Under Mallorca’s Spell – From BBC to CB&B (Chic Bed & Breakfast)

Can Reus Fornalutx Mallorca HikingMallorca has a way of making you look at life in a whole different way. As I can vouch from my own conversion from London strife to country life – Mallorca has a way of making you appreciate a slower way of life.

Many expats complain about the mañana syndrome here in Mallorca. I still have difficulty accepting afternoon siesta closing times, queuing for meetings rather than telephone solutions, Sunday closing and more. But none of these “problems” would tempt me to return to the hectic life I left behind in the UK.  So it was with perfect understanding that I discovered another couple who made a similar escape – also due to a love of the great Mallorquin outdoors.

In the picturesque village of Fornalutx you will find a small rural hotel nestled between orange, lemon and olive groves. From theCan Reus 1 Fornalutx Mallorca Hiking garden of Can Reus there are spectacular views to the Tramantana mountains and endless hiking routes on the doorstep. Indeed the owners are keen walkers, and this is how they became the owners of this idyllic retreat.

The location of this lovely hotel made it an obvious choice for Mallorca Hiking and for a base for our Tailor Made Walking Holidays. The superb facilities and service would have you believe the hosts had been in this profession all their lives – but those of you familiar with TV news and current affairs programmes would be surprised to see Sue Lloyd-Roberts that formidable sleuth of investigative journalism greeting you from her “other job” here in Mallorca. And husband Nick Guthrie continues to produce and edit his weekly current affairs programme for the BBC, Dateline London (but he is back at his post at Ca’n Reus by Sunday).

Can Reus 2 Fornalutx Mallorca HikingSue recounts that they originally bought a holiday home in Fornalutx to have a quiet place to escape from the mayhem of London, enjoy the incredible walks in the Tramantana mountains and the relaxing Mallorquin country lifestyle. Then the boutique hotel next door became available, and against all the advice and protests of friends and family, Nick and Sue invested in their new venture.

My personal trajectory into Mallorquin life also involved taking on an agroturismo in the south east of the island, so I understand what Sue means (when she recounts in an interview for abc Mallorca) that it didn’t begin auspiciously. As somebody who took on a business with more sentiment from the heart than the head, I know the learning curve can be very steep – I’m sure strong nerves from all Sue’s reporting experience came in very handy to overcome some of the pitfalls of Mallorquin bureaucracy, and the very different ways in which things get achieved in Mallorca.

However, regardless of the inauspcious start, the result is a beautiful 9 room hotel with the Serra Tramantana mountains literally Nick Guthrie & Sue Lloydoutside the back garden. This is truly a place to escape and forget the world. Relax and enjoy one of Nick’s chicken casseroles with olives, or one of Sue’s fish specialities fresh from the local market – complete with organic vegetables and accompanied by the very latest world news and current affairs!!

Nick still commutes between Mallorca and London for his weekly news shows, and Sue confines her award winning documentaries to the low season for the hotel. Both return to Mallorca as soon as they can, ready to kick off the world and share their Mallorcan oasis with their guests at Can Reus.

We can highly recommend this lovely hotel as a base for a walking holiday…

Boutique hotels of Mallorca

boutique hotels mallorca hikingMallorca is experiencing quiet growth in the Boutique Hotel market. Wikipedia defines a Boutique hotel as follows:

a  Boutique hotel is a term popularized in North America and the United Kingdom to describe intimate, usually luxurious or quirky hotel environments. Boutique hotels differentiate themselves from larger chain / branded hotels by providing personalised accommodation and services / facilities. Sometimes known as “design hotels” or “lifestyle hotels”

As more tourists and  travel companies are gradually becoming aware of “the other” Mallorca – away from the package holiday resorts – so more of these superb facilities are being developed and discovered. A recent article in Britain’s Daily Telegraph reported:

The days of pile ‘em high package holidays are fading into memory as Mallorca continues to reinvent itself as an upmarket retreat. Annabelle Thorpe seeks out the best boutique hotels, bars, restaurants and beach clubs for a stylish Mediterranean getaway. Lunchtime in Fornalutx. The sun is cascading through the olive groves and there’s not a sound, apart from the sizzle of the kitchen grill. Above me the village slumbers in the sunshine, a cluster of honey- and saffron-coloured cottages; below, the mountains stretch into an unbroken vista free of roads, houses – of any sign of human life.

Just a snippet of a new awareness for Mallorca – experiencing the culture, villages, mountains and beautiful scenery away from the usual images of beaches and high rise hotels. Another recent Daily Telegraph article shouts:

Posh Mallorca: Welcome to Mallorca. If the biggest Balearic island still makes you think of Magaluf and mainstream tourism then it’s time to catch up. Mallorca is the Madonna of the tourist world, constantly reinventing itself. Right now it’s all about style: hotels that ooze glamour, restaurants that mix tradition with 21st-century tastes, sculpture gardens and open-air galleries and gastro-routes with views to die for.

Mallorca has long been a popular destination for painters and artists. Some say that tourism started here. From a scenic point of view, Mallorca is full of contrasts: the Sierra de Tramuntana mountains come down to meet a beautiful blue sea, the Mediterranean. The capital: Palma is beautiful and impressive, with the grand cathedral surrounded by medieval walls. Its Gothic architecture blends with the Palm trees and coastal terrain surrounding it. Within this beautiful backdrop (if you have the right contacts) you can now find these beautiful boutique hotels and really enjoy all that Mallorca has to offer.

At Mallorca Hiking we have the advantage of  local knowledge and personal contact with many of the owners of the best boutique hotels to be found in Mallorca – here is a brief introduction to some of the best examples we recommend and use for our clients:

Hotel Salvia in Soller: Step into a world of timeless elegance and experience this luxurious and perfectly formed small hotel. Beautifully restored Hotel Salvia is one of the grand nineteenth century mansion houses of Sóller, a historic town nestling at the foot of the majestic Tramuntana mountain range on Mallorca’s western coast. Six lavish and individual bedrooms have magnificent views of the valley, each one combines all of the style and elegance of a luxury period home with the modern essentials for complete comfort.

Hotel  C'an Reus Mallorca Hiking

Hotel Can Reus in Fornalutx: Ca’n Reus can be found in possibly the prettiest village on the island, Fornalutx, surrounded by lemon and orange trees and olive groves. This rural hotel offers spectacular views over the Tramuntana mountains, comfort and warm hospitality. It is an ideal venue for walkers, for those who want to explore the island and for those who simply want to relax by the pool or in the hotel gardens.

Hotel Son Burguny Mallorca HikingHotel Son Borguny in Banyalbufar is a historic building from the fifteenth century. Banyalbufar is nestled in the Tramuntana and is surrounded by landscapes of extraordinary beauty. Due to its location between the sea and mountains, its atmosphere, the wonderful natural environment and the particular personality of its eight rooms is the ideal place to enjoy a quiet holiday at any time of the year.

sea club Mallorca Hiking

The Sea Club in Cala Ratjada. This beautifully maintained old colonial residence, The Sea Club, has been owned and run by the Cumberlege family for over 50 years, giving it an informal, relaxed atmosphere. Overlooking the Mediterranean it consists of 16 individually designed en suite rooms with a hacienda style garden, private bar and large swimming pool. Within the grounds, individual casitas, cottages, and sunny patios lend Mallorcan charm to this uniquely private place. The Sea Club is the perfect venue for all ages, for weekend breaks, relaxing holidays or for special occasions such as birthdays or other events.

Finca Sant Blai Mallorca hikingFinca Sant Blai Campos A country retreat deep in the countryside on the south east of Mallorca, it provides you with a tranquil oasis away from the madding crowd. Sant Blai is located 4km from Campos town, enjoying total privacy and all modern comforts in authentic rustic cottages and suites. Close to the best beaches, and just 30 minutes away from Palma, Mallorca’s capital city. More an experience than a hotel.

Are you ready for your Boutique Holiday?