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Spain: Barcelona, Madrid, Marbella, Puerto Banus, Seville, Toledo
Puerto Banus, Spain: Luxury on display
by Prakash Bang, Editor in Chief
Puerto Jose Banus, more commonly known as Puerto Banus is a marina located in the area of Nueva Andalucia, to the southwest of Marbella, on the Costa del Sol. It was built in May 1970 by Jose Banus, a local property developer, as a luxury marina and shopping complex. It has since become one of the largest entertainment centres in the Costa del Sol, with 5 million annual visitors, and is popular with international celebrities.
Developed around a coastal village in the Mediterranean architectural style, Puerto Banus contains expensive shopping malls, restaurants and bars around the marina. It is also scene to many exotic cars that are owned by international celebrities and wealthy owners that also own large yachts. Luxury cars like Rolls Royces and high end sports cars like Ferraris, Lamborghinis and Mercedes Benz are a common sight in the summer months around Marbella and Puerto Banus. These cars are brought to the eye of the public via huge showrooms and dealerships showcasing the latest supercars.
The city has some interesting history for it to take shape. The architect Noldi Schreck, who participated in the design and construction of Beverly Hills, was visited in 1966 by Prince Alfonso de Hohenlohe to ask him to work on the Hotel Marbella Club. Schreck's first job was to meet Jose Banus and convince him that Puerto Banus was not a suitable place to build huge skyscrapers that would house thousands of wealthy families. He proposed a sophisticated Andalusian village and marina, the first port made by a single architect.
We took a taxi from Marbella to come to Puerto Banus. We alighted at Antonio Banderas Square which has the largest El Corte Ingles department store in Spain and also the upscale hypermarket, Hipercor. We spent some time exploring the massive outlet and then walked to the marina.
The focal point of Puerto Banus is the marina. It has berths for 915 boats, including those of the King of Saudi Arabia and several of the world's wealthiest individuals. Behind the harbour lie streets filled with bars, boutiques and nightclubs. The streets are lined with expensive luxury boutiques like Christian Dior, Gucci, Bvlgari, Versace, Dolce & Gabbana, and others. One stretch is known as "The Golden Mile".
We spent a couple of hours walking on the edge of the coast and the marina, enjoying the luxuries that were around. Dinner that evening was at an Indian restaurant. We took a cab back to our hotel with memories of what money can buy.
Puerto Banus Image Gallery Photo viewer
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