Ctra. de Andratx 11, Cas Catala, Palma, Spain, 07184
- Recommended for:
- Business travellers, Couples, Foodies, Honeymooners, Design and architecture, Great views / scenery, People watching, Relaxation, Romance
Expert review of Hospes Maricel
In 2009, the Hospes Maricel was the surprise winner of the Wallpaper* ‘best of…’ awards for its ‘Pool Terrace Suite’. Surprise because such high accolades rarely go to hotel chains. Once you see it, you get it, for this two-building creation - one a revamped seaside villa, the other pure 21st-century art deco, the two connected by a tunnel that runs under the road - is a triumph of modern design cleverly integrated into the local landscape.
In a western suburb of Palma called Cas Catala, right on the beach and handy for the plush Bendinat golf course. But the area is lacking when it comes to restaurants and bars.
They’ve won awards so they’d better be good, and yes they are. Split into various categories, they start with the most basic Eco-Dreamer, and go up to Eco-Deluxe and Eco-Suite, Dreamers Mountain View, Dreamers Sea View, Deluxe, Suite and Presidential Suite. Apart from the obvious differences, some of the features that run across the board are the use of natural and local materials like stone and wood, Egyptian cotton and leather to create a Zen-like calm. All deluxe categories have tiny, private plunge pools integrated onto terraces that aren’t much bigger, and honestly they are not really worth the extra price tag. Suites are another matter, with navy slivers of pool that recall the islands celebrated inlets.
Key is a sense of space and light whether you’re in the lounge sipping cocktails or one of several terraces soaking up the views. It's also pretty fab just prowling around admiring the architecture of the new build.
You won’t get fat here if you don’t want to. Alongside the riches of foie gras and caviar there is plenty of organic ‘my body is a temple’ type fare, to fill a gap. But then again, there is the legendary ‘tasting’ breakfast, declared best in the world at the prestigious Madrid Fusion food fest a couple of years ago, which frankly, throws any diet schemes you might have out the window. Better to be all Zen about it I say and go with the flow, which should find you around 6pm-ish in the hotel’s airy cocktail bar and lounge. A sea of leather sofas, stone pillars and weathered beams, it looks oddly familiar, like you might have seen it in a Bond movie once. I like mine shaken as a Million Dollar Flame Martini (grey goose vodka, red martini rosso, Tío Pepe sherry y angostura bitter).
Carved into ancient stone arches that once lined this stretch of coast, when you’re lying in Maricel’s Bodyna Spa, you feel, quite literally, like you are floating out to sea, and the truth is you practically are. This has the added affect of making you feel all heady and floaty: a quality that most spas aim for, very few achieve. The broad range of treatments could keep you going for several days, but if this doesn’t appeal then there is always the spectacular Senzone Infinity Pool, which drops off abruptly into the sea.
Not all it should be unfortunately. Generally it's friendly and professional, staff remember your name, what room you stay in, and whether you like white or red, but occasionally it seems that everything is just a bit too much trouble.
A curiously mixed bag: Hollywood parties (yep, you may well spot a few stars), upwardly mobile couples from Britain, northern Europe and the States, and a sprinkling of Spanish. No kids though from May through October when it deploys a ‘no children under 12’ policy.
Worth looking out for special offers and packages.
More information on Hospes Maricel:
- Price from:
- Ctra. de Andratx 11, Cas Catala, Palma, Spain, 07184
- Business Centre, Fitness Centre, High-Speed Internet, Parking, Restaurant, Room Service, Swimming Pool