Es Cucons

Santa Agnes de Corona, Ibiza, Spain Book from

Reviewed by Liz Simpson
Laidback and romantic finca in the heart of rural Ibiza, with 15 shabby-chic bedrooms and a great restaurant
Drive out of San Antoni and head up and up, around hairpin bends and through glorious pine forests. The vistas are staggering, the lush foliage amazing in what you imagine to be a fairly arid country. Abruptly you plunge down into a valley, but this too is beautiful: craggy rocks, deep red earth and blossoming almond trees planted in meticulous rows. You feel worlds apart from San Antoni's clubs and crowds yet unbelievably you're only 7km away.

Set back from the road and deep in this valley lies the charming Es Cucons. A carefully restored 1650s finca, this intimate hotel is cosy and colourful. It's run by a couple of Spanish sisters (Maria and Barbara) and their respective husbands (Pasi and Jaime), and it exudes their own warmth: this is the fulfilment of a family dream. The grounds are lush, teeming with lavender, geraniums, cacti and palm trees. Inside, bedrooms are beautifully decorated, each with a distinct design and private outdoor space. Come with your partner and hike or borrow bikes to explore the valley, then unwind with a specialist massage. Or just laze by the pool, a perfect sun-trap.

Highs

  • Wonderful food served alfresco in summer and in a snug dining room in autumn; great cocktails, too
  • Lovely bathrooms with deep, claw-footed bathtubs and walk-in rain showers, plus an alfresco hot tub in the awesome honeymoon suite
  • Your hosts: super friendly, devoting time to chat to each and every guest
  • The whole hotel feels really well cared for: firepits and candles are lit at night, and there are bowls of bright citrus fruit and pine cones scattered about
  • A small spa area for 1 couple at a time, with sauna, hot tub, plunge pool and massage room

Lows

  • Not a cheap treat and prices don't include 10% tax
  • Double rooms are small and a few rooms are quite dark in autumn
  • You definitely need to hire a car to get here
  • Intermittent internet access

Best time to go

The most popular time to go to Ibiza is during the summer months, when it's warm enough to spend all day at the beach or by the pool. Hotels book up months in advance from May-Sept, so if you plan to come then, make your plans well in advance. However, there are definite advantages to visiting in the off-season months when things are quieter. In autumn the island is beautifully green and the days are often warm enough to go to the beach; in March, the almond trees are all in blossom and the countryside is stunning. The hotel is closed from November to the end of February.

Our top tips

  • If you're planning on going walking or hiking bring some sturdy shoes as the terrain can be rough.
  • Sign up for one of the yoga retreats (held twice a year; enquire when booking) and find your Zen on top of the vast flat rock at the top of the hill
  • Great for...

    Foodie
    Great Outdoors
    Honeymoon
    Spa
    Wedding
    • = Recommended
    • = Best in region
    • = World favourite
    • Boutique Hotel
    • 15
    • Restaurant and bar (open daily)
    • Under 10s only (max 4 in High Season)
    • Closed: 10 Dec 2016 - 2 Feb 2017...
    • Outdoor Pool
    • Spa
    • WiFi
    • Pet Friendly
    • Disabled Access
    • Beach Nearby
    • Off-street Parking
    • Restaurants Nearby
    • Air Conditioning
    • Guest Lounge
    • Terrace
    • Garden
    • Gym
    • Bicycles Available
    Room:

    Rooms

    Scattered around the grounds, the 15 rooms are all beautifully decorated with their own specific theme. There are various categories and all have outdoor space: a terrace, private garden or balcony. Colour schemes are gorgeous (reds, bright blues and greens) and furnishings are decadent (squashy sofas, antique wooden furniture, chandelier lights and all the mod cons).

    Our Junior Suite was Moroccan themed, with terracotta tiled floors, apricot tadelakt walls, floaty rose curtains, hand-painted lampshades, heavy wooden shutters over tiny windows and fringed burnt-orange cushions. The bed was comfy, made up with Egyptian cotton bedlinen and a heavy traditional bedspread. However, the most charming element of the room was its claw-footed bathtub, separated from the bed by a beautiful '40s handpainted screen. With bath oil, salts or petals to bathe in, and candles sitting on the windowsill, it was wonderfully romantic. We also loved the waffle bathrobes and aromatic Campos Ibiza toiletries.

    French doors led out to our private terrace, which had fabulous views over the valley; perfectly aligned stone walls, rows of almond and olive trees and hulking hills in the background. Closer by we were overlooking the pool and beautiful gardens, teeming with violet and pink geraniums and leafy trees. The balcony itself was lined with pot plants, and wicker sunloungers; a perfect spot to bask in the afternoon sun.

    The other rooms we saw were lovely too - a 3-room Superior Suite with its own kitchenette and a Jacuzzi bath; Garden Suites with spacious private gardens. But standout was the Honeymoon Suite set up the hill, which felt totally private and had amazing views from its terrace. Outside, there were tables and chairs, a hot tub and an outdoor shower; inside, a kingsize bed and ensuite bathroom with a walk-in rain shower. The colour scheme was soothing: clean white walls and bedlinen offset by violet and indigo curtains and cushions. Best of all, were vast windows covering 2 walls, so the entire space was light and airy.

    When we revisited in 2013, we stayed in a Double Standard with terrace and were comfortable. We loved the pretty blue bathroom and slept very well in the low-slung bed, but it felt a little small overall and there was a musty smell, so it's worth upgrading if you can.

    Features include:

    • Air conditioning
    • Bathrobes
    • Cd player
    • Central heating
    • Cots Available
    • Dvd player
    • Fan
    • Fireplace
    • Hairdryer
    • Internet access
    • Minibar/fridge
    • Phone
    • Safe box
    • Satellite tv
    • Terrace
    • Toiletries
    • Tv
    • WiFi

    Eating

    It's a good job there's great walking in the area because the food at Es Cucons is delicious - and there's lots of it. Meals are served in the wine-red dining room or outside on pretty terraces. We ate inside and it was wonderfully atmospheric - small tables, flickering candles, a heavy chandelier and a round table covered in liqueurs acting as the centrepiece to the room.

    The food was excellent. We started with cod, drizzled with lemon oil, peppers and berries, followed by sunblushed roasted tomatoes with soft cheese, Iberian ham and roasted pine nuts - deliciously smoky and creamy. We assumed this was the main course but were then presented with a heavenly salt-encrusted seabass served with aioli and green beans. After a pause we managed to find room for the lovely apple gratin with vanilla-pod ice cream. When we revisited in 2013, we adored the prawn starter, melt-in-the-mouth fillet steaks, and gooey indulgent chocolate fondant. The wine list has some very affordable options, there's an amazing cheese trolley, and on Saturday nights a sommelier comes in, offering a wine flight with your meal.

    Buffet-style breakfasts include Spanish meats and cheeses, fruit platters, pastries, fresh OJ and smoked sausages, plus cooked options to order - eggs, pancakes, that sort of thing. The hotel also offers lunch, which can be brought to you by the pool: sandwiches, pastas, salads and wraps (we loved the curried chicken wraps and juicy burgers), along with excellent fruit smoothies and ice-cream milkshakes. If you still have space, there's afternoon tea, too: try the 'Forte' brew, served in old-fashioned steel teapots with freshly made cakes and pastries. If you want to go out for lunch or dinner, try Can Cosmi in the village, which does lovely tapas (a 10-minute walk away).

    Features include:

    • Afternoon tea
    • Bar
    • Minibar/fridge
    • Organic produce
    • Restaurant
    • Room service
    • Vegetarian menu
    Eating:
    Activity:

    Activities

    • Go walking through the valley - there are several great trails leading right from the door. This area has been declared a Rural Area of Special Interest
    • Borrow a bike and explore: the valley is especially stunning when the almond trees are in blossom
    • Swim in the pool, read a book on one of the shaded daybeds or bask in the sun on your balcony
    • Book the spa area for a couple of hours and steam, sauna, bubble in the hot tub then have a massage: local masseurs each specialise in a different technique - Ayurveda, Indian, Thai. You can also have beauty treatments, including the Cappuccino Delight: a rich chocolate body exfoliation and fat-burning wrap
    • Drive to the secluded Cala Salada beach or visit the famous Cave Aquarium (both 20 minutes from the hotel)
    • Head to Eivissa to explore the stunning Old Town with its cobbled streets and hill-top cathedral, or visit San Rafael to buy gorgeous ceramics to take home
    • In the cooler months, chill by the fire in the library and read a magazine or borrow a DVD to watch in your room

    Activities on site or nearby include:

    • Cycling
    • Hiking
    • Sailing
    • Swimming
    • Well being
    • Yoga

    Kids

    Although Es Cucons will allow well-behaved children occasionally (4 max in high season), it is a romantic retreat so you'd probably feel self conscious if you brought livewire kids along.

    Best for:

    Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years)

    Family friendly accommodation:

    Cots are available and older children can be accommodated in either El Patio Suite which has an extra single bed or the Superior Suite which has a kitchenette, living room and sofabed.

    Babysitting:

    Babysitting available by arrangement

    Baby equipment:

    Baby cots available on request

    Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

    Kid Friendly:

    Our guests' ratings...

    9/
    Rooms
    10/
    Food
    10/
    Service
    9/
    Value
    9/
    Overall

    {{ review.firstName }}{{ review.countryName ? ', '+ review.countryName : '' }},
    Feedback is only from guests who have booked and stayed through i-escape

    Rates for Es Cucons