JUST a stone’s throw away from Marbella’s Golden Mile sits the luxurious urbanisation of Guadalmina.
I was lucky enough to spend the summers of my youth at my home away from home, Guadalmina Alta. Some 15 years later and this quaint village-esque resort still boasts a neighbourly and tranquil atmosphere in an envious location.
It’s just five minutes from Puerto Banus and ten minutes from Marbella, while the charming old pueblo of San Pedro is a short walk away.
The development may have a tranquil exterior but don’t be fooled, it can still pack quite the punch. When you’re done sunning by the pool, try a round of golf at its sprawling 18-hole course, or get your kicks down at its famous cable ski – where thrillseekers are thrust around a scenic lake on a pair of skis or wakeboard.
The quality of its restaurants has also sky-rocketed over the last ten years. Boasting almost twenty, the variety ranges from the unrivalled Argentinian steak house La Rosa to the longest-standing spot for a traditional English breakfast, Tricky Ricky’s. The latest additions include a vegan cafe and a japanese wok spot.
Pop over the road from the restaurant front and you’ll find Guadalmina Baja, home to huge villas which wouldn’t look out of place in Beverly Hills.
If you’re there at the right time, you might even spot a celeb – ex-Spanish Prime Minister Jose Aznar is often seen jogging with his four brooding bodyguards, while the Princess of Monaco is also rumoured to live close by.
It’s no surprise then that the Spanish, Irish, British and otherwise, whether holidaymakers, expats or royalty, continue to set up shop here.
The food is exquisite, the scenery is stunning and everything you need is right on your doorstep.