We caught up with Linda Greenway, the owner of the Urban Villa to find out more about this incredible lady and how she ended up running this beautiful bed and breakfast in Marbella.
When did you come to Spain?
I came 7 years ago, after working in in Event Management in the UK, mainly in the wedding industry, and having travelled extensively.
Tell us a little about yourself and your travels
I have been classed as the Indiana Jones of my home town by the Life magazine in an article titled from Piranhas to Ponchos! I am fluent in Spanish due to living in Argentina, speak some German after living in West Berlin before the wall went down & Munich. I used to be fluent in Italian but after learning Spanish I confuse the 2 languages but I understand when someone speaks. I love dancing especially Argentine Tango & Cuban Salsa so any excuse for dancing or listening to good music.
I have crossed the Atlantic Ocean not once but 3 times by yacht, visited jungles in Venezuela & Peru, climbed 3 peaks to get to Macchu Picchu, swam in piranha infested lake & have even been bitten by a leopard! I have plenty of stories to tell from my travels, which I am more than happy to share with guests, so please ask me for a funny story!
What attracted you to Spain?
I wanted my son to speak Spanish & I didn´t have enough energy to go back to live in Argentina so as Spain was closer to family and I love Europe, Spain was a great option for me.
How did you end up owning the Urban Villa?
It was a simple phone call from the previous owners asking if I knew anyone who wanted to have a bed & breakfast. As I had previous experience working in luxury resorts in various countries worldwide, in gastronomy, cruise ships & private yachts I thought it was the perfect opportunity to put all my knowledge & add all the quirky & interesting things I have experienced through my travels into my own business.
When challenged I become more determined and when everyone said it is too much work to run a Bed & Breakfast on your own I said “naaargh!, I will be able to do it!”
I have probably aged drastically over the last 3 years with my determination to overcome the many obstacles from crisis, weather, fire etc., but I am still loving it and making improvements to try and ensure my guests have the most memorable stay in Marbella.
What makes you proud to be the owner of the Urban Villa?
My guests! The Urban Villa attracts such fabulous people from all over the world where we exchange fascinating stories and quite often we end up having friends in many countries who often return. It is a great way for us to expand culturally.
We also take pride in giving suggestions to our guests to find lovely, quirky, and different or off the beaten track places where the majority of tourism hasn´t reached … yet. One guest wrote a comment saying that there was no need to buy an area guide book because of our diverse recommendations.
Where’s your favourite place to go when you’re not working?
In the summer I tend to go to the beach to disconnect, otherwise I keep seeing ways of how to improve, so I won´t stop working! The nearby countryside is fabulous to go walking so I go to a nearby place where there is a cave & small waterfall (only water in the winter). Also I like visiting the local villages & their festivals throughout the year.
What restaurant would you recommend?
Marbella has many enticing restaurants so please see the selection of Marbella restaurants I have added to our recommendations. They range from simple foods in the countryside to fine dining & I go to each & all of these depending on my mood. Also, of course, dining at the Urban Villa is a real pleasure and shouldn’t be missed.
What activity would you recommend?
I have added plenty of activities on our activity page because I am a bit of an adventurer & I tend to try out most of my suggestions. Depending if you want to do something low key and disconnect from the fast pace of living or whether you have an adventurous spirit to climb the mountains or wade through rivers.
What are your hobbies? (if you have any time to have them)
Dancing! I love dancing and fabulous live music so maybe this might be something new I could add to our activities. Any excuse for a party & to have a laugh. So be sure to book Christmas & New Year´s party in advance!
What do you hope people experience at your hotel?
Guests are sure to have a memorable experience and a holiday with a difference! We strive to give everyone the feeling of wellbeing and want to make guests feel special, pampered and cared for. The key is to allow all guests to enjoy their holiday the way they choose.