In the pretty-as-a-picture village of Santiago Del Teide, which lies in a fertile valley high above the south-west coast. It's the last village before the serpentine climb and descent to Masca. Los Gigantes on the west coast is a 20-minute drive away, and it's an hour's transfer from the south airport.
Twenty individually styled and decorated rooms are arranged in a quadrangle around an inner courtyard and named after an endemic plant. I stayed in Ajinajo and had wonderful views over the front paddock, the picnic zone over the road and the Masca hills. Each room has a high, mudejar styled wooden ceiling, terracotta floor tiles, double glazed windows and is decorated in the rich sienna, saffron or vermilion of traditional rural housing with modern, abstract paintings providing the perfect contrast. Bathrooms are marble finished and have twin sinks, plenty of space and a very flattering mirror – always a plus point in my book.
Set in extensive grounds, the hotel has chosen to take the traditional materials of its location and merge them with avant-garde style to create a wonderful fusion of traditional and contemporary. External walls are constructed of black volcanic stone and the interior is wood and stone. Traditional artefacts sit amongst modern paintings and sculptures, while cubist chairs surround a large, wood-burning stove in the lounge.
Eating and drinking
Alongside the hotel is a visitor centre which incorporates the Casa Del Patio tasca with its rustic dining room and elegant outside courtyard where you can sample Canarian cuisine at its best. I enjoyed the goat’s meat and the fresh fish during my stay, both of which were cooked to perfection, flavoured with fresh herbs and served with organic vegetables from the garden. Breakfast can be taken in the dining room or on the sunny outdoor terrace overlooking the stables.
The visitor centre has riding stables from which you can book rides and lessons, and they operate pony and trap rides through the village. A wine museum, a museum dedicated to the 1909 eruption of Chinyero, a well stocked shop selling souvenirs and local produce and an art gallery are all on site. A motley assortment of geese, hens, parrots, a Shetland pony and the farm cat keep young visitors in wide eyed awe.
Staff are warm and welcoming, and service is informal and attentive.
Who stays there
A mix of Europeans looking for a rural getaway, but the hotel is still building its clientele so go now before it gets too busy.
- High-Speed Internet
- Backpackers / Students
- Mature travellers
- Seasoned travellers
- Escaping the crowds
- Great views / scenery
- Nature / wildlife
Pros & Cons
- The visitor centre
- Heavenly location
- No pool or spa facilities