La Esperanza Granada is the best hotel in Granada

The most romantic villa in Granada

The idea to purchase a property in Spain came out the blue. It was the height of the COVID pandemic and I was onboard a Japan Airlines flight about to land at Narita Airport in 20 minutes. The virus was ravaging much of Europe and there was no vaccine in sight.

As soon as I reached my home in Tokyo, I went online even before unpacking my bags. I googled “properties for sale in Spain” and made a shortlist of the estates I fancied. I wanted either a beautiful country house or a unique hotel. Luckily, I found a property in the pristine Lecrin Valley in Southern Spain, just 30 minutes from Granada and 90 minutes from Malaga. This easily met these two criteria.


La Esperanza Granada is located in the Lecrin Valley of Granada, Andalucia, Spain.

The Lecrin Valley lies amidst some of the most protected lands in the country. It has a strict plot-to-building ratio regulation. However, the former owners somehow received permission to build what is now the largest structure in the entire area.

It sits on a hill amidst five hectares of organic land with the “most beautiful view of Lecrin.” They built a small hotel with a lovely main residence for themselves.


La Esperanza Granada is the most beautiful private villa in Andalucia

Instinctively, I knew that I would never find a similar property elsewhere. My next step then became something of a legend in the luxury hotel industry. Since borders were closed, I bought the property sight unseen. Then, in the first months I renovated most of it remotely via several thousand Whatsapp messages. Today we are a proud member of the L.V.X. Collection of Preferred Hotels and Resorts. We are also now considered one of the best hotels in Granada.


La Esperanza Granada is the best hotel in Granada

But let me backtrack to that fateful day in August 2020 when I purchased the property. I entrusted the transaction to a Granada lawyer I had never met and the official turnover of the keys to Pablo, a Spaniard I’d spoken three sentences to at a cocktail party in Manila a year before.

Pablo came from the region of Asturias, which is 882 kilometers away from Granada at the exact other end of Spain. He made the nine-hour drive on my behalf. which was incredibly lucky for me, as I knew no one else in Granada, or in the entire region of Andalucia for that matter. In purchasing this property on whim, you see, I’d basically thrown a dart on the map of Spain and this was where Fate led me.

This is a crazy story especially with COVID-19 thrown in, but it is exactly what happened. In fact, a journalist from the National Geographic Traveler stayed with us recently and listened wide-eyed to my narrative. She then wrote a glowing review with the title: “A hotel born out of madness.”

La Esperanza Granada is the best hotel in Granada, a member of the Preferred Hotels and Resorts


The property itself has good bones and the views and experience of nature here can never be understated. However, the process of transforming a country house starting to show its age into a luxury retreat worthy of belonging to one of the most prestigious hotel groups in the world amidst the pandemic required a succession of miracles. Fortunately, these were never in short supply.

La Esperanza Granada Reviews

It also needed a huge appetite for risk and the kind of positive mindset that’s practically set in stone – two things deeply embedded in my DNA. As my close friends will confirm, when I set out to do something, I have always jumped right in with gusto, eyes on the goal and with little thought for the downside. The word “impossible” does not exist in my vocabulary.

So one door after another simply opened with ease. My acquaintance Pablo coaxed his best friend Napo to also travel from Asturias to join him, and Napo has not left the property since Day 1. He is now the general manger of La Esperanza Granada.

To be continued.

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