Why I didn’t take photos of the place, I really don’t know. The scattered upturned chairs, unswept leaf ridden place did not resemble the ‘Boutique Hotel’ photos. There was just a phone number on the locked doors that I couldn’t access because the phone connection that was promised in the UK, was not working.
I made my way up the steep winding road lugging my suitcase behind me, to check if I’d made a mistake with the details. Along the way were pretty well kept dwellings, and I got a clear view down to the hotel’s unkempt terraces. Right at the top was a long track leading to a solitary house. This was placed much further back than I recalled on google maps so I turned back. On the return I ventured down a little cul de sac to the left of the road but no joy. A lady came out of her house and asked me something that I didn’t understand. ‘Dondé esta ‘La Tartana’ por favor? I query. I think she’s been asked this question before. She points to the original place. I go back and sit on the bench and try my phone again. Nada. Niente. And not a soul in sight. I have nowhere to stay. I’m not hanging around here.
As I arrive at the main road, I see a lady leave an apartment block on the other side. I ask her for help. I’m glad to have learned a few Spanish phrases at this point. She starts pointing and explaining. On seeing that I don’t understand, leads me down some steps, then onto a bridge over what looks like a dry river bed. We approach some arched metal gates set into the wall, they’re closed and locked too. I’m wondering where I’m going to sleep tonight. She is talking to me but her words are too fast for my novice ears. We back track and she leads me round the corner, to a road side entrance, which is also closed and no one is about. Eventually a lady emerges from within. The two women exchange words and Gloria, my new Spanish friend indeed, leaves me with the hotel proprietor. Her hotel is full. I’m becoming a little disorientated now. But….she has an apartment I can rent. She goes to collect keys and we step a few paces along to another road side entrance, up marble stairs, to view it. It is dark. It seems it has been closed up for winter and that she is opening up the space especially for me to use. There are lots of closed doors. I’m wondering to if anyone else is in here. Sensing this, the lady tells me it’s all for me. The apartment reveals itself to be spacious, I have a choice of bedrooms, I am given the breakfast times, we agree on the price. I gratefully accept her offer.
I thoroughly recommend La Pensión in La Herradura Andalusia. The accommodation is very clean, comfortable and stylish , the breakfasts are generous. It’s a short walk to the beach. And most of all because Delia is a wonderful, kind host.