Like it, or hate it, Puerto Banus is still one of the Costa Del Sol’s most popular visitor attractions. The marina with its huge boats and exclusive shops is a paradise for the people-watchers who sit in the waterside bars and restaurants gawping at the Lamborghinis and Maseratis as they parade past with their tanned occupants.
The boats themselves appear to be placed in order of wealth and at far end of the marina its not unusual to see yachts so big that they have helicopters on top. What is unusual though is to see anyone onboard. It seems that these vessels sit idle for the vast majority of time while their owners make billion-pound deals that will secure them and even bigger boat to parade next year.
The prices in the waterfront bars are the highest on the Costa and a beer will cost anything up to 10 euros, while buying a Gin and Tonic may require you to re-mortgage your house. This doesn’t seem to deter the wannabes in their tight shirts and small skirts that stand out on the street clutching bottles of San Miguel hoping to get a glimpse of an X-Factor reject or a stray Eastender.
Sarcasm aside, it is quite a fun way to spend an evening and where else in the world can the ordinary man pass a night with such opulent surroundings? But, once you’ve had your fill of expensive beer and underwhelming personalities its time to shuffle on down the marina into the backstreets where the party is already in full swing. The bars and clubs are nearly always full regardless of the time of year or day of the week. Here you will find that the drinks are a little cheaper although few seem to come in anything bigger than a shot glass.
At 5 o’clock the drunken revelers spill out onto the streets zig-zagging their way past the facades of the designer shops in search of friends that have long-departed. Many will face the prospect of a long and expensive taxi journey back to Fuengirola where they will rejoin their golfing buddies and share (over a strong coffee) stories of stolen kisses and drunken conquests.
Back in the marina the prostitutes have gone to their beds and the big cleanup is almost over. Soon the the shops will once again be selling their overpriced goods and the punters will be nursing hangovers on the beaches. For Puerto Banus another day begins.