A sunny holiday or short stay in the Costa del Sol is an attractive proposition, but no time in the area will be complete without first enjoying a top-notch meal in one of the region’s fabulous restaurants. If you rent a car from Malaga Airport and make the 40-minute drive to Marbella, you’ll find plenty such establishments. Marbella is replete with great dining locations, offering a variety of styles and unique experiences. In an effort to guide you along, and to help you fill out your must-try list while in the area, we’ve decided to put together this guide to where to eat in Marbella, highlighting a handful of the city’s very best offerings. We think you’ll agree, there’s a lot to be excited by!
Opening its doors back in 2004, Skina is a celebration of the finest food, wines, and gastronomy. This Michelin-starred restaurant certainly gives off the feeling of exclusivity, thanks to its intimate size, but it’s the food and excellent wine selection that truly impresses. Here to tell us more about the joys of dining at Skina is Marcos Granda, the owner and soul of the restaurant:
“At Skina we aim to constantly revitalise the menu by trusting the temporality around the availability of the main ingredients provided by our trusted suppliers and producers. We have developed a very personal cuisine with special attention to the raw products and its environment in order to be able to offer the best of Marbella and Andalusia in every recipe while always evolving and playing.
“Our location, in the heart of Marbella city, together with our passion for the raw produce, their temporality, and our aim for a constant renovation, are our main highlighted characteristics. We pay special attention to every detail and only sixteen guests can experience what’s on offer each night at the restaurant. However, the capacity is increased up to 26 guests during summer on the terrace, making Skina a wonderful choice for a gastronomic experience on a summer night.”
During our conversation with Marcos Granda, we made sure to ask him about the specifics of the menu and what people can look forward to eating: “Our main goal is offering a new menu every fifteen days, turning visits to the restaurant into a unique experience for the guest who comes for the very first time as well as for the most loyal clientele.
“We offer two different menus:
- “A Seasonal Tasting Menu that offers a fixed option with seven different dishes based on seasonal products that combine traditional recipes with the most innovative techniques. A very personal experience that has been designed accordingly to the client needs where the seafood, seasonal meats, fresh vegetables, and desserts are stars of the menu.
- “Menu à la carte: This option includes a variety of dishes and recipes for the clients to choose from. Elaborated with seasonal raw products and combining innovation with traditional techniques, this menu becomes a perfect choice for the diners that want to choose their own menu.”
Before we wrap up this look into the joys of dining at Skina, here’s some parting words from Marcos Granda on the exciting wines available: “In terms of the whole experience, we can´t leave the wine offer aside as our cellar at Skina represents a unique dimension that we hope surprises wine lovers of all kinds and tastes. Thus, we have developed a very personal project when it comes to the wine menu at Skina, with references from small and local producers, rare gems almost extinguished on the market and outstanding vintages of great wines. For that purpose, we usually attend different auctions and visit collectors or specialised stores where these unique bottles are found. At the same time, a wide range of national and international references from the most respected wineries are included in our wine offer to complete a menu that has been created for every palate to enjoy.
“We aim to offer a unique culinary adventure where not only the food but the wine on offer and the environment allow our guests to enjoy a remarkable gastronomic experience.”
A part of the Marbella Club hotel, the restaurants here are luxurious dining locations and spots where guests have come to expect the best of the best in terms of delicious Andalusian cuisine. Utilising the freshest flavours and highest quality ingredients, the Marbella Club’s virtuoso chef Juan Gálvez has assembled a menu to suit a wide variety of palates. Marbella Club’s restaurant The Grill is known for its mix of local and international dishes, and includes sumptuous starters such as jumbo prawn and leek ravioli and scallop tartare, as well as head-turning main dishes like pan-seared sea bass fillet, suckling lamb shoulder, veal cutlets, and boneless char-grilled grain chicken. Add this all to an impressive selection of wines, the Marbella Club is certainly a crowd pleaser.
The Marbella Club kindly spoke to us about what diners can look forward to at their two restaurants: “In the setting of the Golden Mile on the Costa del Sol, Marbella Club Hotel, founded in the 50s, has become a legendary institution in Marbella. The aromatic and beautiful Mediterranean gardens and the beachfront privileged location give the hotel a sense of total privacy, the ideal setting to enjoy a great Mediterranean lunch by the beach at Mc Beach Chiringuito (a Spanish barefoot dining by the beach concept restaurant) with fresh seafood and salads, authentic Andalusian cuisine but also a sushi bar, signature cocktails, sun beds, live music, sea views and plenty of sun! You can also look forward to a romantic dinner at The Grill restaurant, enjoying historical dishes delivered with panache with a classic service in a romantic and intimate candlelit patio.”
Image credit: El Lago
Set against the stunning backdrop of the Elvira Hills – as well as a picturesque golf course and lake, the El Lago is a Michelin-starred restaurant that has contributed significantly to the Costa del Sol cuisine experience. With incredibly personable service and creative dishes, this restaurant is one of the most innovative in the city. Diners at El Lago can look forward to a menu of premium quality, including the likes of red mullet loin with flame roasted celeriac, grilled octopus with creamed potato and truffles, and local veal steak tartar with crème of fried eggs and sheep cheese. El Lago also boasts a tremendous wine cellar replete with exclusive labels to complement the incredible dishes being served up. There’s no doubt El Lago is a must when visiting Marbella.
Image credit: Messina
Located not far from Marbella’s Old Town, Messina is an elegant restaurant with contemporary style, sporting a minimalist and open-plan design. Certainly one of Marbella’s more up-scale dining experiences, an evening at Messina is one you won’t want to miss out on. Since opening its doors back in 2003, Messina has gone onto win many awards, including a much coveted Michelin Star. The menu is truly something to behold, punctuated by tantalising dishes such as creamy cuttlefish with marinated cucumber, cray fish with bellota ham, Black Angus entrecote steak with potatoes and asparagus, and for dessert, there’s delights that include roasted red apple ice cream with Oloroso sherry sabayon, as well as the their delicious caramelized pineapple sorbet.
Image credit: Terra Sana
For healthy meals created with both passion and the freshest ingredients available, Terra Sana positions itself as a true highlight of the Marbella restaurant scene. Reasonably priced and sporting excellent service, it’s hardly a surprise that this delightful establishment is held in such high regard. Those dining at Terra Sana can look forward to a relaxing atmosphere when eating throughout the day. For breakfast, served until 1 pm, there are tasty favourites such as French toast, American pancakes (with strawberries, bananas and maple syrup), and eggs benedict. Terra Sana also offers a wonderful selection of wraps, inventive burgers, and fresh-baked oven pizzas. Families will also be happy in knowing that Terra Sana has a tremendous kids’ menu that won’t fail to delight.
Image credit: The Boardwalk
Situated on the Paseo Maritimo, Marbella’s beautiful seafront, The Boardwalk is without question one of the city’s finest restaurants and bars. No matter what you’re in the mood for during your time in Marbella, The Boardwalk can accommodate. Offering breakfast, homemade cakes, and even a traditional afternoon tea – just in case you’re missing home – this place really does it all. In terms of main courses, guests can look forward to a menu that contains the likes of Thai vegetarian laksa, chargrilled 8oz fillet steak, and chateaubriand with chips and herb stuffed mushrooms. For a lighter option, The Boardwalk’s sandwich menu is not to be missed, with highlights including the Boardwalk Club Sandwich and their special fillet steak sandwich.
The best places to eat at in Marbella
Marbella has so much to offer in terms of delicious cuisine and impressive dining establishments. From Michelin Star holders to more casual spots, visitors are really spoiled for choice during their time here. We hope that we’ve given you a nice peek into what’s available, but bear in mind that this is just a small selection of what’s on offer, you can dine out in Marbella every day and experience something new and memorable. For more guides to the wonders of the Costa del Sol, make sure to visit our blog.
Before you go, here’s our list, one more time, of restaurants to eat at in Marbella:
- Marbella Club
- El Lago
- Terra Sana
- The Boardwalk