We booked the whole holiday over the internet; flight, accommodation, car. It couldn't have been bettered; everything went like clockwork.
Finca Fenix (self catering) is quiet and in itself fairly remote, yet all that we needed was close at hand. Nothing was too much trouble for our hosts (living in the upstairs half, we rented the bottom half) to the extent of ringing and booking in advance tickets for our visit to Grenada and lending us their total collection of DVDs. We have not been on many holidays where we found ourselves totally relaxed and feeling totally at home immediately on arrival. The accommodation itself was comfortable and up to date, enhanced by the many pets - cats, peacocks......
Open the gates and it's like stepping into your own little paradise. Amongst the quite dry surrounding countryside this is literally an oasis of peace and tranquillity. It is completely private with a very well planned, visionary layout and facilities - various tiled terraces and patio areas with plenty of seating for eating/drinking/socialising or just lounging round the pool, beautiful mature gardens with amazing colours of hibiscus and bougainvillea and tall palm trees, with fig, lemon, orange and olive trees on the upper terraces - fresh green figs for breakfast were to die for. The farmhouse is delightful - it's been very sympathetically restored and gave us everything we needed. We had intentions of making at least a few trips out to see some of the local sites, but apart from driving up to El Chorro and the lakes on our last evening (which was incredible and well worth the effort), we were content to spend our time at Finca Fenix, with just occasional visits to Mercadonna (the local supermarket). A brilliant, relaxing holiday in a beautiful setting - just what we needed. Thank you so much. MARGUERITE & PETER
What can I say? Well I can start by saying what a lovely place the hosts have built up. This was our first time to Spain and so we weren't too sure how we would like it. About the villa, the hosts have renovated the building and grounds themselves and there was a great photo album showing the various stages of the development which made it all feel so much more personal. I feel I should mention that this isn't just a guest villa but the second home of the hosts. They weren't present during our trip but were always available by phone and email on the few occasions we wanted advice. The work has been done very tastefully and at much expense, that was clear throughout. It made for a very relaxing and comfortable stay. Outside the the grounds just ask to be explored with many fruit trees to pick your breakfast from!
We went for a quiet relaxing holiday and a break from our stressful jobs. We ate out at the local restaurants which were recommended in the on-site guide quiet a few times and were not disappointed. They were reasonably priced because Alora is not a tourist centre and the food was just lovely, Candela being our favourite. We also cooked in the kitchen a fair bit. The actual area in which you cook is fairly small but was more than adequate to prepare meals for 4 with all the equipment you would find in your own home (and more!). There is also a washing machine in the utility room adjacent to the ground floor villa.
We spent a lot of our day time around the pool sunbathing, reading and listening to music through the outdoor speakers! There is also the National Park and lakes up past El Chorro which just HAS to be visited. Kayaks and pedalo's as available for hire, which we did one day and it used the opportunity to pop the question to my partner!!! The scenery is so beautiful, it was just perfect!
We didn't go for any big nights out as we just wanted a quiet, relaxing time but I understand that Malaga is a big night out if that is what you want. It took us about 30-40 minutes driving at a reasonably chilled pace on the day we went sight-seeing. The Cathedral and Museum of Picasso were enjoyable and our meal out delicious (again another recommendation from the guide in the villa).
One thing I will say, is you will want a hire car with you as even the shops are a fair walk away, but only 5 minutes in the car. The journey from the villa to the main road is up a rough stone track that winds its way to a steep tarmaced t-junction at the main road.
At the rear of the grounds is a railway line which rarely has a train on it now there is a new main line a few miles away. The few passenger trains that did go by were slow and pretty quiet considering!
Overall, I can give the holiday a big thumbs up. I have deducted one point for service as there may or may not be an actual host there when you stay but this didn't prove an issue for us as they were always available by phone and email (wi-fi is free and surprisingly very fast!). I have also deducted one point for location as you wouldn't get far without a hire car, however this might be just what you are looking for, privacy, peace and quiet!!!