There are luxury hotels on Tenerife and then there is the Royal Garden Villas and Spa. Staying at the Royal Garden Villas is like dipping your toes into the lifestyle of the rich and famous, unless you already are rich and famous of course. For a deliciously decadent break from reality, there is nowhere better on Tenerife. We luxuriated in the Royal Garden Villas for just one night, appropriately whilst working on a travel article about rock musicians and top DJs in the Canary Islands.
Where are the Royal Garden Villas?
The Royal Garden Villas overlook Costa Adeje Golf on the western boundary of the main resorts in Adeje. The nearest centre is the small former fishing village of La Caleta with its mix of traditional fish restaurants and stylish contemporary restaurants. It’s about a 30 minute walk to La Caleta but there is a taxi rank near the hotel.
What are the Royal Garden Villas like?
From the moment you step through the discreet entrance you know you’re in for something special. The scene which greets you is a taster for what to expect throughout the hotel. A small bridge leads over a pool to a reception area which looks cool, welcoming and sophisticated, its entrance framed by snow white drapes.
It’s quite difficult to pin the hotel’s design down. The gardens have a Far Eastern quality to them, partly due to lush tropical foliage, the occasional elephant statue and pools decorated with hibiscus flowers. Polished wooden tables, king sized sunbeds, thatched gazebos and wickerwork chair hammocks add a colonial, Kenyan lodge feel whilst North African lamps, screens and planters evoke thoughts of boutique Moroccan riads.
For a small hotel there is much to explore, the grounds are full of tranquil and exotic little niches which are perfect for curling up with a book. A lot of thought has gone into the design of the Royal Garden Villas and if there is a metre of space which wouldn’t look good in a spread in Condé Nast I didn’t spot it. In fact there are not many parts where there isn’t a garden ornament or a design feature of some sort.
As well as squash courts, the Royal Garden Villas has an Asian themed spa which wouldn’t look out of place in a Russell Flint painting. Use of the indoor pool, Jacuzzi, waterfall, waterbeds, Turkish bath, hydro massage showers and ice fountain is all free whilst there are a range of special treatments with intriguing names (Queen Cleopatra, Oasis of Serenity, Couples Harmony Cava therapy) which cost extra.
What are the Villas Like?
The villas are mini palaces, each with its own tastefully created personality. There are eleven villas in all, ranging from one to three bedrooms. All are designed in a style which matches the influences throughout the rest of the hotel. In the overview I mentioned the hotel was a bit of a walk from La Caleta; however, once you get settled in your villa you won’t want to leave. Each boasts its own heated swimming pool on terraces big enough to throw a pool party. Ours had sun-loungers, a Balinese bed, a separate gazebo and any number of rattan chairs and sofas in which to recline, preferrably with cocktail in hand.
After a night following a DJ around Costa Adeje we got back to our villa at quite a late hour. Even though we were tired and the comfy bed beckoned, the terrace was too inviting to resist. A bottle of red was opened and we sat outside for a couple of hours more simply enjoying the ambience of the place.
The interior, set over two floors, was equally beguiling; lots of richly polished wooden surfaces, beds which were as comfortable as lying on a giant marshmallow, a bath with a hatch window into the bedroom (useful for passing a glass of cava through), and the best stocked hotel room bar we’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. I’ve been in actual bars that were less well stocked.
Succinctly put, the villas are a treat to look at and an absolute joy to spend time in.
Although design features change from villa to villa, all have free wi-fi, plasma TVs, DVD players, solarium with sun beds, heated private pool, exterior shower, covered terrace, fully equipped kitchen, dining/living room, bar , Nespresso machine, safe, washing machine and dryer.
How Good is the Food?
In an article about the top Tripadvisor restaurants in Adeje I mentioned the resort’s restaurants invariably disappointed and that restaurants in 5 star hotels were where the best food in Costa Adeje was to be found. The hotel’s Restaurant Jardín is a prime example of what I meant.
Palatial in style, but not oppressively so, the Jardín continues the luxurious theme. The cuisine is near the standard you might expect from a Michelin Star restaurant. Open to the public as well as guests, prices aren’t excessive and are much the same as the likes of the Parador on La Gomera, which is where the similarity ends. Service is professional and knowledgeable. The menu features the sort of creative gastronomy we find it difficult to choose from. Our dinner consisted of an amuse-bouche of grilled cheese with mojos, lobster bisque with pernod and salmon caviar, Andalusian baby squid with mango alioli, black suckling pig with apple compote, lamb marinated in Merlot, dark chocolate coulant with coconut ice cream and tiramisu made from Colombian coffee – all as good as it sounds. There are also vegetarian options on the menu.
Breakfast is also eaten in the Restaurant Jardín. It’s almost as creative as the dinner menu and is as beautifully presented. Apart from the choice of warm bread, croissants, waffles, cereals, fruit, cold and hot dishes there were mini filled rolls and colourful cupcakes on sweet little cake stands.
This attention to quality and detail is evident throughout the Royal Garden Villas, even the underground car park exudes style.
What is the Best Thing About the Royal Garden Villas?
It is a beautiful looking boutique palace devoted to pampering its guests. It’s the place to go on Tenerife when you want to feel extra special. Check in, chill out and embrace the finer things in life for a short and intoxicating period.
Who Would it Suit Best?
Initially I thought it was the perfect romantic getaway for couples… and it is. But I read a blog written by a couple of girls who loved staying there and who liked to splash out on pampering themselves every now and again. The Royal Garden Villas would equally suit friends who like to put on the gladrags to enjoy ultra chic surroundings and good food when they travel.
Royal Garden Villas and Spa; Avenida de Ayyo, Golf Costa Adeje; Tel (+34) 922 711 294; villas from around €330 a night in low season (breakfast included).
Jack is co-editor, writer and photographer for BuzzTrips and the Real Tenerife series of travel websites as well as a contributor to online travel sites and travel magazines. Follow Jack on Google+