|Add a splash of colour to your Spanish home by mixing furniture and fabrics.|
Andalucia exports nearly 100 million euros in furniture every year - and this is only 14 per cent of the area's overall furniture production. Combine the region's prolific production with a burgeoning import market - especially in areas heavily populated by foreigners - and you can be sure to find everything you will need to furnish your home.
And even if you are very well traveled, you will be hard-pushed to think of a place with more interior designers and furniture shops than the Costa del Sol, and Marbella in particular. With a great selection of the finest brands and qualities of furniture - not only from Andalucía but the world around, as well as accessories and top quality designers and decorators - this is decoration paradise. Virtually all the top furniture houses, from Fendi and Roche Bobois to Kettal and Christian's, have local outlets to compliment the myriad of styles offered in the many little antique shops and specialised furniture shops. Here you can opt for rustic Andalusian, Spanish renaissance, Moorish, Indian, Oriental or modern furniture - or an eclectic mix that reflects your own style and tastes.
Andalusian architectural style is derived from a blend of the region's Moorish and Mediterranean traditions, yet its traditional furniture has all the robust solidity typical of country life. There are four main regions to visit if you are looking for furnishings made in Andalusia: Ronda, Cordoba, Jaen and Seville.
In Ronda area oak and pine predominate, and the fine pieces produced in this area have become synonymous with Andalusian country furniture. Here artisans produce a range of charming pieces that will appeal especially to those interested in rustic styles.
The centre for furniture production in Córdoba is the town of Lucena. Low cost pine furnishings from this area attract shoppers from across the province as well as the coast. However, rustic pine is not the only product this town has to offer as at least one major manufacturer specialises in exact replicas from the Spanish renaissance period.
Jáen is a longer journey from the booming coastal markets, for instance, but well known to bargain hunters seeking the lower prices to be found in this interior region. Towns in this area that are known for producing artisan style pieces are Andujar, Jídar, Linares, Santa Elena and Torredonjimeno, while the town of Úbeda is well known to antique collectors.
Finally, Seville is known for its furniture mainly because of the large number of manufacturers representing all styles of furniture that make their home in Andalucía's capital city. Often, pieces ordered from other parts of the region come from Seville.
While interior towns and regions are known for producing furniture, the Costa del Sol is still one of the best places to shop. However, in contrast to many other parts of Europe, most cities, Marbella, for instance, tend to feature small and specialised furniture shops, with relatively few large chain outlets. Some areas, such as Mijas, near Fuengirola, however, are seeing a boom in superstore outlets. And Marbella's La Cañada shopping mall and Puerto Banus commercial centre, for instance, are also seeing a growing number of larger suppliers for the home decoration market.