Marbella literally means ‘beautiful sea’ in Spanish.
It is no small wonder that Marbella is the constant subject of the world’s society gossip columns. It is the coasts (and one of Europe’s) most jet set havens.
The old town has small boutiques, whilst the main high street of Marbella centre has an excellent selection of shops, from Zara and Mango to Armani and Gucci!
The whole town provides a truly excellent selection of restaurants and cafes, together with some of the finest tapas bars in Andalucia.
By night the atmosphere becomes even richer as another side of Marbella comes alive. In the town centre, typical Marbella chic can be seen, alongside Spanish families fully enjoying their town.
The Old Town (Casco Antiguo)
From the remains that can be found at several excavations in the area, it is known that the old part of Marbella (known as old town or Casco Antiguo) is built upon Roman ruins. The Orange Square (Plaza de los Naranjos), in the old part of Marbella, is surrounded by three historical buildings: the Town Hall (dating back to 1568), the Old Governors House (dating back to 1552) and the first Christian church in Marbella, the Hermitage of Santiago (dating back to the 15th Century). In the centre of the square is the bust of King Juan Carlos I.
Other places to visit – the Church Square, where you will notice a tower that formed part of the wall that originally surrounded the Moorish town; the Church of Saint Mary regularly used to stage a number of classical music concerts.
The shrines throughout the town are also interesting and varied. The smallest one, built into a 500 year old house, can be found on Salinas street; the largest one (located near the main church) houses a carving of Saint Barnabe, the towns patron Saint; the highest one is built into the façade of the town hall itself, looking out to Orange Square; the oldest one is found on Buitrago street; the newest one is found on the corner of Pelleja street and what is probably the most photographed one is thought to be the balcony shrine of the Virgin of Sorrows in Virgen de los Remedios street.
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