Catalan countryside hotel, Spain
Description of Catalan countryside hotel, Spain
Check into the Catalonian countryside for a week or more and you’ll instantly understand the natural connection the locals have with the land. This region of northeast Spain features some of the country’s most dramatic volcanic landscapes where Pyrenean peaks disappear into blue skies to conjure up a wonderful variety of walking and cycling trails to keep guests happy and active all day long.
Accessing Catalonia’s sublime countryside is as simple as walking out of your front door, especially if you’re based in this converted pilgrims’ property that has now become a boutique spa and sports hotel to provide the perfect opportunity for families, friends and couples to cycle, swim and stroll outdoors.
Adjoining woodland, veggie patches and a 25m swimming pool make this lovingly restored stone built accommodation a real treat for all the senses with 17 en-suite guest rooms, two of which are wheelchair accessible, keeping things spacious, yet cosy, so everyone can enjoy the experience in their own way.
Aside from the bedrooms, guests are also invited to enjoy the hotel’s sports facilities with table tennis, gymnasium, sauna and 1 massage treatment room all offering a chance to relax and unwind after a morning, afternoon or full day spent exploring in the surrounding countryside.
Further afield you’ll find some of Catalonia’s most impressive towns and cities including Girona, Figueres, Besalu and Banyole, as well as some of the lesser-known beaches situated along the Costa Brava.
Our no smoking ethos is exactly what you’d expect from a region that holds sports and exercise in extremely high esteem. Athletes training for marathons, triathlons and racing events all benefit from time spent at our hotel with an array of alternative activities, including hiking, mountain biking, horse riding and kayaking, all adding to the appeal of a week or more in the countryside.
Of course, this area is also famed for its cultural allure with many Michelin-starred restaurants tempting guests from healthy diets as well as providing sublime sustenance for those seeking sunshine and solace alongside learning Spanish or taking part in art classes or recreational painting.
Self-guided route maps, local walking guides and on-site sports and massage therapists provide guests with yet more choice with the nearby volcanic national park promising some truly dramatic images, especially from the high terrace at sunset.
A good programme of kids’ activities also allows parents to join in or rest and relax as the mood dictates with freshly cooked regional produce presented at the on-site restaurant ensuring everyone gets a real taste of the Catalonian countryside, just 30mins from Girona and 1.5hrs from Barcelona.
For more information on our group discounts, airport transfers, and choice of guest bedrooms please get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.
9 Reviews of Catalan countryside hotel, Spain
Reviewed on 10 Jul 2021 by Dan AllinghamReally good. Shame we only stayed here for 6 nights as could have happily stayed longer. Very highly recommended Read full review
Reviewed on 30 Oct 2019 by Vanessa PhillipsonThe most exciting part of the holiday was the canyoning. Read full review
Reviewed on 27 Sep 2019 by Sheila ScottThe most memorable part of the holiday was meeting and getting to know people from different countries, and sharing experiences and meals with them. Read full review
Reviewed on 03 Sep 2017 by Liz GloverSo many lovely places, arriving at night with the tiny windows lit up, the smell of the air, exploring the village Seinya with it's fruit trees, vegetable patches and beautiful sand coloured buildings and village square and gentle village life, arriving in Besalu-wow, the most spectacular Medieval village, swimming in the lake at Banyoles, the landscape, seeing a wide boar, swimming in the river, visiting Girona-that first veiw of the old town lining the river, the cat family... the teenagers getting on and mucking about in the pool together! Read full review
Reviewed on 01 Nov 2016 by Melissa WrightPerfect relaxing, rural location convenient to sight-seeing spots such as Girona and Besalu. Read full review
Reviewed on 22 Apr 2016 by Caroline WigartIt was a great holiday, a bit like when we go skiing... you come home feeling fit and energised. Read full review
Reviewed on 16 May 2016 by Rachel GrubbHotel highly recommended. Read full review
Reviewed on 03 Sep 2014 by Trish DooleyGreat. I'd go again....Beautiful accommodation, loads to do and a wonderful Salvador Dali Museum to add to the healthy, outdoor break. Read full review
Reviewed on 07 Apr 2013 by judith cockrellI thought my hosts were amazingly helpful. The house was lovely . There was lots to do in the local area and I loved the walking. Read full review
PlanetWe think about water and power usage and what waste we are producing. We plant local plants like olives and lavender that require little watering. We have left the wood at the back of the property that we look after and harvest, but still keep the healthy trees. The harvested wood is then used in the wood burning stoves. We have underfloor heating as in the winter the nights can be a little chilly. The historic house has been rebuilt in the old ways but with added insulation, so it stays warm in winter but cool in Summer. The walls are 60cm thick, so slowly heat up in the Summer and then keep their heat through the winter. This system works really well, so you do not need much AC, but we do have a large AC unit run by PV panels in the centre of the building to keep the bedrooms at a good temperature (25°C indoor temp even in the last heat waves). People are always amazed how cool it is in the Summer inside. We also have shutters fitted to all the windows, so we can shut the shutters in the Summer to prevent the sun warming up the rooms. As the walls are really thick and as we have thought about window placement, this means in the Summer the sun misses the south facing windows due to the sun height, but in the winter can warm up the rooms as the sun is at a lower height and therefore shines in. We also vent in the cool night air in the Summer. The new suites have the eco ventilation for the night and we run the AC in the afternoon via the PV panels. To keep what PV electric we make we first turn on the central AC unit in the main building, as that keeps its temperature well. Then in the afternoon we move the power to the AC units in the new suits to get them down to 24°C and then at night we turn on the eco ventilation. The window and the roof placement for the new suites allows for shade in the Summer and the suns warmth in the Winter, so we hardly ever need to heat the new garden suites in Winter.
We have a solar pool cover and a PV solar system run the AC and the hotel in daylight hours. This means our pool is swimmable from March through to November all via the suns power. Our light bulbs are all eco and we think about each watt that is used. Our hair dryers are all 1kw rather than 2kw for example and we do not have electric kettles. Instead we provide thermoses of hot water for tea and coffee in the dining room and kettles on the gas rings of the BBQs. We look at each product and try and reasearch and buy the ones that used the least amount of power but still function well.
All waste is divided and what can be recycled is recycled. We also compost. All of our waste water goes through a septic tank which technically produces drinkable water. We water our garden from the old cisternas which are connected to our roof, so we collect rainwater to fill the cisternas, as they did in the old days. We run the whole of our small boutique hotel on 4kw usually, but can up the power automatically for example if everyone turns on their hairdryers at the same time. But usually we run at less than 4kw, which for such a large place is unheard of in Spain.
We plan to keep buying PV panels and adding more AC units as the number of heat waves escalate, so that we are not burning fossil fuels to keep cool. We are off grid, but do not be scared, most people do not even notice.
PeopleWhere we can we buy local in season produce, so for example our onions are Figueres onions, apples & pear from local orchards, local wines etc. We also have our own small vegetable garden. We buy locally and use local companies for almost everything. We also support the local restaurants, by booking tables for our clients. We send our clients to the local best shops if they require anything and let them know the local market days etc.
We offer good wages to locals and train them. For example we have been employing a local guy and supporting him in his university masters studies to become a more qualified sports coach.
We are part of the local community and support the Gegants (this is a local tradition where at festivals the local Gegants (people wearing huge heads, to make them look like giants) go and dance and perform.
We campaigned with the local community against high voltage power lines being put in the area. The campaign was not completely successful but we did manage to get them moved so as not to disturb as much of the local wildlife. We all offered to club together to pay for them to go underground, but the electrical company said this would set a precedent and would not allow it. Which we find ridiculous. In the end the power company said they would put the line where they wanted it or they would work with the local town councils to come up with the best solution, although they would not bury it. So we did have a small effect, but not the one we wanted. The MAT is a very controversial project here, but it has all been passed in Madrid and Catalunya is very angry.