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New to Marbella? Here’s What You Need to Know

Marbella is best known for its luxurious appeal, popular vacation destination and never-ending summer climate. This coastal town in the south of Spain, located in the province of Malaga, is also very much in demand as a second home due to its many advantages, but what do you really need to know if you come to live in this sunny paradise, or simply if you want to leave on vacation well prepared. In this article, you will find out things from the history of the town and national holidays, to what emergency number to call if you have spent too long under the sun.

History of Marbella

Marbella, once known as Marbal-la, was originally under the rule of the Moors. However, in 1485, things took a turn when the Catholic King Fernando conquered Marbal-la. He changed the name to Marbella and beefed up the town’s defences with fortresses that still stand strong today. This shift played a big role in Marbella's history, spurring rapid economic growth over the next few centuries. The town’s prosperity began with fishing and expanded to include agriculture, mining, and even the establishment of blast furnaces.

Fast forward to the 1970s, Marbella started making a name for itself, especially amongst the elite. And after Franco stepped down in 1974, Marbella experienced more revival. It returned to its former glory, becoming an even better version of itself.
Marbella Population

Marbella Population

In 2023, according to the general calculations recording the population in Spain, Marbella would have 149,915 inhabitants, of which approx. 30.4% would be foreigners, 27.88% are from Marbella, 18.05 % are from Málaga, 13.45% are from Andalusia and 10.21% are from the rest of Spain.

Medical Insurance in Marbella

If you are planning a move to Marbella, it's essential to consider your healthcare requirements and make necessary arrangements beforehand. One crucial step is to inform your current doctor about your relocation. By doing so, you can request copies of your medical records to provide to your new doctors in Marbella. 

Additionally, it is advisable to explore healthcare insurance options in Marbella. Applying for insurance coverage in your new country of residence ensures that you have access to healthcare services and facilities in Marbella. Adequate insurance coverage provides peace of mind, safeguarding you against unexpected medical expenses and ensuring timely access to medical consultations, treatments and medications.
Hospitals and Emergency Numbers in Marbella

Hospitals and Emergency Numbers in Marbella

Spain as a whole has a well-established healthcare system, and Marbella boasts excellent medical facilities, clinics and hospitals equipped with modern technology and skilled healthcare professionals - both public and private. Renowned private hospitals in Marbella include Hospital QuironSalud Marbella, Hospital Ochoa, Helicopteros Sanitarios, Hospitén and HC Marbella

The Costa del Sol Hospital is Marbella’s largest public hospital, but some private hospitals such as QuironSalud have an emergency room that accommodates public healthcare. You also have what we call “ambulatorios” that are dotted around Marbella and serve as emergency drop-ins.
Below are numbers of interest for emergencies:  

  • Emergency Number: +34 112

  • Local Police: +34 092

  • National Police: + 34 091

  • Guardia Civil: +34 062

  • Fire Department: +34 080

  • Ambulance: +34 061

  • Sea Rescue: +34 900 20 22 02

  • Costa del Sol Hospital: +34 951 976 669

Holidays in Marbella

Holidays in Marbella

Below is a list of the remaining public holidays in Marbella in 2023. Some of these dates tend to vary each year: 

  • August 15, Tuesday: La Asunción (Assumption of Mary)

  • October 12, Thursday: Día de la Hispanidad (National Holiday Spain)

  • October 19, Thursday: Feria de San Pedro de Alcántara (Local Holiday)

  • November 1, Wednesday: Todos los Santos (All Saints’ Day)

  • December 6, Wednesday: Día de Constitución (Constitution Day)

  • December 8, Friday: La Inmaculada Concepción (Feast of the Immaculate Conception)

  • December 25, Monday: Navidad (Christmas)

Schools in Marbella

Aloha College Marbella

Aloha College is a private school that offers bilingual education in Spanish and English situated near the Aloha Golf Club in Nueva Andalucia, . Catering to multicultural children aged 3 to 18, Aloha provides an International Primary Curriculum, tailored to the English National Curriculum, as well as GCSEs and the choice of IB or A-Levels. With one of the largest school grounds in Marbella, Aloha College boasts extensive sporting facilities, as well as a dedicated science and arts wing. 

Swans International School

For more than five decades, Swans School has been providing educational opportunities to children aged 3 to 18. Swans School delivers a British Curriculum alongside the Spanish ESO system, enabling students to obtain both GCSE and ESO diplomas. Students in years 12 and 13 have the option to pursue the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma, which prepares them for university. The private school also offers a diverse range of clubs, including the Duke of Edinburgh award and various extracurricular sporting and educational activities.

Laude International College

Laude International College is a renowned educational institution located in San Pedro de Alcántara. The school provides a choice between the British Curriculum (GCSEs and A-Levels) and the Spanish Curriculum (ESO and Spanish Baccalaureate). The facilities at the school are outstanding, boasting a football pitch, basketball courts and indoor gym. Students can also explore a range of extra-curricular activities, including second language lessons and music lessons. 

English International College

The English International College follows the British curriculum for children aged 3 to 18. Renowned as one of the premier schools in Marbella, it stands out for its exceptional examination results and rigorous teaching methods. With class sizes limited to 20 students, each learner receives personalised attention. The school offers outstanding facilities, including a Theatre, a Computer Lab and a 25m 4-lane swimming pool that hosts inter-school swimming competitions. Upon completing their GCSEs, students can pursue A-Levels, which serve as an excellent way for students to easily integrate themselves into British Universities.
Colegio Alboran

Colegio Alboran is a Spanish school in Las Chapas and offers bilingual education from ages 3 to 18. In an international environment encompassing over 30 nationalities, Alboran is renowned for sporting a large campus for all students to enjoy. The school prides itself on its extraordinary facilities and activities, such as an Equestrian Centre, a semi-Olympic pool, classes for seven different musical instruments and extra French Lessons. Being one of the oldest schools in Marbella, it is recognised as one of the best schools in Spain. 

Swedish School - Svenska Skolan Marbella

The Swedish School of Marbella is located within the secure community of La Alzambra Vasari, which is situated just off of Puerto Banús. The school adheres to the Swedish curriculum and caters to younger students. For children aged 13 to 18, an online education program based in Stockholm is available. With small class sizes, the Swedish School ensures tailored education for each child. The facilities are excellent, featuring a 25m pool, artificial turf for football, and a large garden for recreational activities.
French School - École Français Internationale Marbella

The French School in Marbella offers a French educational program for kindergarten and primary school students located on Marbella’s Golden Mile. The school adopts a trilingual system, immersing children in Spanish, English and French.

The German School - Deutsche School Malaga

The German School located in Ojén provides bilingual education for children aged 3 to 18, with Spanish as the second language. The institution offers a wide range of extracurricular activities, including theatre and various sports.

Real Estate in Marbella

Marbella's real estate market offers a wealth of opportunities for those seeking a luxurious lifestyle or a solid investment. With its stunning coastal location, world-class amenities and never-ending sunshine, Marbella has become a sought-after destination for buyers from around the globe. Whether you're in search of a beachfront villa, a modern apartment or a charming townhouse, Marbella has a diverse range of properties to suit every taste and budget.

From the prestigious Golden Mile or Golf Valley of Nueva Andalucia to exclusive gated communities like Sierra Blanca and Cascada de Camoján, this coastal paradise boasts exceptional options. With a thriving market, excellent infrastructure and a reputation for elegance, Marbella presents a compelling choice for those looking to own a slice of paradise on the Costa del Sol.

Purchase your Luxury Home with Solvilla.

Choose Solvilla as your real estate to help you purchase your dream holiday home. By working with Solvilla, you will have access to the widest selection of luxury properties in prime locations, including off-market options that are not available to others. Our team of skilled and multilingual real estate specialists will work with you to create a personalised selection of top-quality properties that meet your specific requirements and needs.