Son Jaumell

near Capdepera, Eastern Mallorca, Spain Book from Eur272

Reviewed by Liz Simpson
A dreamily romantic hotel in a gorgeous country setting, with big views, gourmet food and a heated pool
Upon check-out, a recent guest told Son Jaumell's manager that he'd stayed for a weekend but felt as relaxed as if he'd stayed for 2 weeks. A very high accolade for any hotel, yet as soon as we arrived, we could see why. Set just outside pretty Capdepera on the unspoilt northeast tip of Mallorca, Son Jaumell is a total winner. Once a country estate dating back to the 17th century - the old stomping ground remains and is now a protected heritage site - the original finca has been sensitively restored and updated. Its design is immaculate: clean and fresh with white linens, blue-green shutters, plump taupe sofas and an amazing modern art collection throughout, all by Mallorquín artists. There are handblown green glass lamps, beautiful sculptures, earthy pots of lavender, and everyone who works here smiles.

Surrounded by almond groves, the utter peacefulness of the place is its main attraction, but close behind are the exceptional food, the beautiful bedrooms and a sparkling pool lined with double daybeds. It's hard to tear yourself away, but do so for an afternoon; borrow a bike, cycle down country lanes to a hidden beach then swim in turquoise seas or bask on the golden sand with a cold beer. Heaven.

Highs

  • Lazy days that fall into an easy rhythm of reading, strolling, siestas and delicious meals. We already dream of returning for longer
  • The utter peace - all you really hear is the tinkling of goats' bells from nearby fields
  • Just 24 bedrooms, each unique in its design. Some have terraces, others loads of indoor space; all have robes, hydro-massage tubs, Aveda toiletries and a huge, huge bed
  • Stunning food that's very well priced: think organic spiced lamb with truffle and dandelion then chocolate soufflé with passionfruit and smoked almond ice cream
  • Kind staff create a relaxed atmosphere

Lows

  • Expensive, and for this price some would expect a cooked breakfast and turndown service
  • Complicated light switches kept foxing us
  • There are only a handful of loungers and bikes to borrow, so you need to bagsy early, which feels bad
  • You need to book the restaurant in advance, and there are no other eateries within walking distance
  • If an open-plan bedroom incorporating your bathroom doesn't appeal, request a room with a separate bathing area (although toilets are always in a little cubicle)

Best time to go

March-June and September-November 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 60-65F it's perfect for walking and visiting cultural sights. Mallorca is famous for February’s spectacular display of almond blossom. The hotel is open all year.

Our top tips

  • Sit and read in the lovely communal guest lounge. The walls of the hotel display a fabulous modern art collection by Mallorquín artists and there are coffee table books in the lounge, detailing each of their lives and works
  • We loved hearing about the finca's history, admiring the enormous old wine cellar, the beautiful old chapel, the Bronze Age caves and the ancient stomping ground out front
  • Great for...

    Beach
    Eco
    Family
    Foodie
    Honeymoon
    • = Recommended
    • = Best in region
    • = World favourite
    • Boutique Hotel
    • 24
    • Restaurant and bar (open daily)
    • All ages welcome
    • Closed: 8 Nov 2015 - 28 Feb 2016
    • Heated Pool
    • Spa Treatments
    • WiFi
    • Pet Friendly
    • Disabled Access
    • Beach Nearby
    • Off-street Parking
    • Restaurants Nearby
    • Air Conditioning
    • Guest Lounge
    • Terrace
    • Garden
    • Gym
    • Concierge Service
    • Jacuzzi
    • Bicycles Available
    Room:

    Rooms

    Son Jaumell's 24 rooms are some of the most beautiful we've ever seen. Each is unique in design, but the general trends are Mallorquín rustic: whitest of white linens on enormous beds, banks of plump pillows, striped or dotted cushions, taupe armchairs, parquet flooring, billowing white curtains and locally handwoven baskets.

    Many rooms have their bathroom incorporated into the room in an open-plan design, though your toilet and walk-in shower are in little cubicles. We loved our deep hydro-massage bathtub, Aveda toiletries, fluffy robes and the funky tree trunk table and bamboo towel ladder.

    We've been asked not to recommend specific rooms, but we can't resist mentioning the so-called Honeymoon room, which has a stunning exposed brick wall, and a private terrace leading onto woodland out the back, which gets lit up at night. In general, Junior Suites are spacious, Garden Suites are the same as a Junior inside, but with a terrace or garden with loungers and a table, and Grand Suites are simply enormous with a separate living room. If there's something specific you prefer (a view, a ground-floor room) just ask, and they'll do their best to give you what you want.

    We had a gorgeous first-floor Garden Suite, and loved our massive terrace with its big views out to the mountains and over the pool. We lounged on the loungers, lolled on a double beanbag, and sat at the table to play cards. Though we did experience some noise from the communal areas in the morning, we slept like logs, ridiculously comfortable in our enormous bed.

    Features include:

    • Air conditioning
    • Bathrobes
    • Coffee maker
    • Coffee tea making
    • Cots Available
    • Extra beds
    • Hairdryer
    • Ipod dock
    • Jacuzzi
    • Minibar/fridge
    • Nespresso coffee machine
    • Pool towels
    • Safe box
    • Satellite tv
    • Terrace
    • Toiletries
    • WiFi
    • Wifi internet

    Eating

    The food at Son Jaumell is sublime; the restaurant is not actually owned by the hotel, but it is housed within it. As you'd expect from a former El Bulli chef, it's gastronomic with an emphasis on local produce and beautiful presentation. Meals are served in the L-shaped dining room, with its original arched stove ceilings and lovely modern lighting, or out on the terrace when it's warm. Service is quietly terrific.

    For dinner we tried the tasting menu, and cannot recommend it highly enough (if you're on a budget, the daily changing set menu is excellent value). We began with an acai berry cocktail, then lingered through a selection of amazing, unusual combinations: seared tuna with beetroot and cauliflower purée; hake with raisins, pine nuts and a pumpkin foam; paprika beef with a potato stack; a dreamy cheesecake; then apricot ice cream with shortbread biscuits. If you'd prefer à la carte, expect the likes of turbot tiradito with pistachio, praline and pear, or seabream stew with a potato and hazelnut fondant. The wine list (which comes on an iPad) is great, offering lots of local wines at very affordable prices. Do note that the restaurant is often full so advance booking is advised.

    Breakfast the next morning was less inventive, but an absolute treat nonetheless. An enormous buffet of salamis, local cheeses and wonderful yoghurts sits alongside slices of melon and pineapple, kiwi jam, fresh peach juice, and Cava for that celebratory holiday mood!

    If you want a change of scene try Noah’s (pizza, pasta and live music) and Restaurante C'an Maya (fine dining), both at at Cala Ratjada.

    Features include:

    • Bar
    • Coffee maker
    • Coffee tea making
    • Minibar/fridge
    • Organic produce
    • Restaurant
    • Room service
    • Vegetarian menu
    Eating:
    Activity:

    Activities

    • Laze on a cushioned double daybed by the heated pool, which is lined with microcement so the colour changes throughout the day, mirroring the weather. There are also hammocks and single 1850s beds, rescued from a local monastery and re-upholstered as loungers

    • Borrow a bike and cycle down the country lanes to a little beach (Cala Agulla, 2.5km) with golden sands and blue, blue seas. If you fancy a longer ride, ask reception to give you a map of local routes

    • Or borrow Nordic walking sticks from the hotel and hike through Llevant Natural Park, or to unspoilt beaches, harbours, chapels or ruins of a prehistoric house; reception can give you maps

    • Head into Capdepera and visit its 14th-century walled castle, Wednesday market and little eateries. The area outside the town is dotted with caves and archaeological sites, the earliest settlements to be discovered on Mallorca

    • The ancient hilltown of Arta is close, with its hilltop cathedral, dramatic caves and panoramics of the Serres de Llevant mountains

    • There are award-winning wineries with ecological wines nearby

    • Play golf or tennis, or go fishing, diving and sailing from Cala Rajada's marina

    Activities on site or nearby include:

    • Cycling
    • Fishing
    • Golf
    • Hiking
    • Historical sites
    • Sailing
    • Scuba diving
    • Shopping / markets
    • Swimming
    • Tennis
    • Wine tasting

    Kids

    Families are welcome, though in truth it feels more like an adult retreat. Extra beds (supplementary cost) and baby cots (free) are available.

    Best for:

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

    Family friendly accommodation:

    The Junior Suites and Garden Suites can each fit 1 baby cot or rollaway bed; the Grand Suites can fit 2 cots or beds subject to availability.

    Kid Friendly:

    Our guests' ratings...

    9/
    Rooms
    7/
    Food
    8/
    Service
    8/
    Value
    8/
    Overall

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