Sanctuary at Sant Pere del Bosc-Costa Brava
Lloret de Mar in Costa Brava is well known for its beautiful coastline, and along the water is where most visitors choose to stay. I would however, recommend venturing off the beaten path and staying at least a night ( preferably 2 or 3) in one of the areas most scenic hotels. In a unique environment, up a long dusty road dotted with hikers carrying walking sticks, you will find sanctuary at Sant Pere del Bosc.
The hotel and spa are located in an restored and renovated monastary and your stay here will be a luxurious one. Historically, the property has gone through many transformations. Situated 5 km from the town center of Lloret de Mar, the estate originally belonged to a fisherman’s guild and was tied to the fishing tradition of Costa Brava. Dating back to the 10th century, the property contains a small chapel called Sant Pere Salu. Members of the Benedictine order inhabited the monastery until 1694, when it was set afire by French invaders. The monks were thereafter incorporated into Sant Pere de Galligans and the monastery was closed.
The buildings laid in disrepair almost 100 years, when the hermitage, originally Gothic, was rebuilt in a baroque style. History then gets a bit hazy, and in 1860 the property was purchased by Nicolau Font i Maig, an Indiano who had made his fortune in Cuba. The Count of Jaruoo as he was known, hired a young architect, Puig i Cadafalch, a Catalan modernist and student of Antonio Gaudi. Cadafalch renovated the buildings and created what is today an example of one of the greatest properties in Lloret de Mar.
In 2011, the descendants of Font found the ideal partnership for the conversion of the luxurious hotel occupying the property today. Surrounded by the quiet of the forest, the hotel rooms boast views all the way to the Mediterranean Sea. Open grounds and gardens give way to the salt water pool and outdoor spaces for relaxation.
A spa zone is located in the garden of the hotel opposite the pool. There are three spacious rooms. Traditional massage, Vichy (a treatment such as a salt scrub and then shower while on the table) and Ayurvedic, one of the worlds oldest holistic healing systems are the themes. Over 50 different treatments are available. The spacious sunny terrace opposite the pool is the ideal place for the rest and finding sanctuary at Sant Pere del Bosc.
Each of the 19 rooms reflects individual design and attention to detail. Antiques and beautiful linens are accented with modern local art work. The tradition of the original monastery is felt, but there are modernist touches throughout giving homage to the architect responsible for the modern day structure.
Indiano is a word that is used to describe Spanish emigrants who, after finding their fortunes in the Americas, return to their native land. Reflecting the Indiano history of the property, the hotel’s restaurant, L`India represents the gastronomy of Costa Brava and the spirit surrounding the property. The cuisine is creative and appeals to all the senses using the best of local ingredients. A garden on the property supplies the kitchen and the menu offers many vegetarian options. Additional outdoor space is available for seating as well where you can take advantage of the lovely surroundings.
Should you need to leave the property, there are many hiking and biking trails in the area, but this is one spot where I would take advantage of all rest and relaxation it has to offer before venturing back down the dusty trail. Exceptional food, unusual decor and historical detail are offered in abundance at this unique destination. If Costa Brava is on your Spanish itinerary, the Hotel Sant Pere del Bosc should not be missed.