- Detailed Review
- Facts & Amenities
The Jumeirah Port Sóller, in north-west Mallorca, makes a dramatic first impression. The hotel is on a rugged clifftop, framed by the surging waters of the Mediterranean on one side and the dramatic Unesco heritage site of the Tramuntana mountains on the other. It looks like it would be the perfect base for a particularly stylish Bond villain.
The 121 rooms and suites with either sea or mountain views are housed within the 11 low-rise buildings that are scattered, on various levels, around the hotel’s one-kilometre-long site. These are all connected by natural-stone walkways and gardens and, although at first it may seem that navigating the hotel is a daunting prospect, you are never far from one of the hotel’s 11 lifts.
I have stayed at several Jumeirah properties around the world and consequently expect a certain design standard: glamorous and perhaps, at times, overbearing opulence. There is absolutely no such sense of this at the Jumeirah Port Sóller. Every effort has been made to integrate the property into its surroundings. The exterior is built using locally quarried stone and designed to mimic the ubiquitous ruined watchtowers that dot the Mallorcan landscape. The interior lends itself more to Mediterranean minimalism rather than the glamour of a sheikh’s palace. Even subtle touches, which may go unnoticed by all but the most observant guests, are designed to evoke the sense of the local area: from the local artwork, which adds splashes of colour to the walls, to the delightfully omnipresent scent of oranges and lavender that permeates the air of the hotel’s public areas. This sense is even present inside the lifts, which are lined with panels of orange tree bark. There is never any mistaking that you are in Sóller, one of the most beautiful areas of Mallorca.
While the local flavour is there in full force, it never dilutes the impeccable brand standards that you expect from a Jumeirah property. No expense has been spared in ensuring the excellence of the staff, food and facilities. For both Jumeirah veterans like myself and newcomers to the brand, unexpected delights await around every corner of this sprawling property. From the moment I stepped into the cool, spacious, lobby and saw the incredible views, I knew I was in for something special – and it did not disappoint.
The hotel is a 30-minute taxi ride from Palma airport. Upon arrival I was greeted immediately and warmly by two charming, well-dressed doormen. One took my bags and one guided me through the stylish lobby to the reception desk, passing a large circular central water feature.
On entering the reception area I was immediately struck by the sublime sea views (through the floor-to-ceiling windows), which serve as a dramatic backdrop to the entire check-in experience. The front-desk assistant greeted me hospitably, offering locally sourced fresh orange juice along with a refreshing cold towel. Check-in was efficient without being brisk and I was asked if I would like to make a dinner reservation for that evening, a wake-up call or spa reservation.
A rather useful map of the hotel was given to me. However, I was relieved when I was escorted to my room as orienting myself with the layout of the hotel was slightly daunting, map notwithstanding.
My room was explained in detail, along with how to operate the electronic controls. I was asked if I had everything I needed before I was left to take in the most incredible sea view.
Rooms and suites
My Grand Deluxe Sea View Room (approximately 53 square metres) was much larger than I had anticipated. It felt secluded with a sense of private intimacy. On entering, my attention was immediately drawn to the jaw-dropping, uninterrupted sea view, which acted as the focus for the entire room. It was well furnished but uncluttered with plenty of space to move around between the bed and the seating area – something that’s important as this room category is recommended for a family stay.
The tiled entrance area housed a sizeable wooden writing desk, complete with a desk lamp, telephone, multiple charging points and adapters (and the Wi-Fi was good). Tucked away behind sliding dark wooden doors, opposite the office area, was the spacious walk-in wardrobe and dressing area. For the room category, I was very surprised to have so much space. There were plenty of wardrobes for clothes, although more hangers would have been useful. They also contained a huge mirror, a handy umbrella, a safe and the signature Jumeirah slippers.
The area around the bed was carpeted, which broke up the tiling nicely. The huge bed was well positioned, being strategically placed to take in the fantastic sunrises and sunsets, and beautifully presented with plenty of plump pillows, crisp white linens and a comfy duvet. The bedside tables had convenient charging points and touch pads, which controlled the do-not-disturb notice, curtains and lights, allowing everything to be operated without leaving the bed.
There was a seating area with a large sofa that doubled as a sofa bed for additional sleeping space, a small wooden coffee table and a single chair. The room was well provided with complimentary water, tea and coffee, and a kettle and Nespresso coffee machine sat on the wooden sideboard, inside which was the minibar. This was well stocked with alcoholic beverages, soft drinks and confectionery.
The television was a reasonable size, although not a recent model, with adjustable positioning so it could be viewed easily from the bed (but why would you spend time watching television with such amazing scenery outside your window?).
The spacious balcony was amply furnished with comfortable wicker chairs and two tables. Its glass panels ensured an undisturbed view of the ocean. The balcony, directly above the water, gave a sense of being at sea. I could spend hours waxing lyrical about the view which, with the surging waves crashing dramatically against rugged cliffs, was without a doubt the chief selling point of the hotel’s situation.
Decor was stylish, minimal and understated: cream walls complemented by a feature wall painted aubergine. There are hints of Jumeirah’s Arabian origins in the lattice work behind the bed and the dark wooden furniture but these did not overpower the contemporary theme. The locally sourced artwork was a nice touch and added a sense of character to the room.
Each room comes with a welcome gift of locally sourced produce, including a Mallorcan wicker bag, olive oil, orange liqueur and delicious orange dark chocolates. It’s a thoughtful touch, adding to the sense of welcome.
Should you wish for something even more special there are three suites to choose from: The Lighthouse, The Mar Blau and The Observatory Suite. I had it on good authority that The Observatory Suite is the Sheikh’s favourite place to stay when visiting.
The fully marbled bathroom, accessed through sliding wooden doors, was extremely spacious with a separate toilet and bidet screened off by a frosted glass door. There was plenty of room for my toiletries on the cream marbled double vanity unit, which was under a large, well- illuminated mirror and was fully equipped with adjustable shaving/make-up mirror alongside. There was a powerful hairdryer with a long lead, and I was delighted to find it was not attached to the wall, which meant I could dry my hair in comfort. There were plenty of toiletries by Spanish brand Natura Bissé, perfumed with that familiar, exquisite orange scent, and ample fluffy white towels and comfortable towelling robes.
The absolute highlight was the bathing area. The bathtub, long enough to stretch out in, and the walk-in rainfall shower were positioned directly in front of the floor-to-ceiling window. Bathing, overlooking the ocean, made for an utterly delightful experience.
On the cliff-front at the highest point of the property, Es Fanals tapas restaurant is where I chose to have dinner. The choice of tapas was extensive so I decided after the recommendation of my well-informed waiter to try the Es Fanals Experience. For a fixed fee, the chef selects a variety of tapas plates, which can be catered to your own tastes or dietary requirements. I dined on the mountain rice flavoured with garlic, rosemary and olive oil, octopus in garlic sauce with Mallorcan peppers and potatoes, Iberian ham-stuffed croquettes, lacquered veal cheek, and a Baileys cheesecake for dessert. The food was divine, each plate being more enjoyable than the last, and the waiting staff were attentive and eager to explain each dish as it arrived. The sommelier did a stellar job in recommending a lovely local Mallorcan red as an excellent pairing with my meal. This was an ‘experience’, as the menu suggested, and one that I will remember for a long time.
The setting was casual, almost bistro- style, with minimalist decor, although I was informed that the restaurant was due for refurbishment in the near future. The views were incredible, and I managed to time my reservation with a beautiful sunset. It would be perfect for either an intimate romantic dinner or a group meal with family and friends. I was told by the waiter that many guests revisit the restaurant multiple times in order to work their way through the entire menu, something I would happily do myself.
Breakfast the following morning was served in the Cap Roig restaurant, near the lobby and pool. It has a beautiful clifftop terrace area overlooking the sea, along with indoor seating. I was greeted warmly on arrival and immediately escorted to my table and offered freshly squeezed orange juice and coffee, which was attentively refilled throughout my breakfast. The indoor seating area, with ample room between each table, was tastefully decorated. Soft velvet chairs in red and cream, some with a slight hint of Arabic design, echoed the pictures on the walls. The breakfast menu choice was vast: avocado and tomato tostadas, eggs Benedict, farm-fresh eggs cooked to order, all complemented by an excellent and almost exhaustive selection at the buffet, including fruits, pastries, cold meats and breads. I opted for the eggs Florentine, which was perfectly cooked, perhaps the best I have had.
Other dining options
One of the highlights of the Jumeirah Port Sóller is the variety of dining options. For lunch and dinner, Cap Roig serves traditional local dishes and seafood, and the terrace seating makes for a delightful setting for lunch or an evening meal.
The newly refurbished Sunset Lounge, above Cap Roig, offers sushi, which is prepared in front of you by the chef. This restaurant has a much funkier vibe than other locations in the hotel, tending more towards a high-end club or bar/lounge ambiance. Charcoal grey and light-green velvet seating was well positioned to enjoy the panoramic views of the Tramuntana mountains, the town of Port Sóller and the Mediterranean, and is a wonderful place to enjoy a cocktail.
There are also bars by both pools, offering light refreshments and snacks throughout the day.
Dining options in Port Sóller were excellent, with plenty of restaurants offering fantastic views along the waterfront. As there is a regular complimentary shuttle bus operating from the hotel, it would be a shame not to venture into town for at least one meal during your stay.
Spa and wellness
Although I had no time for a treatment, I wanted to visit the award-winning Talise Spa. I was welcomed graciously on arrival, and the staff were more than happy to show me around.
There are 10 treatment rooms including a Hammam Suite and a glass-fronted sauna overlooking the Tramuntana Valley, all adding to the sense of peace, calm and relaxation.
There are many treatments on offer, from massages, therapies, facials and body treatments to Hamman experiences, many of which are available as couple’s treatments. Not to be missed is the outdoor heated hydropool, which also has – you guessed it – an impressive view.
The fitness centre has a large, well-equipped gym, complete with cardio machines, steppers, rowers and free weights, all by Technogym. There are complimentary fitness classes throughout the day, and personal trainers can be arranged on request.
Pool and beach
There are two separate pool areas, at opposite ends of the property. The Sa Talaia pool area is for families with young children, and the Infinity pool for adults and older children (12 and above). Both are heated all year round and have plenty of comfortable sun loungers and parasols. There is no need to wander off as both areas have a poolside bar and offer a range of food options, including comfort food such as hamburgers served in a bento box.
There is another rooftop sun lounge area – no pool here, however it is a perfect spot for lazy days enjoying the sea views.
Situated as it is on a clifftop, the hotel itself has no direct access to a beach. A steep ten-minute walk downhill takes you into Port Sóller town, which has its own lovely beach.
Children are well catered for at the hotel. The Babarojas pirate-themed kids’ club is open daily, with the first two hours offered on a complimentary basis, although pre-booking is essential. It was well equipped with board games, books, computer games and a good range of arts and craft activities for children to enjoy.
There are a number of options for interconnecting rooms – ensure you ask at the time of booking. A lovely touch are the children’s room amenities. Child-sized bathrobes and slippers, as well as welcome gifts, including a personalised cake, are sure to delight younger guests. Babysitting can be arranged at an additional cost.
Staff and service
If the views on offer were the highlight of my stay, the staff and service run a very close second. A good proportion of the staff are local and they gave interesting insights into the area. They were particularly helpful when I decided to venture into Port Sóller town, suggesting the best places to eat. Every whim was catered for, every question answered and absolutely nothing was too much trouble. I was never passed without a “good morning” or “Can I help you?” – everyone working here was exceptional, attentive, charming and professional.
Guests were mainly German, English and American. Ages ranged from young couples and families to older guests who were sophisticated but not pretentious.
Check-out was seamless. I was escorted to my car and reluctantly left knowing that I would one day most definitely like to return to this rather special place.
How to get here
30 minutes by road from Palma de Mallorca Airport
121 rooms and suites