Review: Es Mares, Formentera | Daily Telegraph
Published by telegraph.co.uk, October 2016
"Es Marès is one of Formentera’s premier hotels, a four-star, family-run affair that takes its design cue from the dusty, salty essence of the island’s surroundings. With a prime central location and lavish on-site spa, it’s the ideal base for exploring Formentera."
Set in the heart of Sant Fransesc, one of Formentera’s most bustling destinations (you can count these on one hand thanks to the island’s distinctly laid-back vibe). Es Marès blends in seamlessly with adjacent buildings; with an unassuming, authentic façade, it’s easy to wander past unaware.
The town itself is full of alluring charm, with lantern-lit streets that empty come midnight, and a handful of upmarket restaurants filled with affable residents. It’s a five-minute drive to reach Sant Fransesc from La Savina, Formentera’s primary port, which in turn is a 30-minute ferry ride from Ibiza. The island’s heavenly beaches can all be reached within 10 minutes by car.
Style & character
Named after the sandstone that gives Formentera’s coastline its rugged contour, and served as a primary source of trade hundreds of years ago, Es Marès is an unashamed ode to the ocean. Décor is minimal to say the least, but flashes of flair come in the form of sandy hues adorned with driftwood mirrors and seashells - there’s an undeniable elegance amplified in the less-is-more approach to decoration, and an air of serenity that comes as a result.
Service & facilities
There’s an intimate but luxurious spa on site that’s run via a booking system to avoid overcrowding. Here, you’ll find a sauna and steam room, plunge pool and heated lounge beds, with an extensive list of treatments available. There’s a small outdoor pool area, and a restaurant that’s open to locals as well as guests. Staff members are always smiling.
Taking inspiration from the pared back approach to life of Formentera’s residents, the rooms at Es Marès are simple in nature. Think neutral colours and minimal decoration, with unfussy furniture. Again, there are some nods to a life at sea with sandblasted wooden surfaces, but on the whole, it’s a fairly plain affair. Beds are enormous, and the ideal remedy to sleeping alongside a restless partner. Beach towels are supplied, a nice touch with so many to explore on your doorstep.
Food & drink
Cold cuts, cereal, pastries and eggs à la carte are available at breakfast. You can indulge in a morning mimosa thanks to the supply of champagne and fresh orange juice, and there’s coffee to kickstart your day too. The adjoining restaurant is much-loved locally, in part thanks to its first-rate location on the town square, but also because of its excellent Mediterranean cuisine. The terrace café is a great place to grab an early evening cocktail.