The present-day fishing village is a new settlement which developed over the last century or so. Like most towns on the Costa del Sol, it has seen rapid growth over the last few decades.
Since the construction of Punta Almina estate in the 1980s, Sabinillas has become a popular place for foreign residents including those working in Gibraltar. The most recent developments are the improvements to Avenida Manilva, the construction of the seafront promenade and the underpass for the traffic on the coast road A-7.
Pavement cafes and bars have flourished along with the opening of new banks and real estate offices. The village has a working atmosphere for those who want a touch of what is probably the only real Spain left on the western Costa del Sol. Sabinillas beaches are popular with families. Playa La Colonia and Playa Sabinillas are the fine beaches
What started out in 1990 as small Sunday morning car boot sale in Sabinillas, supported by a few expats, is now one of the biggest rastros on the coast and a visit from bullfighter Javier Conde helped to cement its reputation. Since its humble beginnings, the market has changed locations three times to accommodate a growing clientele, and is now located at the Feria Ground on the ‘Caretera las Baños’ road that cuts inland from the A7 on the roundabout just west of the River Manilva.
There is also a local produce market on a Friday morning in the ‘Zona de la Noria’ at the west end of the seafront promenade.
August Full Moon PArty (Luna Llena de Manilva)
Since 2011 each summer, Sabinillas has held a full moon festival on its beaches in August, with live bands, dancing, body painting, craft stalls and friends getting together on the beach for moonlight picnics. The full moon festival was inspired by the famous lantern and full moon festival in Koh Pha Ngan in Thailand, although more family orientated.
Manilva Fair (feria)
Second week in August. 2015 dates: 6-9 August. The Feria Ground is locarted on the ‘Caretera las Baños’ road that cuts inland from the A7 on the roundabout just west of the River Manilva.
A short walk along the seafront promenade to the west of Sabinillas is Puerto de la Duquesa a charming marina complex and futher on is the litlle fishing hamlet of Castillo de la Duquesa.
A slightly longer walk inland along the road that follows the Rio Manilva leads, shorthly after passing under the large Motorway viaduct to the Roman Baths.
Rising virtually from the beaches, in the mountains the famed white villages of Manilva, Casares, and Gaucin are all within an hours drive.
Cosmopolitan life can be found only twenty minutes away in the “jet-set” city of Marbella, with its retail experiences ranging from the El Corte Inglés and to the sprawling La Cañada shopping centre to the infinite variety of small shops and boutiques lining the cobblestone streets of old Marbella.