delicious. There was traditional German food, desserts and of course plenty of beer. The entertainment this year was more mainstream with many favourite songs from the 1960s and 1970s. Honoured guests Count Rudi von Schonburg and Princess Marie Louise of Prussia enjoyed the entertainment and meeting up with old friends.
Another Día del Pedal organized by Bycivic and the Delegación de Deportes Marbella took place in Marbella on Sunday 20 September 2015.
The meeting point was again on the terraces above the Plaza del Mar in Central Marbella and MarbellaAzul.com was of course there to soak up the atmosphere and bring you some outstanding images. This event has become extremely popular and this year’s Dia del Pedal certainly didn’t disappoint. There were literally hundreds of participants on bikes of all shapes and sizes. There were competitors of all ages, with some hilarious costumes and coloured wigs – as you will see below.
This weekend (17-19 April 2015), the terraces above the Puerto Deportivo (Marina) in the centre of Marbella came alive with the sound of traditional music and dancing from around the world.
The fifth Europealia International Folklore Festival opened on Friday and continued through Saturday and Sunday. Groups from Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Columbia, Germany, Ireland, Scotland, Venezuela and several other countries provided great examples of traditional national music and dance.
This year´s St Patrick’s Day weekend in Marbella took place on 14/15 March on the Puerto Deportivo terraces. The terraces above Marbella´s Puerto Deportivo (Marina) were once again transformed into a little bit of the emerald isle from midday to 7.00 pm on Saturday and Sunday. And the party undoubtedly continued well into the night in the many sponsor bars and restaurants throughout Marbella.
This is the third year in a row that Marbella´s Ayuntamiento (Town Hall) has provided an opportunity to celebrate St Patrick´s Day with the support of the council´s Foreigners and Tourism offices. This annual event is always a weekend to remember.
Saturday 11 July 2015 is an important date for your diary. The Luks Marbella Fashion Awards & Summer Gala is being held at the H10 Andalucia Plaza Hotel in Puerto Banús. Make sure you book early to avoid disappointment – you will find booking information below.
This night promises everything you would expect from a Marbella Gala – an International Fashion Show, live music, great food and awards. It is certain to be a wonderful night under the stars in the hotel’s stunning gardens. Marina Nitzak, the founder of Luks Marbella and Johnnie B will be co-presenting the evening. The dress code is Black and Gold Glamour. The public can vote from 5 – 26 June. There are 7 categories and you can find all the information and images to help you make your decision and cast your votes Click here.
On Saturday 19 December, the Carrera del Pavo (the Turkey Trot) returned to Marbella.
The race started just after 16.00 next to the Parque Alameda and the competitors completed several laps of the circuit up and down the Avenida Ricardo Soriano in Central Marbella. You will find some images below and there are more on our Marbella Gallery page:
The annual Marbella Half Marathon was held this year on Sunday 27 September. It was a beautiful sunny day in Marbella – not too hot, but ideal for running a half marathon. The competitors arrived at the Palacio de Congresos just before 10.00 am, picked up their numbers and headed for the start line.
This year, the organizers achieved their registration limit of 2,500 runners two weeks before the day of the race. Runners from Marbella, Andalucia, many other regions of Spain and other European countries took part. The event began in Calle Jacinto Benavente. The competitors headed towards the Old Town, then down to the Paseo Maritimo and onto Puerto Banús. They then returned to Marbella, finishing on the terraces above the Puerto Deportivo.
The official presentation and press conference for this year’s Senior Masters Cup took place on 21 September at the Puente Romano Beach Resort & Spa. MarbellaAzul.com was of course there to bring you all the information about the tournament and images of the competitors.
The presentation was attended by John McEnroe, Yannick Noah, Sebastian Grosjean and Albert Costa along with the mayor of Marbella Jose Bernal, the Secretary for Sport of the Junta de Andalucía Antonio Fernandez, Director General of the Puente Romano Beach Resort & Spa Jorge Manzur and the 1966 Wimbledon champion Manolo Santana.
The Farm (also known as El Pozo Viejo) is located in a very special house in Marbella’s old town. It was originally built in the 16th century and it was the home of Marbella’s first Mayor. Owners Maria and Elio have established a restaurant in this historic building, enabling visitors to experience their passion for gastronomy.
But, this house is much more than just a restaurant. Inside, you can still see the splendour of the original building with its sturdy wooden beams and the original hand painted ceramics along the staircase leading to the upper floor – which still houses a small chapel.
Our Space Marbella is opening on the 1st of February in the Oasis Business Centre on the Golden Mile with a glamorous launch party. The event will run from 7-10pm and include networking, drinks and canapés, great entertainment, a chance to tour the centre, find out about coworking and meet the team. The event is free to attend and all members of the Costa del Sol business community are welcome.
Our Space Marbella promises to be a breath-taking hybrid of exceptional office services and boutique, collaborative coworking provisions. The centre will provide Marbella based entrepreneurs with 500m2 of futuristic work space, fantastic facilities, a strong business network, corporate wellness and professional development opportunities. As part of the launch they are also offering the first month totally free of charge, to allow businesses to try out coworking for themselves.
MarbellaAzul.com’s Roz & Derek James were delighted to receive an invitation to the official launch of the new Our Space co-working venture at the Oasis Business Centre on Marbella’s Golden Mile on Wednesday evening.
On entering the impressive foyer, we enjoyed a welcome glass of Cava poured in a unique way. A young lady, supported by a ribbon suspended from the ceiling, poured Cava into glasses while upside down.
On Saturday 21 January, María Bravo was given an honorary award at the “We are one” gala in Stockholm, Sweden. This award is given to philanthropists for their exemplary work around the world to change the lives of vulnerable people.
The Oasis Dental Practice is welcoming patients again at its brand new clinic in the Elvira Medical Centre. The clinic, which was originally established in 2010, has evolved into a dynamic partnership of two talented dentists, Dr. Nina King and Dr. Sacha Miller-Wojtan, who together bring almost 30 years of international experience.
The multilingual dentists and support team provide patients with a caring and comfortable service in their own language, from Spanish and English to Danish/Swedish or Norwegian. The clinic offers general and cosmetic dentistry services, including cleaning, whitening, white fillings, crowns, bridges, implants and veneers.