Torralbenc Menorca | Essentially Mediterranean
A SMALL MEDITERRANEAN PARADISE
There is something about the Balearic island of Menorca that makes you want to go back there often. I am not talking about its infinitely beautiful “calas” with crystalline waters, which in fact is the main attraction, but rather the way it makes you feel from the very first moment you get there. The unlimited sense of freedom while driving around the island on a sunny day, a truly inspirational feel when admiring its unique landscape, the magic of discovering secluded spots while touring it on horseback, and the joy that comes along the celebration of its traditional festivities throughout the island during the summer months. The Mediterranean vibe is apparent in every corner, naturally allowing you to slow down to enjoy the spirit of this little great paradise.
INTRODUCING AN EXCEPTIONAL HOTEL
Many establishments on the island truly represent the character of Menorca. But there is one that really stands out for its own and its surrounding beauty, Torralbenc – a 19th century restored homestead converted into a luxury hotel. Opened in 2013, it is located in the south west of the island in the municipality of Alaior, a 15-minute drive from Mahó, the capital, and less than an hour drive to any other spot on the island. The hotel’s 27 rooms and cottages are set on 70 acres of peaceful countryside atop of a second millennium BC archeological remain providing privileged views of the sea. Surrounded by vineyards, Torralbenc brings the best of Menorcan tradition within a Mediterranean atmosphere to its guests.
A PLACE OF RURAL LUXURY
Picture a white-washed building with traditional Menorcan dry-stone walls and olive trees providing the perfect shade on the hottest days, as well as a curated selection of aromatic plants to stimulate your senses. This is what luxury is about here, the cohesive relationship established between all the elements: the smooth transition between the new and the old, the consonance between architecture and landscape, the connection between the inside and the outside, the simplicity of the lines combined with the warmth of local and natural materials. A restorative work that has maintained the spirit of the original building while providing a contemporary atmosphere. Far from pompous and extravagant, Torralbenc conveys the emerging and growing concept of rural luxury while adding a contemporary flair.
ACCOMMODATIONS FOR EVERY TASTE
The hotel’s 27 rooms are segmented into four double bedrooms, which are located in the main building, eleven “double superior” rooms that come with private terraces and balconies with relaxing views, nine slightly larger rooms with sea views, and one aptly named “Gran Vista Mar” (Grand Sea View). The garden cottage rooms have independent living rooms separated by a small patio, and the “Pool Cottage” has a private swimming pool facing the sea. Despite the variety of rooms, there is a driving thread into all of them, which is the language of the aesthetics: bright, airy spaces, beamed ceilings, chestnut furniture and sandstone floors.
BODY & SOUL
Torralbenc’s scene naturally aligns with the services that one may enjoy during the stay. Whether touch or taste, there is a moment to indulge each and every sense. The Spa, set in a single separate building with outdoor views, offers a curated range of beauty rituals, massages and specific treatments using exceptional brands such as Natura Bissé and Sea Skin. Noteworthy is a “holistic massage” based on the application of rosemary and lavender essential oils, which combines Shiatsu and Swedish massage techniques. Let the weight of thoughts go and pamper your body and soul in an atmosphere of harmony and tranquility.
Pump up your body in the gym or alternatively, balance your energy with an exclusive selection of guided pilates and yoga classes.
To further discover the island, the hotel offers organized horseback riding routes through the famous “camí de cavalls,” a long path touring the perimeter of the island. Such experience will get your body fatigued enough to enjoy the contrast of bathing in Torralbenc’s sea water pool, overlooking the beauty of the Mediterranean sea.
Epicureans have the opportunity to enjoy a gourmet restaurant with seasonal dishes and local produce. Local means from the island but also no further than their own orchard where they cultivate products ecologically. Whether vegetables, fish or meat, the dishes excel for the simplicity of its composition. No ingredient disrupts the flavor of another; the taste of each product is exalted by the quality and freshness of itself. Regardless of your appetite’s appeal for “a la carte” or the “tasting menu,” Chef Luis Loza will surprise your palate with authentic Mediterranean flavors in a unique atmosphere of what used to be the storage house for grapes and barrels.
A NEW WINE TASTING EXPERIENCE
This year Torralbenc has introduced the launch of a new wine tasting experience. The first ever touring of the hotel’s vineyards on foot or by bicycle, and sampling the delectable homegrown white, red and rosé wines. Torralbenc’s first vineyards date back to 2008, starting with 5 hectares and expanding to 10 hectares by 2017. A wide range of grapes are being grown here, including Viognier, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay Parellada to Malvasia, Monastrell, Syrah, Merlot, and Pinot Noir, which was introduced in 2017 coinciding with the expansion of the vineyard adding four more hectares in three plots. The launch of this experience coincided with the acquisition of two more hectares. While Torralbenc produced 21,000 bottles of wine last year, in 2018 the number will increase to around 32,000 expecting to reach some 60,000 – 80,000 bottles in the coming years. The “Tramontana” wind, coming from the North, exerts a refreshing and drying effect that helps to attenuate the high humidity and the slower ripening of the grape.
THE PLACE TO BE
Torralbenc is ideally located a stone’s throw away from the most beautiful beaches and “calas,” which guests can visit with available bikes for rent – a perfect option if you want to take in the fresh Menorcan air.
For the most adventurous, Cales Coves is a beautiful natural spot with deep turquoise waters and a perfect backdrop of cliffs and their natural caves. Cala en Porter, a 20-minute bike ride away from the hotel has a white sanded beach ideal for just enjoying to soak-up the Mediterranean sun in comfort. Cala en Porter is also home to one of the most beautiful club/chill-out terraces in the world.
Cova d’en Xoroi, distinctive for its location, in cliff-side caves, is famous for the wonderful sunsets that can be seen while listening to the chill-out tunes throughout the evening. A truly magical event for your eyes and emotions. With its distinctively chic vibe, Menorca can definitely be named as one of the most desirable destinations for anyone in the world, and Torralbenc is undoubtedly the place to be for a perfect vacation.
Photography courtesy of Torralbenc Menorca