Palacio de Babilonia
Carretera de Istán, Marbella, Costa del Sol, 29602
- 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
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.
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.
My favourite main course is the pumpkin velouté, which I have every time, and the cheesecake is, in my opinion, unrivalled.
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.
As you’d expect, it’s five-star all the way.
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.
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:
- French, Fusion, International, Mediterranean, North African
- Carretera de Istán, Marbella, Costa del Sol, 29602
- +34 952 828 861
- Opening times:
- June-mid September: daily 9pm-2am.
- Accepts Credit Cards:
- Essential at peak times