The number of foreign residents in Marbella has increased in the past year, and the American community has followed this trend with an increase of 15 per cent, according to town hall figures. More Americans are deciding to buy property in southern Spain, and property developer Bright says they are particularly interested in the Golden Triangle of Marbella, Benahavís and Estepona.
Bright reports that more than 15 per cent of enquiries it receives are from clients from the USA, who are looking for reliable investment opportunities, quality construction standards and a sustainable way of life in an area with good connections. Bright is currently building Vista Lago, a project initially valued at 60 million euros which has obtained Breeam certification, a method of evaluating sustainability by analysing the whole environment as well as the process of construction.
André Alves of Marbella International University Centre (MIUC), can confirm this change. "This past year we have had more students from the USA," he says. "They couldn't come last term because of the restrictions, but there are five now when before we rarely had more than one at a time".
Juan José González, president of CIT Marbella, is not surprised by this increased interest. "There has always been interest in the American market, although it has not been a priority because of the distance between us," he says. "But the Marbella brand is well-known in the USA, especially in the Miami area".
Americans are following the trend, especially in the UK and northern Europe, in looking for a second home with all the facilities to enable them to work from there in case of a lockdown, in a pleasant area with a lovely climate and good communications.
However, we see the other side of the coin with the American College, where numerous American students come to improve their football, tennis or golf to obtain a scholarship, or gain access to a better university. This year, nearly all have stayed at home because of the pandemic. However, many who were planning to study abroad decided to stay, so the overall numbers did not change much.