Casa El Alpendre

Casa El Alpendre

Casa El Alpendre The pool at Casa El Alpendre Charming interiors The open-plan kitchen Lovely country views from the garden Casa El Alpendre's garden The small private pool The bedroom can be made up as a double? ?or as two singles The covered terrace The shower room inside the natural cave The shower room inside the natural cave Casa El Alpendre The ladder leading into the pool Sitting area Dining area Casa El Alpendre is part of a large fruit farm

Casa El Alpendre

The Canary IslandsGran Canaria › El Madroñal near Santa Brigida

A restored country cottage full of character with its own small pool, set within a large farming estate just outside a small village and well placed for exploring the island's mountainous interior and the bustling capital

Like its neighbour, Casa El Balcon, El Alpendre stands in the grounds of Finca Ayala, an organic fruit farm covering some 50,000 square metres on the outskirts of Santa Brigida in the north-east of Gran Canaria. In this fertile landscape a variety of citrus trees, plums, peaches, avocados and almonds are cultivated alongside vegetable crops such as artichokes, cabbages and tomatoes, so guests can enjoy a scenic stroll without even leaving the estate, whilst for more serious walkers, this is a good base from which to explore the island's mountainous centre.

Originally constructed as a stable, Casa El Alpendre dates back to the 19th century although it is believed that the natural caves onto which the building backs were already used to house cattle and goats prior to then. Following extensive refurbishment in 2017, the house now makes a perfectly comfortable holiday home for humans, but it retains plenty of its original character; in fact that conversion was carried out so sympathetically that it was given a restoration award by the local council.

Casa El Alpendre's cosy, open-plan interiors make it an ideal rural retreat for a couple. You enter directly into the pretty living-dining area with its comfortable corner sofa, glass dining table and satellite TV (limited English-language channels). To the right of this is the bedroom, which can be arranged as either a double or twin beds, and which is partially separated from the living area as the dividing wall is open towards the exposed sloping ceiling. To the left is the open-plan kitchen, with a large fridge-freezer, a ceramic hob, toaster and coffee maker, and the door to the rather quirky shower room, which has been created inside the natural cave. The house has been equipped with air-conditioning, which also doubles up as heating during the cooler season, and free WiFi is also available.

To the front of the house there is a partially shaded terrace with patio furniture for al-fresco meals and a little garden with a couple of recliner chairs from which you can enjoy the lovely country views. The old water-storage tank has been cleverly converted into a small but pretty, mosaic-tiled swimming pool (approx. 6.5 x 2 metres, depth 1.1 metres), which is accessed from the garden via a pool ladder.

A 10-minute walk will take you to the small village of El Madroñal, where you can find a couple of authentic local restaurants, and the larger village of San Mateo is a short drive away. For a wider range of shops, the small town of Santa Brigida can be reached by car in around 10 minutes, and the island capital Las Palmas with all its cultural and commercial attractions is approximately half-an-hour's drive away.

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