Marbella Info, News, Articles, Events, Luxury Homes – DM Properties Blog http://www.dmproperties.com The real estate experts at DM Properties share their knowledge and experience of the real estate market in Marbella and the Costa del Sol. Fri, 06 May 2016 11:23:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.2 Welcome to our best DM Properties website ever! http://www.dmproperties.com/13918-welcome-best-dm-properties-website.html Fri, 06 May 2016 11:23:02 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13918 As the internet has developed over the past few years, the way we interact with it has undergone a dramatic change as more and more of us have taken to using handheld devices to access online information and services.

Welcome to our best DM Properties website ever!

While desktop computers and laptops are still important, the increasing popularity of smartphones and tablets, means that businesses such as DM Properties need to keep at the cutting edge of technology in order to help prospective buyers access our website in a fast, easy to manage manner, wherever they may happen to be.

While many older websites may play correctly on bigger screens and the greater processing power of desktop computers, these are now dated, with not enough thought put into the user experience when accessed on smaller devices.

Slow page loading—particularly of high resolution pictures—can be an annoying experience and it reflects badly on the professionalism of the business in question.

For this reason we have completely redesigned our site—not that there was too much wrong with it to start with! But we do recognise that a company of our standing needs to showcase the properties of our clients in the best way possible—and that means a fast, secure site that is a joy to use on every device.

Our web designers started from scratch to ensure the Diana Morales site is fully functional whatever device you are using. By completely redesigning the website with all code re-written from first steps, we have made sure its mobile-first structure ensures all information is available all the time—not something some older websites permit on hand-held devices. Too often information is hidden to try to speed up loading times on websites that are actually only optimised for desktops.

By doing this, and incorporating the latest design trends and newest technology, we have ensured our site offers a user experience that is as fast and friendly as possible, without losing any features and still featuring high quality pictures—all vital for marketing property effectively. All images and videos are presented as large as possible for the screen, being automatically adapted in Full HD, but ready to go 4K when it becomes the de-facto standard.

Clients marketing their properties through us will recognise the importance of internet visibility, which is why we have worked so hard on the site. We have managed to achieve a 10% SEO performance increase by implementing a new internal site structure that maximises every single piece of content when it comes to Google visibility. Our team will constantly monitor the site to maintain and improve its already impressive search engine rankings

The DM Properties site has been built with the aim of being the best performing property website on the coast, making it a must for anyone wishing to sell a high quality villa, apartment, penthouse or townhouse in Marbella to list their property.

Simply put, the site is fast, easy to use—and it looks great too!

For those owners serious about selling their home, DM Properties is the proven option for results in Marbella’s luxury real estate segment. Contact us and put us to the test.

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La Zagaleta: best of the best http://www.dmproperties.com/13944-la-zagaleta-best.html Wed, 04 May 2016 15:59:48 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13944 Of the luxurious country club estates to be found in and around Marbella the one that can be said without a doubt to match the standards of the most exclusive in the world is the Club de Campo La Zagaleta.

La Zagaleta Country Club

This hill club, nestling in the foothills of the Sierra Bermeja mountains that rise up from the coast before merging into the Sierra de Ronda in the spectacular interior of Andalucía, has become the location of choice for filmstars, international sportsmen, successful businesspeople, nobility—in fact what could be classed as the cream of society—when looking for a home near Marbella.

The other country club estates in the area, such as La Quinta and El Madroñal, offer their own cachét and many attractive features to draw your attention along with many highly desirable properties, but none are quite as exclusive as La Zagaleta.

Security within nature

With only two entrances, this former private hunting reserve that encompasses a series of natural valleys within its ten square kilometres, offers the sort of privacy that only a gated community with 24-hour security can guarantee. This is much prized by residents, who are also protected from prying eyes by the extensive green zones that surround each of the expansive plots. It is a truly special place for those seeking tranquillity away from the stresses of the modern world, with nature and wildlife nurtured within its environs. Indeed, deer can sometimes be seen on the hillsides and within the wooded groves that are dotted across the countryside, while eagles soar on the up draughts formed in the pure mountain air.

As is to be expected and in keeping with the country club concept of its founders, the range and quality of sporting facilities available to residents is of the very highest order. Two immaculately maintained championship golf courses, an equestrian centre offering tranquil cross-country riding trails and a racquets club provide the opportunity for healthy outdoor exercise, while an exclusive clubhouse with a quality restaurant, bar, meeting lounge, private function rooms and swimming pool, serves as a focus for the estate’s social life.

Villas for sale in La Zagaleta

The villas for sale here—there are no apartment complexes—are some of the finest to be found not just in the Marbella area, but anywhere in the world. Built to the most exacting standards, utilising the finest materials and designed by some of the best international architects, they not only have every imaginable amenity within expansive private grounds, but also benefit from stunning coastal vistas across the Mediterranean to Africa. La Zagaleta is truly a byword for a luxurious country club lifestyle.

Diana Morales Properties has a handpicked selection of some of the finest villas and plots for sale in La Zagaleta. Please contact us for more information, and we can discuss your requirements.

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The best frontline golf areas in Marbella http://www.dmproperties.com/13931-frontline-golf-areas-marbella.html Tue, 26 Apr 2016 09:21:28 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13931 For many who come to enjoy the uniquely benevolent climate and sweet lifestyle of Marbella it is not in the first instance the beach but rather golf that draws the attention. Lovers of the game as well as those who simply love owning a home that looks out over the pristinely kept fairways – perhaps with a backdrop of mountain and/or sea views – keep this a highly popular property option in this sunny part of Europe.

Stylish frontline golf villa facing Los Naranjos Golf course

As specialists in luxury Marbella homes, DM Properties can offer the best selection of frontline golf villas and apartments in the most attractive areas. Here is a summary of the most popular luxury frontline golf locations.

Las Brisas

Situated at the heart of Nueva Andalucía’s Golf Valley, Las Brisas is one of the most exclusive golf courses in Spain. Popular with players from across Europe, its championship course skirts beautiful subtropical vegetation bordered by luxurious villas. If you love golf, style and elegant homes that offer the very best of Marbella’s outdoor lifestyle, this is the place to be.

La Quinta

Where Las Brisas is a peaceful residential area close to Puerto Banús, La Quinta is a hill club estate on the northwest edge of Nueva Andalucía. Here an attractive verdant golf course provides players and residents alike with a spectacular visual contrast to the foothills of the Serranía de Ronda, which rise all around. The area, which also features a luxury five-star spa hotel, combines architecturally styled villas with a small collection of spacious apartments and townhouses.

Guadalmina

The hilly terrain of La Quinta stands in contrast to the level coastal terrain of Guadalmina Baja, one of Marbella’s classic upmarket addresses. In this well-established area large private villas stand on spacious plots, many with impressive views over the beautiful parkland golf course – the only one in Marbella that features a links section.

Río Real

For the ultimate combination of luxury and golf east of Marbella, Río Real offers upmarket villas and apartments overlooking one of the most attractive green fairways of all. This area is peaceful and select yet close to Marbella town, shopping, beaches and nature. The course forms the focal point for the luxury residential complexes that line it, including spacious attached homes that are closer to villas than townhouses.

La Zagaleta

If you want a truly exclusive – and private – golf property, then La Zagaleta is the logical choice. The lucky inhabitants of this select gated private country club not only enjoy some of the very finest golf views framed by gorgeous mountain and sea scenery, but they don’t even have to share it with the public in this members-only environment. The large villas and mansions here are set on expansive grounds that form part of a natural paradise at a few kilometres from Marbella and its shoreline.

Diana Morales Properties has a selection of the very finest villas and apartments in these exclusive areas—please contact us and we can help you find the perfect home for your requirements.

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An estate between mountain and sea in Marbella http://www.dmproperties.com/13860-estate-between-mountain-sea-marbella.html Tue, 19 Apr 2016 08:01:55 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13860 People speak of La Zagaleta, El Madroñal and Sierra Blanca, but the finest view of all is a well-kept secret.

An estate between mountain and sea

On the road from Marbella to Istán, in an idyllic setting between mountains, lake views, verdant hill country and the most stunning vistas of the sea, lays a refined estate ensconced within earthly beauty. This private domain of 5.7 hectares occupies a largely level land in an elevated position that takes in all the beauty and splendour of its surroundings.

To the north are the ridges of the Serranía de las Nieves, a protected nature reserve, to the east the curvature of Marbella’s La Concha Mountain, to the west the waters of the Istán lake, glistening in the sun with the peaks of the Serranía de Ronda rising up behind it, and to the south the Mediterranean Sea.

From the many perspectives to be enjoyed from this marvellous estate – be it on a terrace, by the pool or strolling through the manicured grounds – you could easily imagine yourselves in the Southern Alps, yet in this ‘Alpine scene’ one would have to include other landmarks, for on clear days the eye travels straight across the sea to Gibraltar and North Africa.

Silhouetted against the sky in ever-changing hues of blue, orange, pink and, ultimately, black, their outlines form a regular companion from the many vantage points the estate offers. An exquisite country estate with the very best credentials, this property offers the ultimate combination of chic rustic living combined with a location just minutes away from Marbella and Puerto Banús.

An estate in the true sense of the word

Close enough to drop the kids off at school, shop or head off for a game of golf, this is nonetheless a sizeable estate set in beautiful country scenery. The driveway, which winds its way through natural pine and olive groves, leads on to a large forecourt in the classical tradition. It provides access to the domain’s three properties: the main home, a second villa and a guest villa.

An estate in the true sense of the word

Between them they cover a built area of just under 3,400m2, with almost 600m2 of terraces and a total of 13 bedroom suites, two private pools and sufficient parking facilities for the entertaining a property such as this is just made for. Extending between these three properties are the beautifully kept grounds that bind the villas into one magnificent country estate on the edge of Marbella.

Main mansion

The main property is an elegant and imposing home conceived and decorated with style, personality and savoir-faire. Step through the grand entrance door and you enter a classical courtyard whose proportions, artwork and furnishings hold a distinctly Asian enchantment made up of Indian and Oriental elements.

Proceed into the reception rooms and you realise this is a property belonging to someone with the confidence to design her home around her personal taste and sense of wellbeing. A long-time resident of Marbella, she left the highly exclusive beachside area of the Golden Mile to create a refined labour of love in this spot.

“I fell in love with the setting and it all flowed from there,” she says. “From then on it was a question of creating a home where my family and I, our friends and our guests could feel happy surrounded by beautiful things and above all, the beauty of nature.” Whether it is the orientation, the setting, the views or the layout and décor of the villa, but a true sense of wellbeing pervades.

The main open-plan living area is large enough to include a salon, a cosy family room with bar, a formal dining room, private office and a card table, yet so well designed that each of these areas is also intimate and welcoming in itself. From here one can proceed to the expansive terrace – with its lounge and dining areas, not to mention breathtaking views of the grounds and the surrounding countryside – to the elegant guest suites and ground floor master suite, and to a country style kitchen where you simply want to spend as much time as possible.

Salon, a cosy family room with bar, a formal dining room, private office and a card table

In addition to a working, open-plan country kitchen this space also includes a dining room, a wonderfully comfortable lounge – as elsewhere with a grand classical fireplace – and a private terrace with its own take on the vistas. It is not unlike a beautifully styled apartment in its own right, but then so is the master suite on the upper floor, which offers a gorgeous bedroom and terrace, a walk-in changing room, an opulent bathroom with some of the best views in the property and a private little cooking area that negates the need to walk ‘all the way down’ to the main kitchen.

A cinema and entertainment room with bar, once again conceived and decorated around the idea of sheer joie de vivre, offers a fresh take on the genre, while the many different terraces connect with the rolling greenery of lawns that cascade gently towards a rather impressively positioned infinity edge swimming pool and deck with its own cabana.

Other properties

A blend of Andalusian and Tuscan architecture is added to with Provençal-style shutters in all three properties, with the second home a truly impressive and spacious villa in its own right – complete with large, luxurious living spaces, a top range kitchen, elegant bedroom suites, a panoramic swimming pool set in beautiful gardens and a multi-car garage.

The third property, also discreetly positioned to ensure optimal privacy and independence, is a charming smaller villa with the same standard of taste and quality in its lounge, kitchen, bathrooms and welcoming guest suites.

Set in a private domain surrounded by natural beauty and magnificent views yet conveniently close to Marbella, this is an estate with no equal in this region.

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The Golden Mile: still the best address in Marbella http://www.dmproperties.com/13836-golden-mile-still-marbella.html Thu, 14 Apr 2016 15:19:47 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13836 The new country club estates in the mountains surrounding Marbella may be increasingly attractive to a wealthy international homebuyer, but many of the most sought after and desirable properties in the town remain on the Golden Mile.

The Golden Mile still the best address in Marbella

It was on this stretch of real estate between Marbella town centre and the luxury marina of Puerto Banús that the reputation of the town as a five-star resort for the jet set was first established, and it remains the location of some of the very best addresses in Marbella.

The exclusive urbanisations fronting the long sandy beaches and those nestled on the gently sloping hillside leading down to the shore were what first attracted Arab sheiks, European royalty, Hollywood stars and successful businesspeople to the town, and these locations retain their considerable appeal.

Private villas offer Marbella lifestyle options

The sumptuous villas found here are set in extensive landscaped grounds offering privacy and tranquillity, while being just a short step from the lively lifestyle options Marbella and Puerto Banús have to offer those lucky enough to live here.

The spiritual centre of the jet-set lifestyle remains the place where it all started—the Marbella Club Hotel and its sister resort the Puente Romano. These internationally renowned hotels offer the very finest dining, spa and leisure facilities as well as classy nightlife options that continue to set the standard for the town’s luxurious lifestyle. But they are not the only dining and leisure options to be found on the Golden Mile—far from it. Many more fine dining restaurants, luxury leisure facilities and designer label boutiques and jewellers can be found in this wealthy part of Marbella.

Sierra Blanca villas for sale

Villas and apartments, either on the beach side of the main road or in nearby exclusive urbanisations like Sierra Blanca, Nagüeles and Camoján, have been built to match the area’s five-star resorts for luxury and elegance, ensuring the enduring popularity of the Golden Mile with a discerning international clientele.

Diana Morales Properties has a selection of some of the most desirable real estate for sale on the Golden Mile, as well as in all of the most sought after parts of Marbella and surrounding areas. Please contact us for a consultation and we can discuss your requirements.

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Russians making a return to Spanish property market http://www.dmproperties.com/13758-russians-spanish-property-market.html Wed, 06 Apr 2016 13:01:23 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13758 Following a period in which the number of Russian visitors to Spain dropped dramatically—mainly due to the value of the Ruble to the Euro halving—2016 looks to be the year they will make their return to the costas.

Russians making a return to Spain

In January alone—traditionally the quietest period—the number of Russians arriving at Málaga-Costa del Sol Airport was up 23% on the same month the previous year and now tourism bodies are forecasting 2016 to reach the record levels last seen in the first three years of the decade. The Russian Association of Tour Operators has reported bookings to Spain as being up 34% in all. This is viewed as good news for Marbella as Russians are some of the highest spending visitors to these shores and are known to appreciate the upmarket charms of the resort.

This increase in tourism can in part be credited to the Junta de Andalucía’s tourist board, which seeing the worrying downward trend of the past two years put in action a drive to attract more Russians to the region. It involved representation at around 20 events in Russia to highlight the culture and visitor appeal of Andalucía, including a display by the Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Arts, which had never visited the country before.

Important investors in Marbella real estate

Russians have been important investors in the Marbella high-end real estate market in recent years, and still lead the way in applications for the so called ‘Golden Visa’ programme, which gives right of residency—and with it travel access to Schengen agreement countries—to those who invest a minimum €500,000 in property.

Latest figures show that Russian investors accounted for 35.1% of applications under the scheme, spending €327.9million since its inception in the latter half of 2013—much of that in high status resorts like Marbella. With visitor numbers on the increase, it can be expected that the profile of the resort town as a luxury destination for real estate investment will be raised further in Russia, and with it property sales in this important sector.

The significance of this nationality to the area is evidenced by the businesses catering to this market. The Casa Rusia commercial centre, with its restaurant, business centre and movie/cultural theatre is a very visible hub for Russia in this part of Spain, while galleries, artists, musicians and fashion designers from Russia have increasingly made Marbella and Puerto Banús a ‘home from home’.

Taken together with advance bookings from other European countries, plus investment plans worth hundreds of millions from various luxury resort companies, the future looks bright for Marbella and its real estate market. Diana Morales Properties has been at the heart of the top-end property scene in the area for many years now. Should you need advice regarding investing in Marbella please contact us—we are sure we can help.

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Marbella offers value in luxury homes market http://www.dmproperties.com/13693-marbella-offers-value-in-luxury-homes-market.html Wed, 30 Mar 2016 12:10:02 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13693 While major global cities such as London and Hong Kong have been at the forefront of the global high-end property market, there are signs that international buyers are beginning to look elsewhere for their real estate investment—and this could be good news for Marbella.

Marbella offers value in luxury homes market

The sort of Ultra High Net Worth Individuals interested in the exclusive range of properties valued in the millions are particularly worried by the effect—and expense—of UK Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne’s new higher rate stamp duty, which sees tax rates of up to 15 per cent on property values above £1.5 million.

London luxury real estate at top of cycle

Indeed, British national newspaper the Daily Mail recently showed how the price of properties at the highest end of the scale in the UK has slumped, with big discounts offered on asking prices as the effects of the stamp duty rise begin to be felt. The stamp duty is, in fact, the final part of a process that has seen the overheated London luxury real estate market peaking and beginning its cooling off period. In a separate report, respected international news consultants Bloomberg revealed that off plan sales in London have slumped by 19%, affecting mainly up-market condominiums.

Meanwhile, the demand for luxury developments in Hong Kong has also dampened, with high pricing being a concern. Both London and Hong Kong look to have passed the top of their respective cycles as investors look elsewhere for value.

And this is something that Marbella can offer. Its luxury residential real estate is increasingly being seen as a good investment as the steady gains made over the past few years continue. The finest homes in the best areas of Marbella have been enduringly popular with investors, but this popularity has long since spread across the town’s residential landscape thanks to a combination of quality homes, enviable lifestyle and the kind of value that ensures a good purchasing price and great prospects for capital accumulation.

Marbella real estate an attractive investment

The attractiveness of Marbella and the Costa del Sol as an investment vehicle through high end developments has been evidenced by the recent €50 million purchase of beachfront land in Las Chapas by Platinum Estates as the first step in a €200 million five-star hotel resort and luxury villas scheme. Up until now the majority of the company’s investments have been in its Hong Kong base and London. The owners of La Zagaleta Country Club in Benahavis have also shown their commitment to the area by buying Sotogrande’s Valderrama golf course, including the Valderrama 2 project for an exclusive country club estate, while Chinese company Wanda has also shown an interest in investing in the Marbella area.

Hot on the back of this come reports that the Saudi based Cayan Group has announced their expansion into Europe with a joint venture to develop a project in the Costa del Sol, although the exact location has not yet been disclosed.

Diana Morales Properties has seen over the past few years how demand for luxury villas and apartments in Marbella has continued to grow, with demand for new build homes and prime areas particularly strong. Should you be interested in purchasing quality real estate in Marbella please contact us to discuss your requirements.

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Puerto Banús one of most exclusive addresses in Spain http://www.dmproperties.com/13623-puerto-banus-exclusive-addresses-spain.html Wed, 23 Mar 2016 11:45:13 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13623 Property values in Marbella’s Puerto Banús rival those in the big centres of Madrid and Barcelona, according to a report from real estate appraisal firm Tecnitasa.

Puerto Banús one of most exclusive addresses in Marbella

In the study of average prices in provincial capitals and major cities in Spain, Puerto Banús was identified as the fourth most expensive address in Spain at €5,500 per m2. Top of the list is Calle Serrano in Madrid, where residential property commands €10,900 per m2, justifying its long standing position on the Spanish Monopoly board!

Barcelona has the second most expensive address—a home on the exclusive Paseo de Gracia averages €8,450 per m2, while third place on the list is occupied by Libertad-Boulevard in the Basque Country’s up market resort of San Sebastian.

Marbella leading the property market

It should be noted that these are average prices—individual properties in other locations may well cost more per square metre depending on location, size, quality, design, history and a myriad other factors, and because it concentrates on major cities, homes for sale in other exclusive areas like La Zagaleta—which is located just outside Marbella’s municipal boundary—are not included.

At the other end of the scale is the Guinea district in Castellón de la Plana, provincial capital of Valencia’s Castellón province. Property there costs just €363 m2 to buy—less than 7 per cent of the cost of a home in Puerto Banús. It can be viewed as a clear indication of the two-track recovery in the Spanish property market that has seen the high value luxury sector in the big cities and up market coastal resorts like Marbella enter an upswing in the property cycle earlier then other areas.

Sought after residential areas in Marbella

Marbella’s most sought after luxury areas, including Puerto Banús, the Golden Mile, Sierra Blanca and exclusive out of town developments like La Zagaleta, have proven to be largely recession proof, with top end properties retaining their value better than other sectors through the first years of the property downturn and entering recovery faster.

The report by Tecnitasa confirms that Marbella is one of those property hotspots that has been leading the Spanish property market into a new positive cycle.

Diana Morales Properties has an extensive selection of luxury villas and apartments for sale in the most sought after areas of Marbella. For advice on any of your real estate needs please contact us.

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European commission: Spain property market set for 6% gains http://www.dmproperties.com/13588-european-commission-spain-property.html Mon, 21 Mar 2016 15:17:01 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13588 As the European property market continues its recovery the general outlook is looking good for Spanish real estate, with a growing number of commentators forecasting price rises of around the 6% mark for 2016.

European commission Spain property market ser for 6 gains

It could be argued that some of those making predictions have a vested interest in talking the market up—for instance internet property portal Servihabitat has forecast a 6.3 per cent rise, while Caixa bank expects an increase of 6%—but now the European Commission (EC) has produced independent figures, which back up the idea that the Spanish property market will see significant gains of around 6%. Leading the way in Europe, according to the EC’s European Economic Forecast Winter 2016 report, will be Ireland, showing rises of 6.5%, followed by Malta and Spain.

While price increases are not envisioned throughout the continent—Greece, France, Belgium and Bulgaria are expected to see price falls—the available data has led the EC to an optimistic outlook for Spain as it helps lead Europe in terms of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth. Reasons for this optimism are centred not only on an improving economy but also on the relative affordability of property in the country. A typical 100m2 home in Spain cost the average Spaniard the equivalent of about 10.1 years of economic activity in 2014—the latest figures available. Contrast that with the 15.6 years required at the peak of the market in 2007 and it becomes evident that real estate is more accessible.

In Ireland the equivalent figures are 11 and 16.8 years respectively. Interestingly the data for the UK, where there is much talk of the unaffordability of property, are 10.8 and 11.3 years, indicating perhaps that there will be no slowdown in British investment in Spanish real estate as UK citizens still have the cash to spend.

The EC expects all economic indicators in Spain to show continued improvement, with a corresponding fall in the unemployment rate to 18.9% by 2017—considerably lower than the 24.5% seen in 2014. This in turn may well have a knock-on effect in the property market as more first time buyers make it on to the property ladder.

Looking at the number of housing transactions in Spain during 2015, the National Statistics Institute (INE) recorded 354,132 sales, comparable to the 2011 figure and up from 319,389 units in 2014. With the number of mortgages granted up nearly 20% in 2015, it can be seen that the signs are in place for the recovery that started in Marbella’s property market in 2013 to broaden across the nation.

Should you be considering a property investment in Marbella, please contact us. Diana Morales Properties has in depth knowledge of the local market and can offer you the most authoritative advice.

Source: European Commission.

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Marbella’s DOM3 Architecture Award in its second edition http://www.dmproperties.com/13558-marbella-dom3-architecture.html Thu, 17 Mar 2016 12:25:10 +0000 http://www.dmproperties.com/?p=13558 The DOM3 Architecture Award, Southern Spain’s most prestigious prize for excellence in design and property development, is in its second year. Launched last year to promote, stimulate and reward the highest levels of architectural design, the competition is the initiative of DOM3, an organisation with the stated mission of raising standards of property development in Marbella to the very highest levels.

Marbella’s DOM3 Architecture Award in its second edition

DOM3 is made up of a collective of leading professionals from the property sector and related fields, and counts Diana Morales Properties among its members. Indeed, DM Properties are active collaborators and share the organisation’s drive to continue to raise the standard of excellence in the design, planning and construction of real estate in and around Marbella.

To help promote this, the DOM3 Architecture Award invites professional architects to enter designs not of abstract projects but to a specific brief. In 2014 it concerned the creation of an aesthetic and functional concept for luxurious, state-of-the-art villas within the select country club environment of La Zagaleta. A shortlist of candidates was selected from a large entry of international architects keen to apply their skills to one of the most prestigious luxury residential addresses in Europe.

In addition to prize money totalling €70.000 between the three top places, many of the leading designers in Marbella, Spain and beyond are drawn to the DOM3 Architecture Award because of the prestige of the accolade. The real-life format makes it all the more real for architects, who design homes not only for specific plots, but also with their views and practicalities in mind. In the end, the 2014 top entry came from Simón Francés and Judith Sastre of Frances & Sastre Architects who had the additional honour of being the first winner of a competition that is set to place Marbella ever firmer on the map.

From La Zagaleta to Santa Clara

In a place so dedicated to luxury real estate development, from luxury penthouses and villas to sumptuous mansions set in verdant grounds, top-level architecture and the highest standards of construction, engineering and design are of the utmost importance, thus putting the relevance of the DOM3 Architecture Award into perspective. This year the focus of the event is Santa Clara, an urbanisation on the eastside of Marbella that is being developed by Urbania, whose ICON signature new villas have garnered international recognition for the quality of their design.

The competing architects will be asked to create designs for a stunning new project of semi-detached villas and apartments on three plots of 12,270 m2, 27,423 m2 and 19,412 m2 respectively. “The emphasis will naturally be on the aesthetic appeal of the villas, both outside and within,” says Diana Morales, “but they also have to be blueprints for the construction of a fully functioning home in which looks and practicality reach new heights.” Indeed, the entries have to take into account all the parameters of local urban planning guidelines, the latest environmental and technological trends and the kind of comfort, style and amenities that maximise the site and add value to the project.

More than just designing a leading edge contemporary home, the architects will be providing a comprehensive concept for the optimal usage of the land. We herewith wish all the entrants and participants the very best of creativity and luck.

More about the award – DOM3

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