- Style Andalucian Alcazar
- Setting Sun, sea and sierras
It may boast one of Spain’s best golf courses, but Finca Cortesin, near Estepona on the Costa del Sol, certainly isn’t the sort of bland hotel frequented by old men in lemon slacks and Pringle sweaters. Designed with a nod to the Iberian peninsula’s thrilling history, it incorporates both Moorish and Castilian elements, and effortlessly manages that hard-to-pull-off trick of being glamorous and comfortable at the same time. It’s a genuine destination stay.
Need to know
- Rooms 67 suites, including six four-bedroomed villas.
- Rates Double rooms from $611.36 (€450), excluding tax at 10 per cent.
- More details Rates include à la carte breakfast.
- Facilities Spa, gym, free WiFi, laundry service, valet parking. In rooms: flatscreen TVs, air-conditioning, minibar, free bottled water, Penhaligon’s toiletries.
- Poolside There are three pools – one indoor, two outdoor – at the hotel. The two open to the elements are both lined with beautiful blue-green mosaic tiles. The heated, art deco-style indoor pool is found in the spa, and offers views of the coast. The hotel also has its own Beach Club 1km away, with an infinity pool, beachside restaurant and plenty of sun loungers to sprawl out on. The cocktails are pretty potent, too.
- Check–out 12 noon; earliest check-in, 3pm. A later check-out can be arranged for an additional €50.
Children Children are welcome at the hotel. Cots and extra beds can be added to rooms for under-13s, for €75 a night. Babysitting is available for €20 an hour.
- Also The hotel is home to one of the best spas in the region – offering heated and double-cushioned massage beds, a snow cave and a chemical-free indoor pool – which is a destination in its own right.
In the know
- Our favourite rooms We love the spacious Junior Suites in the Andalucian-inspired building that wraps around the cloistered courtyard. They come with their own entrance hallways, and are an intriguing blend of Asian-themed decor, Provençal furnishings and comfortable Spanish style. Executive Suite 74, which overlooks the pool, gardens and sea, also makes a great choice. It has its own kitchen – ideal for entertaining.
- Packing tips Don’t forget your golf clubs – you’re right next to one of Southern Europe’s finest courses.
Food and drink at Finca Cortesin
- Hotel restaurant There are three main restaurants. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, El Jardín is the hotel's rustic mainstay, where fish is a star of the show. In Kabuki Raw, watch chef Rafael Carrasco combine Japanese traditions with Mediterranean ingrediants. Italian eatery Don Giovanni is open for dinner in summer only. Additionally, the Club House is open for breakfast or a casual lunch, where there are international and local favourites; you won’t go hungry at the beach club, either, where there is a moreish Mediterranean menu on offer. The Pool 35 bar serves light bites at lunchtime, summer only.
- Dress code In the formal surroundings of Kabuki Raw – think antique wood tables and white tablecloths – you should be dressed to the nines. Jeans, shirts and summer dresses perfectly suit the more relaxed mood in El Jardin.
- Top table Book early and secure the chef’s table right next to the open kitchen at Kabuki Raw so you can watch Señor Carrasco in action.
- Last orders Dinner is served in the restaurants until 11pm; the last cocktails are mixed in the bars at around 2am.
- Room service A selection of sandwiches, soups, hot and cold starters, and mains are available to order, 11am–11pm.
- Hotel bar Though some of its furniture errs slightly towards the uninspiring, the Bar, situated in the hotel lounge, is still a lovely place for an ice-cold cocktail or two. The mesmerising blue hand-painted wallpaper certainly demands your attention – out of the corners of your eyes, it seems to be jumping off the walls. Drinks can also be taken on the outdoor terraces or in the pool areas.