Regine and Olivia Valere were part of the IT clubs of Paris when growing up there. Getting in whilst dozens and dozens of people were lining up begging for the same thing, made me feel cool and important! But of course I was young and impressionable.
If you don’t know what to do tonight, hop on a plane now! (only two hours from Zurich). You can start the evening by having dinner at the club’s restaurant Babilonia then move to the actual club. Do not start your evening early though – the festivities only begin at 2am! And of course the best time will be during the summer when the Who’s Who of the night scene will be there.
Rey Giarmon, the Hospitality Director sat with me and gave me some interesting insights.
When did Olivia Valère open in Marbella?
Olivia opened Andalusia’s first Olivia Valère, a discothèque with a piano bar and live music at the Gray d’Albion at Puerto Banús on July 4th 1985. She stayed there for nine years before moving on to realise her dream. On July 25th 1997, she opened the existing Olivia Valère – built in only 72 days!
What is your role? How long have you been working at Olivia Valère?
I started working with Olivia just 3 months after arriving to Costa del Sol as the head Bartender (2 years ago). Last summer I was asked to become the Director of Babilonia to introduce a brand new concept.
Is Olivia Valère the owner still?
Does she make decisions? If so, how it is to work with her?
Yes she makes all the decisions. She’s an amazing person and very open-minded. But she knows what she wants and does what it takes to achieve her goals. She’s very determined and very hard working.
Who designed both Babilonia and the club?
The venue was created by architect Oscar de la Peña and the interior design was made by Miguel Cancio, who also designed the Buddha Bar and Bar Fly in Paris. After a few years we decided to change the decoration and concept of the restaurant to be up-to-date and innovative with the current night scene in the world.
What was the idea and philosophy behind it?
e success is actually a mixture of things by finding the right balance with: beautiful venue, good music, pretty models, celebrities, excellent service, elegant people and an harmonious atmosphere. The idea was to make a very classy and select place for Night Life where all the famous and rich people want to be seen.
A word about your Chef and his menu?
The chef has been working at Olivia for 15 years and is great at what she does. She just needed a little motivation and direction to bring the restaurant back on track to become the IT place it once was. Today the menu has a lot to offer, including signature dishes. Our guests come back over and over again, not only for the great atmosphere but also the amazing food.
How after all these years do you manage to keep it so popular?
We always renew our events and hire the most famous DJs in the world!
What makes it so special compared to other places in Marbella?
This place is unique first because of its location, its design but mainly because of the quality of the service provided and of course the super cool ambiance!
What is the key to your success in the club business?
By the big names that are coming to play in the nightclub and all the shows that we produce.
Can you give me names of your most famous guests?
The list of celebrities is never ending. Olivia herself maintains close relationships with very well known people from around the world as clients and as friends. Antonio Banderas, Eva Longoria and Paris Hilton visit regularly. Naomi Campbell, George Benson, Darryl Hannah, Barry White, Prince, Robert de Niro, Bruce Willis to mention a few.
What events do you have planned for the summer?
The lineup for the summer will have to remain a secret for now but you can expect amazing performances from artists like Bob Sinclar and Solomun.
What was the biggest challenge you had to face and learn from?
When I took over the restaurant it was doing very badly so my big challenge was to create something amazing with an existing place that was not working at all. That’s what I did with the new Babilonia last summer and we actually had a very big success, people are talking about us from Dubai to Paris. We succeeded in building an outdoor restaurant where people want to come and have amazing food and party before moving on to the club.
And we did it!
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