La Fructuosa

Gaucin, Ronda & the White Villages, Spain Book from Eur68

Reviewed by Nikki Tinto
Cheap & chic: a Spanish-owned hotel with great views in the heart of a pretty hilltop village
Gaucin residents know that for great food and a convivial atmosphere Restaurant La Fructuosa is the place to go. Since it opened, it's become a firm favourite with locals for long lazy Sunday lunches and romantic starlight dinners on its beautiful terrace. The cuisine is authentic Spanish and Mediterranean; the views of the distant coast are fabulous.

Jesus Balsa and Luis Ruiberriz, the owners, created this wonderful restaurant and small hotel from an old ramshackle village house. The old wine cellar was transformed into a cosy restaurant where paintings and sculptures by local artists adorn the walls, and the original chestnut beams and wine press remain as prominent features. Then they added 5 imaginatively-decorated bedrooms, most with Jacuzzi bathtubs. It makes an ideal destination for relaxing, walking in the mountains and exploring Andalucia's "pueblos blancos" (the white hilltop towns).

Highs

  • Its location in the heart of a pretty mountain village
  • Utterly Spanish from its artistic décor to its authentic tapas
  • The laid back, friendly atmosphere is consistent with the setting and style of the hotel
  • It's great value for money, particularly considering the stunning views

Lows

  • There's no swimming pool or garden but there is a large roof terrace with fabulous views
  • The restaurant is only open Friday and Saturday nights (and may be closed in winter)

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.

Great for...

Cheap & Chic
Family
Foodie
  • = Recommended
  • = Best in region
  • = World favourite
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 5 guest rooms
  • Breakfast (+ restaurant open Friday and Saturday evenings)
  • 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
Room:

Rooms

Jesus and Luis have decorated this old house in an artistic modern style, using bright warm colours to create light, spacious and cheerful rooms. Gone is the white-wash more commonly found in the old village houses; instead, you'll find striking walls of raspberry red, cobalt blue, corn yellow and grass green.

Four of the rooms have Jacuzzi bathtubs, making the Double with shower room slightly cheaper. There are 2 Twin with Jacuzzi rooms, of which Pensión has the benefit of a double sofabed. There are also 2 Double with Jacuzzi rooms, and of these Almagra has a single sofabed.

Old brass fittings, big oil paintings, an eclectic collection of antique knick knacks make this hotel a very individual, aesthetic and cosy place to stay. For extra comfort there are fans to keep you cool in summer, heating for winter, TVs and WiFi access. There is a shared roof terrace with fabulous views as far as Morocco and a quiet morning room in which to sit and contemplate village life.

Features include:

  • Central heating
  • Cots Available
  • Extra beds
  • Terrace
  • Tv
  • Wifi internet
  • Wifi internet

Eating

La Fructuosa enjoys a good reputation for no-nonsense Spanish and Mediterranean food. In cooler months, diners eat in the converted wine cellar restaurant with its intimate alcoves, vases filled with arum lilies and walls adorned with copius works of art by local artists. In summer, the terrace, under pergolas laden with jasmine and honeysuckle, has magical views of the surrounding mountains and the Mediterranean coast on the distant horizon.

The magic of Luis's cooking has made La Fructuosa one of the best restaurants in Gaucin. But if you do decide to sample other local fare, Martins has been recommended - it also has a roof terrace and the food, cocktails and friendly service are getting top marks.

Features include:

  • Breakfast
  • Children meals
  • Food and wine
  • Restaurant
  • Walk to restaurants
Eating:
Activity: Gaucin

Activities

  • 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:

  • Food and wine
  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Tennis
  • Traditional cultures

Kids

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:

The hotel's rooms can accommodate an extra bed and/or cot; there are 2 rooms with sofabeds too.

Baby equipment:

  • 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)

Distances:

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

Our guests' ratings...

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

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