John McMicking a dream came true in Sotogrande

  • Share

Half a century ago in 1962 a dandy Filipino, John McMicking, grandson of a ship-owner from Cadiz, a spy of the Second World War blessed by the favour of General McArthur, with a noticeable bulging current account reached the peninsula in search of desired haven. By then the luxury holiday in Sotogrande was not in everybody’s mouth or in any gossip magazines, but this area would soon become the home of luxury, tranquillity and the bubbles of champagne. Gradually, it became the playground of the world's jet set and one of the most exclusive areas in Europe. Sotogrande luxury vacation today is a great reference of exclusivity.

The history of this project begins when McMicking instructs one of its employees in Ayala Corporation, Freddy Melian seeking an idyllic place in Spain. Melian was initially set on Formentera but after traveling from north to south along the Mediterranean coast he came to a farm by the river Paniagua Guadiaro. Soon the bulldozers came and took over the farm called McMicking Valderrama, 2000 acres were just a field.

Melian built the first house, I think the social club the cone and the money power of the era began to emerge in what is now is being known as a luxury holiday in Sotogrande.

A huge mountain of money invested by Jaime Ortiz Patiño, Philipp Oppenheimer, Rainer Gut, Helmut Maucher, Henry Moore and George Zober invested in the project of the golf course at Valderrama today it is one of the best known among other reasons for having hosted the Ryder Cup. Also the Polo came from  the Philippines by the heir to the empire McMicking, Enrique Zobel.

In this idyllic setting live just under 3000 people surveyed although it is estimated that some 12,500 people live there. Rich officials, celebrities, aristocrats and millionaires chose to live there or simply enjoy a luxury holiday in Sotogrande.

Famous people of the social  scene are faithful to the luxury holiday in Sotogrande. A list consisting of names such as Isabel Preysler, Inés Sastre, Ana Aznar, Sarah Ferguson and even the Royal Family. The gossip stays at the entrance gate but everything turned out so private that it is very difficult to capture the long-awaited instant.

The mansions of the area represent pure luxury with huge lands, swimming pools, lots of bedrooms and living rooms. This is where big parties take place behind private walls. During the Crisis prices have fallen about 30%. Now is the moment for a luxury holiday in Sotogrande?

The Filipino spy John McMicking once had a dream. He was not a tourist,  he was the one who started this great empire and became a no man's land where there was nothing in a paradise on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea.