It feels like summer has come early in Marbella, with visitors and locals basking in unusually warm April temperatures. It’s not just the sun shining on Marbella lately, however, but the global spotlight as news that Dolce & Gabbana have chosen the resort town as the location for their first European real estate project has made headlines throughout Spain and beyond.
The fashion’s move into Marbella with a collection of 60 super-luxury residences forms the third, and largest, part of Marbella Design Hills, a new €250m neighbourhood developed by Sierra Blanca Estates.
Following in the fashionably heeled footsteps of Fendi Casa, whose branded residences at EPIC Marbella are 90% sold and nearing completion, and Karl Lagerfeld, who already has three of his five villas sold, the first of them reaching the price of 15 million euros. Dolce & Gabbana’s residences will occupy a prime 80,000m2 slice of the Golden Mile, along with shopping boutiques, restaurants and public spaces that will host open-air art exhibitions.
Marbella has never been one to shy away from the limelight, as a holiday destination and home to many of the world’s highest-profile and wealthiest individuals over several decades. But these branded partnerships mark a new era of luxury, with Marbella Design Hills setting the blueprint for ultra-high-end living with hotel-style service and amenities exclusively for residents.
They also place Marbella in a new light on the global stage. Dolce & Gabbana have chosen three destinations on three different continents for their first branded residence projects – and it’s a seal of approval from a global brand synonymous with exclusivity, elegance and luxury for Marbella to join Miami and the Maldives in the mix.
Marbella shares much in common with Miami in its cosmopolitan lifestyle and warm, sunny climate. And there’s more than a touch of Miami in the decision to develop homes designed by fashion icons and hold public art shows à la Art Basel. But until now, Marbella has lacked the five-star branded residential offering that provides the ultimate in convenience and luxury for wealthy international buyers.
These branded collaborations in Marbella’s new designer district – which has also fuelled significant public investment into enhancing the surrounding infrastructure – are paving the way for branded luxury on the Costa del Sol.
Another famous name, also in collaboration with Sierra Blanca Estates, is ensuring the spotlight stays on this part of the coast for years to come. Rafael Nadal has revealed that he will open his first sports club on the Spanish mainland in Malaga, next to the city’s new landmark beachfront residential building, Sierra Blanca Tower.
With such high-profile endorsement comes confidence. And confidence has a knock-on effect across the entire luxury market, and inspires others to follow suit, innovate and do something even greater. It’s good news for the Costa del Sol – and in particular for its leading light, Marbella.