Giles Brown brings us the latest on where to go in Marbella on New Year’s Eve – from the biggest bashes to exclusive boutique events, choose where to ring in the new with this essential list.
It’s fair to say that 2020 has been a year unlike any other. Even Marbella, where the party never stops, has had to slow down a little. When I was reviewing restaurants for a glossy Marbella lifestyle magazine, I was informed by the publisher that I was not allowed to slate a below par gastronomic experience at it would upset the establishment, who was normally an advertiser. So I had to devise a code. A meal would become “memorable”, awful main courses were “unforgettable” and frankly unpalatable desserts “had a taste like nothing else”.
So I think we can all agree that 2020 has been more than a little “memorable”, to put it mildly!
You could be forgiven for just crawling under the duvet on New Year’s Eve with a bottle of wine and takeout pizza, but it’s also the perfect excuse to put two fingers up to 2020 and let off the steam that built up over lockdown. As sometime Marbella resident Yazz once sang – “The Only Way is Up”, and on the last night of 2020 this is doubly true.
The restrictions by the Junta de Andalucia mean that this year there will be no crowds gathering in the Plaza de los Naranjos – Orange Square to count down the old year and swallow the traditional grapes as the clock strikes midnight. With curfew coming into force at 1.30am, it also means that Marbella will be celebrating New Year’s Eve in a northern European style and starting early. While midnight on a Spanish New Year Celebration marks the start of the serious partying – and I’ve staggered back at some ridiculous hour in the afternoon on January 1 on more than one occasion – this year the midnight chimes may have more than a few party goers coming over all “Cinderella” and heading for home well before curfew.
For many people, New Year’s Eve 2020 will focus on the food. Many of Marbella’s most popular restaurants will be open for business and, after the year that they have had, could do with all the support they could get. Yanx in Centro Plaza has always been a firm favourite and this year is no different offering an expansive menu in extremely festive and friendly surroundings! Both Breathe and La Sala, two of Nueva Andalucia’s best known venues are also open for New Year’s Eve and likely to be very busy.
Uber trendy bar, restaurant and club combination Mosh is holding a “Catbaret” (the owners have a thing about cats). Promising the ‘most extravagant party in Marbella’, Mosh will have mind-blowing shows, deco and live music from 7pm ‘till the cats go home’.
One of Marbella’s best kept secrets, Motel Particulier (on the site of what was La Catarina) will be holding an ‘NYE Unplugged’. The Motel, that brings together live music and gastronomy in a members’ club setting, looks like the perfect place for a retro styled boogie to banish the 2020 blues and the management ask you to bring your dancing shoes to the black tie event.
For something a little less frenetic, check out Cascada just off the Ojen road. With its cosy fireplace, the restaurant will be offering an a la carte menu, while an acoustic guitarist performs traditional flamenco songs.
At the other end of the scale, Mamzel Marbella (which old Marbella hands will remember as the fabulous Finca Besaya) is more direct with its approach. The ‘decadent and luxurious dinner followed by an exclusive party’, pulls no punches in an evening called “F**K 2020”.
Party central this New Year’s Eve, however, must be at the Puente Romano Resort. The beach front Sea Grill restaurant is offering a New Year’s Eve Stay and Dine package, with early check in, five course dinner and buffet breakfast in the morning.
The Plaza at Puente Romano has already proved itself one of the most adaptable locations to the current regulations. At SupperClub it is likely to be a little more high octane, with a live show and superb food.
Finally, Nobu will be offering many of their signature dishes on New Year’s Eve for the consummate culinary experience.
If you really want to make an evening of it, Nobu Hotel is also offering dine and stay packages. If you decide to carry on the private party in one of the suites, perhaps with a Jacuzzi, you might well find that the late check out is a godsend. And as Nobu is an adults-only hotel, you won’t have over excited children tearing around the corridors at some ungodly hour. Only the over excited grownups…
However you spend your New Year’s Eve 2020, let’s make it a safe one, and raise a glass for better things to come in 2021!