Last updated on March 29th, 2020
When it comes to making vacation plans in Spain, Marbella is right up there in terms of popularity and visitor numbers every year. With so many different city, coastal and island options to consider in the Spanish kingdom, it says a lot that Marbella is a place that is continually regarded as one of the best European holiday destinations for all types of parties, from solo travel to couple getaways to fully-fledged family adventures.
Located in the heart of Southern Spain’s Costa del Sol, Marbella is one of the most celebrated parts of the Andalusia region. With a backdrop of the Sierra Blanca mountains and more than 25 kilometres of sandy Mediterranean beaches to enjoy, there is no better setting for a relaxing break away from home.
Of course, the biggest problem to solve when making any holiday plans is where exactly you are going to stay. Marbella has plenty to offer. From villas to hotels to golf resorts, there is definitely something to cater to each individual party’s needs and preferences. Whether you are interested in restful tranquillity or want something a little more lively, Marbella has you covered. Where do TOWIE stay in Marbella ? Puerto Banus is the place to be, as the luxury resorts & hotels lining the golden sandy beach.
Without further ado, here is a full and thorough guide about where you should stay when you visit Marbella, Spain. We’ve put together some great options that provide a broad overview of this really special region.
What’s the best area to experience the city for the first time, tourists, what’s the best district for nightlife, or where to stay on a budget or when with a family ? Read on below to find out more best neighbourhoods to stay in Marbella Spain.
What is the Best Area to Stay in Marbella ?
Best for First Time (Sightseeing): Puerto Banus, City Centre (Old Town) and Elviria (Nikki Beach)
If you want a suggestion for the overall best area to stay in Marbella, regardless of the details of your party, then you certainly can’t go wrong with Puerto Banus, Old Town (the city centre) and Elviria area.
Recommended Hotels in Marbella Spain
- Best Luxury Hotels in Marbella
Marbella Club Hotel · Golf Resort & Spa • Boho Club
- Best Great Value – Top Rated Hotels
Hotel Claude • Amàre Beach Hotel Marbella – Adults Only
- Best Cheap Hotels in Marbella
Hotel Finlandia • La Morada Mas Hermosa
- Best Bed & Breakfast
Villa Breeze, Luxury B&B • The Residence by the Beach House Marbella
- Best Holiday Apartments
Ample Luxury Apart. Fancy Marbella • Neptuno
Where to stay in Marbella for nightlife ?
If you and your friends crave the thrill and excitement of Spanish nightlife, then look no further than the Nikki Beach and Puerto Banus areas for your accommodation. Without a doubt Marbella’s party central.
What’s the best neighbourhood in Marbella for families ?
When holidaymaking with your entire family and you need to cater to a large range of ages, most areas of the city are recommended, but the one rule that we do suggest you abide by is staying in a beach hotel for ease of access and activities.
What’s the best area to stay in Marbella for upscale holiday ?
If you are accustomed to experiencing the biggest and best in luxury on your vacations, then you will certainly want to add Puerto Banus to your bucket list. Arguably Marbella’s most upscale district. You can also opt to stay at a 5 star luxury beach hotel or resort.
Where to stay in Marbella on a budget ?
If you are looking for somewhere that could be classed as a sensible budget option, then Old Town is definitely the best choice for a holiday at the cheaper end.
The 5 Best Neighbourhoods in Marbella for Tourists
Here is some further information about the best neighbourhoods for tourists in Marbella.
Old Town, also known more generally as the city centre, is without doubt one of the best choices for accommodation when planning a holiday in Marbella. It is an incredibly scenic area in which you will find yourself wandering through narrow, winding streets that evoke a traditional and whimsical atmosphere.
Alongside this wonderful, winding architecture you will find greenery, comfortable cafes, quaint boutique stores and eateries that cater to all kinds of tastes. If you are looking for good food and good ambience, then Old Town is certainly an area to seriously consider.
As mentioned above, Old Town is a particularly appropriate choice for holidaymakers who want to stay more on the budget side of things. There are plenty of wonderful places to stay in the area, but it is certainly cheaper than many other high profile named regions in Marbella. These budget hotels are commonly a mere ten minutes away from the heart of downtown Marbella, so you are never going to be too far away from the action.
Don’t be put off by the thought of more budget-friendly accommodation; even in the cheapest hostels in Old Town, the majority of guests are treated to their own private bathroom along with a comfortable room in a great central location.
- Best Hotels (Great Value): La Villa Marbella – Old Town • Hotel Fuerte Marbella (Beachfront)
- Best Cheap / Affordable Hotels: Puerta De Aduares (Aparthotel) • Hotel Finlandia
2. Puerto Banus
If, on the other hand, the thing that you are interested in is living as luxuriously and excitedly as you possibly can, then Puerto Banus is most likely area of Marbella for you! A favoured location of the world’s rich and famous, Puerto Banus is the city’s hub when it comes to things like luxury beach clubs, expensive restaurants, world-famous night clubs and exclusive designer boutiques. The luxury beaches that surround it are what makes Marbella such a popular and desired location across the world, and the very best of these beaches are to be found in the Puerto Banus area.
Known the world over as a summer playground for the rich and famous, you never know who you might bump into from one day to the next. Don’t, however, make the mistake of assuming that the Puerto Banus region is a ‘snobby’ one. There is a big difference between being exclusive and luxurious and being snobby. The area is particularly welcoming to all those who wish to enjoy some of the finer things in life, but there is always a quick McDonald’s to be had when all you need to top off your Marbella day experience is some delicious french fries!
All are welcome in Puerto Banus, and this fun and friendly vibe can be felt from the beaches all the way to the designer stores and Michelin starred restaurants. Together with Nikki Beach, it’s the best place to stay in Marbella for nightlife.
- Best Hotels (Great Value): Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus • H10 Andalucía Plaza – Adults only • Penthouse in Puerto Banus
- Best Cheap / Affordable Hotels: Hotel Pyr Marbella
This area is roughly ten kilometres from the beating heart of glamorous Marbella, and it offers a slightly different, more historical experience than some of the pumping nightlife spots nearer to Puerto Banus or Elviria. Staying in San Pedro de Alcantara means that you are mere minutes away from the stunning natural beauty of the Sierra de Ronda mountain range, and there is a connection to history and nature that can make for a really restorative and relaxing break.
One particular place of note within the area is the remains of Roman Baths that can be found in Guadalmina. This has long been an area of great interest for visitors, and the Las Bovedas restored baths are something that the region is very proud of.
With a day trip or two to central Marbella well within reach, San Pedro de Alcantara exists as an interesting option for those who are necessarily primarily focused on designer living in one of the beachfront resorts or spas. It has a unique and amazing charm all of its own.
- Best Hotels (Great Value): Paloma Blanca Boutique Hotel • Barceló Marbella
- Best Cheap / Affordable Hotels: Hostal Alisol Boutique San Pedro (Guest House) • Hotel Doña Catalina
Also known by its crowning glory feature, Nikki beach, the Elviria area is the place to stay in Marbella if your main goal is to party and celebrate as hard and as often as you possibly can. Famous for its never-ending party atmosphere and plethora of luxury amenities, Nikki beach is often considered to be the heart of Marbella’s iconic ‘Golden Mile’.
The Golden Mile is specifically a stretch of beach in the area that is the most exclusive of them all. On this stretch, in particular, you will find the best, most luxurious experience that can be had in the entire city.
Along with the best beach life that Marbella has to offer, Elviria is also the location of some of the best accommodation and best food options. For many people, the luxury of being able to eat in fabulous restaurants every single day is something that really makes a holiday, and you will certainly never run out of options in the Nikki beach area of the city. From small, stylish cafes for breakfast and lunch to more exclusive and gourmet establishment for dinner, the food is just as noteworthy as the golden sand beaches here.
Something worth saying about Elviria, in general, is that it is much more suited to groups of adults and party-oriented couples rather than families with younger children. The nightlife and club scene is something that the area is very proud of, but equally, something that might not be the preferred atmosphere for some kinds of holidaymakers. It’s the best place to stay in Marbella for nightlife (together with Puerto Banus).
- Best Hotels (Luxury): The Oasis by Don Carlos Resort • Marriott’s Marbella Beach Resort
- Best Cheap / Affordable Hotels: Summer Breeze (Bed and Breakfast) • Hotel – Apartamentos Greenlife Golf
5. Nearby Towns: Fuengirola, Benalmádena, La Cala de Mijas and Torremolinos
If you would like to enjoy the delights of Marbella but not necessarily stay within the city limits, then there are plenty of locations around the town that can provide an equally fantastic stay.
Some of the destinations most commonly recommended as an adjacent stay to Marbella include the likes of Fuengirola, Benalmadena, La Cala de Mijas, and Torremolinos. Much like Marbella, all of these resort locations have their own beautiful beaches and luxurious hotels, and they are close enough to Marbella itself that you would have no problems with embarking on a day trip to one or more of the areas that we have been talking about in this article.
For many couples and families, the prospect of staying in Marbella might be too expensive in certain areas or perhaps not in step with the vision of the atmosphere they were intending for their holiday. In these cases, basing yourself in Fuengirola, Benalmadena, La Cala de Mijas or Torremolinos can be the perfect answer. Anybody who has spent time on the Costa del Sol will know that virtually any prominently named area has a lot to offer, so it one of these places close to, but not actually in, Marbella can be a great alternative if you were ever to be in need of one.
- Best Hotels (Luxury): Vincci Selección Aleysa, Hotel Boutique & Spa • El Tiburon Boutique Hotel & Spa (Adults Recommended)
- Best Cheap / Affordable Hotels: Sahara Sunset Club By Diamond Resorts • Hotel Carmen
Best Places to Stay in Marbella
If you are keen to get started on your holiday planning and are looking for some inspiration for places to stay, here are three suggestions for some of the best accommodation in Marbella at three different price points.
Best Luxury Hotel in Marbella: Marbella Club Hotel · Golf Resort & Spa
The Marbella Club Hotel is a golf resort and spa that provides the very best in boutique beachfront vacationing. The entire resort is designed to represent a quintessential Andalusian village, with the all-important factor of exclusive luxury at every single turn.
From personal butler service to tropical bird-filled gardens to sea views and more, there is absolutely no doubt that the Marbella Club Hotel has long been regarded as one of the most luxurious and popular establishments in the entire town. Don’t be surprised if you see more than one or two celebrities lounging by the private pools in this resort; it has long been a favourite of the visiting elite.
Best Mid Range Hotel in Marbella: Amàre Beach Hotel Marbella – Adults Only
If you are travelling with other adult companions and want to spend a little less on your accommodation in order to enjoy more extracurricular experiences in your destination, then the Amare Beach Hotel is a great option. Located right on the famous promenade and just a five-minute walk from the joys of Old Town, the Amare Beach establishment is one that provides a lot more than its mid-range pricing might suggest.
Something of particular note is the fact that the hotel is strictly adults-only, which makes it a perfect holiday base for couples or groups travelling that don’t necessarily want to share their vacation time with other people’s children running around.
Best Cheap Hostel in Marbella: Albergue Inturjoven Marbella
One of the very best things about Marbella is that, while many of its establishments cater to the rich and famous, there are still places and opportunities for enjoyment for those travelling on a much smaller and stricter budget. Situated right in the middle of Marbella, this clean and comfortable hostel puts you right in the heart of the action for a fraction of the cost that you can expect to pay in a location on or nearer the beach.
And don’t make the mistake of thinking that this is some kind of run-down, Euro a day establishment. The prices at Albergue Inturjoven are more than reasonable, but you still get to enjoy facilities such as tennis courts, Wi-Fi access, a swimming pool and private bathrooms. As far as finding somewhere cheap and respectable in which to base yourself for a visit to Marbella, you can’t do much better than Albergue Inturjoven