Monday, May 12, 2014

HOTEL CHECK MALLORCA, Belmond La Residencia

Mallorca - The Ultimate in Bohemian Luxury. That is how Ada from our Oslo office describes a corner of this Mediterranean island after a stay at one of our special hotels ...

It was nothing like a charter experience. Ada arrived  for a weekend at La Residencia in the hotel limousine  – a good and posh beginning for a five star pampering on the edge of Bohemia…

The winding road takes you through olive groves and past Mallorcan villas and citrus farms along the north-western coast of Mallorca, with breathtaking views to the sea. Passing the house of poet Robert Graves - now a museum - 300 m before entering Deià village, you can understand the attraction that brought artists and later the Hollywood crowd to this small village in the Tramuntana mountains. 

Village in the mountains

A very special place  - La Residencia
Click on the picture for larger images

Belmond Hotel La Residencia, a sixteenth and seventeenth-century villa high in the foothills of the Tramuntana mountains, offers views of the idyllic village of Deià, with the Mediterranean in the distance. The garden with lemon and olive trees, the resident artists, the very welcoming staff and casual ambiance are all part of the charm of this very special place. 

Looking down into Deia

Old stone and sublime mountains
Views of the Bohemian village - seen from
a hotel with traditional yet arty luxury
The two former manor houses were formerly owned by Richard Branson. Due to his ownership, and the fashionable Bohemian artists in Deià, the village and the hotel have attracted movie stars, musicians and models since the 1990s and you will still be surprised by who you might meet by the pool or at a local bar. 


Down to the garden and beyond


I loved the fact that we received old fashioned keys to the rooms.

I stayed in a Junior Suite in the main manor, with a French balcony overlooking Deia village and the garden. The whitewashed walls, beamed ceiling an terracotta tiles framed the local furnishing and gave a home away from home feeling. With espresso machine, flatscreen Tv, complimentary in room WiFi and iPod docking station I was very comfy. The small bathroom suited single travelers, but note that most rooms have larger bathrooms to suit couples or families. Ask us about room types to fit your specific needs.




Your own terrace with enchanting view
All 67 rooms have been individually decorated using local furnishings, and this adds a real charm to the hotel. I would have preferred maybe a Deluxe Junior Suite with a terrace from which to see the sun set over Deia or even an Executive Junior Suite where there is a plunge pool on the terrace.

Bedroom

The Suites are of course wonderful.

Suite luxury

I was shown an Exclusive suite that was very spacious and private, with an attractive large pool in the garden. These can even be connected to a Deluxe room for more space. The Villa is actually in Deia Village, a 5 minute walk from the hotel.

Food & beverage

Dinner at the wonderful ‘El Olivo’ restaurant was truly an amazing experience! You simply have to dine here – but you MUST pre-book as this is a very popular restaurant, with good reason. The Cooking lesson was also a great experience, joining the Chef Guillermo in the kitchen was exhilarating – so much passion for his profession.
Gourmet touch - colour and  taste

The breakfast room was pleasant, a short walk from the bedroom as its situated by the main pool. Glass roof – winter garden feeling.


Passionate culinary team

Facilities

There is a lovely small spa which has an indoor heated pool, outdoor Jacuzzi, treatment rooms, sauna and steam room. The building is kept as it was, renovated farmhouse with small rooms and hallways. Very charming. There are two outdoor swimming pools, two tennis courts and a gym with top of the range equipment.

Activities

I really enjoyed the Tai Chi lessons in the garden. Local artists work here and offer classes at the hotel in sculpture, painting and pottery. 

Art exhibitions - painting lessons


Another enjoyable activity is trekking in the mountains surrounding Deià, with or without a guide. I can recommend the donkey trail including lunch in the olive groves, a fantastic lunch. Its also a very pleasant experience to go on a private boat excursion, which I recommend over and above the complimentary boat trip. 

A picnic under ancient olives

...on a donkey trek

Mallorca & Deià

Mallorca is very popular with hikers and cyclists. The hotel can assist with booking tours and treks or just a bicycle or a Vespa to get around. In the village of Deià there are a few art galleries and a couple of shops. But for serious shopping you need to go to Palma.

A local bar worth a visit is Sa Fonda, two minutes walk along the main road. It is very local and rustic. Mick Jagger, guitarist Mark Knophler and Mike Oldfield played there often in the late 1980s. This was the favourite watering hole for many a famous artist, fashion model or musician visiting Deià. They still come, mostly in August.

Beach?


Its possible to walk down to a small cove with a stony pebble beach where you can swim in the sea and have a nice lunch at a very local tavern. There is no sand and no easy access to the water. You need to have strong legs and good balance.

But beautiful clear sea

Children

The hotel now also caters for families with children. They have a small kids club and will activate the children with the same activities they already have for adults…but adapted to children.


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