I recently travelled to Andalucía, Spain, and on my way back from Marbella, the white village of Grazamela, and Ronda, I was invited by the brilliant Scottish-Spanish entrepreneur Anthony Reid to spend one night at the fantastic Hacienda de San Rafael. His family has owned the property for 140 years and recently renovated it to make it one of Southern Spain’s best hotels. The impressive gate and alley of laurels and olive trees taking you to the majestic entrance, immediately gives you a feel for what to expect.
It is absolutely stunning! I have visited many hotels but this one is probably one the best I’ve ever been to. And this is partly due to the warm welcoming of the staff and owners.
Located half-way between Seville and Jerez de la Frontera, historically and artistically-rich cities, this 18th-century hacienda is a dream come true! It is the perfect, idyllic place to experience traditional Andalucian lifestyle or simply indulge yourself in pure rustic chic combined with all the modern comfort you need.
Nestled among sunflower, cotton fields, lemon, pomegranate and olive trees, the family still produces an excellent olive oil today, while cotton bulbs beautifully decorate the rooms and baskets of fruits ornate the dining room.
The hotel features 11 rooms with veranda, and 3 individual casitas with a bedroom, separate living room, marbled-bathroom and uspstairs siesta space each. They are tastefully decorated with furniture from around the world and photographs and paintings of Spanish cultural moments. Each room has its own identity and inspires serenity.
If you’re looking for a retreat, a wedding or birthday-party venue (Pippa Middleton celebrated her 30th birthday in style at Hacienda de San Rafael), this luxurious hotel is your place. Outside “chozitas” give guests the opportunity to take a cosy nap or enjoy an excellent breakfast. The key word at Hacienda de San Rafael is relaxation.
The cortijo-styled hacienda also has three spectacular swimming pools and a tennis court, a nice outside bar and a beautiful bougainvillea-filled courtyard. It feels very boutique although the hotel spans 5 acre of fruit trees. The contrast of colours, the stylish interiors, the modern amenities, the beautiful gardens, the professional staff make this place a total heaven!
I also had dinner in the lovely restaurant and the atmosphere, food, cocktails and wines were excellent. Staff were really attentive, nice and discreet and it made for the perfect experience! Massage, yoga manicure, and excursions to local points of interest are also available.
The Reid family also owns Corral del Rey in Seville (reviewed by every glamourous magazine in the world) and I’ve heard it’s equally amazing. The attention to details is impressive, just have a look at the logo, featured on the napkins, towels and website.
Don’t miss it and book your trip now. I would recommend spending a few nights at Corral del Rey and then retreat at the fantastic Hacienda de San Rafael.