The view from the ultra-stylish Hotel Tres
Style, Culture, Nature, Sunshine
The Balearic Island of Mallorca is often associated with stag nights that bring shame to all who participate. Look a little further however and you’ll see a world of immense natural beauty, charm and style.
The compact capital of Palma is an appealing base for Trundlers in search of an affordable, cosmopolitan weekend, hopping from cafe to bar to fine-dining restaurant, swanning around the shops and admiring the stunning buildings, including the magnificent cathedral. It’s also extremely easy to take a train or a bus and head out into the glorious surrounding countryside. Or to the wonderful coast with its mix of small bays and long, sandy beaches.
You also won’t find a better choice of marvellous hotels, ranging from a swish and chic boutique bolt-hole to a charming, tranquil rustic Finca and a classic Mallorcan favourite with exemplary eco-friendly credentials.
Kick off in Palma – Hit the town at the Hotel Tres
Get off to a flying start at the slick, buzzy Hotel Tres in the heart of Palma, sharp and modern in design, but built in the remains of a 16th century palace. There’s a giddy feeling of fun here, created by gregarious Norwegian host Svenn Rudow, whose charisma helps sets the pace for a lively stay.
Rooms range from smart singles to decadent suites, all light and fresh in feel, cleverly designed to ensure optimum space. Many overlook a sunny courtyard which doubles up as a gently vibrant bar. The highlight of this convivial hotel however is the sun-baked roof terrace with its splash pool and sundeck where you can bask with a glass of Prosecco and look out over the dazzling skyscape and the sea beyond. A buffet breakfast of charcuterie, cheeses, hot dishes fresh fruit, juice and coffee is included the room rate. From around £124 a night for a double room. Visit www.hoteltres.com/email firstname.lastname@example.org
Head for the beach at Illetas
Rest and relax at the Hotel Bon Sol in Illetas. This classic Mallorcan favourite operates like a well-oiled machine, but one which is elegant, tasteful and genuinely welcoming. The Bon Sol is run with a mixture of warmth and panache by the kind and lovely Xamena family, Martin, Lorraine and son Alejandro and is as far removed from a chain hotel as you can possibly imagine. This is a world of comfort and familiarity, even if you have never been there before. It’s a family hosted hotel whose sincere commitment to environmentally-friendly practises goes back to when Martin’s father Antonio originally opened for business in 1953, with his wife Roger. Over the years they filled Bon Sol with a rich collection of paintings and artworks from all over the world and Antonio’s passion for the sea has inspired the hotel’s design. Water recycling and solar energy have been of crucial importance, long before green tourism became popular.
Elegant rooms are peaceful and sumptuous, the food is a delicious blend of Mallorcan and Spanish dishes. The lush grounds lead down to a private bay, where it’s easy to swim as an alternative to using one of two hotel pools. Treatments in the soothing Nirvana Spa as well as yoga and Tai Chi classes, enhance the feeling that your well-being is being given the utmost consideration.
For Trundlers in need of a breather after trundling in more challenging spots, the seaside town of Illetas, about 20 minutes by bus from the centre of Palma is a relaxed, low-key resort with good sandy beaches.
All this comfort and happiness costs from around £140 a night for a double room including a lavish breakfast. See www.hotelbonsol.es
The Dalt Murada Experience
Trundlers who like to imagine they are living in another century entirely, will love the gracious 16th century townhouse of Dalt Murada in the centre of Palma. Its high-ceilinged rooms are atmospherically furnished with antiques, tapestries and chandeliers, fascinating old maps of Spain and carved wooden beds.
All the modern comforts of 21st century life are in place however and a delicious breakfast featuring home-made Mallorcan specialities is served in a shady courtyard garden full of lemon trees. This intimate hotel is packed with charm no matter which room you choose but the penthouse suite is special, with a Jacuzzi, a large terrace and splendid cathedral views.
From its position in the Gothic quarter, this is a special base from which to explore Palma. And now for Trundlers who would like to strike out into the Mallorcan countryside but still enjoy a slice of history, Ferran and Luis Llado have opened an Agroturismo Finca in the wine region of Binisalem, 20 minutes from Palma.
You can even take a train from the Placa d’Espanya. Board the Inca train operated by the Transport de les Iles Balears and get off at Binisalem, where a pick up can be arranged. Or you can just trundle for 2 kms until you reach this 500-year-old estate with its cool tiled floors and beamed ceilings.
You’ll find the same mix of family heirlooms and antiques here, as well as many amazing paintings. All this sombre beauty is enhanced by the swimming pool surrounded by almond trees and the silence of the surrounding gardens and farmland.This is rural Mallorca at its most delightful and the perfect balance to a few days in sophisticated Palma. And not a hint of a stag night in sight.
From now until 30th September, a seven night stay at the Finca Dalt Murada costs 700 Euros with breakfast included. Or you can stay at the Hotel Dalt Murada for two nights and the Finca for five. See www.daltmurada.com
Easyjet offer regular flights to Palma for around £100. www.easyjet.com