I was so busy rushing around when I was in Palma that I couldn’t spend half as much time lolling about at the Cort as I’d have liked – this is the sort of place where you feel really at home straightaway. There are only 16 rooms and suites at this very chic hotel bang in the middle of the Mallorcan capital and I was lucky enough to stay in the Island Suite up on the top floor, which is a duplex with a roof terrace.
And a very nice terrace it is too, with striking blue and white tiles – used throughout the hotel – a Jacuzzi, loungers and views across the city to the Mediterranean. Not enormous, just appealing and very romantic. It’s on the roof above the suite and you get it to it via a staircase outside.
The Island Suite feels more like an apartment than a hotel room. On the lower floor is the living area, with two winged armchairs covered in the local llengües fabric, also in blue and white, with the signature zigzag pattern – it pops up all over the hotel, creating a breezy seaside vibe. The material is made using the ikat technique at Teixits Vicencs, a family-run firm based in Pollensa in the north of the island. There is also a fireplace in this downstairs room, which would make it nice and cosy and winter, and two minibars – one just to keep red wine at a suitable temperature. You actually get interesting stuff here in proper bottles, not tacky miniatures. The prices aren’t bad either, with wine from €15 a bottle and water for €3. There is a litre bottle of water in all rooms on arrival – if only all hotels did that!
The stairs leading upstairs are also tiled in blue and white, with a white banister. I defy anyone to clap eyes on that vast bed with its leather headboard and huge square pillows and not collapse onto it immediately. There is a large, inviting bath in the room and a lovely tiled shower around the corner. Products – shampoo, conditioner, gel and body lotion – are by Molton Brown in nice ceramic bottles with cork stoppers. The loo (with a door) and washbasin are in a separate area, so you don’t have to worry about getting a bit of privacy. There is plenty of wardrobe space and shelves so no squabbling over the hangers here. The windows are set high but you can still see out and take in the view from the bed, although the real showstopping vistas are from the terrace of course. As I said, you feel like you are staying in a rather smart apartment – except you don’t have to do your own cooking.
Talking of food… At a lot of hotels – even trendy ones – the bar and restaurant are often dull and deadly, but this is definitely not the case at the Cort. The hotel was designed by the Lázaro Rosa-Violán studio, who must be very busy as their work pops up everywhere these days. At the Cort, the original higgledy-piggledy layout presented a bit of a challenge, but they worked with it to create rooms that are all different, and an attractive bar and restaurant in their trademark bistro style with lots of square mirrors, bottles lined up on shelves and a buzzy brasserie vibe.
The hotel is on the Plaça del Cort, which also houses the city hall. The terrace sprawls across the pedestrianised space, which is busy all day from breakfast to after-dinner cocktails. It is a favourite of locals as well as tourists, not to mention the guests of course. I really liked choosing breakfast from a menu rather than a buffet – with excellent coffee rather than depressing grey liquid. For other meals, you can have tapas or maybe tuna, steak or a burger. A glass of cava and some oysters at the bar is a pretty good start to the evening too. It’s all sort of modern Mediterranean and just right for the unpretentious atmosphere. No wonder it’s so popular. In the shade of an ancient olive tree, the terrace is perfect for a nice cold beer when you get back from a hard day’s sightseeing or shopping too.