There is something decidedly decadent about the restored Palacio Can Marques in Palma, filled with worldly treasures, mementoes, a repertoire of good taste and creative richness set to the powdered romance of Baroque classicism.
Discreetly tucked away down a narrow meandering cobblestoned street of Palma’s historic La Lonja, is a lost treasure. A former 18th-century Mallorcan palace built for a wealthy marqués merchant in 1760, is now one of Palma’s most noble 5-star Palacio’s of style, renovated into a seductively glamorous grand hotel of casual luxe.
Palacio Can Marques cranks up luxury whilst being a chilled sort of insider’s clubhouse, an address where the nomads of good taste opt to reside when in Palma. This is certainly a lavish aristocratic mansion with an aura of calm grandeur and opulence which greets you in its ornamented Baroque entrance hall. An impressive atrium with a soaring 11-metre high vaulted ceiling is flanked by Gothic alabaster columns. The Palacio has homed Palma’s nobility and the honey-coloured stone walls have witnessed the whispered tales of merchant trade deals, nautical explorations and the secrets of Palma’s dignitaries.
On arrival, move through the imposing entranceway to an exotically cool interior garden where fronds of greenery, just the right side of tamed, has deep sofas creating the perfect spot for morning coffee with a slice of sunshine.
Echoes of lost tribes and distant nations sleep with cultural heirlooms and contemporary flourishes in the palace’s grand salons and thirteen individually designed luxury suites. They speak of a confident and travelled décor, helmed by interior designer and owner Aline Matsika. The palace was built to showcase travels, wealth and articulate style; Aline continues this design dialogue with a curated repertoire from Portugal, Italy, West Africa and the flea markets of Paris, adding to the trésor of curiosities from the palace’s past.
Literally crowning the Palacio Can Marques is the fabulous vantage rooftop terrace and chillax lounge. Find your sunset pitch here, enjoy your own private vista along the rooftops of Palma, the close-by marina and to the landmark Gothic cathedral. With champagne in your clasp you’ll feel like nobility in no time in your discreet little palace.
Just thirteen grand luxury suites are found within the chunky walls of heritage wonder Palacio Can Marques. With a vast range of differences between each one, it may well be possible to match your room to your personality. What unites all is a ribbon of muted luxury, plush comfort and pared-back colours with sumptuous detailing including mid-century Murano chandeliers, handwoven carpets, antique writing desks, Moroccan fireplaces, Mallorcan artwork and Italian sculptures.
If you’re with a loved one, pick Suite Romance with its spacious dressing room, marble-floored bathroom and tub-for-two or choose sensual Suite Cathedral with soaring 6-metre high vaulted ceiling, inky-blue and slate-grey colour scheme and sandstone floor. Love millennial pink? Choose the pretty Suite Rose with its pastel-tinted interior and views on to the leafy garden and adjoining Plaza Drassana.
If you’re travelling with your tribe, hole up in The Riad with three opulent suites – bag the tower room for yourself with its 360º view of the city, Palma Bay, the harbour and the majestic Tramuntana mountain range.
Art aficionados should opt for the grandiose Renaissance Suite where you’ll be surrounded by artwork by renowned Mallorcan artist Girbent and intricate 17th century sculptures - a veritable art gallery and library of rare books in your own suite to be enjoyed at leisure.
Start your day right with some choice morsels from the breakfast buffet and enjoy the tranquillity of a freshly brewed coffee under the cherry and fig trees of the garden. Later you may well be drawn to this spot for a glass of champagne from the hotel’s champagne bar which opens out into the cool, verdant courtyard.
The Merchants – Steak & Grill is unlike any steakhouse you have experienced says Edgar Lagassi, one of the three partners of Five Senses Hospitality. The Merchants Palma offers both indoor and outdoor dining options for breakfast, lunch and dinner. With classic takes on the Salt 'n Turf serving up steak with a side of seafood, the concept brings the 'steak house' to a new fresh level. The Culinary Chef Stephen Sullivan has curated a collection of the world's best cuts and globally influenced dishes for a more approachable 2020 steakhouse experience with a fun, shareable, streaming style of continuous service and something-for-everyone appeal. Sourcing freshly caught lobster and premium steaks, the Merchants will provide the city with a fresh and authentic take on the surf and turf with rustic and 'down to earth' plates.
The Merchants drinks menu is packed with handcrafted cocktails designed by Mariusz Szymecki, a curated wine selection with the best of Mallorca wine, global beer list and, creative non-alcoholic alternatives. Andrius Kulbokas will be overviewing the operation of this new opening, knows that the devil is in the details—and that’s one of the things he enjoys most about the process.
Most visitors find their footfall around the narrow streets of La Lonja and beyond enough to satisfy the need for exercise, but should you require a little extra, head to the hotel’s Technogym for a workout on top-of-the-range equipment followed by a detoxing session in the steam room.
Over the last 300 years the Palacio has only had three owners – the Marques family and previously the Massa family.
A love story swirls around its current owners, who met through the restoration of the palacio. Sailor, yacht owner and frequent visitor to Palma for its regattas, Kim Schindelhauer, saw potential in the old palacio but it wasn’t until a favoured interior designer Aline Matsika became involved that the hotel was born, and was their own romantic journey began together.
Palacio Can Marques is found in the historic La Lonja district of Palma on one of its many medieval streets.
Centrally located, the hotel is within walking distance of Palma’s marinas where the hotels own sailing yacht is moored, should guests want to head out for a day on the sea. Nearby is also Es Baluard Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art of Palma, numerous art galleries, restaurants and chic boutiques.
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