They had been prepared for months. Anne's family (not her real name) had travelled from Houston to enjoy a few days in Marbella. They had been invited to attend a friend's wedding on the Costa del Sol providing the perfect excuse for a short holiday.
It was not the first time they had travelled to Marbella, but they were "very excited" all the same. This time they had rented a luxurious villa with a private pool, located just a few minutes' walk from the beach. The price of the stay was over 3,400 pounds a week, but money was no object.
On 26 June the family landed in Spain. They went to the wedding as planned and all was going well until the eighth day. That Tuesday, 5 July, they spent the whole morning at the villa and, at around 6.30pm, they decided to go out for a walk. They strolled around Marbella's old town for a while and then went to have a drink.
Just a few hours later, at around 10.30pm, they returned to the property and Anne points out that they did not notice anything strange when they opened the door. She went to the kitchen and suddenly heard a scream coming from her parents' bedroom. "Where is my suitcase? It was here, on the bed!" she heard her mother say.
Alarmed, they started to look around the different rooms of the house, realising that five high-end Rolex, Cartier and Patek Philippe watches - the latter valued at 350,000 euros - along with several Chanel, Hermes and Dior handbags and numerous items of jewellery, among other things, were missing.
According to the report filed the following morning at the Marbella police station, to which SUR has had access, the thieves also took several brand name belts, 5,000 dollars, family documents and the lens of a camera valued at 75,000 euros. They had also ripped the safe out of one of the wardrobes.
The report says that the value of the stolen items is around 1.5 million euros. According to the sources consulted, an investigation is currently underway by the National Police to find those responsible for the robbery.
There are "too many coincidences" that neither Anne nor her family can explain, she told SUR. On the one hand, she indicates that it was "a very clean robbery", as nothing had been moved in the rooms. It was as if the thieves knew exactly where the valuables were, she says. The only damage they caused was to the safe, which was ripped out of the wall.
Anne goes on to explain that each time they left the house they would check that all the windows and doors were locked and set the villa's security alarm and that evening, she insists, was no exception.
However, after realising they had been burgled and checking the premises, they noticed that one of the glass doors leading to the swimming pool was slightly open, Anne continues, "I'm absolutely convinced that we left it closed before we left," she says.
The family also do not understand why the alarm, which they claim they set off before leaving that evening, did not go off. Hence, they believe that the only reasonable explanation for this is that the assailants gained access to the villa with a key.
"Unfortunately, there were no security cameras to record what happened," Anne told SUR, who also says that she agreed to talk to this newspaper to prevent other people from being victims of robberies and to try and find the perpetrators.