“A crimson colonial mansion with elegant rooms, set in fertile fruit groves and surrounded by mountains”
As an aristocratic second home, Finca Las Longueras feels very much 'to the manor born'. The early 18th-century salon, chapel and conservatory are kept in pristine condition, and the outdoor terraces, with enclaves of wrought-iron chairs and tables, are also well-maintained.
In the main building are 10 double/twin rooms and 2 suites, all of them fairly spacious. There are only 2 genuine double rooms; the European twin bed set-up is very much the done thing here, with no pretence of even pushing them together. You won’t find aircon, overhead fans or phones, but there are minibars, TVs, hairdryers and safes, plus Victorian dressing tables and grand wardrobes (with hangers that you can actually remove from the railing). Bathrooms here are big but rather rudimentary: there are no fancy toiletries, and most have showers only (if you want a tub you'll need to book a suite).
If you'd prefer a more modern style then opt for one of the 2 Junior Suites, set in a separate block about 60m away and built since our last visit. Each has a double bed, a sitting area with a sofabed (for 1 adult or 2 children), a bathroom with a shower and hydro-massage tub, a private terrace, and an adjacent parking spot. They also come with additional comforts: kettles, air conditioning, satellite TV.
Breakfast (8.30-10.30am) is a help-yourself selection of coffee, bread, jams, fruit and juice laid out on sideboards in the dining room. Once you've loaded your plate you can head outside to one of the little tables on the terrace, which is shaded from the sun and has wonderful views out over citrus trees and palms.
The half-board option is popular in Gran Canaria, and dinners are served outside whenever it's warm enough. We had a tasty seafood paella made by Elsa, the finca's cook, who walks to work from the neighbouring village of San Pedro. Her homemade almond ice cream, served with oranges from the orchard, was a triumphant finale.
You may want to head to the nearby twin towns of Agaete and Puerto de las Nieves (2km away) for lunch; you could even catch the boat from the port across to Tenerife for something to eat. But we couldn't resist the raft of cheap and cheerful outdoor restaurants along the seafront, serving up fresh fish in a boisterous taverna atmosphere. We did feel a bit sorry for the Restaurante Dedo de Dios, which recently lost its raison d'etre: a prime view of 'God's Finger', a tall basalt monolith that lasted 100,000 years, only to be snapped off in a mad storm in 2005.
Children of all ages are welcome, and older, outdoorsy kids will love the wild setting and spacious grounds. Be aware that the pool is not supervised and the grounds may be a bit uneven for toddlers.
One suite can take an extra bed (small additional cost), and the Junior Suites have sofabeds which can accommodate 2 children or 1 adult. All rooms can take a baby cot (free of charge).