British Shopping In Spain

Photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash

Photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash

Many expats and visitors to the Costa del Sol delight in assimilating themselves into the wonderful Spanish culture and begin to see boquerones (sardines) and ensaladilla russa (Russian salad) as their go-to lunchtime snack where once they would have eaten a sandwich and a packet of crisps!

However even the most committed hispanophile may occasionally need something that can only be purchased in a UK-originated shop. Here’s a handy guide for just those occasions!

Marks and Spencer
La Cañada, Marbella
The old favourite, whether it’s M&S underwear or just the reassuring presence of an old favourite transplanted from home, this branch also contains a small food store, which while compact, has a surprisingly large range of ambient and frozen favourites.

Primark
Miramar Centre, Fuengirola
Many people swear by this cheap-and-cheerful clothes shop which has become a firm favourite in the Fuengirola shopping centre. A huge space, all the old favourites can be found here and it is just as good value here as in the UK.

Iceland/Waitrose
Parque Miramar and Puerto Banús

This hybrid store actually caters for everyone, with old familiars such as frozen sausage rolls to be found alongside a wide choice of exotic spices and sauce mixes – as well as a huge range of produce and most of your favourite brands. The Mijas Costa store also has a great English butcher stocking both UK, Irish and Spanish meats. The Puerto Banús store is smaller and doesn’t have the choice of meat, but is handy for things like kids snacks and the more popular ranges of everyday items.

English Butchers
There are several English butchers up and down the coast, selling everything the avowed British carnivore could wish for! Just keep a look out in local English-language journals to find the one nearest to you.

Of course, nowadays in the UK the high street is full of shops such as Zara, Pull and Bear, Oysho and Massimo Dutti. What you may not know is that in fact all these and more are owned by Inditex, the Spanish clothing giant, who exports around the world, so while you may be looking for a little bit of the UK in Spain, it is surprisingly far from difficult to find a bit of Spain in the UK!

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Marbella Beaches Get a Boost

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Earlier this year, the famed beaches of Marbella took a huge hit when not one but two of the biggest storms in twenty-two years battered the shores and reduced many to a sad state. The local council took immediate action to repair them and they were indeed mostly ready for the summer season, however this year the town hall want to go a step further.

Plans were announced last week for six Marbella beaches to attain the coveted Q mark for Quality in Tourism. This initiative, run by El Instituto para la Calidad Touristica Española, the Spanish Institute for Quality in Tourism, rewards all sectors of the service industry involved with tourism. Those who attain the Q mark are deemed to have passed strict controls, which ensure that there is a high attention to service to tourists guaranteeing quality, safety and professionalism. With regard to beaches, they must be accessible to all and demonstrate clean water and sand quality. The beach bars and restaurants will also be inspected, as well as clear signposting, beach supervision and security assessment.

The beaches are to be the first in a project that it is hoped will eventually encompass all of Marbella’s beaches. The first tranche to be submitted for the prestigious mark of quality will be La Salida, Nueva Andalucía, Puerto Banús, La Venus, El Faro and Cabopino.

This project comes after a recent successful visit by San Pedro and Marbella delegates to the World Travel Market in London, one of the most important tourist exhibitions in the world. The delegates, including the Mayor of Marbella, Angeles Muñoz, had a busy time meeting with tour-operators, travel agencies and representatives from the golf and hotel sectors.

As tourism is such a vital part of the local economy, being able to demonstrate quality and service on the local beaches with the prestigious Q mark is just another indication that tourist and residents’ comfort and satisfaction are paramount to Marbella.

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Atalaya, at the Heart of The Golden Triangle

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There is a residential area at the crossroads between San Pedro Alcántara, Estepona and Benahavis that blends peace and tranquillity with easy access to the best of the Costa del Sol. Monte Biarritz is located close to the coastal roads that connect these three hotspots in the Marbella area, as well as being just a few minutes from the beach, under ten minutes from Puerto Banús and Marbella town, and having three golf clubs right on its doorstep.

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Established and largely consolidated, with little land left for development, this is a thriving community of Spanish and expat residents who enjoy the many conveniences of the location. The Atalaya Golf & Country Club dominates the area, though those facing eastwards will also spot the verdant fairways of the Real Club de Golf Guadalmina, with the iconic Gary Player designed greenery of the El Paraíso Golf Club also just five minutes away. The area is on the doorstep of the charming little town of San Pedro Alcántara, with its restaurants, cafés, tapas bars and boutiques, but also has its own array of shops and eateries, not to mention schools, dental clinics and other services.

 

Beloved above all by those who live here year-round, the proximity of Atalaya to the sandy beaches of this area (a little over a kilometre, in fact) also makes it popular with vacationers looking to rent holiday apartments or even villas. Monte Biarritz gets much of its residential community feel from the good mix of apartments, townhouses and villas, adding to by a popular Saturday market that competes with the fresh produce market held in San Pedro on Thursdays and the Sunday flea market set in a beautiful country location close to the charming village of Benahavis. The area between Atalaya and Benahavis is marked by natural hill scenery whose hiking trails will take you over river canyons and past waterfalls – making this in many ways an area that offers the best of all worlds.

Altavista Property offers quality contemporary homes in this area. Please contact us for fantastic new developments such as the modern villas for sale at Arboleda.

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