With its dramatic cliff top location, plethora of white sandy beaches and outdoor activities, Mallorca has a reputation as Europe’s summer holiday capital.
Step into the lobby at Jumeirah Port Soller Hotel and Spa and you’ll be greeted by a refreshing citrus aroma reminiscent of the beautiful orange and lemon groves in the nearby Soller Valley – also known as the Golden Valley. The lobby’s scent was exclusively formulated by a ‘Maître Parfumeur’ in Grasse, on the Cote d’Azur or French Riviera, which has been the world’s capital of perfumes since the 17th century. The fragrance is subtly diffused through the air conditioning systems and makes for a refreshing welcome.
Once checked in, take a moment to enjoy the breath taking views of the orchards and rugged Tramuntana Mountain range (a popular UNESCO Heritage site), admire the beautiful panoramic views of the Mediterranean or plunge into the inviting waters of the infinity pool.
Anyone keen to explore can spend a morning down at the charming fishing village Port de Soller and discover the island’s local treasures. Stroll around the bustling marketplace and browse the traditional Mallorcan handicrafts at the art and craft shops. Enjoy a spot of lunch at one of the many bars and restaurants or venture into Palma, the island’s historical capital. Take the picturesque ‘Orange Express’ tram ride over and enjoy dramatic views and endless photo opportunities. This vintage tram set out on its maiden trip in 1913 and has been serving the town of Soller and Port de Soller ever since. Visitors can relive this historical journey as it heads through the orange groves. Once at the Soller train station, keep an eye out for original works of art by the likes of Joan Miro and Picasso.
Other popular activities include fishing, snorkelling, scuba diving and exploring the area’s exquisite scenery by yacht. Boats can be hired for excursions or to visit the island’s beaches from the bustling Cala d’Or in the east to the more secluded Cala Deia in the west.
Fitness enthusiasts will be spoilt for choice with the spectacular cycling routes and majestic mountains. Hire a bicycle and ride through the island’s diverse terrains, perhaps one of its best kept secrets. Marvel at the scenery, the orange groves of Soller and enjoy beautiful views along the northern coast. Climb the Soller mountain pass or along the Tramuntana mountains through the famous towns of Deia and Valldemossa. Take in the crisp mountain air, refuel with a picnic and cycle back to town. After a day in the great outdoors, return to the hotel, where refreshing snacks and glasses of freshly squeezed orange juice will be waiting.
During April 2016, cycling enthusiasts can sign up to the ‘David Millar Ultimate Cycling Experience’ for three day’s riding with David Millar – one of Britain’s most successful professional cyclists. Ahead of the trip, riders will receive a training plan and, upon arrival, will be given their own personalised jersey and kit from Capt. III – Millar’s new high-end clothing collection created in collaboration with Italian brand Castelli. Long-been regarded as a road cyclist’s paradise; Mallorca attracts pro-teams and enthusiasts with its year-round sunny climate, long mid-gradient climbs and well-maintained roads relatively free of traffic.
The enticing flavours of Balearic cuisine tend to revolve around the island’s flourishing fishing industry and seasonal crops – one can’t talk about Soller without mentioning the valley’s most famous product, the orange. Cultivated on Mallorca for over six hundred years, this tangy delight, which is also the theme for the town’s annual festival, has even enjoyed royal patronage. It is said that King Louis XIV of France would eat no other oranges than those from Soller, and shiploads of the fruit were especially sent to his court every year. Stay at Jumeirah Port Soller and you’ll be treated to a glass of the freshly squeezed orange juice upon arrival – bowls of fresh oranges are also placed in each room.
Another famous product not to be missed would be the island’s Soller prawns and you can even arrange an organised fishing adventure to catch your own. After a morning on the water, you’ll then learn how to prepare your catch of the day under the expert guidance of a hotel chef before settling down for your authentic al fresco meal. Alternatively, take a trip to Palma’s historical fish market at La Lonja, which provides a glimpse into the town’s seafaring traditions.
The hotel offers two casual restaurants which both feature fresh local produce. At Cap Roig local beverages complement the delicacies served under the pine and olive trees overlooking the sea. Tucked away on the highest point of the resort, Es Fanals offers a lovely location to enjoy the delicious flavours of the area. Named after the glass lanterns used by local fishermen which also decorate the interior, this bistro offers local seafood, tapas and paella, all beautifully prepared and bursting with flavour – casual dining has never been more spectacular. Bon appétit, buen provecho or as they say in Mallorca, bon profit!
Where to stay
The hotel offers 121 sea or mountain facing rooms and suites which promise the perfect escape. For something extra special try the Observatory Suite. With its in-room telescope and cliff-top location, it’s the perfect spot to explore clear skies and stunning constellations. Guests also love the fact that the private suite offers incredible views of the sea and the mountains during the day while they can relax in the Jacuzzi. Incidentally, the island has been home to an international observatory Observatorio Astronomico de Mallorca since 1991 – so if you’re really keen, pop down to the working planetarium where you can view Jupiter, Mars, Saturn, Venus and Mercury.