Hotel El Patio

near Garachico, Tenerife, Spain Book from Book from £73 per night

A simple manor house - the ancestral home of the first family of Tenerife - wrapped in a banana plantation that flanks a rugged coast
The de Ponte’s carry some weight in Garachico - they’ve been here since 1507. They built their own church in 1565, then ruled the island from 1608. This is their land down by the sea, and the dragon tree that stands in the courtyard is 400 years old.

These days they run a banana plantation. It’s all around you, with signed footpaths to guide you through it. You plunge off the main road, pass the small church, then roll down towards the ocean. The hotel is a curious mix of styles. Century-old palms soar in an ancient courtyard, and a sparkling pool lazes out back with sublime views up the mountain. Inside, the 26 rooms are simple, homely and spotless. Don’t expect designer chic; do expect cast-iron beds, floral bedcovers, colourful walls and terracotta-tiled floors. Rooms are split between the manor house, the winery and the stables. Others are half a mile up the lane in a pretty annex, offering total peace and quiet. Don’t miss the old garden, the lemon trees, the hanging ferns, the purple bougainvillea, the tennis court and the croquet pitch. A total escape, and deservedly popular with families from around Europe.

Highs

  • The pool: it's flanked by banana trees with views up the mountain
  • The people: Elena and Baltasar run their home with great charm and old-fashioned hospitality
  • The peace: you're in the middle of a banana plantation. You might be just a few miles from the (modest) resorts of Icod and Puerto de Santa Cruz, but you'd never guess
  • The courtyard: stately palms, tropical flowers, vast sofas, free herbal teas and fresh-picked fruit on tap
  • Nearby Garachico: an authentic little town that's beyond the tourist trappings

Lows

  • Dinner is only served twice a week (Tue and Fri); on other days you'll have to drive a couple of miles to Icod or Garachico
  • Some rooms are half a mile along the lane. We thought this was rather romantic; some might not
  • Service is brisk and efficient, but feels rather institutional
  • The rooms could do with a refurb, but the shabby, rustic feel adds to the colonial atmosphere
  • Elena and Baltasar are of an older, less email-addicted generation; don't be surprised if your enquiry takes a day or two to be answered

Best time to go

Any time of year - the average temperature is 25C - though do bear in mind that this is the coolest, cloudiest part of Tenerife: between December and March it regularly drops to 15C (and the pool is unheated). Prices are usually lower between June and October, and the sea breezes mean that it rarely gets uncomfortably hot. February is carnival time.

Our top tips

Take a moment to visit the family church, built in 1565 and still used for mass. It's made of local stone and has a pointed archway. The altar is neo-classical and the central painting - the Adoration of the King - is of Flemish origin. You’ll also find a Canarian pitch-pine pulpit and damask wall hangings. The small house next door was used by Augustine monks from 1692-1701 when their monastery was destroyed by fire.

Above the tennis court is a lovely, sheltered, semi-outdoor sitting area - a great spot to retire for afternoon tea, or lunch if you're clever enough to have your own supplies (you can use the cutlery, crockery and microwave in the dining room).

Great for...

Beach
Family
Great Outdoors
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 26
  • Breakfast (+ dinner occasionally)
  • All ages welcome.
  • Closed: 5 May 2019 - 4 Jul 2019
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Sauna
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Tennis Court
  • Croquet pitch
  • Golf practice course
Room:

Rooms

Rooms are nicely simple. They are split between the manor house, the bodega (winery), the stables and the annex up the lane. Beds are dressed in colourful linen, floors are tiled with terracotta. Bathrooms tend to be small - most are shower only - but they’re pretty. There are no phones or TVs - a deliberate ploy to let you shake the city from your shoulders.

The manor house rooms are comfortable and authentic, with a touch of style. You get sofas, heavy beams, perhaps an old armoire. All of them have lovely views - some of the banana plantation and the sea, others of the mountain - plus a small terrace or balcony.

Rooms in the bodega have small balconies overlooking the lush courtyard. They come in warm yellows and pinks and are well-sized, but it’s worth noting that they’re above the bar - don’t expect a party though. Stable rooms are to the side of the house. A sheltered terrace stretches along the front, and windows at the back look onto the courtyard.

Rooms in the annex are cheaper as they’re half a mile down a lane that leads deep into the plantation. They’re very peaceful, and if you don’t mind the inconvenience of having to walk (5 minutes) or drive (1 minute) to the hotel, you’ll love them. They share a long terrace, with each room getting a table and chairs outside its door, plus a communal sitting room with sofas, armchairs and a fridge filled with drinks.

Features include:

  • Central heating
  • Cots Available
  • Extra beds
  • Hairdryer
  • Safe box
  • Terrace
  • WiFi

Eating

Dinner is only available twice a week (Tue and Fri), so be prepared to drive out in the evenings. But breakfast is offered daily in the dining room, whose full length windows offer wonderful views over the plantation and out to sea. It's a rather institutional buffet, but there's plenty to choose from: plates of chorizo and salami, sliced cheese (not local,sadly), pastries, croissants, fruit and cooked breakfasts.

If you’re heading out for the day and want to take lunch with you, small picnics can be prepared by arrangement. You get a couple of sandwiches, fruit, a carton of juice, maybe a hard-boiled egg. When you return, help yourself to hot drinks, biscuits and fresh-picked fruit (all free throughout the day), then retire to a sofa or table hidden in the rampantly flowering gardens.

If you coincide with a dinner day (booking required), you can expect a set 3-course meal of straightforward local fare such as pumpkin soup, homemade lamb stew, chicken thighs with baby carrots, or grilled fish with a green salad. Pudding might be lemon tart, chocolate mousse or tiramisu. Feedback has been mixed, so you might want to check again before booking.

But it's no real hardship to eat out. In Icod, a few minutes east, La Parada offers excellent Canarian food at very reasonable prices. Next door, Tasca Parada excels in creating sumptuous tapas dishes, as does nearby El Mortero - but only on Wednesdays (pre-booking advised). In Garachico, a couple of miles the other way, we've heard great things about Pizzeria Rugantino and Casa Gaspar; or you can splash out on upscale fusion fare at Hotel San Roque.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner by arrangement
  • Lunch by arrangement
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

  • The banana plantation encircles you completely and runs down to impressive sea cliffs and a tiny, enclosed, black-pebbled cove. Paths are marked in different colours, each of which corresponds to the length of a particular walk
  • There's a tennis court and croquet pitch at the hotel, as well as a basketball hoop and ping-pong table (not in the best state of repair)
  • Golfers will be in heaven down at Ballasteros-designed Buenavista; seven of the holes run along the ocean
  • Head east to Icod de los Vinos to visit its unexpectedly pretty colonial heart, its fabled dragon tree, and the butterfly centre
  • Continue to La Orotava for stately mansions and leafy gardens, or to the historic bathing resort of Puerto de la Cruz for a swim in the Manrique-designed aqua park (not just for children!)
  • There's a decent black-sand beach at Playa San Marcos (La Mancha), a 2km walk (or 4km drive) to the east of the hotel
  • The other way lies lovely Garachico: don’t miss the town square of Glorieta de San Francisco, the tiny but wonderful gardens in Plaza de Juan Gonzales de La Torre, or the seafront rock pools
  • A trip through the island’s hinterland takes you into some spectacular scenery. Climb up to El Tanque and you can stretch your legs in one of 3 nature reserves: the Teno Rural Park, the Forest Crown Nature Park and the Chinyero Special Nature Reserve
  • Do a tour around the volcano. There’s a lookout halfway along, where you can gaze all the way down to the coast. There’s also a good restaurant where you can get a bite of lunch
  • Head to the western tip at Punta de Teno for an 1883 lighthouse, volcanic coves, dreamy colours and spectacular views down the coast to the cliffs of Los Gigantes. There’s great hiking here, too

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Croquet
  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Historical sites
  • Picnics
  • Shopping / markets
  • Swimming
  • Tennis

Kids

With so many activities on offer in the area, children will love this hotel. There's a vast amount of space for playing, plus a large swimming pool, tennis and basketball courts, a croquet lawn and a TV room. No rooms interconnect, but families can be accommodated in rooms next to each other.

Best for:

All ages

Family friendly accommodation:

One of the Superior rooms has a double sofabed so can sleep 4. Extra beds and baby cots are available in most rooms.

Baby equipment:

  • High chairs
  • Baby cots
  • Small beds

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

Kids Activities on site:

  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Table tennis
  • Croquet
  • Basketball

Kids Activities nearby:

Beaches - El Cincho is great for families

Families Should Know:

The terrace next to the tennis court is quite high up

Kid Friendly:

Location

Hotel El Patio is situated on the northwest coast of Tenerife, near the town of Garachico.

By Air:
Tenerife North, which is used mostly for domestic flights, is 50km away. Tenerife's main international airport Tenerife South, is 75km away via the slow western road, or 112km by the eastern motorway (which is probably faster).

From the Airport
You can get a taxi to the hotel but we'd suggest hiring a car so that you can explore the island at your leisure (see below). Public transport links aren't very good.

By Car:
For car hire please see our car rental recommendations.

Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.com.

Airports:

  • Tenerife North (Los Rodeos) 60.0 km TFN
  • Tenerife South (Reina Sofia) 65.0 km TFS

Other:

  • Beach 4.0 km
  • Shops 4.0 km
  • Restaurant 0.1 km

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 8 independent reviews from i-escape guests

9/10
Room
7/10
Food
9/10
Service
9/10
Value
8/10
Overall

Our room beautiful, rustic, quiet, clean. We would have like a kettle though. We enjoyed a delicious breakfast every day; excellent dinners on the two occasions on which they were served and chefs kindly accommodated my dietary requirements. Only negative here is that dinner isn’t offered every day of the week. Service was truly excellent with really generous, friendly, helpful staff
Overall really good value in a beautiful setting with fantastic facilities (free tennis/ badminton equipment, heated pool, charming places to sit and relax). I really liked the ‘treat this place like your home’ ethos. One thing I’d like to have had would have been complimentary tea, coffee and water throughout my stay.

9/10,

El Patio is an amazing find in Tenerife. We loved the banana plantation aspect and the walk to the secluded cove for swimming and crab watching. We will certainly visit again.

9/10,

Just perfect! So peaceful and beautiful for a realxing holiday. The staff were amazing and would do anything to help. Loved it.

10/10,

Food was simple but nice. Superb value for money considering the stunning grounds and gardens, facilities and location. Very friendly staff who encourage you to make the place home.

The hotel is situated in the prettiest part of the Island, so it's a great spot even if the weather isn't perfect - walking, visiting the volcano and pretty towns along the coast.

8/10,

My wife and I had a wonderful experience on our honeymoon at Hotel El Patio. The scenery is beautiful all around, especially the banana plantation next to the ocean and the city on Garachico. The staff was friendly and helpful. It wasn't very busy in April. It was an unforgettable experience. Tenerife is an amazing place!

8/10,

A fantastic retreat, it is a retreat though, but it does have all the amenities that you could ask for, apart from serving evening meals every day and the nearest towns are a drive away. Take fly repellent as well, they don't bite but they are irritating!

8/10,

Comfortable, friendly, relaxing, sad to leave. A true retreat.

10/10,

This is a wonderful quiet old house without TV and in the middle of a banana plantation.

9/10,

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