Thursday, April 06, 2006
Marbella: How Spain's jewel lost its shine
Marbella was always one of Spain's Mediterranean jewels.
Known for being the Costa del Sol enclave preferred by aristocrats, Arab princes, actors and singers, it numbers among its residents Antonio Banderas, Bruce Willis and Julio Iglesias.
The city, which has a population of 124,000, enjoys a beautiful spring micro-climate all year round and, like Los Angeles, Marbella also has a Hollywood Boulevard of sorts - known as the Boulevard of Fame - where well-known personalities can leave their handprints and signatures in concrete.
But despite the glitz and glamour, the resort city has seen its reputation nosedive with a flood of recent corruption cases.
In recent years it has acquired a reputation as a beach haven for gangsters of various nationalities.
It has taken another blow with the arrest of its mayor and other officials in a multi-million euro corruption scandal. READ ON