Mayor vows to protect Marbella history

Marbella mayor Jose Bernal has vowed to increase security at the town's historical monuments. The mayor was speaking during a visit to view the shocking damage by vandals at the Villa Romana de Rio Verde.

Bernal was accompanied by the head of Culture and Heritage, Gema Midon, as well as police and  associations Cilniana, San Pedro 1860 and Marbella Activa.

All deplored "the acts of vandalism and looting at the 2,000-year-old site, especially the damage to the Medusa mosaic, whose face has been totally destroyed after this savage attack"

Bernal said that the Town Hall had been immediately in touch with the Local and National Police after discovering the attack on Sunday, and that they were working with the Junta de Andalucia on how to restore the mural.

"Unfortunately, much remains to be done to create an awareness of  the value and meaning of one of the best examples of Roman culture in Marbella and Andalucia" said Midon "We will be increasing security ay  three archaeological sites: the Vega del Mar Paleo-Christian Basilica, the Roman Baths and the Villa Romana de Rio Verde".

Police are now looking for the vandals, who face imprisonment from 6 months to 3 years.

Personally, I think the punishment should fit the crime. Such as throwing them to the lions...

Now showing - Joy

If you fancy catching a film in Marbella, then Wednesday is the best value day to do it.

The Cine Teatro Goya in Puerto Banus has improved its selection of English language films (known as V.S.O.E) and is also a much more comfortable viewing experience.

Wednesday is Dia del Espectador, when tickets are available at the reduced price of €4.50 (normal price €8). This includes three hours parking as well, so it represents great value.

New this week is Joy,  the wild true story of Joy Mangano and her Italian-American family who becomes the woman who founds a business dynasty by inventing the Miracle Mop and becomes a matriarch in her own right. Betrayal, treachery, the loss of innocence and the scars of love, pave the road in this intense emotional and human comedy about becoming a true boss of family and enterprise facing a world of unforgiving commerce.

Allies become adversaries and adversaries become allies, both inside and outside the family, as Joy's inner life and fierce imagination carry her through the storm she faces. Jennifer Lawrence stars, and picked up a Golden Globe for her performance, along with Robert De Niro, Bradley Cooper, Edgar Ramirez, Isabella Rossellini, Diane Ladd, and Virginia Madsen.

Joy screens at 18.10, 20.20 and 22.40 today and Thursday

Property of the week

This is a lovely ground floor apartment near to the beach in a quiet urbanisation in Benamara, close to all the local amenities and within walking distance of restaurants, beach and public transport.

The accommodation consists of one big bedroom with en suite bathroom and fitted wardrobes, living/dining with open plan fully fitted kitchen, marble flooring, double glazing, fireplace with wood burning stove and sunnyw est facing patio.

The complex is very well maintained and has beautiful communal gardens and swimming pool. Basic furniture is included.

This property has great investment and rental potential.

63 m2 built plus 18m2 patio

PRICE €110,000

For more information please contact Peter on 670 015 202. email


The Man who fell to Earth and sold (and wowed) the World left the planet today

David Bowie has been part of my life for decades and he will always have a special connection with Marbella for me. I remember first hearing Let's Dance playing at Victor's Beach when I was on holiday in the early 80s.

I interviewed the great Nile Rodgers, who has also had a brush with cancer, a few years ago and we spoke about the album. Nile remembered Bowie first playing the song Let's Dance on the guitar on the end of his bed one morning.

When my family moved to Spain full time in 1985, all of my new friends were huge Bowie fans. My neighbour, Little Scott, had one of his bedroom walls covered with photos of Bowie and we'd sit out on the terrace, smoking and listening to early Bowie such as Diamond Dogs and Hunky Dory. And I even learnt to play a bad versions of Five Years, Rock n Roll Suicide and Ziggy Stardust...

RIP Legend


Amàre Marbella Beach Hotel - Central Style

It may only be January, but the new Amàre Marbella Beach Hotel in Marbella looks like being one of the places to stay in 2016.

A sophisticated adults only hotel the Amàre Marbella Beach Hotel sits right on the beachfront,  a five minute stroll to the buzzing centre of Old Town Marbella, and its marina and a taxi hop away from Puerto Banus and offers  the only rooftop bar in  Marbella. This offers guests the opportunity to enjoy the most incredible sunsets on the Costa del Sol, with Africa visible on the horizon  This is the perfect destination for couples, solo travellers and groups of friends, who want to indulge in the Marbella lifestyle.

The hub of this new hotel is the Amàre Club, which is spread across three different spaces; the Amàre Beach, Amàre Lounge and Amàre Pool that form a chic setting. The exclusive Amàre beach area offers comfortable sunbeds, massages on the beach and as the sun sets, guests can enjoy the chilled out sounds of the resident DJ, who plays a set every afternoon. Guests will also experience special events, such as the ‘Amàre evenings’, with performances and acrobatics, vibrant ‘Cuban nights’ and romantic ‘Full Moon Evenings’.

The Amàre Lounge is a contemporary space that boasts a chill-out area and bar which opens up on to the pool. During the evening, entertainment is on offer to suit every guest, such as themed parties, live music and a mojito or two! During the day, the Amàre Pool is the perfect place to relax and unwind. The spacious sunbeds come with a ‘call button’ that is conveniently linked to a watch worn by the staff, ensuring that every whim is catered for, at any time of the day.

Each restaurant at the hotel encompasses a relaxed and unpretentious atmosphere with the menus ensuring quality food and variety - The Mare Nostrum Restaurant serves a fantastic breakfast buffet in the morning and Mediterranean fusion cuisine throughout the day, using only the freshest local ingredients. The Belvue Rooftop Bar is the only one of its kind in Marbella, offering unrivalled views of the Mediterranean, accompanied by a delicious selection of cocktails.

Guests can also indulge in pampering services by one of the world’s most renowned professional skincare companies, Germaine de Capuccini. The spa at the hotel includes a hydrotherapy circuit with professional treatments and massages, as well as relaxation areas and a Turkish bath. These treatments can also be enjoyed outside, where guests are treated to massages under the shaded palapa’s on the beach. The hair and beauty salon at the hotel also offers guests the opportunity to experience the latest beauty treatments and high-tech cosmetic products, whilst the Technogym, includes state-of-the-art equipment making it the perfect place to let off some steam!

Nightly rates at Amàre Marbella Beach Hotel start from €108 n an I Was Here (standard room) per night, based on two people sharing with breakfast included.

Marbellisima - Hannah Murray

Talk Radio Europe Breakfast presenter Hannah Murray shares her favourite places in Marbella

Best View:

Every time I go to Kala Kalua, a chiringuito on the beach in San Pedro, it literally takes my breath away. Some almejas al ajillo, a glass of white wine, and an uninterrupted view of the Mediterannean Sea, Gibraltar, and even Africa, on a clear day - Stunning. Another really spectacular view is from the top of La Concha, Marbella’s famous mountain, which I’ve climbed a few times. You can see along the whole of the Costa del Sol, and try and work out where your house is!

Best Place for Coffee:

There are lots of great coffee shops in and around Marbella, which can vary hugely in price. I don’t like particularly strong coffee, and Café Verona make the perfect cup. It’s in La Colonia, San Pedro, where the radio station is, and the girls in the office take it in turns to buy the coffee each day.

Best for Eating:

My ultimate favourite that I discovered when I moved here nearly thirteen years ago, is La Marina de Guiseppe. It’s on the beach in Marbella, between the marina and the Alameda Park, and has been run by Guiseppe and Val for over 25 years. They have also had the same waiter, a real character called Pedro. The food is delicious and fresh, and his ‘Sizzling Spinach Pot’ (which you can have with or without chorizo), I’ve never had anywhere else. I’ve celebrated many a birthday there, and even spent Christmas day there once.

Over the last year San Pedro has opened some great new restaurants, and more and more people are coming from Marbella and even further afield to eat there. A personal favourite is Benisty, run by David, the son of Simon of ‘Albert and Simon’ (one of the most popular restaurants on the coast) My boyfriend and I think their food is some of the best quality and flavours we’re even seen on the coast. They have an extensive wine menu, funky modern décor, and the staff are lovely too.

Another one I must mention is Urban Chai, also in San Pedro near the Super Sol in Cortijo Blanco. Neil and Carla have only been open about six months, but they’ve already created a great atmosphere, got a regular following (as Neil was one of the founders of Terra Sana), and are creating some fabulous dishes, for meat lovers and veggies alike!
Best for showing visitors the real Marbella:

The Old Town in Marbella has to be done. Its cobbled streets, boutique shops and trendy tapas bars are always a lovely surprise for visitors, as I don’t think many people would stumble upon the old town without being shown. Each time I go there, I see places I’ve not seen before, and say “We must come here more often!”

Puerto Banus is also a must for tourists. It’s what they’ve seen on the TV, and often what they expect to see when visiting the area. I must admit, sitting in ‘Portside’ with a glass of something, looking at the beautiful yachts, and the beautiful people walking by, is a great way to spend an afternoon.

San Pedro is also a fun place to explore. I’ve lived in or around the town since I’ve been here, and yet, I can still get lost in the back streets trying to remember where the cobblers is that I took my shoes to be re-healed, or where that greengrocers was that gave me a free punnet of strawberries after I bought half the shop!

Best for quiet moments:

On top of La Concha is lovely and peaceful (depending on who you go up there with!), strolling along San Pedro paseo on a late summer evening is magical, and if I really want to get away from it all, I can go and visit my parents. They moved here just over a year ago, and live very much off the beaten track near Alozaina (close to Guaro and Coin, about 45 mins inland from Marbella)

The views of the hills and mountains from their place is spectacular, and the only noise is the occasional dog bark from next door, or the sound of goat bells.
Best for lively ones:

Since moving back into the centre of San Pedro over a year ago, we enjoy being able to go out for dinner and drinks, and be able to walk home again, so most of our ‘lively nights’ these days are nice and local. I host a quiz every Thursday at the Hogan Stand Irish pub, and enjoy going there for drinks and a dance, as they often have live music on the weekends. There are some cool cocktail bars that have opened recently in San Pedro too; Taco Loco, which are just off the roundabout by La Colonia, and have very reasonable priced cocktails, as well as Urban Bistro Bar, which is conveniently located next door to Benisty!
I couldn’t live without:

The sunshine. One of main attractions for people to move here is the great weather. It gives you so many more options when the sun is out. I’m sure everyone has experienced having visitors, and it rains. You feel guilty, as they are expecting sun! Thankfully, sun is what they will normally get when visiting from May to October. Although, It’s currently early January and we have clear blue skies, so you can get lucky throughout the winter months too. I’ve always felt that whatever life throws at you, if the sun is sunshine, then it’s not so bad.
Best Shopping:

To be honest I’ve always enjoyed high street shopping, and you can get pretty much anything you need from El Corte Ingles in Puerto Banus, La Canada Shopping Centre in Marbella, or even the Mirimar in Fuengirola. But if I’m treating myself, I’ll go for a bit of quality in Twist Boutique in La Colonia, San Pedro.
Personal Best:

I very much enjoy my job as a Radio Presenter. It’s a very difficult industry to get into in the UK, and I’m grateful of the opportunity to do what I do.

I never take it for granted being able to walk to the beach from my house, and being surrounded by great restaurants and bars is a huge plus (if not, a little dangerous – both on the finances and the waistline!) I am blessed to have wonderful friends, and my parents living nearby, so I can share it with them too.

I also really appreciate the location of Marbella, and the easy access to great cities like Malaga, Seville, Cordoba, Cadiz and Jerez. We drove to Portugal for a long weekend a couple of years ago too. This year we hope to venture over the water to Morocco. After living here this long, it’s about time!

You can tune into ‘Wake Up with Hannah’ on Talk Radio Europe every weekday from 8am to 10am, and The Book Show on Thursday’s at 7pm, repeated Saturday’s at 8pm @radiohannah


Now showing - Steve Jobs

It's dia de espectador today, which means that all tickets at the Cine Teatro Goya in Puerto Banus are €4.50. Assuming that you've seen the new Star Wars (and if you haven't where the hell have you been??)  then the Steve Jobs movie, directed by Danny Boyle and staring Michael Fassbender, should be one of the first films to see in 2016.

With public anticipation running high, Apple Inc. co-founders Steve Jobs and Steve "Woz" Wozniak get ready to unveil the first Macintosh in 1984. Jobs must also deal with personal issues related to ex-girlfriend Chrisann Brennan and their young daughter Lisa. Eventually fired, Jobs launches NeXT Inc. and prepares to release a new computer model in 1988. Ten years later, Jobs is back at Apple Inc. and about to revolutionise the industry once again with the iMac.

We are huge Mac fans here at Planet Marbella, so will be putting down our iPads, iPhones and iPods and checking this out. And as Marbella has one of the biggest and busiest Mac stores in Spain, we are expecting to see a few familiar faces,

Screening times on Wednesday and Thursday in English (V.S.O.E)- 17.45, 20.10, 22.30

Don't forget that three hour's free parking are included in your ticket price, a great deal for a night out in Banus!

Unemployment falls in Marbella

Unemployment has fallen by 1,024 people in Marbella in December, compared to the same period in 2014, representing an annual decrease of 6.94%.

The year ended in with 13,731 people unemployed compared to 14,755 in December 2014, the best figure in this period since 2009.

The data also reveals that that the everage age of unemployed people is 45, while catering and retail are the most sought after job sectors.

During 2015 the number of people out of work fell by 1,525, just under 10%.



Culinary Three Kings!

Today's Three Kings Procession has a culinary flavour.

Three of Marbella's top chefs , Diego del Río, chef of the restaurant El Lago ; Sergio Garrido , executive chef of Vincci Hotels, and Fermin Lozano , head of the Restaurant La Barca will represent the Kings today.

At the presentation of the chefs, Marbella Mayor Jose Bernal said that this year's Kings respresented the growing gastronomic identity of Marbella. And maybe the sweets distributed by the Kings will be of a high culinary standard!

Where to catch the Kings


12.00 The Three Kings arrive at the  Puerto Deportivo de Marbella on the yacht  “Fly Blue” where they will meet the mayor Recepción por parte del alcalde, José Bernal and be given the keys to Marbella. They will then travel through the streets of Marbella in classic cars before visiting the Town Hall in the Plaza de Los Naranjos.
18.00 h. - The procession takes along the  Avda. Severo Ochoa (Edif. La Zambomba), Avda. Ramón y Cajal, Avda. Ricardo Soriano and finishes at Plaza Monseñor Rodrigo Bocanegra (El Pirulí).

San Pedro Alcántara
12.00  The Three Kings travel through the streets of San Pedro Alcántara in classic cars
17.00 h. The Three Kings visit the Residencia Aspandem in San Pedro Alcántara.
17.30 h. The fire service accompany the Three Kings at the start of the porcession(Fuente Nueva).
18.00 h. Procession route C/ Fuente Nueva, C/Diego Piña Macias, Avda Oriental, C/ Juan R. Jiménez, C/ Pepe Osorio, C/ Luis Braile, c/ Lagasca, C/ Andalucía, Avda. La Constitución, C/ Jerez, C/ Marqués del Duero, C/ Hernán Cortes, C/ 19 Octubre, Avda. Oriental y Plaza de la Iglesia.
The procession ends at  la Plaza de la Iglesia, where the Three Kings will greet the public from the balcony of the Town Hall

Nueva Andalucía
15.15 h. Reception for the Three Kings at the  Parroquia Virgen Madre de Nueva Andalucía.
15.30 h. Procession around Nueva Andalucia

Phil Lynott's last gigs in Marbella

January 4 marks the 30th anniversary of Phil Lynott's untimley death. The charismatic Thin Lizzy founder passed away after collapsing in his home in the UK, after several years drink and drug abuse.

A little known fact, however, was that Phil played one of his last ever gigs in Marbella, as well as jamming at a beach bar the next weekend.

Phil's band played at the Cuba nightclub in Carolina Park, Marbella on August 6. (Thin Lizzy fans wanting to pay tribute will find that the venue that also hosted acts such as Divine, is now a Chinese bazaar.)

Former radio presenter and now real estate agent Maurice Boland was running Cuba at the time, and remembers Phil and the other band members being more than a little lively.

The following weekend, the Puerto Banus party crowd as well as musicians from the Port's many piano bars, were working up a sweat and working off their hangovers at Mel's Beach, a Sunday afternoon jam session that was hugely popular.

Mel Williams remembers that all musicians who wanted to play had to register with his wife Sally. "Sally didn't know who he was, and Phil told her that he played a bit of bass and sang a bit"

Phil delivered a blistering set for the next half hour ( I was lucky enough to be there!) and the big names didn't stop there.

"It was an incredible afternoon" laughs Mel "Because next up was Edwin Starr!"