We all love Marbella for its warm climate but quite possibly the only downside might be the additional challenge of getting into the Christmas “mood”. Fortunately, Marbella has plenty going on this season. Here we present a few venues and events for all things from shopping to posting letters to Santa.
CHRISTMAS SHOPPING IN MARBELLA
There’s always El Corte Ingles and La Cañada of course, but there are better ways to do your Christmas shopping and support local businesses at the same time.
Puerto Banús & Bookworld
The golden oldie of any seasonal shopping in Marbella is the street market of Plaza Antonio Banderas, which is now full of Christmas-themed stalls. While you’re at it, you could also pop by Bookworld which is just around the corner, the most comprehensive English bookshop on the coast with a large selection of the latest bestsellers, non-fiction, children’s books, board games and an impressive selection assortment of cards and wrapping paper. There’s also an option of purchasing a gift card. It’s a win-win! You can give a mindful present while supporting a local bookshop.
Marbella street market
Traditionally, every Saturday from about 9am, the street market on the stretch of Avenida Pilar Calvo between La Sala and the bullring has everything from fresh local fruit & veg to art pieces and vintage jewelry.
Marbella Arena, located around the bullring, hosts its own street market on Sundays from 11AM. Complete with takeaway food and live music, it makes for a pleasant stroll and offers a variety of locally crafted gift options.
Marbella’s Old town is charming on any given day but becomes irresistible during the Christmas season. While you can do a whole shopping spree around its narrow, cobbled streets, a less obvious option is the newly-opened Alma Essentials, where you can get everything from hand-poured candles (including some with festive smells) to personalized essential oil mixes. Another great idea for gifting an experience are Alma Essentials workshops. Read more about the brand’s philosophy and find all the details here.
CHRISTMAS CHARITY EVENTS IN MARBELLA
Roza Rossa Christmas market
The Roza Rossa Family Tennis Country Club in El Paraíso is hosting its own market this year. Antiques, homemade sweets, festive décor and much more will be on sale. Check out what the place has to offer, including tennis and padel courts, mini golf, sports residence, and restaurant. The club is open from 9am to 10pm. Calle Violeta, Nº. 106 Urbanizacion Paraiso 29680 Estepona.
Messiah by Handel at the Incarnation Church
The Choir & Orchestra of Collegium Musicum Costa Del Sol together with four international soloists will be performing Handel’s “Messiah”, directed by Delyth Bressington in the beautiful Church of the Encarnación in the old town of Marbella. Entry is free, while all donations will go to Caritas charity foundation.
Casa Angeles Christmas party
Casa Angeles, a day centre for children with special needs by Global Gift foundation will be hosting a Christmas party featuring kid’s entertainment, workshops, live music, street food, gift market and much more. All the money collected during the event will be used to finance the centre’s activities, which include innovative therapies and rehabilitation machinery as well as workshops and leisure programs designed to promote social inclusion. Visit their website here.
Looking for an excuse to show off your ridiculous Elf outfit? Look no more. On December 17th, Marbella and San Pedro town halls are organizing a festive charity run where participants are encouraged to wear costumes. Find more details and register here
Lunch with Santa
Collective Calling, a local Marbella charity that works with children and parents in Spain and Tanzania to help tackle poverty, have their annual “Lunch with Santa” event that is hosted at the beautiful DIVOT Gastro Grill. Celebrate Christmas at this fun day and help those in need at the same time. Enjoy a two-course meal (half bottle of wine included), live entertainment by Sam Woodrow International, a visit from Santa & his Elves (presents will be given to all the children) and lots of arts & crafts for the kids. Tickets are just €65 for adults & €25 for children. All proceeds from the day will go directly towards Collective Calling’s work in Spain & Tanzania.
Book your tickets by calling 622 611 084 or emailing the restaurant: firstname.lastname@example.org
Christmas Gift Appeal
Collective Calling are also organising a gift appeal for local children that live below the poverty line. The charity believes that every child deserves a new gift at Christmas, so their appeal is for new gifts or toys, not used or second hand ones. All you have to do is buy your gift, wrap it up and label it with the gender and age of child, then drop it off at La Sala restaurant in Puerto Banus. Collective Calling will deliver your gifts to local children in need.
TRADITIONAL CHRISTMAS EVENTS IN MARBELLA
Christmas Flamenco Lunch at Trocadero
Trocadero Benalmádena will be celebrating Christmas in a truly Andalusian way – with a “zambomba flamenca”. Zambomba is a celebration that takes place in Andalusia in the run-up to Christmas, where friends and family gather in courtyards or squares to sing flamenco Christmas carols – accompanied by instruments such as zambombas, tambourines or guitars, and spiced up with local wines, traditional sweets and cold meats. There is usually a mix of religious and profane lyrics, and participants often dance! The focus of zambomba is on communal singing. Make sure to book ahead!
The Big Christmas Parade
Starting at 5pm on Thursday, December 15th and accompanied by a musical performance, the Christmas Parade (Pasacalles de Navidad), aka “The Arrival of Father Christmas”, will honour the inauguration of the grotto installed on Paseo de la Alameda. The parade will start in on Plaza Santo Cristo and terminate at Paseo de la Alameda.
The ending of the parade will be followed by the opening of the grotto and a children’s show with a game “Juega la Navidad” taking place on The Paseo de la Alameda.
Children that wish to hand in their letters to Santa will be able to do so at the following times:
December 16th: 5pm – 8.30 pm
December 17th & 18th: 11am – 1.30 pm, 5 pm – 8.30 pm
December 19th-23rd: 5 pm – 8.30 pm
December 24th: 11am – 2 pm