Kau'iki Hill – Hana Maui

The Road Past Hana Maui

It’s easy to drive the road to Hana and see all the beauty along the way, but it’s hard to imagine what it was like living here in ancient times.  I’ve been on all kinds of tours all over the world.  I enjoy them because as a photographer and writer, it’s wonderful to have a guide to not only tell the stories of the land and people but to have someone to ask questions.  It often spurs my own imagination and gives me great research tips and things to track down later.  Many people on vacation often miss out on this information when they drive the road to Hana themselves.  They think in mainland terms such as “when we get to Hana we’ll stop and have lunch”, or “it’s only like 30 miles to Hana, we’ll be there in no time”.  Unfortunately, hours later when they arrive motion sick and dizzy from the winding road they realize Hana is a small town, I mean really small!  Driving through town to Hana bay is about a 2 minute drive.  But as you round the corner and see the canoes on the beach and the park pavilions with their concrete picnic tables don’t let the seemingly tranquil bay fool you.  At the far end of the bay where the boat dock is, look up to your right at the large hill sitting right on the bay.  This is Kau’iki Hill, and is a famous cornerstone in the history of the entire Hawaiian Island chain.

Hana Maui Bay

Hana Bay, Maui

waianapanapa state parkIn ancient Hawaii, Hana was an area favored by the Alii (royalty) and was the seat of power for the entire island.  One of these kings, who was of the great Piilani family of Maui chiefs*,  commissioned a road be built around the whole island. It took this king most of his lifetime and that of his two sons to finish it, but it united the villages and chiefs of Maui, and made this island one of the most powerful of all the islands.  So powerful in fact, that it was a major goal of Kamehameha to conquer it.

Over the centuries, stories have evolved which explain that Hana was attacked at least 4 times by invaders from the big island*.  This area changed hands with Hawaii chiefs several times and these stories of legendary battles were passed down for generations through chants. The fighting skill of the Maui warriors was well known on the Big Island, and they were well aware of the difficulty of taking Kau’iki Hill.   Kua’iki Hill could be seen from ocean going canoes and was a landmark for people coming as far away as the island of Kauai.  The chiefs and warriors of Hana were fierce fighters and many chants tell the tale of battles that raged from Kaupo to Nahiku, but over the centuries it was known that the fortified hill of Kua’iki was the last stand for defending Maui Chiefs*.

big island HawaiiMaui for years, but finally achieved it himself in what is estimated to be the 1790’s.  It took a fleet of 1000 canoes carrying an estimated 100 warriors each*.  This invading fleet of canoes filled every bay from Wainapanapa to Kipahulu.  The battles lasted for months and the Maui warriors beat these forces back several times.

alau island, hamoa beachIt is said that the warriors of Hana had a unique style of warfare in which they used slings and stones which enabled them to damage and even sink canoes from shore.  But the sheer numbers of invaders was too much to overcome, and the people fell back to their fortified fortress of Kau’iki Hill.  Even though it was well provisioned with food, spears and stones to throw down upon advancing fighters, Kamehameha found a weakness.  Freshwater springs existed on the eastern flank of the hill, and one of his trusted commanders found it and destroyed it in the dark of night.  hana bay beachEventually the hill was surrendered and Kamehameha moved on to battle the last of Maui’s chiefs in Iao Valley, where the waters ran red with the blood of so many killed.

Today Hana is one of the most peaceful and friendly places on Maui.  It’s beauty is heavenly, and this is how it should be experienced, but keep in mind that this beauty was fiercely fought for in ancient Hawaii, so please respect this hallowed ground and tread lightly.  Oh, and take your time and enjoy it, because it really is the land of royalty.

Aloha Nui Loa

Kipahulu*Moses Manu, The Story of Kihapiilani,Ka Nupepa Kuokoa, Aug. 9, 1884.  MS SC Sterling

*S.M. Kamakau, Ruling Chiefs of Hawaii, Translated from the newspaper Ke Au Okoa  1961 SC Sterling

*Abraham Fornander, An Account of the Polynesian Race: Its Origins and Migrations  London 1876-85

*Pi’opi’o State Park signage- Hilo, Hawaii – Kamehameha Schools Alumni Association, Mamalahoe Chapter

Chef Pablo and I Share Lunch

The exquisite and unforgettable Chef Pablo and I shared lunch under the ebb and tide decorative influences of La Galerna:

White Wine: Rias Baixas refreshing Terras Gaudas 2010
Ceviche of Crevettes
Steak Tartar served with Cassava Chips
The grilled Red Tuna (to perfection)
The Ray Fish & French Violet Potatoes

1st Dessert: Macademia in all its textures
2nd Dessert: Cheese platter & Quince Jelly

The bilingual bill of fare has a section for sharing and some of the other
house specialties are :

Iberian acorn fed ham D.O. Guijuelo (11 Euros half portion)
Ventresca albacore tuna belly salad (7 Euros half portion)
Pear Gazpacho (5 Euros)
Torta del Casar sheep cheese salad with caramelized pinenuts (8 Euros half portion)
The Cod fish Pil Pil  (full portion 17 Euros)
The La Galerna Filet Mignon ( full portion 22 Euros )
The La Galerna Hamburger topped with mushrooms & Cheddar (12 Euros half portion)
Baby Lamb Chops (half portion 9 Euros)
*** The Laboral Daily Lunch menu is 19 Euros and the Executive carte is 29 Euros.

Restaurant La Galerna de Pablo
Calle San Bernardo 115
Metroline 2: Quevedo
Reservations Highly Suggested: 91.446 0899
Website: www.lagalernadepablo.com

Face to Face with Chef Pablo

Mar: Tell us about your culinary philosophy?

Chef Pablo: As a restaurateur and working Chef, a place where my wife Ana and I want to go. Dynamic. Traditional Spanish combining evolutionary market, however, our signature favorites with international touches. For example: Ceviche which is Peruvian however, with Galician crevettes (carabineros) and Steak Tartar served with Cassava chips and a mint cream for dipping.

Mar: Could you tell us, how does La Galerna translate into English?

Chef Pablo: The northwest winds of Galicia follow hand in hand with the ebb and tide.

Mar: Mentors and influences?

Chef Pablo: Firstly, since I was ten years old, my grandmother and my mother. Then, fast forward, Consultant and Chef Xavier Pellicer of Restaurant Can Fabes in Celoni, Barcelona.

Mar: The product, raw materials?

Chef Pablo: I was born in Madrid, however, in parallel I was raised in La Coruña, Galicia, in northwestern Spain, so I have always been influenced by the sea and its tenants, fish, seafood and shellfish, the kings of the table, the delicateness, a challenge. Furthermore, it started in Galicia, my grandmother and my mother. My restaurant shares family favourites in a carte that is from the lands which they hail from with a touch of evolution without changing the flavors worthy of their own individual properties.

Mar: Goals 2010 – 2011?

Chef Pablo: We opened La Galerna on the 30th of December 2010, and thus, are happily satisfied and returning customers with word of mouth recommendations.

Mar: Both you and Ana speak proficiency level English. Where have you both studied?

Chef Pablo: We lived in Riverside, California for 10 years.

Mar: How did the two of you meet?

Chef Pablo: We fell in love on a plane getting ready to do a parachute jump.

Mar: This is quite a recipe!

Restaurant La Galerna de Pablo
Calle San Bernardo 115
Metroline 2: Quevedo
Reservations Highly Suggested: 91.446 0899
Website: www.lagalernadepablo.com


La Galerna de Pablo: The Sea of Love

Opening up a 40-seat restaurant is a huge commitment during hard economic times, says, Chef Pablo of Restaurant La Galerna de Pablo, located 75 metres from the well known Quevedo Plaza of Madrid. We make less money than restaurants that turn more tables however, we love coming to work, for this is our second home.

Pablo and his lovely wife Ana Maria, have always been inspired by the sea, gastronomy and where they are not caught up in a rat race. The bill is only presented, when asked for. Upon entering, one shall begin to feel all the unwinding before them in this extraordinaire blonde wooden, brick and ocean turquoise blue green duplex with floor to ceiling windows. One would expect to find this jewel box restaurant in their imaginations, thus, being on the rugged coast of La Coruña, Galicia, Sonoma, California, Montauk Point, New York or Nagshead, North Carolina. Chef Pablo is a firm believer in the old Italian adage: A TAVOLA SI STA SEMPRE IN ALLEGRIA, which translates to AT THE TABLE, ONE IS ALWAYS HAPPY…

Restaurant La Galerna de Pablo
Calle San Bernardo 115
Metroline 2: Quevedo
Reservations Highly Suggested: 91.446 0899
Website: www.lagalernadepablo.com

Rubaiyat's Feijoada

RUBAIYAT’s FEIJOADA (CAN BE ENJOYED IN MADRID, RIO DE JANIERO & SAO PAULO)

1 kilo of black turtle beans or pinto beans ( often called Alubias ) or white Cannelli
beans ( NOTE: In Northwest Portugal Feijoada is made with white beans, in the
Northeast it is made with red kidney beans and each family adopts its own versions and
vegetables, for example: tomatoes, carrots and cabbage. (This recipe calls for black beans often called turtle beans).

¼ kilo pig ears
3 pork ribs
100 grams filet mignon of pork
1 pig’s tail
6 Iberian pincho or skewer size style sausages
6 Portuguese sausages

½ of 1 pig’s trotter
¼ calf’s tongue
1 chunk Spanish, Portuguese or Canadian bacon
1 chunk of smoked pork loin shoulder
150 grams dry meat called carne seca

1) Put all the pork meat ingredients in a large Dutch oven preferably made of
copper or earthenware terracotta clay with the beans on low flame ( slow
cooking ) for 2 – 2 1/2 hours (AFTER THEY HAVE SOAKED OVERNIGHT
IN SALTED WATER). Taste test to insure their tenderness, and if needed cook a total of  3
hours.
2) After two hours, add the two varieties of sausages and cook ½ hour more.

3) Now, prepare the chopped bacon, celery, garlic, 1 rock glass of fresh squeezed
orange juice, a shot glass of Jérez Brandy, a shot glass of Black Beer, chopped
onion, oregano, salt and pepper to taste and a shot glass of Brazilian Aguardiente
called Cachaca liquor.
4) Simmer to boil on low to medium flame for 10 minutes and serve with white
rice, fresh double skinned Israeli oranges and fresh lime slices, the perfect
company for Feijoada.
5) Serve with a full bodied red wine: Ribera del Duero, Toro or Priorat designation
of origin.

History of Hotel InterContinental

 

 

Translated By: M. Alexandria Cintrano – CELTA TEFL and published journalist

Hotel InterContinental Madrid – An everlasting and growing five star luxury hotel and our privileged proposal regarding the 21st millennium.

HISTORICAL FACTS

The Hotel InterContinental Madrid is profoundly steeped in history. In the 18th century, the property was purchased by Marqués de Mérito and he had the palace reconstructed as a spectacular palatial estate. Implementing his ideas, D. Luis Feluchi decided at the end of the 1940s to keep and maintain the chimney and fireplace in the meeting room, TOLEDO, which is made of Carrara marble. You can still find the doors and LA PLACITA, the entrance for horse drawn carriages, also in their original forms.

Pointing out the main characteristics of the impeccable building, the elaborately sculptured frieze in the ALBÉNIZ MEETING ROOM, created by sculptor Don José Planes as well as the floor and the marble limestone columns in this conference room and also the main lobby. The artworks are complimented by decorative elements such as the watercolors signed by Don José Caballero, Don Antonio Arias and Don Álvaro Delgado. Furthermore, inside the building you can relax in its´ magnificent garden where you shall also find a waterfall and the fountain built by sculptor Don Ángel Ferrant.

THE 1950’s

The Intercontinental Hotel Madrid had begun to become very popular in the early 1950s for the Hollywood stars and established itself as the first international hotel in Madrid. It was the foreign residence of many renowned artists during the 1950s film shoots, for example: Ava Gardner, Frank Sinatra and Elizabeth Taylor. Additionally, chosen by many other well known performing artists including, Mia Farrow who made the hotel her home while abroad, the glorious Zsa Zsa Gabor, Sophia Loren, Gina Lollobrigida, Tony Curtis, Robert Mitchum, Luis Mariano, Gary Cooper and Charleston Heston. The 3 day opening festivities took place at the same time the United States of America, Spain and the city of Madrid signed a contract for the Madrid establishment to be the place in which performers and artists would have their very own Madrid meeting point. It had become the headquarters of Hollywood´s fashionable and the elite.

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OVERVIEW & GENERAL INFORMATION

The prestigious Hotel Inter Continental is a 5 star luxury hotel with one of the highest brand ratings for its´reputation without leaving out a single detail and catering to the luxury lifestyle in Madrid. Situated in Madrid´s Financial District in the cultural heart of the Capital, Paseo de La Castellana, it offers impeccable services and facilities to satisfy and fulfill all the wishes of our guests. The technology in our rooms and suites, meeting rooms and public areas are state of the art. Here, you can find the spectacular lobby, the central rotunda, with an elegantly luminious dome ceiling and a wonderful view of the splendid garden. It is a breathtakingly beautiful location to enjoy a coffee, tea or wine and / or meet up with friends and business associates. One can also relax in the Bar 49, El Café, and / or the hotel´s first class preferred Restaurant, El Jardín which specialises in Mediterranean cuisine and the delicacies of the traditional and modern Capital of Madrid.

EXPLORING THE AREA

  • Paseo del Arte ( Madrid´s Art Triangle ) consisting of the Museum Prado, The Thyssen Bornemisza Museum and The Reina Sofia Museum

  • Serrano Street Shopping Mile and Barrio Salamanca Retailers within walking distance

  • Madrid´s ultra vanguard Barajas Airport is only 11 kilometres and a short drive through the Maria Molina tunnel

  • The Underground Metro line number 8 called Nuevos Ministerios leads our visitors directly to Barajas Airport

  • NEW CONVENIENCE : Our Airport Shuttle with an Eco Friendly hybrid Lexus model car is available for our guests

ROOMS & SUITES, SERVICE & EQUIPMENT FOR EVERY GUEST TYPE

The four new Presidential suites and the Royal Suite have been incorporated into this Madrid based establishment and thus, it is a unique offer for luxury accommodation compatible to the cosmopolitan style of this Capital and fashionably glamourous city.

At present, the hotel contains 302 rooms due to the latest suites. You can find 141 Superior rooms, 29 Executive rooms, 99 Club rooms, 18 Suites, 7 Ambassador suites, 7 Presidential suites and one Royal Suite to enjoy your stay with us. Additionally, there are 5 non-smoking floors.

GUEST SERVICES

Laundry, Vale service, air conditioning and heating with individual control, T.V. satellite, pay T.V. possible, AM / FM radio, alarm clock, telephone, answering machine, Minibar, smoke detectors, hair dryer, bathrobe and a security safe for your valuables and especially created for your laptop or netbook.

SECURITY

There are smoke detectors in the common and private areas throughout the hotel, fire estinguishers in the public areas, rooms and meeting rooms and Emergency lighting in the Public areas. Information about emergencies and the Emergency Plan for evacuation routes are located inside the rooms and in all public areas. There is 24 hour security and Camera Surveillance in the public areas and last but not least, First Aid.

NEW INTERCONTINENTAL SUITES & THE CROWN JEWEL, OUR ROYAL SUITE

The most challenging project was to design the spacious Royal Suite and at the same time, to enhance the inventory of the existing rooms. Enjoying the Suite on the 8th floor, one can relax in the 2 bedroom suite with living room, 3 bathrooms, private elevator, lounge, dining room and the gourmet dream kitchenette measuring 400m2. The most significant location in this stunning suite is the 180m2 exterior terrace, where one can take in the phenomenal

panoramic views of the famed Paseo de La Castellana and beyond.

CLUB INTERCONTINENTAL – A glamourous 5 star Luxury Hotel

Exclusively reserved for our executive clients at our Hotel:

Permanent breakfast Buffet 7.00am – 11.00am
Excellent personalized client services
Express Check-In and Check-Out
Breakfast: Elective in the Club Lounge, main restaurant´s premises and or as room service ( Continental Style Breakfast )
Daily national and international newspapers
Gastronomy: Buffet with a wonderful selection of dishes
Free High Speed Internet Access during your stay
Exclusively designed rooms for our Inter Continental guests with a professional coffee corner, fully equipped bathroom and the newest state of the art Technology
Daily fresh water and fruits in the rooms
Escorted invitations
Personal concierge services
Miscellaneous: Fax and photo-copy services and personal executive secretarial services on request and against payment
Baby-sitting services
Car Rental Services
An assorted pillow carte a to z

MEETING ROOMS

All 17 meeting rooms illuminate Madrid´s lovely natural daylight. Three of them are adequate for private lunches. ( Cibeles, Neptuno and Madrid Meeting Rooms ).

Special Conditions: The Albéniz Ballroom has the highest ceiling in all of Madrid´s hotels and is very appropriate for Banquets and all types of conventions and events.

GASTRONOMY

RESTAURANT EL JARDIN DEL INTERCONTINENTAL

Open daily from 13.00 hours to 16.00 hours and from 20.00 hours to 23.00 hours

Average price: 55 – 60 Euros

Daily Menu from Monday through Friday for 38.00 Euros per person

Open Air Summer Terrace

Head Chef: José Luque Torres

Epicurism: Both International and Mediterranean cuisines and the national dish of Spain, called Cocido Madrileño ( pot au fè signifying Dutch Oven on the fire, a cocoction of slow cooking on the flame and / or Madrid Stew ).

EXCLUSIVE EVENTS

It is the perfect locations to celebrate your family and commercial events. Our reliable and highly qualified team assist you during your event and caringly solve all your problems you may encounter, immediately.

SPECIAL WEDDING OFFERS

We are delighted to plan your wedding in every detail with the newsest technology and all the services you require on your special day. We have several facilities suited to your individualised needs.

BRUNCH EVERY SUNDAY UNTIL 13.30 HOURS

Available every Sunday of the year from 13.30 hours to 16.30 Hours

Open Buffet with more than 200 referenced products and an international variety of pastries, cheeses, salads, pastas, seafood, sushi, small desserts, cakes and our Chocolate Fountain

National and international specialties

Sushi prepared with Saki

Live music to suit all tastes and ages

Animation for children with clowns and games in a special area from 14.30 hours to 16.30 hours

The price of 58 Euros per person without beverages

Discounts for children 0 to 4 years: Gratis

Discount for children 5 to 12 years of age: 12.25 Euros per child

Sparkling white wine as a welcome aperitif and fresh squeezed orange juice for the children

Sophisticated yet family oriented atmosphere. Perfect to enjoy a nice Sunday especially for couples, friends and family.

Taking the courage of a Great Company, The InterContinental Hotel Group, with more than 60 years of experience, the renowned hotel brand, InterContinental Hotels & Resorts has established more than 150 hotels in up to 60 countries worldwide. We, the InterContinental believe that excellent service, quality and emphasizing its most important element, the guest, and to insure the interests of the clients.  Our desire is to help our distinguished guests to benefit from every moment of their stay. Independent of the destination one selects, our aim is to create a new lifestyle in the luxury hotel segment. We wish to share our knowledge with you so that you can experience an extraordinaire and memorable stay which brightens up your life and opens your horizons.  Online InterContinental allocates more information and the availability of online booking.

On www.ichotelsgroup.com . You can find all the information about our various locations and on www.priorityclub.com , you shall be informed about our Priority Club Rewards and Benefits Programme.

To be up-dated on the latest news of the InterContinental Hotel Group visit:

www. Ihgpic.com

Caipirinha Cocktail Recipe

Caipirinha Cocktail Recipe
Caipirinha Cocktail Recipe

Broken ice ( NOT crushed )
Sugar cane
Lime cut in varying sizes without seeds, squeezed by hand
1 Shot Top quality Brazilian Aguardiente called Cachaca Liquor

*** This should be served before the Feijoada to open up the palate

 

The Guardians of Spanish Heritage – The Parador Hotels

Sweet Dreams Are Made Of These

Since 1928, the Spanish government at the initiative of Marqués Vega Inclán, King Alfonso XIII  opened the first Hotel Parador of Tourism in the heart of the Gredos Mountain range in Navarredonda de Gredos, Ávila.  For the last 82 years, the Parador Hotel Network has been rescuing ancient hilltop castles, intriguing historic fortresses, impressively enchanting monasteries, majestic medieval convents, princely palatial mansions, massive octagonal stronghold towers and noblemen´s manor houses. Additionally, they have been recruiting internationally renowned architect teams and restoration specialists to transform them into privileged paradises with 21st century comfort and hotels featuring superior amenities without losing their extraordinaire ambiances, fabled characters and historic circa details.

Furthermore, they are offering around the Iberian peninsula, expertise in the art of seducing palates with their  93 regional Tasters´ lunch and dinner cartes between 27 Euros – 32.50 Euros. My friend, and intercambio, Ana Maria Martin and I believe all 93 are worth visiting 365 days a year.  Noted for maintaining their original concepts, one of which states, to act as the guardians of Spanish national artistic heritage while promoting superior quality tourism and dynamizing those regions that are lesser known. Now in the 21st millennium, the Parador Network maintains the founding principles while adopting them to the guests of today at all 93 of their spectacular establishments. Hasta invierno.

The Parador Network’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil Tastings

The long story of Spanish olive oil production has taken an unexpected twist. Botanists, chemists, journalists, sommeliers, olive oil makers, chefs and restaurateurs have laboriously worked their way back to concentrate on the oils´ natural starting point, the fruit itself. The Parador Hotel Network is providing their guests with a finely tuned tasting profile.

A handful of olive oil varieties we sampled are:

  1. Almaszaras de La Subbética, S.C.A.
  2. D.O. Carcabuey, Córdoba

Olive Variety:  100% Hojiblanca

Production: Ecological Organic Method

Tasting Notes: Equilibrium, complexity with green apple, herbs & spearmint

  1. Almaszaras de La Subbética, S.C.A.
  2. D.O. Carcabuey, Cordóba

Olive Variety: Hojiblanca and Picuda

Production: Conventional

Tasting Notes: Lightly almond reflecting an unusual equilibrium with piquant and bitter notes

  1. Aceites Campo Liva, S.L.
  2. D.O. Pegalajar, Jaén

Olive Variety:  Picual, Hojiblanca, Arbequina & Frantoio

Production: Conventional

Tasting Notes: Green almonds, aromatic herbs and green Apple

  1. Rodau, S.L.
  2. D.O. Torroella de Fluvià, Girona

Olive Variety: Arbequina, Hojiblanca & Koreneiki

Production: Conventional

Tasting Notes:  Mature fruit, green apples & green almond

Monastic Splendour On The Silver Route

Ancient Architectural Gems

Ages before the construction of this majestic monastery, monks were already residing behind the Parish church of San Miguel in what was once called The Santo Domingo Viejo. The community’s relocation to the new monastery took place while Fray Alfonso Maldonado was friar in 1477. Historians have traditionally attributed their sacred miracles to Saint Vincent Ferrer, who resuscitated the sole male child the duke and dutchess had. The monastery was severely damaged in the War of 1812, in which Spain fought for its independence from Napolean. It was reconstructed and renovated in 1850. Over the years it was occupied by various religious orders. The Fathers of Heart and Maria and the Servitas, were the last theological  orders to occupy it.

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The remains of the fortifications were found during archaeological research while carrying out the restoration of the building and it was confirmed that the Parador de Santo Domingo was a former fortress. Additionally, the area possessed a Sefardic synagogue and a Hebrew faith graveyard.   Many artifacts had been found including a yad which is a pointer for reading, fragments of a hanukiyot which is a votive lamp and thus confirmed the existence of a significant Sefardic settlement in this area. The presence of human life in the area dates back into the remote past has been proven and a series of structures were partially built in caves.

Construction work on the monastery was directed by the master stone mason Pedro Gonzalez with the assistance of his son Francisco and the master craftsmans Maluenes, Dara and Garcia Escalante, who also collaborated on the two Plasencia Cathedrals.

The Monastery Complex

The 66 room Parador Hotel complex located in a small cosmopolitan city that flirts with all who encounter its treasures,  is centered around the church which is almost cathedral like in proportions. The temple is reached through a large 17th century neo classical façade. Access to visit the the monastery complex is located on the Westside at an 18th century portico.

The Cloisters & Chapel Houses

The stunning proportioned cloister is late Gothic.  The Profundis chapel was a most important room of its day and the star ribbed vaults date back to the 15th century.

Monumental 1577 Staircase In The Tapas Bar

The monumental staircase commonly called the Staircase of Air is especially noteworthy.  It was built by Plasencia native Juan Alvarez in 1577.  This architectural wonder rises without pillars, hanging almost in the air in a faultless study of thrust and executed with exceptional mastery.

The Wine Cellar, Bar De Copas & Chillout Lounge

The Hotel Parador ’s wine cellar, which dates back to the 15th century has been adapted to the needs of the 21st millennium guest however, it has been preserved virtually in its original state, with its embedded earthenware jugs, stone, bricks and ceiling vault. The perfect place to enjoy a wine or cocktail and enjoy the conversational background music.

Room 320 & Room 222

Firstly, Director Felix Lobo showed us  ROOM 320, which houses the original walls of the Convent of Santo Domingo. The VIPS unique suite consists of  78 m2  and is divided into two large rooms each of which has its own cosy lounge to ensure maximum unwinding. The deep cherry red and white upholstery, period furniture and the fireplace all add to the warmth and romance of this suite. Our hotel ROOM 222 was absolutely a perfect place to spend a couple of nights. The wide ranging balcony views over the Gredos Mountain Range, pool, gardens and courtyard are divine.

Chef Luis Mora

  • Mar :  What is your culinary philosophy ?
  • Luis:  Adapting quality traditional products of the zone with modern concepts,  reinterpretation and author creativity.
  • Mar:  Where have  you studied ?
  • Luis:  I have been learning all my life as I was born into a family of chefs . My formal studies have been with the Parador Network.  I have worked in the Parador Hotels of Chinchon, Antequera, Málaga, Hostería Del Estudiante in Alcalá de Henares and since October 2000 in the Parador of Plasencia.
  • Mar: Your dream trip.
  • Luis:  The profound depths of Spain in all its regions.
  • Mar:  Tell us about autumn.
  • Luis:  Venison and wild hoofed game varieties, lamb, saffron, wild mushrooms Bolteus Eduli, Niscalos, chestnuts for desserts and red wine Tentudia from Almendralejos, Badajóz. I also employ some historic Sefardic ingredients.
  • Mar:  Your inspiration is derived from ?
  • Luis:  I read a lot, plus collaborate recipes with Juan Marí Arzak and Dani García.

Chef Luis Mora Savours Spanish Culture

  • White wine:  Sánz Clásico Rueda 2009
  • Red wine:  50% Cabernet Sauvignon & 50% Tempranillo Tentudia 2005
  • Torta del Casar sheepcheese & straight out of the oven assorted breads
  • Palate cleanser French greenbean slaw & prawn salad
  • The exquisite black cherry gazpacho
  • Divine roast lamb with criadillas, Plasencia´s local potatoes
  • Tecula Mecula:  an ancient Roman almond gel concoction translating: For you, for me
  • Sweet ripe stuffed fresh figs:  D.O. Almohain, Cáceres
  • Cañas: pastries with white chocolate filling
  • Cherry sherbert

Hotel Parador Santo Domingo Convent

Plaza San Vincente Ferrer  S.N.

Plasencia, Caceres 10600

www.parador.es

Fabled Castle Dropt From Heaven

Located in the county of La Vera, Cáceres, snuggly nestled in the Gredos Mountain Range, the XV century restored castle of Emperor Carlos V, the royal gem of the Renaissance awaits you.

Emperor Carlos V was the most powerful man in the world during his reign and resided in this historic 15th century castle for a few months before retiring to the Yuste Monastery,  8 km away in Cuacos. This renovated four star hotel is a fortified 15th century castle which dates back to the Counts of Oropesa and was built over the ruins of a fortress that had been reconstructed  centuries later and was inhabited by King Alfonso XIII.

It has all that a castle should have, a Blue Room with a fireplace and 15th century tapestries, a Salon of Portraits, a Patio of Arms,  robust corner towers, migrating storks, embrasures, machicolations, turrets which are the small projecting armed structures for gunners, and heraldic shield crests.  The Italian Renaissance prevails throughout and the dining room views lookout onto a beautiful courtyard.  The grounds include walking paths with delightful gardens chock full of orange trees, ancient eucalyptus trees, palm trees, lilac bushes and a lovely swimming pool.

Without sacrificing the original structures, one enters across a drawbridge between two cubic fortress towers. The courtyard is a sanctuary covered in ivy, shaded by palms depicting the region’s micro climate and houses a fountain, creating the privileged paradise for after dinner conversation through late autumn.  Conquering visitors’ emotions, this is a nobleman’s castle in every sense of the word.

Nobel Room 219 With Balcony Over Gardens

Our room, one of the best in the house, can be found nestled amidst the gardens, complete with balcony, providing royal refuge in this privileged paradise of sweet dreams.

Capacity Data For Bookings

The three story castle houses 52 renovated rooms which seduce and house the treasures of royalty in its salons and communal spaces. Emperor Carlos V dwelled in the castle from November 12th, 1556 until February 3rd, 1557 prior to his retirement. Debonaire Maîtré Julian Sevila informed us that the hotel is fully equipped for those requiring handicapped railings, business conventions, christenings, celebrations and weddings with a capacity for 250 people. The restaurant ‘s capacity holds up to 80 people and special breakfasts for up to 60 people.

Chef Juan Antonio Ramos De La Calle

  • Mar:  Tell us about the  specialties of the house.
  • Juan:  Firstly, designation of origin, La Vera is renowned for their goat cheeses and the 4 varieties  I believe you both would enjoy are:  QUESUCO BLUE VEIN which has a very creamy texture and is similar to Asturian Picón Azul, PIMENTON which has a paprika cayenne rind and is a semi soft variety, the French style roll or RULO and the ECOLOGICAL mild semi soft.
  • Mar:  What is your culinary philosophy  ?
  • Juan:  It has always been clear. To cook with what the environment produces, a united team, to teach, the content, the affection, new technology and the traditional with the regional and seasonal, the product and the textures. I am sort of an Extremaduran Santi Santamaria.
  • Mar:  Where are you from Juan Antonio ?
  • Juan:  Across the street,  I was born in the historic town of Jarandilla de La Vera.
  • Mar:  What are the autumn products you employ in your menus?
  • Juan:  Partridge, quail, rabbit, wild mushrooms, Boletus Eduli and Niscalos, boar, fresh figs, La Vera paprika varieities, Iberian acorn fed ham, codfish, fresh river carp, fresh trout and herrings.
  • Mar:  Dream trips?
  • Juan: China culturally and Seychelles to relax.
  • Mar:  Where have you studied and in which Parador Hotels have you worked to date?
  • Juan:  I studied at the Gastronomic Institute in La Bañeza, Leó close to Astorga. I have worked in various Parador Hotels including, Valle de Aran, Málaga, Zamora City and since 1998, in my home town of Jarandilla de La Vera.
  • Mar:  Which celebrities and/or famous well knowns have you cooked for?
  • Juan: I have cooked for the various members of the Royal Family, former Prime Minister, Felipe Gonzalez,  government officials, singers Shakira and Alejandro Sanz who have homes here in Jarandilla de La Vera.
  • Mar:  Tell us about innovation and the road to success.
  • Juan:  A lot of  Innovation, fusion of ingredients, evolutionary technology, textures, colors, research, experimentation and “A to Z” styles.
  • Mar:  This is a stunning area, however, what products do you miss the most ?
  • Juan:  A larger assortment of Ribera del Duero red wines and shellfish. We can obtain the ocean´s fresh catches however, we have to utilize them much more promptly.
  • Mar:  Do you listen to music in your kitchen while preparing?
  • Juan:  I am a flamenco guitarist and this inspires me.

The Emperor’s Table

  • White wine Lar de Barros 100% Macabeo Grape 2009
  • Assorted designation of origin cold cut Deli Meats and Cheeses
  • French style onion soup created with fowl stock
  • Warm smoked herrings with scalded eggs
  • Stuffed aubergines stuffed with hake and baked apple sliced
  • Seared on flame tender mouthwatering octopus
  • Quail in port wine and spiced pear
  • A buñuelo, fusion between a Doughnut  & French toast bread,  pine nuts & creamed goat cheese filling

Parador  Hotel & Restaurant Carlos V

Avda. García Prieto 1

Jarandilla de La Vera,  Cáceres 10450

Multilingual Website:  www.parador.es

Madrid Central Reservations:   91. 561. 6666

Headquarters at   Calle Requena 3

Metroline 5 / Ópera