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Da Bruno – The Richness of Italian Cuisine

A culinary philosophy of life

By Tanja Horlacher
Photos: Da Bruno Ristorante

Da Bruno Ristorante – which at first sounds like a little Italian restaurant around the corner – reveals upon closer inspection not only the finest Italian cuisine, but also an extraordinary success story. For Bruno and Giuseppina Filippone, their love of the Costa del Sol turned into six dream-like restaurants along Spain’s sunny coast. In 2019, they celebrate the 25th anniversary of the first Da Bruno restaurant in Spain alongside the first anniversary of the Döss – their latest coup.

“The only secret to our restaurants is to maintain the motivation of the first day and to remain true to our principles of quality and hospitality,” Bruno and Giuseppina reveal. When they fell in love with the Marbella area during a holiday trip in 1994, they already had over 40 years of experience in gastronomy. It all started in the Black Forest – with a small Italian restaurant. The Filippones originally come from Pianella, a small town in Abruzzo not far from the Italian Adriatic coast. In 1994 they finally made a decision that would change their lives: “We decided to move to Marbella, right at the heart of the Costa del Sol”, says Giuseppina. There, they finally brought all their enthusiasm and experience to a new restaurant. Pasta Da Bruno was born. The experienced gastronomic couple are committed, then as now, to authentic cuisine. “We are committed to traditional Italian cuisine ‘à la Mamma’, but we have developed it over time to adapt it to our understanding of modern gastronomy,” says Bruno. Their aim: to spread the richness of Italian cuisine

A Life with Passion for Italian Cuisine: Giuseppina and Bruno Filippone

Success proves them right. Almost five years after their start in the pulsating holiday metropolis, they opened their second restaurant, A Casa, in 1999. In 2001 the third Da Bruno opened its doors at the exit to the port of Cabopino, which is considered to have one of the most beautiful beaches around Marbella with its fine, golden sand in the middle of the Artola dunes. The Filippones know how to offer their guests an enjoyable all-round experience. An Italian delicatessen is attached to the restaurant, where gourmet enthusiasts will find everything their heart desires. Just one year later, in 2002, the first guests were welcomed at Da Bruno sul Mare, followed by Da Bruno a San Pedro in 2005 and Da Bruno Mijas in 2010, halfway between Marbella and Málaga. In 2008 there was also the idea of offering takeaway meals in all Da Bruno restaurants. A great idea.

An experience for all senses

It goes without saying that freshly prepared pasta is served every day in all Da Bruno restaurants, as is the case with genuine Italian cuisine. This features alongside freshly caught fish, meat dishes and of course original Italian pizza – all with regional ingredients. Of course, the menus are based on the season with weekly changing specials. A delicious touch of Italy, which the Filippones have spread along Spain’s coast. In 2018, they ventured into another culinary crossover project with sophisticated cuisine: the Döss. Restaurant and champagne bar. Asian elegance meets Mediterranean passion. The finest sushi, Thai red curry with mussels or langostinos in tempura batter are served here, as are Italian burrata or duck with caramelised apples in port wine – and of course pasta! All of the Filippones’ restaurants also offer regular events. The live performances of musicians, whether jazz, soul, opera or tango, as well as DJs, make a visit to a Da Bruno restaurant an experience for all senses.

The Da Bruno sul Mare – located not far from the historical centre of Marbella.
The latest opening of the Filippones: The Döss Marbella offers the finest Asian and Italian cuisine as well as a Champagner bar and Events of the extra class.

The recipe for success

So how is it possible to successfully run six restaurants, including takeaway and live events, all at once? “The most important thing for us is to maintain our identity as we evolve with our customers. That’s what we focus on. We strive to get better every day, but we don’t believe in the need for constant competition. To differentiate ourselves from the competition, we have to work hard, pay attention to every detail and manage resources effectively,” Bruno explains his recipe for success. “Plus we can rely on an exceptional group of professionals in each and every one of our restaurants to do their best every day.” But they are often not easy to get. As Da Bruno continues to develop as a group of companies, Bruno Filippone founded a training centre in Döss in 2018 to complement the various catering schools of the Costa del Sol and to train young people with a passion for the hospitality industry in Marbella, the Costa del Sol, and the entire province of Málaga. “Our goal is to consolidate the Da Bruno brand as a reference point for quality and service on the Costa del Sol,” says the successful gastronomy entrepreneur.

The passion for beautiful living can be seen and felt in all Da Bruno restaurants.

But with all their plans, does the couple still have room to enjoy their dream of the sunny Spanish coast, the reason that they once came here? “Yes, definitely. We enjoy the privilege of living in Marbella, this unique place,” says Giuseppina. The Filippones like to spend their free time there with the whole family. This is part of their philosophy of life and they love to share their daily experiences with everyone. This passion for the Dolce Vita can be felt every day in their restaurants. Pure happiness.