October 17, 2021

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Inside a secretive luxury estate hidden in the Spanish mountains, where homes can cost $30 million and include helipads, horse paddocks, and Michelin-star chefs

By Ruqayyah Moynihan and Christina Esteban From Business Insider

  • La Zagaleta, located in Benahavis in the South of Spain, is one of the most exclusive, luxurious, and secretive estates in Europe.
  • There are 230 houses on the complex and prices range from $6 million to $30 million.
  • One of the last villas for sale, known as H-25, is on a plot of over 3,700m² that overlooks the Mediterranean Sea and has built-in Turkish baths.
  • The compound also offers Michelin-star chefs, housekeeping and gardening services, an equestrian club, and a helipad.

In the middle of the foothills of the Serranía de Ronda, overlooking the Mediterranean, and 10 minutes from Marbella, you’ll find the “Zagaleta” estate.

Known as the most exclusive resort in Europe, no one can cross the development’s threshold without prior authorization.

Before it came to be known as La Zagaleta, the land there was a village that went by the name of “La Baraka”, and was owned by tycoon and arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi.

After the Saudi billionaire’s arrest, the land was put up for auction in 1989, which led to a group of investors led by Enrique Pérez Flores to buy the 900 hectares of land.

Today, La Zagaleta comprises 230 of the 420 houses Flores had set out to build, all surrounded by fir trees and century-old oaks, and offers amenities that include an equestrian center, golf courses, and a helipad.

The compound, which is guarded 24 hours a day, can’t be entered without prior authorization — the compound boasts that they wouldn’t even permit entry to the Google Maps cars. The estate has released some images from inside the estate and the homes within it, to give a glimpse into this playground for the rich and famous in the foothills of the Spanish mountains.

La Zagaleta is located on the slopes of the Serranía de Ronda

La Zagaleta is located on the slopes of the Serranía de Ronda

The location offers stunning views of the Mediterranean and the Strait of Gibraltar.

The residential complex has been described as the most exclusive in Europe

The residential complex has been described as the most exclusive in Europe

The 230-house complex covers roughly 900 hectares.

One of those properties is known as H-25

One of those properties is known as H-25

H-25 is one of the new villas for sale in La Zagaleta, which is selling for roughly $18 million, La Zagaleta’s director of communicationstold Business Insider.

The villa’s plot covers over 3,700m², over 1,200 m² of which is comprised of the villa itself

The villa's plot covers over 3,700m², over 1,200 m² of which is comprised of the villa itself

The villa offers spectacular views of the Mediterranean Sea and the mountains of Monte Mayor. It also has roughly 700 square meters of balcony.

The villa has seven bedrooms

The villa has seven bedrooms

In addition to this, it has eight bathrooms and a sheltered garage that can accommodate four cars.

As well as well-equipped bathrooms, the home has its own spa

As well as well-equipped bathrooms, the home has its own spa

The spa includes a heated indoor pool, a gym area, a sauna, and a Turkish bath.

There’s also an outdoor pool

There's also an outdoor pool

There’s a barbecue area, a fireplace, and an outdoor bathroom too.

A lot of care was taken when curating the interior of the villa

A lot of care was taken when curating the interior of the villa

The interior designers clearly had a clear vision in their heads of how the villa should look, right down to the smallest detail.

Even the bathrooms have astonishing views

Even the bathrooms have astonishing views

The villa boasts incredible views in every room in the house – even the bathroom, so you can soak up the vista from the tub.

La Zagaleta offers its residents personalized services 24 hours a day

La Zagaleta offers its residents personalized services 24 hours a day

As well as Michelin star chefs for residents’ events, those who live in the compound can enjoy private shopping trips at luxury boutiques, as well as private transportation by yacht, plane, or helicopter.

The residence also offers administrative services including picking up and forwarding mail, paying bills, taxes, accounting, or legal advice.

La Zagaleta is home to two golf courses and private stables

La Zagaleta is home to two golf courses and private stables

La Zagaleta Country Club is a resident-only, 18-hole golf course, designed by Brad Benz in 1991 and revamped by Marc Westenborg in 2016.

Another golf course was added in 2005, dubbed the New Course.

As well as this, there’s a riding club with eleven horses and ponies. Comprised of twenty stables, six paddocks, and a covered area for training and jumping, residents who live on the estate can keep their favorite horses there indefinitely.

As though that weren’t enough, there are tennis courts, ping-pong tables, and two social hubs known as “club houses”.

You have to be a member of the Country Club to access the amenities on the compound

You have to be a member of the Country Club to access the amenities on the compound

As well as an initial registration fee of around $100,000, there’s an additional annual fee of around $11,000 to be able to access all the available amenities.

According to Diario Sur, this fee doesn’t include spouses and children, who pay a lower fee.

House sizes range from 3,000 to 10,000 square meters

House sizes range from 3,000 to 10,000 square meters

This means the price of a house can range from anywhere between $6 and $30 million.

To live in La Zagaleta, your house’s price must represent 10% of your fortune

To live in La Zagaleta, your house's price must represent 10% of your fortune

There’s also a community fee of around $5,600 and the maintenance of the house will set you back by roughly $78,700 a year.

If you moved here, your neighbors would mostly consist of senior executives or international executives from big companies

If you moved here, your neighbors would mostly consist of senior executives or international executives from big companies

According to Expansion, some of La Zagaleta’s residents have included the founder of Orange Telecom Hans Snook, the former president of the Starwood Hotels chain Jürgen Bartels, a renowned British politician Lord Stanley Fink, and Silicon Valley guru David Heinemeier Hansson.

Exclusivity and privacy are the biggest draws of the estate

Exclusivity and privacy are the biggest draws of the estate

La Zagaleta isn’t mapped out on Google.

“No cameras are allowed through here. We’re shielded in by both land and air,” a representative for the estate told El País.Read the original article on Business Insider España.This post has been translated from Spanish.Copyright 2019. Follow Business Insider España on Twitter.

For more on this story go to: https://www.businessinsider.com/inside-la-zagaleta-exclusive-luxury-estate-spain-benahavis-2019-8?utm_source=feedburner&amp%3Butm_medium=referral&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A%20businessinsider%20(Business%20Insider)#exclusivity-and-privacy-are-the-biggest-draws-of-the-estate-16

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