Son Brull Hotel and Spa

Nr Pollenca, Soller & Mountains, Spain Book from Book from £205 per night

Urban chic meets rural idyll - a design hotel with gourmet restaurant, bistro, heated pool and spa in a tranquil valley near Pollenca
If you need a fix of contemporary design and top-notch service but in a handy rural setting, Son Brull has it sussed. Only a couple of miles from the picturesque town of Pollenca in the north, it's set on a forested hillside with great views across the plain, and surrounded by olive and cypress trees. With its substantial size and natural setting, it's got imposing presence when you first arrive. Its 25 slickly designed, teched-up rooms are so geared for comfort they even come with pillow menus.

This was once a Jesuit monastery. Its olive mill and press still remain, as does the beautiful late-Baroque inner courtyard. But things have moved on for worshippers today. A shimmering heated infinity pool now overlooks the valley, and double daybeds with wafting muslin drapes line the decking. Its very well-equipped spa, chill-out bar and fine restaurant now cater for a different kind of monk: mostly romantics, sometimes with toddler. A divine place to unwind.

Highs

  • Pampering spa with steam room, sauna, hammam, pools, gym and treatment rooms; yoga and meditation too
  • Good location: mountains, beaches and golf are a short drive away, as is nightlife in Pollenca
  • Despite its style, it's not at all pretentious or stuffy. When we revisited in 2012 we found the atmosphere relaxed and staff very friendly, taking the time to chat with every guest
  • Excellent food, much of it home grown in both the Restaurant and the Bistro - breakfasting on freshly picked cherries and homemade jams by the pool is a fine start to the day
  • We loved the spoiling extras: fresh flowers and bowls of their almonds and apricots in the room, sweet surprises on your pillow, and complimentary mint and lemon granitas poolside

Lows

  • There's no escaping it, it's a pricey treat. But you get a lot for your euro
  • Unless you're a walker or cyclist you'll need a hire car to get around (beaches are a 10-minute drive away)
  • Some of the old monastery bedroom windows are a little small, which makes the rooms a bit dark, but fab interiors more than make up for this. We have yet to visit the new Villa Suites
  • The restaurant is closed on Tuesday nights in the winter months

Best time to go

April, May June and September and October are the best months for sunny weather without it being too hot. In winter, the countryside is lush and green and with an average temperature of 60-65°F it's perfect for walking and visiting cultural sights. Mallorca is famous for February’s spectacular display of almond blossom.

Our top tips

The famous Festival de Pollença takes place during July, August and September and the town plays host to cinema, arts and literature events. Classical musical concerts are held at the beautiful Santo Domingo Cloister.

Great for...

Foodie
Honeymoon
Spa
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 25
  • Restaurant and bar (open every day except Tuesday)
  • Allowed but not ideal
  • Open all year
  • Pools
  • Spa
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Concierge Service
  • Tennis Court
  • Bicycles Available
  • Cooking lessons
  • Yoga lessons
Room:

Rooms

Forget any notion of kipping down in a monk's cell. All 25 rooms and suites are slick, designer luxe with silky sheets, kingsize beds, original artwork, Bang & Olufsen technology and groovy bathrooms.

Bedrooms are contemporary design: headrests with natural linen covers, unfussy bedside tables, Scandinavian chairs and dark concrete flooring softened by creamy-white rugs. Shuttered windows and exposed wooden beams hint at the past. They are spacious, well lit and most have views out to pool or countryside. If you opt for one of the suites with terrace you're in for a treat as these have even more space and the best views of the valley. We were lucky enough to stay in one of these in 2012 and loved it. The Junior Suite with Terrace has an outdoor Jacuzzi, too. New for 2018 are two 2-bedroomed Villa Suites with a private pool apiece, set further away in the grounds; perfect for families.

The spoiling touches are excellent. i-escape guests are greeted with a bottle of complimentary cava on arrival, you'll find a pillow menu, bowls of the estate's own cherries and almonds, even make-up wipes! For a little extra you can have 100% linen sheets.

It's easy to linger in the bathrooms. Step through and your sound system follows you in. Whip off your slippers and bathrobe and experience the large powerful walk-in shower. If you want to take it lying down, most of the larger rooms have a Jacuzzi bath with more jets than is decent. Beside the 'his 'n' her' sinks, you'll find an array of ginseng and macadamia lotions and potions: they smell wonderful and come in generous measures.

Rooms all have air con and individual heating, safe, B&O TV and DVD player (there's a list for you to borrow from), B&O sound system, 3 phones and WiFi. Oh, and a hairdryer for when you finally leave the bathroom.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • B&O sound system
  • Bathrobes
  • CD player
  • Central heating
  • Cots Available
  • DVD player
  • Extra beds
  • Hairdryer
  • Internet access
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Phone
  • Safe box
  • Terrace
  • Toiletries
  • TV
  • WiFi

Eating

Son Brull takes its food seriously, particularly at its restaurant 365. Classic Mallorcan cuisine is turned into delicately presented modern dishes, using cherries, almonds, citrus fruits and artichokes harvested on-site. Expect white linen tablecloths, black banquettes and sparkling glassware. When the evenings are warm, dine outside by the candlelit pool.

A couple of skillfully stirred Mojitos in the former oil-pressing room set us up nicely for a late dinner. You get olive oil and bread to start (they pick 2 types of homemade oils each day). The menu changes frequently, and if you choose the degustacion menu, you'll be making a night of it. We did, and started with foie gras, liquorice bread, tuna vollatine, then spider crab ravioli, arugula and passion fruit. And that was just 2 of the 7 courses. Later, our sea bream with bouillabaisse mousse and spiced pigeon with orange sauce and Ceylon tea were near perfection.

During the day, or night for that matter, try the Bistro for more casual fare including a tapas menu snack menu ranging from mixed salads, club sandwiches, marinated salmon and guacamole to paella and catch of the day.

For breakfast a substantial buffet's laid out with fresh juices, muesli, yogurt, their own cherries, strawberries, melon, hams, cheeses and croissants; and they'll bring you cooked breakfast if you want it. Our large cafetiere of coffee was bang on.

If you want to eat out, try Clivia on Avenida Pollença (good traditional Iberian fish and pork dishes, closed Mondays) or La Font del Gall (more contemporary French-style cuisine) and La Fonda (excellent value Mallorquin food in low vaulted rooms); all are a 5-minute drive away in Pollença Old Town.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Organic produce
  • Restaurant
  • Restaurants nearby
  • Room service
  • Tapas
  • Vegetarian menu
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

  • Lounge by the heated infinity pool on supersize daybeds
  • Visit the spa for its sauna, steam room, hammam, pools and fabulous treatments evolved around the prickly pear. They also offer a daily complimentary yoga class
  • Play tennis on the fast court set amongst carob and fig trees, or golf - there's a 9-hole course next door. The Alcanada Golf course overlooking Alcudia Bay is not far by car. Guests get a discount at both courses
  • Go to the beach - either the turquoise coves at Cala San Vicente (10-minute drive) or the long sandy stretches at Puerto Pollença and Puerto Alcudia. Staff can book you a lounger on the beach and pack you off with a picnic; ours was delicious, with chicken salad with oranges, almonds and dates, steamed fish and fresh fruits and cakes
  • Visit the market in Pollenca's Old Town on Sundays; the hotel has bikes to borrow
  • Take a hike in the magnificent Tramuntana mountains or walk to the top of Puig de Maria behind Son Brull for stunning views of the monastery and valley beneath
  • The hotel can arrange yacht and boat charters, as well as water skiing, windsurfing and scuba diving
  • Take a cooking course with one of 365's chefs
  • There's often jazz on Friday nights and in summer DJs spin chill-out tracks on Saturdays

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Boat trips
  • Cooking classes
  • Cycling
  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Historical sites
  • Live music
  • Private guided tours
  • Sailing
  • Scuba diving courses
  • Shopping / markets
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Water skiing
  • Well being
  • Windsurfing
  • Yoga

Kids

Children are welcome and cots, extra beds and babysitting can be arranged (extra cost). However, apart from the pool, there aren't any special facilities for kids. On the whole this is an adult retreat.

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)

Family friendly accommodation:

The two new Villa Suites are perfect for families, sleeping up to 5, with a private pool apiece, set in the grounds

Babysitting:

Babysitting available by arrangement

Baby listening:

Baby listening/monitors available on request

Baby equipment:

Baby cots available on request

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

Families Should Know:

Children under 12 are not allowed in the main pool. Access to the spa and gym are only for those over 16

Kid Friendly:

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 2 independent reviews from i-escape guests

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

Son Brull was excellent. Staff are superb, very elegant property.

10/10,

Definitely an indulgent place to stay. Lovely touches like bowls of cherries and nuts, baskets to carry your pool towels in, flip flops etc. Service couldn't have been better. Food 'gastronomic' and felt a little fussy in the restaurant, but beautiful terrace and fun to do one evening.

9/10,

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Rates for Son Brull Hotel and Spa