If you’re feeling a little stir-crazy because of travel restrictions, a night away in a local hotel offers a change of scene and a welcome break from the domestic chores that have become part of the daily routine. Such a break also helps a local business to keep operating and employing people during the pandemic.
In Mallorca, most hotels are closed at the moment and, although one or two are suggesting when they may open their doors to guests again, there’s uncertainty about when the tourist ‘season’ is likely to start this year.
Find Spacious Rooms & Mediterranean Views
One hotel in Mallorca that is open is the 5-star Hospes Maricel in Cas Català, a short drive from Palma de Mallorca. The property is built in the style of a 17th-century stately Balearic mansion right on the seafront but was, in fact, constructed as a rather different hotel in the late 1940s.
Hospes commissioned Barcelona-based architects ADD+Arquitectura Xavier Claramunt to create the beautiful hotel that awaits guests today. The property is rich in marble, wood, and golden sandstone from Santanyí. Beams, arches, and columns grace the huge public areas. In 2008, Hospes Maricel opened an extension across the road – again designed by Claramunt, and inspired by the terracing of the Mallorcan coastal village of Banyalbufar. The extension is contemporary, features a lot of stonework, and each room has its own terrace and private plunge pool. An underground passage connects these rooms with the main hotel building, so there’s no need to dodge the traffic on the road between them.
I first visited Hospes Maricel to do an interview in connection with an article for Interiores y Diseño by Deluxe magazine in 2008. I’ve subsequently reviewed the restaurant a couple of times and had a drink there, but we’d never stayed overnight.
The hotel had a special offer for Valentine’s Day so we booked one night away, having noted that the Hospes Maricel has the Institute for Spanish Tourist Quality’s ‘Safe Tourism Certified’ accreditation. Their protocols to protect against Covid-19 were prepared with the help of Quirónprevención, Preverisk, and the Institute’s guidelines. We were impressed by the attention to detail and felt safe during our stay. The spacious public areas make social distancing easy too.
We booked a room on the top floor, which had two windows looking out over the Mediterranean. Our bathroom had both a shower cubicle and a free-standing claw-foot bath.
A ‘Covid’ pack of two masks and a small bottle of sanitizing gel were in the room for us, although there were sanitizing stations throughout the hotel.
Rafa Sánchez – Chef
Rafael Sánchez joined Hospes Maricel to lead the kitchen in 2018. His previous experience includes working at the former Plat d’Or restaurant, which had a Michelin star. We had a special set menu for Valentine’s, which was tasty and balanced so we didn’t feel uncomfortably full afterwards. Due to the romantic (low) lighting, my photos don’t really do the dinner justice. We’ll return one day for lunch sitting on the terrace by the sea…
Breakfast at Hospes Maricel is an assisted buffet – help-yourself buffets are not allowed during the Covid restrictions. We had a choice of eating on the terrace or indoors. Quite a few people were breakfasting outdoors, but we opted for indoors on this occasion, as it was quite a cool early morning.
Guests queued to point out what they wanted from the breakfast buffet and the masked-and-gloved server plated up the selected items. Hot dishes are made to order and brought to the table.
We were pleased to see the service team reminding people of the need for social distancing while in the queue and the requirement to wear a mask. I saw only one person who arrived without a mask, who was told she had to wear one (which they fetched from a drawer) while she was waiting in the buffet queue. We also spotted the hotel’s general manager, who came to cast his eye over things.
Good to Know
One thing to note if you are staying in a hotel in Mallorca: bathroom amenities in the rooms are limited for hygiene reasons. We had soap, shower/bath gel, and shampoo – but were told other items were available on request.
The Hospes Maricel Spa is closed because of the pandemic.
If a luxurious night away in Mallorca appeals to you at the moment, check out the Hospes Maricel offers.
Jan Edwards Copyright 2021