screenshoot The steady lap, lap of water in the marina, with boats bobbing gently at their moorings and, perhaps best of all, no traffic roaring past to disturb the peace and tranquillity of the scene. Cabopino is a charming residential area in the municipality of Marbella that abuts the border with Mijas Costa. Built around the landmark yacht marina, it is built on a human scale – unlike some of its big brother developments further along the coast in both directions. The Andalusian-style architecture of the homes and villas by the port are reminders of an older Spain. Even the larger complex of apartments immediately surrounding the harbour is artfully designed to give a taste of traditionally Mediterranean squares and patios.Cabopino_06 With several very good restaurants right on the water’s edge, it is an idyllic spot to while away a few hours. Yes, it can be busy, particularly on summer weekends, but the atmosphere always seems to be relaxed with life moving at a more leisurely pace than some more touristic hotspots. To use musical terms, the tempo is more adagio compared to Puerto Banús’s allegro. There is much more to Cabopino than the marina alone, even though it also offers a host of activities for water sports lovers as well as dolphin watching and angling trips. For many visitors the main attraction is the beach, known as one of the best and safest bathing areas in Andalucía. For families the knowledge that the water, sheltered by a large breakwater to the west and the harbour to the east, is shallow and meticulously clean is a big attraction. Beyond Cabopino beach itself is the last undeveloped area of dunes on this stretch of the Mediterranean coastline, making for an impressive backdrop. It is also the location for a ‘clothes optional’ beach. But the area, close to Calahonda on one side and Elviria on the other, is not just about the beach and marina. There is an 18-hole golf course, known by local players to be a good test without being ridiculously long (accuracy is at a premium though). The views to the sea and mountains are spectacular from both the golf course and the villas and apartments built near it, many in a more modern design like this 4 bedroom penthouse apartment. Cabopino homes sell precisely because of all the facilities on offer in such a tranquil area, which is still within easy reach of the bright lights of Marbella, Puerto Banús and the airport.AVS01112 - La Monesa de Marbella - swimming-pool One development that offers great value for money is La Montesa de Marbella, which is a brand new project with stunning sea and golf views. It is the perfect spot to take advantage of the tranquillity of the area while remaining at the heart of the Costa del Sol.