“Eight rustic houses (each sleeping 2-8) with Bohemian overtones make up this cosy converted farm in the heart of Lanzarote”
The 8 houses are scattered around the sunken swimming pool. Each has its own quirks and bed configuration, but all have more or less the same facilities and Indonesia-meets-Morocco styling.
Ours, Mawar, is the best choice for romantic couples, occupying the most remote position. The ground floor of this 2-storey house consists of a large, terracotta-tiled living room with wheat-coloured walls, a beamed ceiling and bare stone features. Surprisingly, there's also a small fireplace for rare chilly winter nights. A large wooden coffee table takes centre stage in front of a wicker settee festooned with bright cushions.
The small kitchen has a fridge-freezer, 4 rings, a microwave, a kettle, an ironing board, and cutlery and crockery for a maximum of 3 guests. The bathroom has a separate wash area with 2 square, stone sinks. Wooden steps lead up to a shower and toilet with daylight pouring in from a high window.
An open stone staircase leads to the bedroom, where a double bed - framed by a billowing white mosquito net - faces a large double window with a marvellous duvet-view of the ashen landscape and a couple of low-lying volcanic cones. It also overlooks a private walled terrace and garden coloured by hibiscus, begonia and orchids.
For families with small children, Kintamani would be a perfect choice with its double master room and second twin room; a stair gate provides security on the staircase.
Also ideal for families are Akar Wangi and Sari Wangi, each of which have 2 bedrooms (1 double and 1 twin) and a garden with a barbecue and terrace.
Dewa and Dewi (both studios), and Melati, a 1-bedroom house, are set up primarily for couples. Melati has a terraced private garden and barbecue; Dewa a little terrace with plants.
We're yet to see Casa Grande, the largest house, which has 3 double bedrooms and a fourth single room. It comes with a fully equipped kitchen, a large living area, a dining room, and a terrace and a balcony which look to offer impressive views over the countryside.
A continental breakfast is served in the 6-table dining room and 4-table conservatory between 8.30 and 11am every day. It includes cooked eggs and bacon, a choice of cereals, hams and cheeses, and a selection of home-baked breads and confectionary. Guests can help themselves to juices, coffee and tea. Down by the pool is a self-service bar.
Otherwise, all the houses are set up for self-catering, though some kitchens are more equipped than others. For example, Sari Wangi, Akar Wangi and Casa Grande have ovens, while Mawar has only hob rings and a microwave. Sari Wangi, Akar Wangi and Melati have barbecues.
For stocking up the kitchen cupboards, the nearest supermarket is a 5-minute drive. And, although none are within a short stroll, there are several restaurants just a few minutes away. For homemade Canarian dishes try the restaurant at Caserio de Mozaga nearby. The excellent Casa del Enyesque in San Bartolomé is recommended for a creative spin on local meat and fish; the same village also offers Pizzeria El César for all things Italian. The eatery at Casa Museo y El Monumento al Campesino is a good bet for lunch.
Another option is to buy takeaway homemade Canarian dishes and spit-roasted chickens in tupperware from Baya Baya in San Bartolomé. While there, pop into the Lolita bakery opposite for freshly baked bread and cakes.
Lie back in a hammock or on a daybed near the pool and sip a cold drink from the bar while your youngsters splash about in the sunshine. Casa Tomarén is a great family-friendly spot, particularly as you feel like you're staying in your own private house. There's also a babysitter available if you want a night out or some time alone as a couple.
Being in the centre of the island, you're close to everything there is to do, but given that this is such a tranquil haven, there's no shame in doing nothing but kicking back, watching the children play and reading a good book.
Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)
We recommend Sari Wangi and Akar Wangi - not only are they large, but they also have a private terrace with a barbecue area. Large families should opt for Casa Grande, which has 3 doubles and a single room, plus one of its 3 bathrooms has a bathtub. Also ideal is Kintamani, which has a master bedroom and a second bedroom with space for up to 6 single beds.
Babysitting is available by arrangement (24 hours' notice at least). See Rates.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
All houses have slightly different kitchens; basically, the bigger the house you book, the better the kitchen. Breakfast is included in the rates; at other times you can request lunch or dinner (24 hours' notice), get a takeaway from a nearby restaurant, or stock up at the local supermarket.
The swimming pool isn't fenced, but is behind a wall a short distance from the houses. Some houses have stair gates where needed.