Welcome to Torremolinos & Benalmádena
Once a small coastal village dotted with torres (towers) and molinos (watermills), ‘Terrible Torre’ became a byword for tacky package holidays in the 1970s, when it welcomed tourism on an industrial scale and morphed into a magnet for lager-swilling Brits whose command of Spanish rarely got beyond the words ‘dos cervezas, por favor’. But times, they are a-changing. Torre has grown up and widened its reach. These days the town attracts a far wider cross-section of people, including trendy clubbers, beach-loving families, gay visitors and, yes, even some Spanish tourists. Waiting for them is an insomniac nightlife, 7km of unsullied sand and a huge array of hotels, most of which subscribe to an architectural style best described as ‘disastrous’.
Benalmádena, Torre’s western twin, is more of the same with a couple of added quirks: a large marina designed as a kind of homage to Gaudí and a giant Buddhist stupa.