With the recent increase of foreign buyers investing in property in Spain and the Costa del Sol receiving one quarter of British property enquiries, we are getting requests from our new clients each day, wanting some guidance to help them decide where to buy property in Marbella and which neighbourhood would be best suited to their lifestyle needs. In light of this, we have put together a summary of each popular area, for those of you who are unfamiliar with the hidden gems along the Costa del Sol, where property is more affordable than prime locations such as Puerto Banus. The great thing about the sunshine coast, is the close proximity of each area mentioned below to the bustling towns of Marbella and Estepona.

As suggested by its name, the Costa del Sol offers excellent weather all year round and properties here range from basic apartments (pisos) to luxury villas (casa sensorial), depending on your budget and taste. There is something for everyone in the area, from sporting activities to bars and restaurants.  The airport at Malaga has daily flights to and from most European cities and there are many budget airlines now using the airport regularly. With the abundant amount of property still available on the market and a large expat society consisting mainly of Irish and British, it can be overwhelming to decide exactly where to buy property in the Marbella area, due to the wide choice of areas available.

Estepona

Located to the west of Malaga, the town has an old fashioned Spanish feel to it and it is a very popular resort with tourists wanting to experience authentic Spanish dining and living. Estepona is popular with retiring expats and there are a number of golf clubs in the area for the sportier types. Properties available in the town center are mainly traditional Spanish homes, although there are now some more modern developments close to the beaches, offering amenities such as secure gated complexes and communal pools.

Benahavis

Home to a large community of expats, who are attracted by the old fashioned style of the town. There are few modern developments and traffic is not really a problem as many of the streets are too narrow to accommodate cars and vans. Benahavis is 7 kilometres from the coast and is known for it´s excellent restaurants serving traditional Spanish food and contemporary fusion. The tourist season is busy, but the cooler winter months are fairly quiet. The town is beginning to grow and some new build properties are available on the outskirts of the town, although the allure of the village is undoubtedly the traditional townhouses, set on the cobbled courtyards, with breathtaking views over the Benahavis hills. The recent addition of the Benahavis Hill club, which is not only a luxurious development of villas and townhouses but also has a glorious spa and restaurant, offering stunning sea views of Marbella and beyond. If you like a sense of community when it comes to everyday living, then this is the place for you!

San Pedro de Alcantara

Once a small, sleepy, Spanish town- San Pedro is fast becoming the SOHO of the Costa del Sol. With several new luxurious developments of apartments and many fashionable restaurants and bars, property prices are on the up and San Pedro makes for an excellent investment opportunity. Just five minutes from Puerto Banus, it is the place to be for those wanting to be close enough to nightlife, whilst still having a sense of tranquility at home.

Puerto Banus

Just to the west of Marbella, Puerto Banus is a luxury resort which is very popular with celebrities. The town has grown over the last few decades and is now very commercialised. Property in the area is very expensive and ranges from apartments to luxury villas.A good choice for those wanting to experience the hustle and bustle of a small city.

Nueva Andalucia

Situated just north of Puerto Banus.This is a relatively new urban area and is a very exclusive place to live. It attracts mainly the more wealthy residents and has everything from shops and restaurants to golf courses. Everything in the area is carefully maintained and properties range from apartments to luxury villas. Popular amongst the Scandinavian expats, due to the manicured grounds of the various Urbanizations, excellent international schools and within walking distance to Puerto Banus.

Marbella

Marbella has a large British expat population, especially among retirees and its support networks are well established. Expat social and business group and high numbers of locals who speak English. Marbella has three International Schools, reflecting the high demand on the Costa Del Sol for the children of expatriates to be educated in line with the UK system. The town has always been a popular area for foreign real estate investment and many UK expats own homes and holiday houses here. While Marbella has plenty of high-end properties for sale, the median house price is more realistic and buyers are able to own a standard three bedroom family home for around 300,000 Euro.

Nerja

One of the largest tourist resorts on the eastern part of the Costa del Sol. Nerja is a former fishing village, which has grown dramatically over recent years. There are no high rise developments in the area and many of the properties are the traditional whitewashed houses. It is popular with expats who enjoy the hustle and bustle of a tourist resort and there are many work opportunities for foreigners, since the town expanded. Nerja is also home to some of the quieter beaches and of course the stunning stalagmite caves.

Mijas

A large area of the Costa del Sol, with  three main parts: the village of Mijas Pueblo, Mijas Costa and Las Lagunas. The village of Mijas Pueblo is just a few kilometres from the coast and attracts many tourists during the summer months, who delight in wandering through the cobbled streets and enjoying some traditional Tapas for lunch, before visiting the donkey taxis. The town hall in the village has a department devoted entirely to helping the expats that choose to settle in the area. Mijas Costa is the region’s coastline and lies between Marbella and Fuengirola. Las Lagunas is the commercial area of the region and is very close to Fuengirola. It is easily reached and offers a number of employment opportunities for expats. The large area means that all types of properties can be found there and they are reasonably priced.

Torrox

Officially declared the healthiest town in Europe, with two distinct parts: Torrox Pueblo which is located in land and the coastal area of Torrox Costa. The area has many properties for sale, particularly along the coastal area. These are mainly apartments and are very affordable. Those who wish to rent will also find a great deal to choose from, although this really is rural living in a sleepy Spanish town at it´s finest.

Calahonda

Another large property development which can be found between Marbella and Fuengirola. The size of the development means that it could now be considered to be a town. It officially is part of the Mijas region and despite the fact that it is a new development, it has a very rural feel with lots of green areas. Retiring expats are drawn to the area as the area has everything they need from golf courses to car hire companies. There are also employment opportunities in the area due to the ongoing development. The area is also home to several top rated Spanish schools and international schools. Extremely popular with British and Irish expats, you will be hard pushed to find someone who doesn´t speak English here.

For more information on buying property on the Costa del Sol, or selling your existing home, please contact us.

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