5* La Residencia, A Belmond Hotel ~ majorca
Artistic heritage in an idyllic setting
This charming hideaway set amongst olive and citrus groves is regarded as one of Mallorca’s finest hotels. Formerly owned by Richard Branson, now part of the Belmond portfolio, La Residencia celebrates Deià’s artistic heritage, in an idyllic setting that oozes a rustic charm and tranquillity, all under the shade of the Tramuntana Mountains.
Karen and James have recently returned from this stunning destination. It holds a special place in their hearts, being the first hotel they visited together some 20+ years ago.
During the 20th century, artists from all over the world came to live in Deià, and a community of painters, sculptors and decorative artists grew up. The hotel has always been a focus of this activity and now has its own art collection, a sculpture garden, resident artists and a number of art-related events.
The property, in Deià, is located in the north of the island, giving you opportunity to explore the island enroute. Karen and James chose to hire a Fiat 500 convertible (a great car for nipping around the island in). Once landed at Palma Airport, you can reach Deià driving through the centre of the island from Palma in approximately 40 minutes, should you wish to drive the beautiful coastal route up the west of the island like Karen and James, it will take you approximately an hour and 25 minutes. The scenery is spectacular and without a doubt worth the extra time! On this route stopping off at the ancient Mallorcan town Andratx… a truly authentic place to visit for a spot of lunch is a must do if you can, it is best known for its culture, shopping and beautiful landscapes.
On arrival at the hotel, you will be taken to the terrace, offered a refreshing cocktail while the hotel staff check you in, a wonderful welcome greeting.
The hotel works equally well for both couples and families alike and is the perfect destination for spring sunshine or late summer sun. Karen and James noticed many groups of guests were multi-generational, from baby to Grandma. Everyone from young to old are well catered for in every aspect of their stay.
Despite its grandeur and polish and of course impeccable service, this is a hotel with a homely, inviting, and warm ambience. Karen and James would recommend visiting for 4-5 nights, they stayed for 3 nights which they felt was a little short if you are wanting to take a day trip or two as well.
The whole experience is quite laid back; you are in a prime position to be able to enjoy a leisurely breakfast on the terrace, then take a wander down to the beach, a stroll back up to the lawns for afternoon tea; where you can enjoy the art sculptures, followed later by a delicious dining experience in one of the restaurants.
Karen and James visited in April and would recommend eating dinner inside of an evening, as the weather will be on the cooler side, so make sure you pack a sweater or two.
It is no surprise that many of its guests return time and again, which is true for Karen and James who regard it as a little hidden gem where they like to retreat to when in need of some R&R.
5 Nights from £2,065pp
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Take a Mediterranean buffet breakfast daily in Son Fony, where tables overlook the main pool and offer tranquil views of the Tramuntana Mountains. Indulge in La Residencia’s homemade preserves, freshly baked breads and pastries. Local seasonal fruits from the orchard, fine Spanish Iberian hams and organic eggs cooked to your taste all ensure your day begins with a gastronomic start.
Dine at one of Mallorca’s top ten restaurants El Olivo. Embark on a gastronomic journey, a fine-dining experience you won’t forget. Flickering candlelight creates an enchanting ambience, complementing the Mediterranean cuisine of Executive Chef Guillermo Méndez and his team. Why not have the sommelier pair your choices with wines from a collection that’s earned – year on year – the Award of Excellence from prestigious Wine Spectator.
Enter into breezy Cafe Miro, a mountain-facing venue that celebrates the region’s artistic heritage. Celebrating Deià’s artistic heritage, Café Miró is a scenic spot in which to enjoy a leisurely lunch. Sample a seductive selection of tasty tapas or try one of the fresh fish dishes.
Classic Double Rooms
~ Room size: 30 m2
~ Queen bed
~ Spectacular views
Superior Double Rooms
~ Room size: 35 m2
~ King or Queen bed
~ Spectacular views
Deluxe Double Rooms
~ Room size: 40 m2
~ King bed
~ Furnished terrace or balcony
~ Room size: 58 m2
~ King or Queen size beds
~ Terrace or Balcony
~ Room size: 70 m2
~ King beds
~ Gardens, pools or terraces
~ Room size: 170 m2
~ Three double bedrooms
Designer Suite by Matthew Williamson
~ Room size: 200 m2
~ King bed
~ Private terrace with swimming pool and outdoor dining area
2 Swimming Pools
Spa and Fitness Room
2 Tennis Courts
Mountain Bike Hire
Seasonal Kids Club (4+ years)
Free Shuttle Service to Cala Deia (Summer months)
Yoga and T’ai Chi (weekly, seasonal)
Weekly Walk & Talk Art Tour in Deia
2 Hour Boat Excursion (Summer months)
An abundance of activities
The arrangement for children is fantastic, they can enjoy a delightful Mallorcan adventure at the supervised children’s club where they can partake in exciting activities such as pottery workshops, cooking classes with Chef Guillermo, tennis coaching and tours with the adorable resident donkeys.
Sophia (the in-house nanny) is delightful and is available to look after the children all day and also offers a babysitting service in the evenings. You can drop the kids off whenever needed or whenever they want to go and will be entertained with an array of activities to choose from. They are also welcome to simply use any of the children’s toys and equipment without attending the Smile Club.
THE DONKEY TRAIL
The much-loved donkeys will accompany you on a trek through the olive groves. You will be able to admire the tranquil landscape of Tramuntana Mountains before stopping for an unforgettable picnic lunch in a stone shepherd’s hut.
Perfect your serve and stay active while surrounded by the beauty of the Tramuntana Mountains. Other facilities include a practice hitting wall and a pro-shop. You can even arrange private lessons and children’s classes.
SPA & WELLNESS
Indulge all the senses in the award-winning retreat. An exquisite menu of fully personalised therapeutic treatments each infused with indigenous flora, is available at our luxury spa. Mallorca’s spectacular scenery can be enjoyed from the alfresco terrace; the perfect spot for the signature massage.
HIKING AND CYCLING IN THE TRAMUNTANA MOUNTAINS
Set off to explore the spectacular scenery of the Tramuntana mountains. Immerse yourself in the natural landscape and pedal a mountain bike up and down the slopes. Or join the expert guide, Eduardo, for adventurous hiking among the spectacular scenery of this UNESCO world heritage site.
DISCOVER A PALACE OF ART
In a remote enclave in the north of Mallorca, an artistic adventure is calling. Combining art, nature and architecture, the Fundación Yannick y Ben Jakober is a sensory experience not to be missed. Journey to a neighbouring country estate, where a privately guided tour avows spectacular views. Raise a glass to this enriching cultural adventure with a picnic in Sa Bassa Blanca.
IN HARMONY WITH WINE
Meet the accomplished Javier Jara for a cool drink on the grounds of his 15th-century winery, Son Sureda Ric. Tour the estate first acquired by his grandfather, one of the first ‘green farmers’ on the island.
Your tour ends in the charming stone-clad courtyard followed by lunch and local wines. You’ll then be treated to a mesmerising bossa nova performance with Javier on guitar and his talented wife Carmè on vocals.
FIRST LIGHT WALKS
See the majesty of first light on a dawn walk, in partnership with Leica Sport Optics. You will be provided with a pair of Leica Trinovid 8×42 HD binoculars and encounter the captivating flora and fauna of Mallorca in truly magical light.
Choose to take a private tour with celebrated photographer Sebastià Torrens, or opt to be led by an expert nature guide. Alternatively set off on your own with the help of a map. Breakfast boxes will be given to keep you energised. 24-hour advanced reservations required.
Revel in the unique artistic spirit of Deià with the hotels collection of creative classes. Develop your skills under the guidance of the resident experts.
Painting: Hone your painting and drawing skills with artist in residence Alan Hydes in his on-site studio.
Sculpture: Enjoy a multi-disciplinary sculpture class with sculptor in residence Juan Waelder.
Painting by the sea: Take a morning walk from La Residencia to Cala Deià for a painting masterclass in front of the sea. With a young and talented artist from Deià, you’ll learn how to capture the magical light of this enchanting Mediterranean island. You don’t have to be an expert—you’ll be guided though the basics to create your masterpiece.
With its flower-lined streets to sparkling coves, Mallorca is as pretty as a picture. Give your Instagram followers a true Mallorcan experience with pictures they will envy as you explore Mallorca and all it has to offer!
Deia & its nearby villages
Walk out through the gates of La Residencia and you find the village’s chic boutiques, cafés and restaurants while pretty Cala Deià with its pebbled beach and renowned Ca’s Patró March restaurant can be reached in 10 minutes by car.
La Residencia is just a five-minute walk to village of Deià. The village itself is gorgeous and popular amongst the glitterati such as Andrew Llyod Webber, Michele Obama, Richard Branson, Rafa Nadal, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones to name a few. Also, home to some of the best restaurants in Mallorca. From pizza to fine dining to thumping bars for dancing. Whichever is your preference for an evening out, Deià can deliver. During the day there are plenty of little boutiques for shopping and cafes for refreshments.
A 30-minute stroll from the village takes you down to Cala Deià, a horseshoe shaped cove with crystal clear water and choppy waves that lap listlessly at a shingle beach. You will likely have worked up an appetite enroute, so relish the chance to refuel at one of the rustic beachside restaurants. Karen and James highly recommend Ca’s Patró March, the food was simply divine. You can also take on rock climbing here if your limbs will allow you… Karen and James just so happened to cross paths with Ben Fogle and his family enjoying a rock-climbing session (you can read all about this in The Sunday Times), needless to say Karen and James were not the ones Rock Climbing.
Just a short drive from Deià you will find the pretty picturesque town of Valldemossa. Drenched in beauty and rich cultural heritage it feels a world away from the capital, Palma. The town is a real treat to visit as you work your way around the car-free cobbled alleys and take in the deep-rooted history it has to offer.
A beautiful old traditional town that is well worth spending a day exploring. Set in the heart of the ‘valley of oranges’ or ‘valley of gold’ as it is sometimes known, is a bustling market town with a great vibe. The main square, Plaza de la Constitucion, is lined with an array of bars, cafes and restaurants and all dominated by the valleys landmark, Sant Bartomeu church.
Home to the well know tram line, which takes you from the main town to the port clunking its way regularly through the beautiful square.
From here you can also take the old wooden train to the cosmopolitan city of Palma, stopping at Bunyola on the way. The journey takes you through spectacular scenery, amongst viaducts, bridges of which there are thirteen tunnels, but who’s counting. A great day out with plenty of photo opportunities.