Marbella, Costa del Sol, Spain
Rest and Relaxation in Marbella
I thoroughly enjoyed our drive through Andalucía. Spain is responsible for producing more than half of the world’s olive oil, and 76% of its national output comes from Andalucía. As we traveled through the rolling hills, we were surrounded by olive groves, a sight both endless and beautiful.
Following a week full of activities in Seville, the arrival at the Don Pepe Gran Meliá resort was a much-needed respite. Situated along the Mediterranean Sea on Spain’s Costa del Sol, the resort was a haven of relaxation. Its striking pool and the on-site dry heat sauna provided a soothing retreat, rejuvenating our weary bodies from the travels.
Marbella Seaside Promenade
The Paseo Marítimos, more commonly known as the Marbella Seaside Promenade, stretches for kilometers along the seafront. Adorned with palm trees, exotic plants, and inviting beach restaurants, it provides a picturesque setting for leisurely walks. The soothing sound of gentle waves lapping against the shore enhances the tranquil ambiance of the promenade.
Our visit in early April was peaceful, but I’ve heard that in the summer, the atmosphere transforms. The promenade comes alive with bustling beach bars, vibrant entertainment, and an infectious festive mood, making it a hub of activity.
We spent our days indulging in the lavish comforts offered by the Hotel Don Pepe Gran Meliá. Stepping out from the hotel’s gated confines, we found ourselves immediately on the streets of Marbella. The city, transcending its role as merely a tourist spot, exuded a homely feel, inviting one to envision a life there. Marbella distinguished itself as an elegantly sophisticated and visually stunning coastal town. Notably pristine, the town is abundant in shops and restaurants, facilitating a relaxed and convenient day-to-day living experience.
Traditional paella, especially the kind served in Marbella, Spain, combines local flavors and cooking traditions. The paella pan, or “paellera,” is central to this dish. It’s typically wide, shallow, and made of thin, conductive material like polished steel or iron. This design helps distribute heat evenly and allows the rice to cook in a thin layer, which is essential for achieving the perfect “socarrat” – the slightly crispy, caramelized layer of rice at the bottom of the pan. This was by far the best paella I’ve ever had and dining by the Meditteranean Sea put the entire experience over the top.