What is Puerto Banús?

Simply put it is the marina of marinas, a puerto deportivo for the playboy classes. Yet it also extends a friendly welcome to anyone who is looking for the ultimate Marbella day out.

The larger area of Banús incorporates a sizeable, modern cinema complex that regularly shows films in their original language, meaning that English speakers can enjoy the latest Hollywood blockbusters and British films with Spanish subtitles. Apart from the entertainment itself, it’s a great way to brush up your Spanish.

Within the confines of this glamorous Marbella suburb there is also a branch of Spain’s popular department store, El Corte Inglés, and this establishment is every bit a temple to shopping. The ground floor is home to Hipercor, a one-stop supermarket where the fruit and vegetables are arranged so beautifully that it seems a shame to ruin the display by buying them. This elegant department store is where many Spaniards and foreigners alike get their designer brands, computers and other electronic goods, music, cosmetics, furniture, sports gear, toys and a baffling array of other products.

The large piazza outside El Corte Inglés is transformed, during the summer months, into a bewitching bazaar, with tented stalls selling a large range of largely unnecessary, but very desirable, fripperies, from diaphanous beach dresses to gorgeous jewellery.

The heart of Banús is its marina, a magnet for celebrities and celebrity spotters alike. It is also home to some of the finest yachts in the world, several of which push the boundary between ‘boat’ and ‘ship’. Don’t try to guess the cost of some of these, since you will almost certainly underestimate their true worth.

The best way to enjoy this extraordinary place is perhaps to visit some of the port’s designer boutiques and jewellery stores before finding a comfortable seat at one of the many frontline cafés, bars or restaurants and enjoying the view.

After dark the marina is gripped by a completely different mood. Now you will see why Marbella has a reputation as Europe’s party capital as the clubs open and the beautiful people arrive to enjoy an evening of music and dance. Dreamers, (now CW by Dreamers) one of Banús’s largest clubs, has a reputation for welcoming top DJs from around the world, particularly during July and August, and weekend sessions often take on the feeling of a private party – albeit a very large one!

This, then, is Puerto Banús – a place that certainly deserves its reputation as Marbella’s one-stop shop for a good time.