Andalucian Colours at Kasser Rassu

Kasser Rassu Gallery will be showing the latest works by German artist Sandra Meiland this Friday, September 18 in the exhibition Farbreisen (A journey into Andalucian colours)

Born in Germany, Sandra has worked in Spain, Canada, Iceland and Portugal, transforming the culture and colours of the places she visits into her mainly abstract paintings.

After her latest series of paintings in the dramatic landscapes of Iceland, Meiland deals with the equally emotional landscapes of Andalucia in Farbreisen.

Farbreisen opens at the Kasser Rassu Gallery, Blvd. Principe Alfonso de Hohenlohe, Edifio Centro Expo, from 8-11pm on September 18. For more information visit

Kung Fu Corrida

When you think of the art of the bullfight (and I’m using that word advisedly, trust me) you think of the apparent grace of revered matadors such as Manolete, the mere mention of whose name makes ancient aficionados go all misty eyed.

And they have to be pretty ancient, as the great Manolete met a sticky end from the business end of a bull called Islero in the 1940s.

At a bullfight in Marbella this summer, however, matador Morante de la Puebla showed that bullfighting is apparently embracing martial arts. The bullfighter was celebrating the third kill of the afternoon when an anti-bullfighting protester ran shirtless onto the bloodied sand.

This enraged Morante to such an extent that he charged, somewhat like a wounded bull, at said protester, leaping into to the air and delivering a kung fu kick, à la Bruce Lee, at him.

(As an aside my own karate skills are more akin to Loose Brie than Bruce Lee, but I digress).

The startled and winded protester was then nabbed by a combination of police and bullfighters and bundled off.

I think that this move could mean the start of an exciting new phase of the “noble art” and can’t wait to see the next 500-kilo fighting bull that Morante comes up against. He’s bound to prove how manly he really is by getting rid of all that cape and sword business and taking the bull on, unarmed and using only his new-found martial art skills. After all, the Chinese are a growing market for all things Spanish, so this Kung Fu Corrida could be the next big thing.

I’m not holding my breath though!

Food Aid for refugees

Responding to the the humanitarian crisis across Europe, a Marbella-based group is organising Food Aid and accepting donations for the refugees in Kos, Greece

The donations will be transported to a Gibraltar based Charity called Help the Syrain Refugees in Kos – Gibraltar. From here they will be sent to the organisation Kos Kindness to help the refugees currently stranded on the island of Kos

The donation event takes place on Thursday September 17 in the large car park opposite the Daidin School in Benhavis between 2-4.15pm.

Those unable to attend the event can still drop off donations before the September 17 at Funky Forest in Benamara, Nell G's Cafe in Benavista, Wonderland Playskool in San Pedro, and Galaxia in Guadalmina.

Items most needed include

long life foods such as rice, pasta, tinned foods etc

warm clothes, jackets and coats, shoes and trainers

blankets, duvets, sleeping mats and sleeping bags

nappies, wipes and toiletries

baby bottles and anything baby related

A full list of items needed can be found on the Food Aid Facebook page Food Aid/Ayuda alimentaria

Please make sure that items are boxed with a clear list of what in in the box written on the outside. The Charity simply doesn't have time to sort through bags.

On the day itself Food Aid will be selling cakes made by Purple Cakes and there will be face painting for the kids, while Planet Marbella will be doing its bit and driving the items collected to the charity in Gibraltar.

Marbella 4Days Walking - Get on the good foot!

Marbella 4Days Walking will be celebrating its fifth anniversary this year.

From October 8 - 11 , thousands of participants from around Europe will take to the streets of Marbella to take on the challenge of walking routes of 20 or 30 km per day for four days, exploring Marbella in a very different way and meeting new people - all part of the 4Days Walking experience.

In order to open up the event to both residents and visitors alike, there are special 6km routes for children and families on Saturday and Sunday and participants can choose to join for one or more days to enjoy the experience.

Completing the challenge of walking 80km in just four days is a no mean achievement and those participants will be awarded with a medal at the end of the event.

The first edition of Marbella 4Days Walking took place in 2011 with 658 participants, more than doubling in 2012 to 1.552.  This year the organisers expect more than 2,500 participants and are encouraging more residents of Marbella and the Costa del Sol to get involved and represent Marbella’s vibrant community.

Starting and finishing at Las Terrazas del Puerto Deportivo, in the centre of Marbella each day, there will be entertainment, live music, refreshments, stands and a great atmosphere from 12.oo-17.00 and everyone is welcome to visit the area and enjoy the fun.

Participants can register to take part in the event on the website for a cost of 40€ for 4 days or 12.50€ per day. Children can take part in the shorter weekend routes for just 2.50€, with accompanying adults walking for free.


The Bald Truth

Being a well-known baldie that sports a beard, I was delighted to be invited to the opening of The Barber Club during the summer.

Set up by Jon Stretton – Knowles (He of Life on Marbs fame/infamy), the venue describes itself as a barbershop, coffee lounge and spa, with private memberships offering massages, facials, spray tans and even protein shakes. The place looks great and the team of barbers seem to have stepped off the chorus line of Sweeney Todd, so I'm sure that the venture will do well amongst the 'Marbs' Himbo crowd all wanting to get their trendy tonsorial tendencies in tip top shape.

It's not the cheapest place on the planet to get a haircut though, with memberships starting at €100 a month. Skinflint that I am, I've tried shaving my head in the privacy of my own bathroom, but the result invariably ends with me hacking out a sizable portion of the back of my scalp off with the misnomered 'safety' razor. So to ensure that the ensuite doesn't resemble an out take from Saw, once a month I visit, Said, my Moroccan barber just off the main street in Marbella.

The whole process, complete with discussion about the Premier League, normally takes about 15 minutes and costs less than a tenner.

The best bit, however, is at the the end when, having made me look like Yul Bryner, my barber then massages balm into my scalp. It's the nearest I get to a spa treatment.

Unfortunately, he was busy on my most memorable visit, so his willing nephew took charge of shaving my dome. All was well and good, and the process was almost over. I sat back in the chair blissfully awaiting the application of soothing lotion.

The nephew, however, did things a little differently.

Rather than balm, he grabbed what I can only assume is North Africa's best selling men's cologne – Tuareg Nights or some such - and slapped it on my head. Not only did it make me sit bolt upright with a yelp, but it also turned my bonce bright red. And two days later I still couldn't get rid of the scent, with all of my friends kindly remarking that I smelt like a Tangier brothel.

Although I have no idea what one of those smells like, obviously...

Marbella opens online register for refugee aid

Marbella Town Hall has introduced a form on the official website for families willing to host refugees fleeing to Europe.

Families and individuals who are willing to help can download and fill in a form from the website that can be handed in at  Town Hall offices.

At the moment people can help by offering to foster, sponsor a family or become part of the team of volunteers.

You can find the link to download the document on


Marbella pledges support to refugees

Marbella is ready to to join the City Platform to help the refugee crisis, along  with cities such as Madrid or Barcelona.

With the current refugee crisis the biggest movement of people since the Second World War the authorities have responded to an increasingly unsustainable drama.

Councilor Victoria Morales commented "We believe that no human being is illegal and that in situations of extreme gravity and emergency that are happening at Europe’s borders. You cannot look away when people die on our shores. No rules, laws, or barbed wire can  stop the despair of entire nations that  have seen their lives destroyed by war”.

Marbella Town Hall is looking for ways to speed up the process of aid. Families who are able to take in refugees are being advised to contact Social Service."We are aware that the reception of refugees under the control of Central Government, but in the current situation we believe that we can offer alternative solutions." said Morales.

Marbella mayor, Jose Bernal, has requested that the procedures for the reception of refugees are speeded up and more funds for the humanitarian emergency be made available. "Developed countries , including Spain, cannot look away and continue to act with a shameful passivity in the human drama that is happening on our borders," said Victoria Morales.

Carbon Free Course in Marbella

Organisers of the Permaculture Design Course to be held at Arboretum Marbella on October  9-22 October have announced that the course will be carbon neutral in order to be more sustainable and responsible. 

Carbon emissions created by students in their travel to the event and also those produced by the event itself will be offset by the planting of native species of trees, plants and shrubs within the ecological park.

Charities like Arboretum Marbella and climate change campaigners encourage everyone to look at their personal and professional carbon footprint and try to minimise it as much as possible.

There are simple steps to achieve this, predominantly by reducing our electricity consumption by using energy-efficient products such as lightbulbs, turning off equipment when not in use and using efficient transport methods.

However it’s almost impossible to not produce any carbon at all, which is why carbon offsetting is popular. Planting trees to offset carbon emissions is an excellent method, as carbon is absorbed by the plants and locked into their leaves and trunks.

In the case of trees, around 50% of the dry material is composed of carbon. Using a carbon calculator Arboretum is able to calculate how much carbon will be produced by their students travelling to the course and then plant a range of different trees and shrubs to absorb this and care for them for at least the next 20 years.

Certified by the British Permaculture Association and comprising of 112 hours of theoretical and practical training, this comprehensive course is internationally recognised and necessary for gaining the Diploma in Applied Permaculture. High profile trainers include Naresh Giangrande, co-founder of Transition Town Totnes and responsible for developing and delivering training for the Transition Town Network.


To find out more about the Permaculture Design Course at Arboretum and register for your place please visit or view thePDC event on Facebook.

Neon Night Marbella launches

The countdown has started to the second Neon Night Marbella.

Last year over 800 people took part in this night time event, which is due to be held on Oct 3.

Neon Night Marbella's Facebook and Twitter accounts have gone live today and the organisers have also launched a logo for the event (pictured above) that they hope everyone taking part will share.

Last year's event was a huge success, rasing over  €7000 euros that was allocated to  two chosen charities. The first was for the Marbella CADI Association, for children with functional diversity and special needs

The second charity was Plan International Spain, whose campaign "Because I am a Girl" seeking to end gender discrimination that affects millions of girls around the world (

Both these charities will once again receive donations at this second edition of Neon Night Marbella.

For more information 
Facebook: neonnightmarbella
Twitter: @nnmarbella

Marbella Summer 2015 – The winners

So another Marbella summer draws to a close, and those of us lucky enough to live here let out a huge sigh of relief and settle back to enjoy September, the most mellow of Marbella months.

Summer war stories are swapped, tales of excess and excitement bandied about. Planet Marbella takes a purely personal pick of the winners of summer 2015...

Marbella Town Hall

The left wing coalition under Jose Bernal swept to power in summer, to the horror of some well heeled residents who before the muncipal elections seemed to think that the Red Terror was at the door.  Sierra Blanca was about to be turned over for social housing, the luxury car showrooms forced to sell tractors and Puerto Banus would be renamed Che Guevara marina, be run by a workers co-operative and have a strict dusk til dawn curfew (not a bad idea, I hear some cry)

In the end nothing of the sort happened as the new Marbella administration embarked on a policy of transparency, including publishing the Mayor's wages on the web and unveiling a new strategic plan for the town running until 2022. It is early days but the signs for the new Marbella are looking promising.

Virginia Ruiz

Summer 2015 may well go down in history as the point when Marbella finally voiced its opposition to the bullfight. Following the lead of leading Spanish cities, Marbella declared that it would no longer allow its official television and radio stations to promote, report on or take advertising from bullfighting events.

There were peaceful demonstrations in Marbella by anti-bullfighting groups but things turned violent in the Bullring itself when bullfighter Morante de la Puebla clashed with protester Pedro Torres when he ran into the ring.

A week later Marbella based animal activist Virginia Ruiz attracted universal praise when she cradled a dying bull at a bullfight in Malaga. The striking image of her standing over the dying animal flashed around the world.
Life on Marbs

It may be a Marmite of a show, you either love it or hate it, but Life on Marbs was certainly the media event of the summer. The lives and loves of the cast drew the usual cries of “Where did they find this lot?” and “Why do they never pick ordinary people?”

Although you may not like the cast much (I admit that I'm biased in liking most of them because I've known some of them for years, and “Mummy Marbella” Lina has more than enough information on me, trust me) you can't deny that Marbella itself looked superb, with fantastic opening shots reminding us just how lucky we are to live here.