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The latest from Paradores, Spain’s state-run luxury hotel network

Apr 7 2024


As 2024 unfolds, Paradores, Spain‘s state-run luxury hotel network of 97 historic and cultural hotels, unveils a host of developments, from new openings and significant renovations to engaging new experiences and tours. With hotels spanning converted monasteries, Moorish fortresses, and medieval castles, as well as some exceptional modern properties, Paradores continues to help British holidaymakers explore Spain’s rich culture, celebrated gastronomy and natural beauty.

New opening

New Parador, Molina de Aragon, opening in late 2024

Paradores is opening Parador de Molina de Aragón in Guadalajara, Castile-La Mancha, in late 2024, marking its 99th hotel. Nestled atop the city with panoramic views of the Molina de los Caballeros fortress, this contemporary-style Parador will feature 22 rooms, wellness facilities, and a restaurant celebrating regional cuisine. Representing a €20 million investment, it aims to bolster sustainable tourism and local economy, creating an initial 22 jobs. Located just two hours from Madrid, it invites British tourists to explore the area’s rich medieval heritage and natural parks, such as the Alto Tajo Natural Park.

Renovations

Parador de Benicarlo re-opens following refurbishment

Parador de Benicarló, a contemporary property situated in the vibrant fishing port of Benicarló near Valencia, has reopened its doors following a €2.8 million renovation. The renovations include a refresh to guest rooms, as well as the installation of solar technology to provide a renewable energy source for the hotel. To celebrate, rooms are available at discounted rates from €87 until May. Guests can enjoy the distinctive Benicarló artichoke and fresh Mediterranean fare at the on-site restaurant, relax in sea-facing rooms, or unwind in the expansive garden leading to a sandy beach.   

Stays start at £90 per night on an accommodation-only basis.

New experiences

New eco-tourism experiences availabel at more Paradors

The “Nature for the Senses” initiative by Paradores, designed in collaboration with the Global Nature Foundation to promote sustainable tourism, has expanded to include more of its historic hotels, offering guests the opportunity to experience Spain’s diverse cultural heritage and natural beauty. New experiences include showcases local wine-making workshops in Parador de Verín, nestled in Galicia’s Monterrei valley; pottery workshops in Parador de Jarandilla de la Vera, in the lush Vera valley of Cáceres; tours of ancient rum distilleries in Parador de Cruz de Tejeda, perched in the Gran Canaria mountains; and at Parador de Puebla de Sanabria in Zamora, guests can embark on wolf ecology excursions. 

To find out more about Paradores Nature for the Senses programme visit: https://paradores.es/en/nature-senses

Paradores promotes Spain’s “Green Routes” for cycling enthusiasts

Paradores has renewed its partnership with the Spanish Railways Foundation (FFE) to further integrate Spain’s “Green Routes” (Vías Verdes) into Paradores’ cycling offering, including tailored itineraries and facilities to accommodate cyclists. With over 30 routes located near Paradors, including Plasencia, Teruel and Salamanca, the project champions cycling tourism as a more sustainable way to explore Spain. 

For more information on Paradores’ cycling offering, visit www. paradores.es/en/cycle-tourism-paradores   

New tours

New astronomy and volcano tour with Kirker and New Scientist in the Canary Islands

In partnership with Kirker Holidays and New Scientist, Paradores has launched a new tour exploring the Canary Islands’ most prestigious astronomy sites and volcanic landscapes. This 7-day expedition takes visitors to La Palma and Tenerife, engaging in expert-led stargazing, and discovering unique environments from sub-tropical rainforests to ancient volcanic craters, coupled with stays at Paradors de La Palma and Las Cañadas del Teide.

The La Palma & Tenerife: Astronomy and Volcanoes tour, starting at £2,989, departs on 28 November 2024. This tour covers return flights, 7 nights at Paradors with breakfast, 7 dinners, sightseeing, entrance fees, gratuities, and expert guidance from a guest lecturer and Kirker tour leader. Book via www.kirkerholidays.cok

Key celebrations

Holy Jubilee Caravaca de la Cruz pilgrimages in the Region of Murcia

2024 marks the Holy Jubilee of Caravaca de la Cruz, an event that takes place every seven years in the Region of Murcia. This religious and hiking pilgrimage, rooted in nearly 800 years of tradition, invites pilgrims to visit the holy cross in Caravaca, believed to contain a fragment of the Lignum Crucis – the cross where Jesus Christ was crucified. The Camino de Levante route, culminating in Caravaca de la Cruz, offers a spiritually enriching journey across 5 stages, from Orihuela to Caravaca, passing through historical sites, Roman ruins, and vineyards, appealing to both the faithful and hiking enthusiasts. Nearby, is the Parador de Lorca, nestled within the castle grounds of Lorca city. This Parador offers breathtaking city views and houses historic remains of a 15th-century synagogue. 

Stays start at £75 per night, on an accommodation only basis

Oviedo as Spain’s capital of gastronomy

Oviedo, the capital city of the Spanish region of Asturias, has been awarded the prestigious title of Spanish Capital of Gastronomy for 2024. This recognition Asturias’ rich culinary heritage, from its hearty meat and seafood dishes to its creamy cheeses and traditional cider, poured from height as per local custom. For those wishing to delve deeper into Asturian cuisine, the nearby Paradors in Cangas de Onis, Gijon, and Corias offer a blend of traditional and contemporary dishes, with an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients and time-old traditions. 

Stays at Parador de Gijon and Corias start at £80 and Cangas de Onis, from £95 per night, on an accommodation only basis.

Valencia as the European Green Capital

Valencia has been awarded the prestigious title of European Green Capital 2024 in recognition of its efforts to improve its sustainability, quality of life and environment. This highlights Valencia’s proactive measures in carbon emission reduction, sustainable transportation promotion, and conservation of local ecosystems. Anchoring this green vision is the Parador de El Saler, located in the Albufera Natural Park, amidst the beauty of Spain’s largest freshwater lake.  The Parador embodies sustainability through solar energy use, water conservation, local sourcing, innovative recycling, and wildlife conservation efforts. These initiatives align with Paradores’ goal for Net Zero by 2030, mirroring Valencia’s ambition for climate neutrality and preserving its green legacy beyond 2024. 

Stays at Parador de El Saler start at £95 per night, on an accommodation-only basis.

Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson is Editor of A Luxury Travel Blog and has worked in the travel industry for more than 30 years. He is Winner of the Innovations in Travel ‘Best Travel Influencer’ Award from WIRED magazine. In addition to other awards, the blog has also been voted “one of the world’s best travel blogs” and “best for luxury” by The Daily Telegraph.

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