By Charmaine Hibbert
What better time to get away as it starts to get cold than in November and as I make my way to Gatwick airport the taxi driver told me he was chipping ice off the car windscreen before he came to pick me up, the thought of some winter sun certainly appealed to me at this moment in time.
I am heading off to Mallorca and while James plays in the Media Cup I will be checking out the Castillo Hotel Son Vida, the transfer from the airport to the hotel takes less than 20 minutes and as we pull up outside I am already impressed by the design as it looks like an old castle that has been renovated.
There is a full history on the hotel’s website but Castillo Hotel Son Vida dates back to the 13th century when King Jaume I declared the hills behind Palma city fertile ground. Since then the castle has changed hands many times, in 1995, the hotel was purchased by the Schörghuber Group, renamed Castillo Hotel Son Vida, and designated as one of the leading hotels of the world. In March 2007, the hotel became a member of Starwood Hotels & Resorts’ Luxury Collection and finally the hotel is now part of the Marriott Luxury Collection of hotels, with many influential guests included politicians and celebrities from around the world including Prince Rainer of Monaco and Grace Kelly, Aristotle Onassis.
After a quick check-in I find myself on the 3rd floor and about to open the door, the classic décor has already impressed me with a number of beautifully appointed pieces adding to the elegance and aesthetic of the hotel. As I open the door I was not really surprised how large and elegant my room is but what does surprise me is how big my stone balcony - with beautiful views over the garden - is.
Apart from the king size bed, there are two large comfy chairs and desk – from where I am now writing this feature – and the bathroom has a deep soaker tub and large separate shower with beautiful stone tiles, there is also plenty of closet space and of course mini bar, large TV and safe.
We are meeting for lunch in Es Castell Restaurant and as I walk in you can’t help but notice the beautiful uninterrupted views of Palma, the cathedral and the sea and as I sit right by the window I make a mental note this is where I want to sit every morning for breakfast.
After a relaxing lunch, I take a stroll around the grounds, the outside terrace is a wonderful place just to soak up the views and just let the stresses of life slowly disappear. The outside pools are also perfectly placed to take in those wonderful views with tress adding to the tranquillity, there is also a pool side bar and I could certainly see myself during the summer months just chilling by the pool indulging in a few cocktails.
After a good night’s sleep I head down to breakfast and find my spot right by the window, the orange sun highlights the few clouds in the sky as it rises over Palma, I just sit and watch it slowly climb in the sky with a freshly squeezed orange juice.
Breakfast is buffet style with fresh fruits, a selection of cold meets and cheeses, mueslis, yogurts and of course hot food and I have to give special mention to the scrambled eggs which were perfection.
Son Vida Spa
Son Vida have spent over £2 million on updating their spa facilities and now offer an extensive range of treatments and also boost a Gym, Indoor Pool, Treatment Rooms, Wet Area, Relaxation Area and a Hair Salon.
James has instructed me that I need to take the sports massage – there is also a golf massage – but we felt this was the best compromise of the two to show case what the hotel can offer. Waiting in the spa reception area was my masseuse Veselin who introduces himself and we head to one of the treatment rooms, the first thing I notice are the wooded slated windows which you have the choice of leaving open so you can soak up the views or you can have them closed, I choose to have them closed.
Veselin started by asking me if there were certain spots I wanted him to concentrate on and being a writer and stuck at a computer quite a lot my shoulders and neck always seem stiff, so I asked him to pay particular attention to that area. He started with my legs, then back and then up to my shoulders and I have to say he really did work wonders on my neck and shoulders. As always, I could feel myself drifting in and out of sleep and all too soon I could hear Veselin say he would step out while I change and take some water.
I did lay there for a few minutes contemplating if I could just go to sleep right there, but I slowly got myself together and had a glass of water and to my surprise Veselin had stayed outside waiting for me. I thanked him for a wonderful massage and made my way back to my room. I had a few hours before I needed to get ready for the evening meal, so yes you guessed it, I jumped into bed and with my body now feeling wonderfully relaxed I drifted off to sleep.
These trips end all too soon, I certainly could have done with Veselin’s soothing hands at least one more time and just sitting around the pool soaking up those views, but it’s time to depart and with the airport only a 20 minute journey away it wasn’t long before I was checking in for my flight.
It has been a wonderful few days and the Castillo Hotel Son Vida certainly lives up to its reputation and high standards, I am sure with the new spa facilities you will no doubt be bumping into many a celebrity and VIP guest in the future.
Castillo Hotel Son Vida & Spa, Mallorca, Spain
Urbanizacion Son Vida
Palma de Mallorca 07013
T: +34 971 49 34 93