Once the private residence of Prince Alfonso von Hohenlohe, a scion of Bavarian royalty, this luxurious beach resort has been the domain of the jet set since the 1950s. The parties held in the Champagne Room were the stuff of legend; think playboy princes rubbing silk-clad shoulders with Hollywood A-listers. A mere stone’s throw from Marbella’s yachting hotspot, glitzy Puerto Banús Harbour, the Marbella Club is now a must for luxury holiday makers.
Nestled among dark pines and ancient olive groves, the Marbella Club is distinctly Andalusian. The white-walled villas and Mudejar ornamentation blend seamlessly with dust-scorched terracotta tiling, a tribute to the region’s rich history of Moroccan artistic production.The retro-chic rooms are light-filled and expansive, the simplicity of the decor enhanced by lavish marble bathrooms and sweeping ocean views. The scent of jasmine and orange blossoms wafts from the hotel’s botanical gardens, long-cultivated by the Prince himself. Expect the royal treatment, as befits a place that once hosted the descendants of Aragon and Castile.
The Marbella Club boasts multiple dining experiences, for all occasions. Guests can enjoy classic French fare (silver cloche and all) on The Grill’s candlelit terrace or opt for lunch at the elegant MC Cafe. After dark, the Champagne Room is a must; A favourite of Brigitte Bardot and Grace Kelly, this bar exudes art deco glamour. One can sip Dom Perignon and dance in the glow of the mosaic fireplace, or simply people-watch from velvet banquettes.
Although high glamour is de rigueur, there are more relaxed options. Head to the Summer Bar for sundowners or enjoy the hotel’s own chiringuito, a rustic beach bar serving sea-fare straight from the ocean.
There is a host of exciting activities on offer, from world-class golfing facilities to a seasonal water sports itinerary. We recommend a romantic ride through the Sierra Blanca mountains, courtesy of Club Marbella’s luxury equine centre. For those less sports-inclined, head over to the spa and wellness centre for invigorating Thalassotheraputic treatments.
Best by Boat
Drop an anchor at Puerto Banús, which has moorings for yachts up to 85 metres and anchorage for larger boats. The marina has also recently expanded its catalogue of high-level services for up to 915 visiting yachts with draughts of up to seven metres.