The Ritz Carlton, Abama
Proof that big can be beautiful, the Abama is an exclusive resort in Tenerife offering five-star accommodation and a first class range of facilities, particularly for families.
The Ritz Carlton, Abama resort is based around the 'citadel' - a terracotta-coloured, Moorish style building - from where there are panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and the nearby island of La Gomera. The resort sits in 400 acres of grounds but thanks to the way it is designed, manages to feel pretty intimate, while the many lakes, waterfalls and subtropical gardens ensure plenty of privacy.
The many and varied rooms on offer at the Abama are undeniably beautiful. Each one is designed with the care and attention to detail that you would expect for the Ritz-Carlton and comes complete with a luxurious marble bathroom, naturally each one has a walk in shower and enormous bath. All beds have recently been treated to a new mattress, to ensure that guests have a blissful night's sleep, and the hotel's three VIP Suites have had full facelifts. The refurbished Imperial, Royal, and The Ritz- Carlton Suites have each been decorated to the latest design trends, whilst maintaining the Ritz-Carlton group's iconic and luxurious style, and feature soft colours and buffed marble floors. The huge windows let in masses of natural light and the most incredible views. This natural feel is carried through the suites, where the designers worked with natural materials such as oak and linen, and many of the features, such as the raffia screens, are handmade.
There are no fewer than ten restaurants at the Abama, including one headed up by a triple Michelin-starred chef, and catering to all tastes from Japanese and Italian cuisine to an Argentinean grill and a beach club. The newly revamped Tapas menu at the lobby bar offers the classics, including patatas bravas, spicy Spanish sausage and garlic prawns. More excitingly, the El Mirador restaurant has had a completed refurbishment and offers exciting new menus for every meal.
The Abama offers a wide variety of activities, from wine tasting, cooking classes, whale watching, deep sea fishing and excursions to (and up) the Teide volcano. The resort has a secluded golden sandy beach, an 18-hole oceanview golf course, a golf academy, seven floodlit tennis courts and a fantastic Spa with 14 treatment rooms.
Last, but by no means least, are the excellent facilities for children of all ages. For four to 12 year olds the main event is the Ritz Kids programme, which aims to tap into children's innate curiosity for the world with a series of games and activities based on the four admirable pillars of water (due, in no small part to Jean-Michel Cousteau's involvement in creating Ritz Kids), land, environmental responsibility and culture. Children can enjoy treasure hunts, learn about coral reefs and even do (entirely safe) science experiments. For babies and toddlers the hotel provides a wide range of kid clobber from playpens to potties to save you having to lug it all out on the plane, as well as babysitting. Thoughtful, no?
Why We Love It
An average annual temperature of 22Â°C means that all these activities can be enjoyed year-round, but should the weather turn bad, there's always the spa.
San Roque is a design-led boutique hotel in a beautifully restored 18th-century manor house on the northwest coast of Tenerife.
The rooms - all with jacuzzi bath - are mostly situated around the central courtyard and each has its own distinct character. The décor combines traditional architecture with stylish modern furnishings and contemporary art. Facilities include a swimming pool, sauna and a roof-top sun terrace.
The hotel's Anturium restaurant serves Mediterranean and Canarian cuisine, while the Hoffmann bar provides an intimate setting for a quiet drink.
The hotel can arrange a variety of activities, from sea fishing to mountain biking and paragliding, and there is an excellent Seve Ballesteros-designed golf course nearby. The black volcanic sand beaches of the coast and the forested slopes of the Teno Mountains are both easily accessible.
Why We Love It
A luxurious hideaway and a perfect base from which to explore the Isla Baja (Lower Island) - a little known and largely untouched part of Tenerife.