A Low-Key (ish) Hen Party in Marbella

We spent three nights in Marbella (well it was actually Puerto Banus but I'm not going to split hairs) for Katie Jane Online's hen party at the end of June. Katie has had a house in the area for as long as she can remember, has lots of happy memories and friends here and couldn't wait to show us around.

A Low-Key (ish) Hen Party in Marbella

Where we stayed

We stayed in this 5 bedroom luxury, beach-front apartment. It was located right on the beach, had three private pools and provided all of the space we needed. The main harbour was within easy walking distance and the apartment was furnished to a high standard. They were pretty strict about noise and getting make-up/tan on the towels and sheets so I'd advise taking your own if this is going to be a problem (or risk losing some of your deposit). It did feel nice and safe and you could only access the apartment block via a locked gate. We loved the pools which were lovely and quiet and the perfect place to catch some afternoon sunshine. 

Cocktails at Astral Bar 

Astral Bar is right on the beach and it always seemed to be super busy. The cocktails here are super-sized but delicious - the service wasn't the best here though and we were almost forced to pay for more drinks than we'd ordered.

Those sunsets (and beach clubs) 

A Low-Key (ish) Hen Party in Marbella - Puerto Banus Harbour

The sunsets in Puerto Banus are so stunning and it was lovely walking along the harbour at night and taking it all in. Fantastic for people watching too. Two of Marbella's most popular beach clubs were right by our apartment and I swear I've never seen anything like the aftermath of a Champagne Spray Party. It's like the party-goers of Marbella are an entirely different breed. Loved watching all of the posing and I felt like I'd stepped onto the set of TOWIE at times.

The posing continued on the harbour front which was filled with rich kids posing in their supercars. It was actually hilarious to watch as an outsider as sometimes they really did look ridiculous. How the other half live!

Dinner at Pizzeria Picasso 

We enjoyed dinner on the first floor of Pizzeria Picasso one night - we were right by the window and had excellent views of the harbour. Everyone's food was delicious and it was busy, busy, busy. I made the mistake of ordering the 4 cheese pizza though which was far too cheesy......

The Bullring Market and Brunch at Breathe 

On Saturday morning we visited the Bullring Market which was a fantastic traditional Spanish market selling clothes, gifts, antiques, lace and more. Lovely for a little browse. This was followed by brunch at Breathe which was gorgeous - the menu had a healthy twist with fresh smoothies and healthier brunch options (I did still manage to squeeze in some Feta cheese mind) and the food here was beautiful. Perfect antidote to the alcohol we'd been drinking. The loos were lush too. 

Drinks at Links Bar & Dinner at El Banco 

Links Bar was a short taxi ride away and one of my favourite places to have drinks. It wasn't too busy and was super chilled with gorgeous views from the terrace. We had fun playing a few hen party games here. This was followed by dinner at El Banco which was nice but it took FOREVER for our food to arrive and it was after 10:30pm before our food was served which was a little late for me - even on Spanish time. Some of the girls headed out to party afterwards but I was ready for bed afterwards. Old age is creeping up on me.

Lunch & Drinks at Paradise Beach 

Paradise Beach was recommended to us by one of Katie's friends currently living in Marbella who we met for drinks on the previous evening. It's one of those understated beach cafes that actually serves delicious foods. The prawns and mozzarella and tomato salad were both incredible and here was easily my favourite meal from the whole trip - worth hunting out. I'd recommend booking ahead as it does get busy.

Dinner at Los Farolillos 

Los Farolillos is Katie's favourite restaurant and somewhere she has been coming since she was a baby. Kind of hidden away (and a taxi ride away), it was filled with locals which filled me with high hopes. The food here was so reasonable and all spot on and the service was great too. Of all the places we dined in Marbella, Los Farolillos felt like the most authentic to me. 

Vodka at Bijou 

A hen party just isn't a hen party without 'drinks on the strip'. Bijou was our club of choice and we ordered a couple of bottles of vodka which arrived with free mixers and sparklers - everyone was pretty drunk at this point and we spent the whole night laughing. The perfect end to a pretty perfect weekend.

I am so pleased I finally made it to Marbella and loved that Katie shared this part of her life with us all for her special day. Now that I've seen it, I honestly doubt I'd return though. Marbella seems to attract two sets of people - those like Katie who have been visiting for years and before it became so commercialised and have many friends, memories and roots in the area OR the party/TOWIE crowd who just want to pose and throw ludicrous amounts of money around. I fall into neither of those crowds and don't really feel like I fitted in as such. I prefer smaller, more authentic Spanish towns like my beloved Calella de Palafrugell. 

I would recommend Marbella/Puerto Banus for a girl's weekend though and it was absolutely perfect for our hens - I am so pleased I got to experience it. There are loads of restaurants and bars to choose from, fabulous shopping options and a beautiful beach.

Have you visited Purto Banus or ever been tempted to visit? 


  1. I’m so pleased you all had a nice time. How you’ve described it is just how I’d imagined it!

  2. Glad you had a good time! I went for my friend’s hen do and had pretty much the same experience as you. I liked how clean it was & really loved the people-watching! Melis x


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