How it started
Once upon a time after the Spanish Civil War, before Marbella turned into one of the much-loved destinations of the super glam by the power of influence, this fisher-mans village went into a deep crisis and had to start from scratch as the rest of the country. Nowadays, thanks to several visionaries who were able to foresee the extraordinary potential for tourism and foreign investments from this area, Marbella is today known as one of the best-preserved old towns of Andalucía.
Marbella’s spectacular transformation began in the 40s, when in 1943 the Marquis of Ivanrey, Ricardo Soriano arrived and founded the Venta y Albergues del Rodeo. A residential complex with an adjoining housing estate, copied from a rustic bungalow idea from the US, was to set an example for the tourism of the future. That was the first time when artists like Edgar Neville, Conchita Montes, and Antonio “El Bailarîn”, felt attracted to visit the area. In order to accommodate all the visitors, the city was transformed and developed, all the housing estates were redesigned and as a result, the price of land went sky high. Nevertheless, in order to create a luxury resort capable of attracting the super-elite it takes more than a good marketing campaign. Its beaches, high and slim palm trees and the sun provided the perfect backdrop for an exclusive inner circle of influential people of the time.
In 1954 the Marquis of Ivanrey tighter with his nephew Prince Alfonso of Hohenlohe-Langenburg acquired two estates in the area, one of which became the infamous Marbella Club Hotel, being attracted by all kinds of famous people from international movie stars, European aristocratic families, artists, and fashion icons. By then Marbella was already synonymous with glamour and class and the destination was firmly positioned on the map for the Jet Set.
The epitome of elegance
In 1970, Don Josê Banús arrived in Marbella to set the designing and build the most vibrant and largest leisure complex that had ever existed in Spain until then. Its inauguration was attended by many famous names including Hugh Hefner, director Roman Polanski, Prince Rainier, and Princess Grace of Monaco. It was a huge micro-project named “Puerto Banus” which was known as the chicest street of the city as it included several hotels, golf courses, discos, and a yachting harbor. Today, the charm of Puerto Banus is still considered as one of the most vibrant areas of Marbella, where you will lose yourself between supercars, luxury boutiques, trendy restaurants, and influential people.
Images that are immortalized forever
Slim Aarons who photographed Marbella in the 60s, 70s, and 80s, is known for capturing the life of the elite in action in Marbella, as it happened. It is these moments captured forever that most epitomize the old-school glam of Marbella.
Nowadays, when you access the Marbella’s most exclusive gems as in The Marbella Club Hotel, you will still see the same as what Slim Aarons captured 50 years ago. Effortlessly chic people having delicious drinks in resort outfits living their best life. Stroll down the promenade of the “Milla de Oro” and you’ll feel it in your own skin. Discover the Puente Romano’s Owner’s Club and some expensive hotels and complexes as El Fuerte, el San Nicolás, Guadalmina or Salduba, Los Monteros, and Don Pepe the most fines places, for the most exclusive people.
For the last quarter of a century, Marbella has been the outright leader as far as foreign investment in Spain is concerned. This natural paradise is complemented by some of the world’s best leisure infrastructures; from one of the most complete and fascinating golfing infrastructures in the world and attracts a lot of top quality sailing vessels to its yachting harbor. Trends come and go, Marbella is as close to paradise as you can get on earth for those that want to experience a star-studded holiday while authentic Spanish flavor flows through the veins of the town for those travelers who appreciate some really ancient cultures.