August 24, 2016 No Comments

Marbella – Is It Really So Expensive?

Since the 1950s, Marbella is a town popular with the international jet set and celebrities. This has no doubt pushed property prices and living costs up over the years, when compared with other towns in Spain. However these days, while property prices and the cost of living are still on the higher end in Marbella compared to towns like Torrevieja or Guardamar del Segura, you can find some great properties very reasonably priced if you go a little further inland.

Average asking prices for towns across Spain

Marbella is on the Costa del Sol in Malaga, Andalusia, and as well as being a popular spot among the rich and famous, it is also a mecca for boat and yacht enthusiasts and even more so, golfers. Nearby Puerto Banus is a favourite tourist location with many mega yachts and cruise ships visiting throughout the summer.

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Puerto Banus

Marbella sits on the Mediterranean coast, with a stunning background of the Sierra Blanca Mountains, which are home to eagles, falcons, hawks, vultures, badgers, foxes, rabbits, deer, wild goats and cats, among other wild animals, and an enchanting array of flora.

A number of Roman ruins and other archaeological sites show that the area was popular and well-inhabited even many centuries ago; in fact the history has been dated as far back as the seventh century BC.

Average Spanish Property Prices

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Things to Do and Places to Visit in Marbella

Marbella is one place where no one need ever need be bored, as there is so much to see and do. Nature lovers can fill their time exploring the mountains and natural parks, or the Dunas de Artola; a protected natural beach containing an array of natural flora like sea daffodils, sea thistle, marram grass and caudate juniper.

The region of Malaga is home to some stunning golf courses and golf resorts, tennis clubs, riding stables and other sports facilities, while the coastal towns are magnets for water sports enthusiasts.

In Marbella’s old town, visitors can wander round the Barrio Alto and Barrio Nuevo, and the historical city walls. Much of the old walled city remains the same as in the 16th century; with the centre square housing the Renaissance style town hall; built by Catholic monarchs in 1568 and the combination Gothic and Renaissance style Mayors House; which has frescoed murals in the interior and a Mudejar-styled roof. Also in the square is the oldest church of the city; the Chapel of Santiago, which in fact predates the rest of the square, and is believed to date back to the 15th century.

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Marbella old town

Other churches in the city are the 17th-century Church of Santa Maria de la Encarnacion, and the Capilla de San Juan de Dios; with buildings also worth a visit including the Royal Hospital of Mercy Hospital Real de la Misericordia, and the former Hospital Bazan which is now home to the Museum of Contemporary Spanish Engravings.

In the Barrio Alto visitors will find the Hermitage known as Ermita del Santo Cristo de la Vera Cruz, which was originally built in the 15th century and expanded in the 18th century.

The richest area in the region is known as the Golden Mile, which is actually 4 miles between the town of Marbella and the smaller Puerto Banus; which is known to have the highest percentage per capita of luxury limousines than anywhere in the world, and houses the famous Palace of King Fahd, as well as some of the most well-known and exclusive hotels in the area.

The nearby El Angel Botanical Gardens displays three separate styles of garden; dating back as far as the eighth century, and Marbella has three very important archaeological sites in the Roman Baths of the Vaults, the Christian Basilica of Vega del Mar, and the Torre de Las Bovedas watch tower.

In the Las Chapas district, close to the mouth of the Rio Real, lies the Rio Real settlement; which is believed to be Phoenician from as early as the eighth century BC.

Along with the beautiful beaches, sports facilities including golf courses and horse riding, and all the historical places of interest; Marbella also offers an array of bars, bodegas, cafes, restaurants and nightclubs to entertain even the most energetic partiers.

Getting to Marbella from the Airport

The local airport at Malaga is 51.2 km from Marbella, or about a 40 minute drive on the motorway (toll road).

There is a reliable local bus service which runs at least every hour and sometimes twice an hour depending on the time of day. The journey takes approximately 45 minutes from Malaga airport to Marbella bus station and costs around 6.50 euros per person, although families and groups may be entitled to some discount. There is a ticket office outside as passengers exit the Terminal 3 Arrivals Hall, where tickets must be purchased before boarding, but after 8 pm this office is closed and the driver will accept fares.

Marbella Weather

Marbella enjoys an average 2,900 hours of yearly sunshine and average temperatures of 18°C annually, in a microclimate protected by surrounding mountains. It is unusual to see snow in this area, except on the very high mountain peaks, while average annual rainfall is around 6280/m.

Relocating to Marbella

The easy access of the town and the large number of expats living in the area makes Marbella a popular location among those looking to retire or live and work abroad. There are employment opportunities in Marbella, with the real estate market being a focus for many.

Seasonal work can be found in the many hotels and bars in Marbella and surrounding towns, and with a high number of affluent homeowners with properties in the area, foreign residents are able to earn extra money supplying services such as gardening, pool maintenance, child-minding, etc. The new port that is currently under construction in Marbella will bring many employment opportunities to residents once it is completed in 2018.

While property prices may be high compared to other resorts in Spain, if you are prepared to live a little inland or in one of the nearby villages, you will find accommodation more pocket-friendly while still being in the close vicinity of the Costa del Sol’s playground for the rich and famous.

Check out Unicorn Estates to discover a wide range of fabulous properties in Marbella and the surrounding areas.


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