AirToob Lightning

Tags  →  hotels

An unusualy quiet evening at the hotel Villa La Massa, Florence (a truly wonderful place to treat yourself for a few days, as will be seen if you click the link), taken in late June 2013.

This hotel is situated on the river Arno, about 8 km upstream of the centre of Florence, and comes into my "died-and-gone-to-heaven" category. Worth saving up for!

If you like this...

[A much less expensive but beautiful hotel in Majorca]

Majorca, September 2012

The weather in England this summer (apart from the past few weeks) has been pretty awful, and the weather in the rest of Europe hasn't been so great either.

My spouse found a great last-minute deal for a week in a nice-looking hotel (the Luabay Galatzó) on the south-west coast of Majorca. It was full board, everything included, and we didn't expect to go many places or take many photos. Since Majorca is at about the same latitude as southern Sardinia and southern Italy, and only a few hundred miles from Africa, we thought we would be unlucky not to get some sun!

As it turned out, the weather was great, the hotel complex was very attractive, and I did take more photos than I had expected.

(A bad storm the previous week damaged a few things around the hotel, including the TV aerial feeds. We don't normally watch TV on holiday, but it meant that we missed the closing ceremony of the wonderful London 2012 Paralympics. I recorded it, though, and will post highlights later.)

Waking up later in the morning, after getting here around 4.30 AM... the view from our room

First impressions of the hotel and the weather were very encouraging!

Looking left, towards Santa Ponsa (the nearby small seaside resort of Peguera, or Paguera, is to the right, invisible from the hotel)

Roofs of the next level down... notice the hotel cat (see later)

Lots of terraces and green areas...

Walking around the main pool... eventually reach the second pool, in the adjoining complex of Vista del Rey (this pool, frequented mainly by Germans, got very quiet later in the week)

There are various ways of walking down to Peguera... this way is via the steps leading down to the Vista del Rey pool (and a nice restaurant)

...or, retracing your steps, you can walk down through this seven-storey building, the Edificio Llevant, which juts a long way out from what is almost a sheer cliff (its shape reminded me somewhat of the tall keel of rock that divides Minas Tirith in Lord of the Rings)

Taken from the top of the spiral staircase on the 7th floor... which is the floor where you enter, if coming from our hotel.... great views as you walk down to the lowest floors, which house a spa and gym (with a public entrance)

...either way down takes you onto a road, which eventually passes these gates

You can turn left and walk a short distance to a spot with a good view, still far above the sea...

...or you can turn right through a pine forest that takes you down to Peguera

I'm standing on a kind of knife edge of rock quite high above the beach and sea below... good idea not to try this if feeling wobbly! (Warnings but no barriers.) The rest of Peguera, frankly, is nothing to write home about...

An evening when we walked down to the Vista del Rey pool again, quite deserted

Reflections in the Vista del Rey restaurant windows (we only ate here once. The food at the hotel was very nice, and all food and drink there - including house wines, beer, Cava, etc. - was included in the price)

Another day, walking down through the Vista del Rey complex

Some very attractive villas and apartments down here

I could put up with living here for a while!

Most of the time the temperature was in the high 70's and low 80's, but we picked a hotter day to visit Palma (via local bus, which cost only 3.60 Euros per person each way, but unfortunately not all buses are air conditioned!)

Palma Cathedral, which the sea used to come right up to, so that the cathedral used to be reflected in it... unfortunately progress has moved the sea back...

This wonderful stained glass window, through which the sun was shining brightly...

... created some pretty rainbow effects on people and architecture inside

Just a nice picture on three large panels in the hotel lobby!

Sure enough, the hotel cat (a venerable creature obviously retired from being the official mouser/ratter) eventually found my spouse... (you may remember my post on Corsican Cats?)

Last evening at the main pool...

... the flight home left Palma at 4:50 AM, so we didn't have to leave the hotel until 1:10 AM (it was a long night!)

My wife and I have noted this for the next time that we're visiting Cornwall, as a wonderfully dog-friendly hotel.

It is also the home of Jean Shrimpton's family - see the next post above.

If you like this...

[My previous West Country posts]

[Continued from Charlottesville Part 1]

The best place to stay while enjoying the historic centre of Charlottesville (IMO) is the 200 South Street Inn. The room rate reflects its location, a few hundred yards from the Downtown Mall, and its well-deserved popularity.

Dating from 1856, it has been in its time a private residence, a girls' finishing school, a brothel (!) and a boarding house. It finally became today's Inn in 1986.

I love the old-style verandahs...

...where you can sit and enjoy the free wine and cheese laid out in the library / breakfast room from 5-7 pm each day

The Inn has many nice touches (and gave me an excuse to try out some HDR photography)

While the decor is in the historical tradition, the hotel is well lit by bulbs of the modern eco-friendly variety. These ceiling spotlights were too bright for the camera to show clearly, even when I decreased the exposure - they are LED spotlights which the owner tells me he bought for $17 from Sam's Club. They cost almost nothing to run and will last so long that the next person to have to climb up and change those bulbs will probably be one of the present owner's grand-children!

If you liked this...

[Some other places to enjoy life]