The name is Mallorcan for ‘house of the little king’ and, with its large iron-gated entrance and distinctive officially protected façade, it looks regal. In 1881 the Catalan Escalas i Garau family built Can Reiet – still a house of reference in Santanyí, and in the street of the same name. It stayed in the same family until around 30 years ago, when English people bought it as a holiday home. Local children used to be invited on school outings here. It even appeared in episodes of the German TV soap ‘Verbotene Liebe’ (‘Forbidden Love’).
Cal Reiet Holistic Retreat Hotel
Spanish, English and German
Petra and Henning Bensland recognised a spirit of generosity about the place, and bought it in 2012. With their interest and belief in the mind-body-spirit connection, they would turn Cal Reiet into one of Europe’s few upscale holistic retreats. Inclusive, rather than exclusive, it’s a place for guests to experience personal service and a beautiful product.
Obtaining the necessary licences took some time, and the renovation work began only a little over a year ago. New light-stone floors, air conditioning, and ceiling fans were added, and some restored traditional Mallorcan furniture incorporated into the décor – a harmonious blend of old and new. Barcelona-based international interior design company Bloomint undertook the project, and a Felanitx construction company did the work.
The owners live in Switzerland, and serendipity played a part in finding someone special to run Cal Reiet Holistic Retreat which finally opened in July.
“It’s been a fantastic journey,” says the hotel’s director. In her case, it’s the same thing. Her carefully selected hotel team is not typical, “but people who live and breathe this holistic lifestyle every day.”
Cal Reiet Holistic Retreat is a boutique hotel with official ‘agroturismo’ classification. Its luxurious high-ceilinged rooms offer neither television nor mini-bar: “Clients come for the beauty of the place, and to socialise in a holistic retreat.” Yes, wine is available (local and organic) – and you can come just for a tranquil holiday, enjoying healthy cuisine in the company of like-minded people. Cal Reiet’s cuisine uses fresh organic produce from a nearby supplier and includes raw, vegetarian, and vegan dishes.
Who are their guests? “People who live from the heart . . . are on a journey . . . who want to grow,” Cal Reiet’s director says. Mainly North European, they could be part of a yoga or meditation group, individuals or families (children welcome) who already live the lifestyle and want to holiday accordingly, or even regenerating business executives.
The property boasts an enviable new-build yoga shala, superb outdoor swimming pool and bar, and peaceful well-tended gardens. The 15 spacious rural-chic rooms and suites include two ‘casitas’ with full kitchens and private chill-out terraces. Guest amenities include Aromatherapy products in the large bathrooms.
As well as hosting groups who organise retreats here, Cal Reiet offers yoga classes and holistic wellbeing workshops. The ‘house of the little king’ is now a place where wellness, self-development, and tranquillity rule.
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