Puerto Pollensa in the north of Mallorca has been a magnet for British visitors for decades. It was where I had my first ever holiday on the island, as a teenager. The hotel I stayed in is still there and looks unchanged from the outside. I’ve not ventured in – not that anyone would remember the embarrassing incident in the hotel dining room, when the piece of melon I was trying to spear with my fork shot off the plate and onto the rather-too-close neighbouring table. It put me off eating melon for ages, but didn’t put me off Puerto Pollensa: here my love affair with the island began.
A hotel for a writer’s holiday
Agatha Christie holidayed in Puerto Pollensa too. It inspired her short story Problem at Pollensa Bay, featuring the detective Parker Pyne. Some say that Christie stayed at the Hotel Illa d’Or in the resort; others, that the Sis Pins Hotel was where she lodged during her visit. Wherever she was, she would have enjoyed the sweeping views of this expansive bay, which takes on a special beauty during the winter months. On a calm, sunny day like today, the Mediterranean laps gently at the shore but otherwise looks almost like a lake. Boats are still anchored in the bay, and this morning we even saw a water-skier in action. But it’s the clarity of the light that most impresses on a winter’s day when the sun shines from a clear blue sky.
Open for business
We love to visit Puerto Pollensa in the winter to enjoy its natural beauty and to stride out along the Pine Walk, passing waterfront houses and apartment buildings and daydreaming about living so close to the sea. Every long walk should end with a good coffee or, in winter, perhaps a gloopy hot chocolate, although many cafés and bars here are closed over the winter months.
Restaurante Stay on the waterfront stays open all year and is open through the day for snacks, lunch, tapas, and dinner. The terrace is a sunny spot on a fine winter’s day.
Cappuccino Grand Café – a Mallorcan chain of smart cafés – has had a seafront place in Puerto Pollensa since 2011. The café adjoins the Sis Pins Hotel, a charming British-owned place that first opened in 1952 and is packed with traditional Mallorcan character. Although Sis Pins remains open in the winter – and offers some very reasonable room rates – Cappuccino has been closing for the winter months for the past few years. It must be said that Cappuccino’s prices are more geared towards visitors to Mallorca than to locals…
Go where the locals go
Many restaurants and bars in the holiday resort are closed outside the holiday season, but locals live here year-round, so venture away from the seafront and you’re sure to find somewhere to get a drink or something to eat.
©Jan Edwards 2013