Agualivar Spanish School

Why choose Agualivar Spanish School?

Agualivar is a family-run school in the south of Spain, Málaga, off the beaten tracks!! We are Estefanía and Elisabeth, sisters and Spanish teachers at Agualivar, we opened the doors in 2014. Now, we have a third teacher, Carmen, who is enthusiastic and professional.

Our programs are based on the needs and likings of our students. They live together with us and our family, giving them exposure to a real Spanish Immersion. Attending lessons in the mornings, enjoying meals and chatting with our family, participating in our daily life.... students take advantage of Spanish around the clock!

Our immersion school is not for everyone. We don't like to create false expectations. It suits individuals looking for a different place, interested in nature, arts, culture, gastronomy, Spanish language, and above all sharing experiences with us and our family. Don't expect noise or large malls, we are in a rural setting. Prepare yourself to work hard in your Spanish and live a real immersion.


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Yes, I recommend this program

Wonderful experience!!!

I stayed at Agualivar for one month and had a life changing experience!! Although my experience with Agualivar was nearly two years ago, I still often remember this time with nothing but gratitude. My review will not be able to do my experience justice because it was just that special!! Somehow Eli and Fani were able to uniquely tailor my experience to my learner needs and travel wishes making it exceed all of my expectations. Fani, Eli, and Carmen welcomed me into their home and made me feel like a part of their family! They are so kind and full of love and warmth. They are truly some of the most special people I have met- they quickly changed from being teachers to friends. They were thoughtful and intentional in how they crafted this experience for me and the other students. For example, I spent the American holiday Thanksgiving with them, and they created an incredibly elaborate feast for us to celebrate with all the traditional staples- turkey, cranberry sauce (which was better than any I’ve tasted back in the states), and mashed potatoes. They also made sure that the other students who studied there at the same time as me were around my language level, leading to enhanced learning for all of us. In a short month I was able to improve my Spanish immensely. As teachers, they created an encouraging space for me as a language learner to build confidence with speaking. They knew exactly when to correct my mistakes so I could learn and when to allow them so that I could build confidence. They also provided Spanish lessons and engagement in multiple contexts. During my stay, we did this through classroom lessons, hikes, cooking experiences, wine tastings, games, over meals, at the local beach bar, excursions to nearby towns, etc. On our excursions, they took us to many hidden gems of southern Spain, avoiding many of the more common tourist attractions and instead giving us a glimpse of the real beauty of Spain.

The school itself is such a unique experience! The food is made fresh by Eli and Fani and was consistently delicious! They have a vast garden with fresh produce at all meals-my favorites were the mangoes and avocados! The accommodations were very comfortable- I was given my own room and bathroom and the views were unmatched! The school is located right on the coast of the Mediterranean with beautiful views from almost every room in the house! My favorite place to study was on the patio overlooking the sea! Additionally, during time off on the weekends, they gave great recommendations on where to visit and how to make the most of the excursions.

The depth of language development, friendships built, and travel experiences all made this a trip I will remember for the rest of my life! I wish I could go back every year! I have nothing but love and appreciation for these wonderful teachers and friends!

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Yes, I recommend this program

5 stars!

I cannot recommend the Agualivar Spanish School enough! This program is expertly crafted to suit the needs of every student. It's an intimate, immersive experience in a beautiful home; Fani and Eli are compassionate, supportive and intuitive teachers - I can't imagine there's another program like this one. Not only do you spend every day in a idyllic location, you take trips to places nearby to learn about the history and culture of Andalusia. You get the opportunity for adventure, but also for rejuvenation. I will most certainly be going back again very soon.

  • The intimate nature of the immersion - a maximum of 4 students per week.
  • Lessons are tailored to meet the needs of the students
  • Spending time learning to use Spanish in regular day-to-day activities.
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Yes, I recommend this program

¡La magia del Agualivar!

Agualivar is very special place. Magical in my memory and in truth I almost don’t want to write this review because I’d like to keep it small and secret. But it deserves more: more than the 5 stars I gave it; more than I can describe in the words allowed for this review. But I’ll try.

Imagine sitting on a terrace overlooking an infinity pool and the Mediterranean Sea with a cup of espresso in front of you and a white board to your right. The other three students gradually find their chairs and Fani stands in front of the whiteboard. It is 9:15 on Monday morning and two really special weeks lie ahead. That is the Agualivar classroom.

The classes themselves are a balance of lecture, exercises, games, presentations by the students to each other, occasional videos (think Antonio Banderas, born nearby), and tongue twisters. Many of the exercises and presentations are related to the region’s culture and history. And of course there are many suggestions for improvement tailored to each of the students.

The days are structured and full: wake up, breakfast, class, break, class, break, lunch, break/siesta, a walk or exploration of the local area, dinner, free time, sleep. ALL IN SPANISH, INCLUDING CONVERSATIONS WITH OTHER STUDENTS!! By the second week, I even dreamed in Spanish!

The “sobremesas” at lunch and dinner along with the daily “paseos” were as important as the classes for actually using Spanish in conversational settings. If you stay for more than a week, the weekends too are opportunities to explore a bit farther away, or just hang out at one of the local chiringuitos.

The food was fantastic and really deserves a review all its own! We often helped set the table and with clean up after, and sometimes with preparation, all the while improving our food and kitchen-related vocabulary.

The home is amazing and my room was spacious, clean and comfortable. The internet was fast. I slept well and felt secure throughout my stay. The house is set among orchards, with fencing, remotely operated gates, and a modern security system. In the afternoons you could hear goats bleating as they returned home from their daytime pastures.

Getting to Agualivar was an adventure. I took the local bus from Málaga and was picked up at the Lagos bus stop. Total round trip cost: about 7 euros. Others took cabs. If you elect to take a cab, I’d recommend organizing through Agualivar so you get a cabbie who knows exactly where he or she is going.

While at Agualivar I felt like part of a very special family. An outgoing and welcoming family that included the other students. A family with enormous pride in this beautiful part of the world, its people, and its many thousands of years of history. Above all, they are fantastic and patient (in my case very patient!) teachers of the Spanish language. If your goal is learning or improving conversational Spanish, I highly recommend Agualivar.

One caveat--this school is fun, but it isn't a "party" school. If you want to spend your week day evenings drinking and dancing, there might be something more suitable in Barcelona or Valencia. But without the magic!

  • Total immersion!
  • Fantastic food!
  • Nearby beaches and chiringuitos!
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T Johelen
Yes, I recommend this program

Agualivar Immersion

Agualivar is the perfect Spanish immersion experience. The school is serious about teaching and the setting could not be more lovely. Formal lessons are mixed with real world and fun use of the Spanish language that incorporates cultural experiences. The accommodations are elegant, clean, and comfortable with spectacular views a short walk away from swimming in the sea. The hosts are gracious and kind. They also prepare delicious, healthy food. I felt a part of the family and will return at every possible opportunity.

  • Not a con for me however, this experience is for serious Spanish learners not for people looking to party every evening.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Agualivar Spanish School

I spent a week at Agualivar Spanish School in May. It was a great experience in such a relaxed and beautiful environment. We spoke Spanish 100 percent of the time in a small group setting, a perfect opportunity to get to know my fellow students at the same time. Our instructors, Elisabeth and Fani were great, not to mention their mom, Carmen, who prepared three fantastic meals a day for us. Not only did we have classroom instruction but we went on some great outings to practice our new skills. I can’t thank them enough for their kind and welcoming hospitality. I left with improved speaking skills and desire to return and pick up where I left off!

  • Excellent personal instruction; opportunity for immersion
  • Perfect location in a relaxed setting overlooking the sea
  • Hospitable and welcoming hosts
  • I can’t think of any.


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Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Elisabeth Díez

Job Title
Elisabeth co-owns Agualivar Spanish School. Before joining at the project, she worked as a Training Manager at different companies. It was during a business travel in Portugal when Elisabeth had the idea to create her own Spanish School. She brings her management skills, enthusiasm and a natural interest in people to Agualivar as well as her own experiences as a learner, combined with her creativity, complement her pedagogical training.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

Elisabeth: Well, this is the best thing that has ever happened to me. Before starting with Agualivar, I worked in other training companies. And I have had amazing experiences with students and co-workers. However, nothing compares to Agualivar. This school is our project. My co-workers and I have the opportunity to make a difference, as we have always dreamed, and it's incredible!

Agualivar has given me the chance to work in something I really love, and what is more important, the way I want. With small groups of students, in a family atmosphere, with lessons out the classroom, with creativity… without frontiers! Agualivar is not only my company, it's also my home.

It’s the place where students become friends. And the place where both teachers and students stop to learn. It is easy to realize when people are completely happy in their lives and that is just what Agualivar has brought to me.

What unique qualities does your company possess?

Elisabeth: Agualivar is not a traditional academy or school. It is a real house with a family and teachers who host the students. The learning process is very intensive because not only are students attending lessons in the morning or afternoon, but also sharing lunch and dinner together and enjoying all the activities of the day.

All we expect from the students is their involvement in our daily life and the promise to speak only Spanish. In exchange, we offer a unique experience in Spanish Immersion, where students will speak only in Spanish all the time, improving quickly and gaining confidence.

That is not simple or easy. However, we can do so by hosting only groups of four. In fact, most of our courses are individuals. So I would say what makes Agualivar unique is our home and having students feel like they are at home too.

What was your favorite traveling experience?

Elisabeth: It was an inter-rail though Europe. It was my first experience traveling abroad on my own so it was exciting! Meeting people in each city, running from one place to another, catching trains, sleeping in hostels or on the trains themselves…looking for something cheap to eat! It was an amazing experience that I always remember happily.

I try not to forget that experience because it reminds me best travels are those that are not planned. I experienced a lot of different funny moments in that travel and others less funny… But what I remember quite well is that I noticed how important languages skills were. At that moment, I didn’t know too much English and it was frustrating because I couldn't speak naturally with other backpackers.

Describe a time when you felt especially proud to be part of the Agualivar Spanish School team.

Elisabeth: It is always the same time: when students say goodbye and tell me how amazing their stay with us was. It is really quite comforting when people tell you that you’re doing a good job. But there was one student who made a difference and left a mark on me. She was a student from Luxembourg and stayed only one week in our school.

However, time in Agualivar is very relative… One week may seem like a month sometimes! That it is what happen when the immersion is so intensive! She decided to have one week in our school and other week in other one. First week was with us and the thing is that student and our family understood each other very well. The day of her departure, without going into many details, was very emotional.

Just hours after, I received a message from her to tell us that she already missed us and our house. We met again before she came back to Luxembourg. I noticed that I have achieved what I have dreamed! We are a team that works for something more than just a Spanish School.