The low hills around Agua Amarga are the perfect backdrop for Cortijo Los Malenos, a rambling little cortijo that has become the epitome of rural chic. The hotel sits in acres of grounds that provide so much peaceful space, surrounded by the Cabo de Gata Natural Park and just a few minutes drive from the charming little beach and village of Agua Amarga.
The gardens and patios of Cortijo Los Malenos offer numerous little corners and spaces to relax, read, sunbathe or sip a cooling drink. On the hillside above there is a delightful swimming pool that harmonises with its surroundings, coloured to blend in, not clash.
Indoors too, there are lots of places to relax. The reading room has a little library, lots of information about walks and attractions in the area and even a book of ideas and recommendations put together by previous guests. The bodega is a quiet little spot to have a drink and there are often exhibitions about the Natural Park.
The charming guestrooms combine quality with simplicity. Fresh clean white walls come with rustic tiled floors and wooden beams, evoking the character of yesteryear yet never missing the comforts of today. This is best seen in the approach to maintaining comfortable temperatures: the thick walls and small windows ensure that air conditioning is not necessary, while solar-powered underfloor heating (backed up by gas) provides the warmth in winter. One room has been especially adapted for a wheelchair-user. there is also wheelchair access to the swimming pool, reading room and dining room. Some other areas will involve negotiating steps.
Cabo de Gata is a wonderful stretch of coastline: 40 kilometres of virgin cliffs and beaches, punctuated by just a small number of tiny villages, with Agua Amarga being one of the prettiest. A real “get-away-from-it-all” holiday.
Maybe I've watched too many spaghetti westerns, but I think Clint Eastwood would feel at home here. I do. I love the open spaces, and the charmingly haphazard tangle of rooms and patios that make up Cortijo Los Malenos.
A Word from the Owner
I think we have achieved a relaxing and peaceful place where our guests can feel at home, with all their needs attended to, living in harmony with the environment.
LA PITA. Twin beds, terrace facing east.
LA BUGANVILLA. Twin beds, terrace facing east.
LA CHUMBERA. Twin beds, terrace facing east.
LA DEL ALGARROBO. Double bed, terrace facing east.
LA PARRA. Double bed, terrace facing east.
LA DE ENMEDIO. Double bed, terrace facing south.
LA HIGUERA. Double bed, terrace facing north.
LA ACEQUIA. Double bed, terrace facing north.
LA GRANADA. Double bed, terrace facing north.
LA CASITA. Special room facing west, with a sitting area downstairs including a sofa-bed for one, double bed on the mezzanine, and a small kitchen.
The dining room provides an ample breakfast each morning. Dinner is available by prior booking, specialising in fresh produce from the hotels own kitchen garden, hot and cold soups, and excellent cheeses and meats.
Dinner menu: € 22 per person (excluding drinks).
Beaches. Agua Amarga is a small village with a long stretch of sand and a few bars and restaurants nearby. Carboneras is a small town with a promenade with bars, shops and restaurants.
Lots of other quiet or totally isolated beaches along the coastline of Cabo De Gata
Cabo de Gata natural park
Cabo de Gata marine park (the only marine natural park in Spain, or maybe in Europe)
Walking. Choose from the coastline, the flora and fauna of the hills, the moorish springs, or even a little industrial archaeology.
Sailing trips along the Cabo de Gata coast
Scuba diving (Agua Amarga)
Horse-riding (Agua Amarga)
Places to visit:
Cabo de Gata cape and lighthouse
The salinas (flamingos and other birds)
The villages of Cabo de Gata (Las Negras, San José, etc)
The caves of Sorbas
Nijar (craft shops)
Reviews from Little Hotels Travellers:
|This is a lovely place and its location just perfect for an escape from the more commercial aspects of holidaying in Spain. The nearest beach resort, at Agua Amarga, is very low key, with just a few restaurants and bars along the beautiful sandy bay. There are other bays nearby, some of which are only accessible on foot or by dirt track. The hotel itself is very relaxed and breakfast is available until 11am, making a leisurely start to the day a welcome option!|
Breakfasts are buffet style with cereals, toast, fresh fruit and yogurt along with the option of cooked eggs, cold meats including Spanish jamon and cheeses. As well as a terrace for each room, there are also seating areas all around the hotel grounds to enjoy the peaceful views. Indoors, we enjoyed the lounge area with a kettle for making tea - an unusual facility in European hotels. Staff helped make my partner's birthday extra special with a gift wrapped bottle of wine and their good wishes. All in all a very relaxing break.
Could do better? The mix up over the deposit detracted from the experience somewhat, especially as it was raised late afternoon, just as we were leaving for the airport (I'd paid the balance the night before). That said, the manager, Maruchy, had been out during the morning. On the plus side, the hotel had been vey sweet in letting us stay on in the room until later in the day as our flight wasn't until 9pm.
Here's What Some People Have Written On Other Review Sites or in the Guestbook:
|For those of us looking for peace, rest and relaxation it is perfect.|
|Thank you, Aurora. You have created a near paradise, thanks to the design, originality, decoration, tranquility, open spaces and most especially the jewel of a swimming pool.|
|We liked the photos that we saw on the web site, but it was only when we arrived that we truly appreciated how beautiful Cortijo Los Malenos really is. Every corner is exquisitely decorated....lovely antique furniture everywhere.....it is really, really lovely. We saw some marvellous sunsets from the terrace of our room, and the breakfasts were so good. Sincerely recommended for anyone who appreciates tranquility, calm, friendliness, simplicity and good taste.|
Guest Rating: 8.8 / 10
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In the hotel
- Reading room
- Bodega Chantal lounge
- Bar service
- Dining room
- Ample gardens
- Swimming pool (seasonal)
- Donkey cart
- Car park
In your room
- En‑suite bathroom
- Private terrace (most rooms)
- Underfloor heating