After a soft opening last year, Plaza 18, a luxury boutique hotel in the gastronomic Pueblo Blanco of Vejer de la Frontera, has scooped the Best New Hotel in Spain 2021 accolade from the Spanish edition of Condé Nast Traveler’s Gold List.
The honour for Plaza 18 – a former 19th century merchant’s house and part of the Califa Group of hotels and restaurants – is borne out of a collaboration between two Brits: the award-winning interior designer Nicky Dobree and the Califa Group’s James Stuart who has been described as the Rick Stein of Vejer.
Over a two-year restoration, the spirit of the building was beautifully preserved with the help of local craftsmen using organic building materials. The original black and white floor tiles were lifted and re-laid on newly levelled floors; the entrance foyer is now flooded with light thanks to the Montera (large glazed roof lantern) being dismantled and repaired to its former glory, and the wonderful central stone staircase and balustrade were painstakingly restored.
Situated just off the Old Town’s beautiful Plaza de Espana, the elegant boutique hotel with a timeless design has a vast roof terrace where, on a fine day, breakfast is served. Views of the mountains and Morocco’s Tangiers coast beyond complete the picture. On cooler evenings, the large double-fronted sitting room, with its imposing fireplace and well-stocked drinks trolley serving as an honesty bar, is the place to be.
Each of the six en suite bedrooms, one with a sitting room, was personally curated by Dobree. But the wow factor doesn’t stop with the interiors. The views from the bedrooms are stunning, whether across the town or of the nature reserve (Parque Natural las Marismas), while the top floor suite looks out to the beaches of the Costa de la Luz, 10kms away.
Price: A double room at Plaza 18 costs from €160- €325 depending upon the season, including a la carte breakfast, free use of the Califa’s many facilities, an underground massage room, and the roof-top cocktail bar. Private parking is available.