Santa Catalina, a Royal Hideaway Hotel
A classic winter sun destination, this Canary Island is a treat during the UK’s coldest months, especially when you check into the best hotels in Gran Canaria.
Up there with the best hotels in Tenerife, these stylish places to stay are perfect for escaping the icy UK weather, whether you’re travelling solo, as a couple or looking for a family hotel.
BEST HOTELS IN GRAN CANARIA
Famous for its black and white sand beaches, dramatic lava landscapes and colourful Canarian villages, Gran Canaria is the third largest island in the Canaries’ archipelago and the perfect spot to enjoy year-round sunshine.
Only 60 miles from the coast of North Africa, the island benefits from a balmy sub-tropical climate with average temperatures between 22 and 26 degrees. But there’s more to the island than fly-and-flop beach resorts. Nearly half the island is a UNESCO World Biosphere.
Here, you can explore the rippling sand dunes of Maspalomas on the southern tip, go hiking around the volcanic flanks of Caldera de Bandama or stargaze at Roque Nublo, the island’s famous rock formation in the very centre of the island. For history and culture, head to island capital Las Palmas and learn about Christopher Columbus’ Canarian adventures in Casa de Colón.
From the historic boutique hotels in Vegueta, the historic old quarter of Las Palma, the swish beach resorts of Maspalomas to the colourful haciendas hidden in the hills of Tejedo, we’ve cherry picked the best hotels in Gran Canaria for 2022.
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Hotel Veintiuno, Las Palmas
The best hotels in Gran Canaria are not always the sprawling beach resorts or high-end hotels. Veintiuno in Las Palmas is a stylish adults-only hotel in the historic neighbourhood of Vegueta. Located moments from the 16th-century La Catedral de Santa Ana, this chic boutique pad is perfectly placed for exploring Las Palmas’ cultural attractions, including Casa de Colón, the Columbus museum. After a day of exploring, soak up the sun around the rooftop pool which overlooks the cathedral, or grab a sundowner in the rooftop bar.
The 11 design-led rooms have an almost Scandinavian vibe: think clean lines, neutral tones and flashes of colour and texture. Some rooms have high ceilings and beautiful grand doors, which open out on to views of the cathedral. Breakfast is served in the stylish dining room or on the terrace.
Lopesan Villa del Conde Resort & Thalasso, Meloneras
Palm-fringed pools, a clutch of fancy restaurants and a swanky Thalasso spa, this sprawling resort set in tropical gardens is perfect for an easy sun-drenched getaway. Located in the heart of the upmarket resort of Meloneras, Lopesan Villa del Conde is well placed to explore Gran Canaria’s south coast and is a short hop from Faro de Maspalomas, the island’s famous 19th-century working lighthouse, and the shifting sands of the Maspalomas Dunes Nature Reserve.
Spacious rooms are beautifully light and airy and all have views over the lush gardens. To really go to town, book one of the rooms that offer access to an exclusive VIP lounge with complimentary drinks.
Santa Catalina, a Royal Hideaway Hotel, Las Palmas
Overlooking Parque Doramas and the Atlantic Ocean, Gran Canaria’s most glamorous hotel was once a favoured hangout of royalty and Hollywood with Prince Charles, Maria Callas and Ava Gardner all counted as former guests. Opened in 1890, the grande dame of Gran Canaria hotels has been brought bang up to date by a recent refurbishment from the snazzy salmon pink exterior to the cool murals inside.
The rooms at Santa Catalina have a distinctly classy vibe but with mirror-like Smart TVs and free-standing tubs. Relax in the indoor-outdoor spa, which has a hydrotherapy circuit and offers volcanic stone massages. Or enjoy a sundowner on the rooftop bar overlooking the ocean, before dining in the Michelin-starred Poemas restaurant, headed up by acclaimed chefs Hermanos Padrón.
Salobre Hotel Resort & Serenity, Maspalomas
Set back from the busy beach resorts of the south, the swish Salobre Hotel Resort & Serenity is just the spot for a quiet escape in the sun. Swathed in ochre and surrounded by cacti and palms, this smart resort-style hotel blends into Gran Canaria’s arid desert environment. It benefits from not one but two 18-hole golf courses, a series of outdoor pools and the Be Aloe Centre, a luxury spa with a Finnish sauna, oxygen therapy cabin and Turkish hammam.
All the rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows, many overlooking the tropical gardens or the golf greens. Meanwhile, Casa Salobre, the Sunset bar and SENS Kitchen Patio Garden are just three of the many bars and top-notch dining options on offer.
Hotel Rural Las Calas, Vega de San Mateo
The antithesis of the sprawling beach resorts of the south, Hotel Rural Las Calas in La Lechuza is around 2,800ft above sea level and perfect for exploring Gran Canaria’s mountainous interior. Popular with the hiking crowd, who flock to conquer Pico de las Nieves, the highest peak on the island. It’s also close to the colourful mountain town of Le Vega de San Mateo and local vineyard, Bodega Frontón de Oro. This rural boutique inn housed in a 17th-century manor is set in lush tropical gardens and has a small pool and massage services.
The nine rooms are warmly decorated with a rustic vibe: think polished wood, terracotta tiles and beamed ceilings, and traditional Canarian furnishings. The house restaurant serves a delicious fusion of Canarian and South East Asian cuisine.
Hotel Cordial Mogán Playa, Puerto de Mogan
Moments from the port and Mogán’s pretty crescent-shaped bay, this upmarket hotel with its sunshine yellow turrets and lush tropical gardens has a real Canarian vibe. Built around an ancient necropolis, Hotel Cordial Mogán Playa looks like its carved into the rock and features, rather uniquely, an archeological park and botanical gardens with more than 450 species of tropical plants.
The rooms are warmly decorated and have a traditional vibe: think tiled floors and polished wood furnishings, many with a private balcony or terrace and ocean views, too. Naturally, the resort has a brace of beautiful palm-fringed swimming pools and a luxury spa, with an indoor pool and Turkish hammam. Plus, numerous dining treats, including the oh-so fancy Los Guayres restaurant, which has a Michelin star.
Parador de Cruz de Tejeda, Cruz de Tejeda
Offering panoramic views over the island, and on a clear day as far as Mount Teide on the neighbouring island of Tenerife, Gran Canaria’s only parador hotel makes the perfect romantic getaway. Pitched in the heart of the island, you can hike to the island famous Roques Bentayga and Nublo rock formations, alternatively, just kick back in the heavenly spa, which has an infinity pool set 1500m above sea level.
There are 43 rooms at Parador de Cruz de Tejeda, all traditionally furnished with plenty of terracotta tiles and natural woods; some have terraces or balconies with fabulous views. You can dine out in Restaurante Roque Nublo, which prides itself on its traditional Canarian dishes, including regional specialities like roast goat, watercress stew and mojo garlic sauce.
Seaside Palm Beach, Maspalomas
Moments from Maspalomas beach and the UNESCO-listed sand dunes, this design-led hotel is a cut above the rest when it comes island style. Designed by acclaimed architect and designer Alberto Pinto, Seaside Palm Beach first opened in 1975 and was largely influenced by the colourful art deco style hotels in Miami.
The rooms have a real 70s’ vibe with plenty of colour and patterns, many have balconies and ocean views. You can spend lazy days lounging around the palm tree-lined swimming pools or being pampered in the swanky spa, which also offers free tai chi and yoga classes. After dark, try sampling the many culinary delights of the island in either the Esencia or La Bodega tapas restaurants.
Bohemia Suites & Spa, Playa del Inglés
The very first boutique hotel to open in Playa del Inglés, this adults-only wellness hotel is a stylish and design-led pad with sweeping views over the ocean and the Maspalomas sand dunes. With a brace of pools and a top-class spa, Bohemia Suites & Spa offers a full health and recovery programme, as well as traditional Thai massage, saunas and a floatarium.
The rooms are colourful and quirky. Many have floor-to-ceiling window and vast ocean views. But to really impress, book a Sky Suite which comes with complimentary use of the hotel Audi A1 Sport. The hotel has become a firm favourite of the island’s gourmands, with many flocking to dine in the 360-degree restaurant.
La Hacienda del Buen Suceso, Arucas
Situated in the lush north of the island, with its white sand beaches, palm groves and colourful villas, La Hacienda del Buen Suceso has all the appeal of the Caribbean. An antithesis to the modern beach resorts of the south, the building dates back to 1572 and is said to be the oldest hacienda in the Canary Islands.
Awash with exposed stone, tiled terracotta floors and rustic beamed ceilings, it’s stacked with charm and is the closest you’ll get to a truly authentic Canarian experience. The lack of fancy facilities is all part of the attraction. There’s a lovely pool in the leafy grounds, a hot tub and a small gym, plus a Turkish hammam. The authentic Canarian restaurant has a charming terrace overlooking the banana plantation.
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