Another glowing review

The winter is drawing in to the Alpujarras and firewood has become a major priority.  Gaunt, shivering souls wander the villages waiving €50 notes at the locals and wailing ¿leña?, desperate to score a bag of olive logs at any price. Our latest guests didn't let it spoil their enjoyment, however, as this enthusiastic review demonstrates:

"We had such a good time - your lovely house is a credit to you...beautifully converted, and very comfortable. Juviles - well, I recall a poem by Rod McKuen (you are probably too young!) called 'Listen to the Quiet'. That says it all. It was cold (to be expected at this time of year) but bright and sunny, and we were lucky. It was a wonderful short break, and we hope to return at some stage, and won't hesitate to recommend you to everyone. I am just downloading my photos - the colours of the autumn trees were spectacular. We took 2 bags of wood for the fire, but used it the first evening, then had a few panic-stricken moments tracking more down - there was none to be had in Cadiar or even Trevelez, and no reply from the guy in the main street, but finally, a chance remark to a lady who was sweeping her path brought forth the mystical 'wood man', so for €20 we had two large-ish crates, which warmed us beautifully! Such a lovely part of the world - thank you for bringing it to us!"

New review

I've not posted for a while for one reason or another, but this excellent review from Louise Wignall of Melbourne, Australia has brought me back to the blog.  More soon now I've been goaded into action.

"Once we got over the challenge of driving on mountain roads in a left hand drive car on the right hand side of the road and actually got to Juviles the choice of this small, remote village 'on the other side of the world' from Australia was entirely worth it!

The 'La Golondrina' house was a lovely place to stay. We loved our week in the mountains-a rugged and harsh and unforgiving landscape so full of history and natural beauty.

The house is spacious and beautifully appointed with a great kitchen perfect for cooking up feasts made from locally sourced ingredients (either bought from nearby villages or from the vegetable delivery truck ).  Features we loved the most were lying in our comfortable airy bedroom enjoying the view across the rooftops through the shuttered window; sitting out on the deck at sunset shelling almonds and enjoying a drink; reading our way through the excellent collection of books about Spain on the shelves; poring over the walking guidebooks and planning our daily walks (Trevelez, Mecina Bombaron and El Fuerte de Juviles were our favourites). The walking pole in the house has travelled many kilometres I am sure with various visitors and is a valuable asset!

We were in touch with (Martin/the host) via email before our visit about how to get there and felt fully supported before and during our visit. We also used the excellent house-book containing tips about the area and recommendations that proved valuable advice.

The weekly rental fee was good value for money and we would recommend 'La Golondrina' to others wanting a secluded, peaceful and unique holiday without hesitation."

More availability

Sadly, some guests have had to cancel their trip to Spain and our house due to illness in the family.  So, unexpectedly, our property is available to rent between 23rd June and 7th July. Lovely time to visit if you fancy it...

Best-ever review?

That welcome pack worked a treat.  Just take a look at this review from Niah Richards of Manchester.  Unprompted and unedited.  And we've never met her.

We were absolutely delighted with this property.All the facilities were of the highest standard and tastefully carried out.The location was superb--the village a delight and the views out of this world--the peacefullness was exceptional .The owner was thoughtful --everything you need to know was there for you.Also he was helpful and responsive when we were making our booking.I would go again and recommend to anyone.

Nothing says 'welcome' like a pot of jam and a bottle of wine

In most of Britain - or anywhere else for that matter - you can always grab a few essentials from a corner shop or a petrol station, at any hour of the day or night. 

It's not like that in the high Alpujarra, so with the help of our lovely friend Abi from Berchules we are now supplying a modest welcome pack for guests at our house. It's enough for a snack and/or breakfast, and should tide you over until the shops (or bars) open. No additional charge.

The joy of six

Over the five or so years we've been welcoming guests to La Golondrina - a.k.a. Calle Altillo 26 - we've had parties consisting of one couple, couple plus kids, two couples, one couple and one single, two singles, three singles, a ménage-a-trois plus a couple (I like to imagine), one individual in magnificent isolation, and five ladies from Norway.

A typical set-up is three generations - this weekend we welcome a mum, grandmother and daughter - and another is the young adult couple with either his or her parents (although it's always her parents, I notice). Interestingly, different nationalities have wildly contrasting attitudes to privacy, but that's another story.

 Anyway, we've been saying we welcome up to five guests, as we have two double beds and a single. Now we've added a very comfortable bed-chair (or single sofa-bed) from Ikea to make it six. The bed-chair is in the small bedroom alongside a standard single bed, so that room could now sleep two, but it could equally be used on the first-floor landing or the trastero to make a fourth sleeping area, or moved into the biggest bedroom for a toddler who likes to sleep in the parents' room. NB:  there's also a cot thing available for babies - it's folded up in the trastero and goes up in seconds - but you have to bring your own baby.

So now our place sleeps six adults, or more if you're particularly inventive/intimate, and all at no extra cost - bringing the price per person in mid-season down to a frankly mystifying £58/€70 per week.

Snow in Juviles

Despite good snow higher up in the Sierra Nevada where the ski resort is, there hasn't been much white stuff at our altitude so far this winter.  Yesterday, though, the snow came down to meet us.
Thanks to Abi for sending me the shot.  We won't get a chance to visit our house till Easter, although we've got guests from Yorkshire arriving in a couple of weeks, who may be in time for some snow.