I love surprises. Seriously, who doesn’t? This summer I was treated to a beautiful surprise, one that definitely left an imprint in my memories.
On the night before our wedding, I was dashing around Granada, doing some last-minute preparations, when a surprise came knocking on our door. A luxury heritage hotel in Granada had invited us to stay at their presidential suite.
It wasn’t just any presidential suite, and it wasn’t just any hotel. Since its inauguration in 2005, Hospes Palacio de los Patos has attained a reputation as one of the best hotels in Granada. The legendary hotel is most famed for its architectural design and well-preserved heritage. I’ve long heard of its legacy and I was truly grateful to be spending our wedding eve in a place as special as this.
The Story Behind Palacio de los Patos
Built in the 1890s, the Palacio was originally a private family residence, home to the Moreno Agrelas, an affluent family in Granada. The lavish residence was a representation of Granada’s prosperity back in those days. It took on the name ‘Palace of the Ducks’ then – a reference to the concrete swan figures that stood at the gate of the building. But when UNESCO announced its status as a heritage building, the family sold it off. Soon enough, the Hospes Luxury Hotel Group took over and transformed it into what it is today.
Walking through its doors, I was surprised to find modern, futuristics designs within the hotel – a stark contrast to its classic 19th-century exterior. The refreshing combination featured minimalistic furnishing and bold lines against alabaster-white walls and artistically painted ceilings. Avant garde lighting filled up the space within the hotel, while bright sunshine poured through the gorgeous gardens outside.
Time Travel in the Presidential Suite
Our presidential suite was a whole new world: with ceilings that stretch up to 4m high, doors that look out to a massive patio, mosaic-tiled flooring that has been kept in its original form, a steel peacock-styled bedframe and an elegant marble-tiled bathroom. But the main star of the suite was definitely the elaborate ceiling – with paintings reminscent of Capilla Sistina, intricate carvings on the cornice and shimmering gold paint that sparkle in the night.
“This was the main saloon of the house. The paintings on the ceiling are original, we’ve restored them to their glory.” said Marc Passola, the General Manager of the hotel. Although maintaining the UNESCO building comes at a cost, the hotel makes it a point to retain the building’s original paintings, floorings and carvings to give it an identity.
I was curious to find out what else the hotel had in stored for us. The 42 rooms in the hotel are split amongst two buildings – 22 in the new edifice and 20 in the palace itself (inc the Presidential Suite). Each room in the palace has its own unique design. The hotel’s in-house restaurant, Senzone, embodies the spirit of the hotel, serving up traditional Andalusian cuisine in a slick, stylish setting. At the Bodyna Spa, dark lights and harmonious music create a hypnotic atmosphere and provide complete privacy. It features a thermal swimming pool, steam bath and private spaces for ultimate relaxation.
Palacio de los Patos has definitely won me over with its vintage beauty, antiquated charm and medley of surprises. The next time I’ve got a special occasion to celebrate in Granada, Spain, I know where I’ll be heading.
My stay was hosted by Hospes Palacio de los Patos. All opinions expressed here are my own.