We have lost count of how many years we've been staying a Biniarroca, my wife, and I. It's one of those dreamlike oases that draw you back, again and again. We were last here for a long weekend in August this year, although we'd already spent nearly three weeks at the hotel in July. Like all the great hideaways, it's hard to put your finger on what makes it so special: the labyrinthine gardens (like being lost in a sub-tropical Monet), the viridian swimming pools - two of them - or the comforting, tenebrous tranquillity of the house itself. A house whose exterior is pure rustic Menorca, but whose interior is English Country House luxury in the corner of a foreign field. Every detail has been considered by the two charming owners-in-residence, from Sheelagh's collection of vintage crocodile handbags in the library to the wall display of antique bird cages in the restaurant and at every turn there are Lindsay's dreamy, vibrant canvasses that seduce the gardens back into the hotel. Breakfast is a delight, from the freshest of seasonal fruits to quirky local specialities, like sobrasada rolls, queso de Mahon and ensaimadas, and at night the head waiter, Juan Carlos (a man whose charm seems like a branch of the martial arts) guides you effortlessly through a menu where Menorcan cuisine - a tricky beast to track down - is elevated to international standards; this is a destination restaurant, and it's no accident that it featured on the cover of House & Garden's hidden gems supplement last year. The bedrooms - we have stayed in four different ones (including one of the secluded garden suites, converted from an old cowshed) are exquisitely furnished and appointed, with - do not be fooled by the period detail - highly efficient air-conditioning (still a rarity on the island) and wi-fi. As to the staff, all of them somehow manage to make you feel that Biniarroca is their home and that you are their most welcome guest. As to the guests, you do tend to see the same hedonistic recidivists each year - whose faces all bear the same genial expression of pampered bliss; Spanish couples on a romantic hideaway, English literati seeking a quiet spot to finish the next chapter - and the restful absence of children. As one of our fellow guests remarked as we floated gently in the pool, sipping our pomadas - if this is not perfection, then it resembles it to an uncanny degree.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Biniarroca is a small stylish boutique hotel, just outside the village of Sant LLuis on the island of Menorca. An oasis of calm, wellbeing and rejuvenation. Extensive gardens, 2 swimming pools and lime stone terraces encourage a relaxing environment to chill out, meditate, paint, write or to simply indulge in delicious cuisine and fine wines in beautiful surroundings. This hotel promotes an adults only environment. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Biniarroca Hotel Sant Lluis Es
- Biniarroca Hotel Sant Lluis, Menorca, Spain