In January, the construction of the new Orchid House in Estepona was well under way. Such was the speed of completion that the new building opened in March this year and both the Orchid House and the new landscaped park around it are now firmly part of the urban fabric of Estepona.
The park is a triumph of urban landscaping; it has transformed this area and given local residents a high quality new amenity – plus it has resulted in an increase in house prices in the adjacent streets. Simple in concept, but with lush planting, robust concrete seats, areas of grass and careful use of water, it runs down to, and around, the new Orchid House, capturing it and holding it firmly in place.
The Orchid House or “Ochidarium” has three glazed domes projecting above its roof and underneath a walkway takes the visitor past some 8000 species of plants, selected to enable flowering all year round once the plants are established. Three cascading waterfalls, under which the visitor route passes, drop down into a pond below, enabling the moisture and atmosphere of the tropical jungle to be maintained.
The aim of the new Orchid House is to provide another attraction for the beautiful town of Estepona to bring tourists along the coast from its larger competitors Marbella and Malaga. It is only a short walk from the historic centre and the Plaza de los Flores, and will develop its role as it becomes known and the regeneration develops, including potentially new restaurants and cafes facing onto the new landscaped space. It is one of the new public facilities opened by the Estepona Council last March including the 600-seater Felipe VI Auditorium, the largest stage area of the Costa del Sol, with capacity for 600 people and additional space for rehearsals or exhibitions.