Le Papillon Restaurante and Beach Club – Marbella


Urb. Marbesa
Ctra. de Cádiz Km. 193
29604 Marbella
Málaga, Spain

Tel: 952 834 113
Fax: 952 839 100



When you are travelling around interminably, sometimes you forget that you are essentially ‘living’ in holiday destinations. We like to plug into the holiday vibe now and again, even if it’s only in spirit because finances don’t allow.

Le Papillon is a lovely-looking beach front restaurant with sun loungers beneath straw parasols and has a lovely terrace with wicker chairs and big dark wood tables.

The first time we visited there we were welcomed as we sat using the internet, supping green tea. The staff were polite and professional, albeit not over friendly. The tea came in a pot and was agreeable.

The second time we visited, we were slightly less satisfied. We ordered a salad, a sandwich and a portion of fries. The salad was limp and contained three ribbons of almost grey carrot and a tablespoon of avocado that had already turned brown. The portion was small for the price. The sandwich was advertised as a mozzarella, tomato and pesto panini, but bore no resemblance to any panini we’d ever had. It wasn’t served warm, which they generally are, the mozzarella was like none we’d ever encountered and there was a yellow stain where the pesto had been. The fries were hard and withered as if they had been refried a second time because they’d gone cold.

We ate half of our meal. We were disappointed because the descriptions of the food were so tantalising and all seemed upmarket.

We eventually complained (politely) about the stale, limp flavourless sandwich and were visited by the manager who told us to get out because he didn’t want people like us eating there. What? Paying customers? I know things work a little differently in Spain and the ‘customer is always right’ may not be a familiar axiom to all. It certainly wasn’t to this angry little man. He then accused us of trying to steal from the restaurant, because Jacob had said ‘I don’t see why we should pay for this..’ and then the manager gradually got louder and louder, shouting at us and telling us to leave and not allowing us to discuss the situation with him, even though we offered to pay for the entire meal. All this in front of around thirty other paying customers.

On the way out we were stopped by an English couple who said that they’d had a similar experience of the food and refused to eat at Le Papillon. They only go on Sunday afternoons to listen to the music and to meet friends.

On the plus side all the other staff were polite and in particular the English man who deals with the deckchairs was exceptionally polite and professional. We were also really enjoying the Engleburt Humperdink alike before being rudely ejected from the restaurant.

When we spoke to other English and German folk who live at the campsite nearby, they recounted similar stories.

I think Le Papillon could do with bringing the prices down or elevating the quality of the food that they serve. As for employing an aggressive, overly-sensitive egotist who shouts at customers, throwing them out for politely complaining about something – risible. Constructive, polite criticism is a route to improvement and progress.


You can find a hotel in Marbella by clicking here.

You can discuss vegetarian, vegan and raw vegan Spain in our forum section by clicking here.

You can look for other vegetarian, vegan and raw-food information in Spain by going to our Food section.

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