La Fructuosa

Gaucin Ronda & the White Villages, Spain Book from Book from £54 per night

Cheap & chic: a friendly, art-filled little hotel with great views in the heart of a pretty hilltop village
There's something magical about La Fructuosa. Back in 1998, Spaniards Jesus and Luis visited the tiny hilltop village of Gaucin, and immediately fell in love with this abandoned 19th-century inn. They upped sticks, restored the building to its former glory, and over 20 years gained a reputation for a friendly, down-to-earth welcome, great food and buzzy vibe.

In 2017, it happened afresh. After falling under its spell during a visit to the Art Gaucin festival, new owners Catherine and Daniel (she is a sculptor and ceramicist, he ran a B&B) moved from Brussels to start a new life here. You can expect a warm multilingual welcome, cheery paintings and sculptures on the walls, a convivial atmosphere and hearty Spanish food in the old wine cellar.

Upstairs, six cheerful and unique bedrooms make a restorative base for overnight guests, and the views of the distant coast are fabulous. By day, the area is ideal for relaxing, walking in the mountains and exploring Andalucia's iconic pueblos blancos (white hilltop towns).
Covid-19 update: some services and facilities may be changed as a result of Coronavirus measures.


  • Its location: perched in a pretty mountain village with views out to Gibraltar and beyond
  • A window into traditional village life: the restaurant is a firm favourite with locals as well as weary travellers
  • The shared roof terrace with fabulous views to the coast, where you can happily while away the hours with a bottle of red
  • Original chestnut beams and wine press add an authentic sense of history
  • It's brilliant value for money


  • The restaurant is only open for dinner five nights a week, and lunch is restricted to Sundays (though live music, tapas and cocktails on Wednesday evenings instead are a fantastic compromise)
  • Staff are lovely and helpful but they’re only on site for part of the day, so it’s best suited to more independent travellers
  • There's no swimming pool or garden, but there is a large roof terrace
  • At the time of visiting the WiFi was patchy, but the hotel assure us this has now been improved

Best time to go

Come in spring and autumn for walking, April/May for wild flowers and migratory birds. July and August can be very hot and there is no swimming pool, although being high up in the mountains always ensures it is a few degrees cooler than on the coast. Artistic types should come in May for the Art Gaucin Open Studios event.

Our top tips

Although Gaucin's chaotic maze of tiny cobbled streets and whitewashed houses can seem daunting at first, after 24 hours in the village you will be navigating them like a pro. Don’t miss a sunset walk up to the castillo (castle), with a warm, ‘Hola’ to every friendly villager who passes by.

Great for...

Cheap & Chic
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 6 guest rooms
  • Breakfast (+ restaurant 5 nights per week and lunch on Sundays)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym


This old house is decorated in a traditional Spanish style, using splashes of turquoise, ochre and terracotta to create six light, spacious and cheerful rooms named after the themed artwork adorning their walls. Each is unique, though stunning views are guaranteed in all.

Architecture buffs will like the Almendros room, where guests can sleep beneath the house’s original roof (an additional storey was later added to much of the property) while outdoorsy types are likely to gravitate towards the sunshine yellow Jardin room, where French doors and a Juliet balcony overlook open panoramas. Two rooms have been renovated since our last visit to create El Mar and El Cielo, both on the second floor (the former is a twin room and the latter a double); they also have an adjoining door - ideal for families.

There are well-stocked and reasonably priced minibars that are handy for evening tipples, plus fans to keep you cool in summer and heating for winter.

Features include:

  • Central heating
  • Cots Available
  • Extra beds
  • Satellite TV
  • Terrace
  • WiFi


Breakfast is an array of fresh local pastries, Andalusian salami and Spanish cheeses. Be sure to say yes when offered the fresh juice is offered: it was some of the best we’ve tasted. In summer, the jasmine and honeysuckle laden terrace has magical views of the surrounding mountains and the Mediterranean coast in the distance. In cooler months, guests eat in the converted wine cellar dining room with its intimate alcoves, vases filled with arum lilies and walls adorned with local art.

Open Friday to Tuesday night for full dinner service and Sunday lunchtimes, La Fructuosa restaurant enjoys a good reputation for no-nonsense Spanish and Mediterranean food. Try the presa iberica - a tasty cut of meat from forest pigs who feed on wild acorns. Wednesday night sees live music, tapas and cocktails instead, from 7.30pm.

When the restaurant is closed, Gaucin has a number of other great small bars and restaurants. El Zorro was our favourite for local specialities such as fried aubergine drizzled with wild honey and garlic marinated aceitunas (green olives).

Features include:

  • Breakfast
  • Children's meals
  • Restaurant
  • Restaurants nearby


  • Explore Gaucin village and get a taste of local life
  • Dine on the restaurant terrace overlooking the mountains
  • Go walking in the surrounding mountains
  • Play golf on one of the region's many golf courses
  • Visit the beautiful windswept, but unspoilt beach at Bolonia (60-90 minutes away)
  • Drive to Ronda with its spectacular gorge, bridge and bullring (45 minutes) or Jimena de la Frontera (25 minutes)
  • Take the fast boat from Tarifa to Tangiers for a day trip (45 minutes each way) or stay a couple of days in the laid back village of Chefchaouen in the Rif Mountains

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Tennis
  • Traditional cultures


This is a typically Spanish hotel where children are welcomed with open arms. Under 3s stay for free.

Best for:

All ages

Family friendly accommodation:

El Mar and El Cielo (one double and one twin) have an adjoining door - perfect for families with older kids. El Jardin has a double sofabed and space for a baby cot; La Aves has a single sofabed plus space for a baby cot. All rooms can hold a baby cot.

Baby equipment:

  • Baby cots

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

Children's meals:

The hotel restaurant is child-friendly.

Kids Activities on site:

  • TV
  • WiFi

Kids Activities nearby:

  • Walking in the Andalusian hills
  • Horse riding
  • Beaches (around an hour's drive)


  • Airport: 45 minutes (Gibraltar), 1.5 hours (Malaga)
  • Hospital: 45 minutes
Kid Friendly:


La Fructuosa is in Gaucin, a small village about 40 minutes' drive south of Ronda, Andalucia.

By Air
Fly into Gibraltar (60km), Malaga (125km) or Seville (163km).

From the Airport
You can travel by train to Gaucin and take a taxi, but to make the most of your trip, we strongly recommend that you hire a car. Remember to take caution and follow the speed limit (regardless of what the locals are doing). The streets of Gaucin are very narrow and parking is limited.

Detailed directions will be provided when you book through i-escape.

More on getting to Andalucia and getting around


  • Gibraltar North Front 60.0 km GIL
  • Malaga Pablo Ruiz Picasso 125.0 km AGP


  • Beach 35.0 km
  • Shops 0.1 km
  • Restaurant 0.1 km

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 4 independent reviews from i-escape guests


A warm welcome, charming rooms, delicious breakfasts on the terrace overlooking the valley and excellent, talkative hosts, made our stay very pleasurable. Also very accommodating with dietary options. Gaucin is a charming village to spend a few days relaxing in, plenty of great day trips within driving distance too, including Ronda, Sentenil & Zahara.


We have stayed at many i-escape listed properties, and La Fructuosa has been the best. The hosts, Catherine and David, are simply wonderful, the sleeping room (Les Aves) was amazing (and rather roomy) and the views are stunning. I wish that we were able to have had more time to spend with Catherine and David.


One of the best little hotels we’ve ever been to. Unforgettable experience and sublime service from a wonderful, gentle and kind couple. Bravo!


Lovely boutique hotel in the centre of Gaucín with stunning views from our bedroom and roof terrace. Our room was beautifully decorated and had a lovely bathroom. We ate in the restaurant one night - attentive service and good food. We also ate at Azulete nearby which is worth a visit.


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