In the hills just off the coast between Estepona and Sotogrande, just below the pretty village of Casares is the luxury retreat of Finca Cortesin.
With sweeping views down to the Mediterranean and across the countryside Finca Cortesin is set on a 215-hectare estate featuring a hotel, golf, spa and sports club, beach club and residential area. If you have time to stray from the resort during your stay there is plenty to explore within an hour’s drive, including Marbella and Puerto Banús, Gibraltar and a string of white villages in the mountains.
The hotel’s fresh but grandiose design is inspired by traditional Andalusian architecture, built around two main courtyards giving a sense of space and light to the interior. Decor is low-key in natural tones, with discreet splashes of colour supplemented by antiques and materials carefully sourced by Duarte Pinto Coelho, a renowned interior designer, from Spain, Morocco and Portugal.
The theme of comfort and space continues in the hotel bedrooms with 67 unique, large, luminous and exquisitely designed suites with lofty high ceilings. Most open onto a private garden or terrace. Bathrooms are enormous and spa-style and the living rooms come with plasma televisions and interactive home theatre systems.
There are three main restaurants, El Jardín is the hotel's rustic mainstay, Spanish favourites are prepared with a creative, light touch by Lutz Bösing. In Kabuki Raw, watch chef Rafael Carrasco create exquisite Japanese dishes with Mediterranean ingredients. Italian eatery Don Giovanni is open for dinner in summer only. Additionally, the Club House is open for breakfast or a casual lunch, beach club, either, where there is a moreish Mediterranean menu on offer.
A heated, art deco-style indoor pool is found in the spa, and offers views of the coast. The hotel’s beach club is 1km away with a spectacular infinity pool surrounded by, lush gardens, Balinese beds and a beachside restaurant and bar.
Finca Cortesin also boast an impressive sized spa and treatments, tennis courts, and of course there’s the golf club itself, with an 18-hole par-72 course spread over 70 acres.