Palacio de Babilonia

Price guide: Expensive

Carretera de Istán, Marbella, Costa del Sol, 29602

Price guide: Expensive

Dining area pre-service

By George Prior, your Marbella expert

I write for Monocle, OUT, SUR in .... Read more
#2 of 12
expert-rated restaurants in Marbella
Expert overall rating:4.6 out of 5
Food and drink:
4.6
4.6
Ambience:
4.7
4.7
Service:
4.7
4.7
Location:
4.7
4.7
Value for money:
4.1
4.1
Recommended for:
Couples, Foodies, Honeymooners, Mature travellers, Celebrity spotting, Design and architecture, People watching, Romance, Trendiness

Best for Romance - Expert review of Palacio de Babilonia

Arguably the most exclusive, original and expensive restaurant in Marbella.

Owned by the ‘grande dame’ of Marbella society, Olivia Valere, Palacio de Babilonia (Palace of Babilonia) transports you straight into a chapter of Arabian Nights. Next to her famous nightclub, which takes the French socialite’s own name, the luxurious Arab-esque palace just off the Golden Mile is where the wealthy come to dine in the summer. The entrance is a candle-lit drawbridge, there are murmuring fountains at every turn, the round tables in the massive orange and olive tree-lined courtyard ache with crystal glasses and silver cutlery, and high terracotta walls keep out the paparazzi. It’s that kind of place.

Food and drink: 

Olivia was born in Morocco and went to live in Paris as a student where she remained. Her heritage is stamped all over the contemporary Moroccan-influenced French cuisine. The wine and champagne lists are impressive - and so they should be for the prices they charge. The cheapest bottle of champagne is 320 euros.

Recommended dishes: 

My favourite main course is the pumpkin velouté, which I have every time, and the cheesecake is, in my opinion, unrivalled.

Ambience: 

The soft glow of hundreds of twinkling candles reflecting off the terracotta walls, as well as the ancient olive trees, star-lit sky overhead and scores of Europe’s most stylish people make for an utterly glam experience.

Service: 

As you’d expect, it’s five-star all the way.

Location: 

It's 800 metres past the King of Saudi Arabia’s house (let’s say ‘palace’), on the Istán road, just off the Golden Mile. Follow the flow of Ferraris at the sign-posted exit and you’ll find it.

Price advice: 

It's overwhelmingly pricey, so you’ll need to be celebrating something quite special. It usually averages about 160 euros a head for a two-course dinner. As it is expensive, it has been given a low price rating, although this is no way reflects the food or experience you'll have.

More information on Palacio de Babilonia:

Price guide:
Expensive
Type:
Restaurant
Food:
French, Fusion, International, Mediterranean, North African
Address:
Carretera de Istán, Marbella, Costa del Sol, 29602
Telephone:
+34 952 828 861
Website:
http://www.oliviavalere.com
Serves:
Dinner
Opening times:
June-mid September: daily 9pm-2am.
Accepts Credit Cards:
Yes
Reservations:
Essential at peak times

Have you been to Palacio de Babilonia? Would you recommended it?