Travel: Fountainhead Retreat, Malaga

May peace be with you at the Fountainhead Retreat in Malaga.

As soon as I arrived at the Fountainhead Retreat, I knew I wouldn’t want to leave! It was a stunning October day with the sun streaming in through the owner Peter’s windows as I was whisked inland to the deserted Andalusian mountains destination. And upon arrival, softly spoken, slightly Scottish sibling, Angus didn’t think twice about hauling my jumbo luggage along to my suite.

Checking into the Oriental Suite (one of four- the others are Indian, Sultan and Arizona), I had been moved due to the inconvenience and my resulting date change of Monarch folding, but in retrospect, I think this was in my favour. The divinely calming dark wood and four poster bed, is just what the doctor ordered. And the slate grey sofas, oriental lampshades and scented candles only added to the mysteriously seductive qualities of this hidden retreat.

Each suite comes with it’s own personality, and is decorated to a T. It might be somewhat twee for minimalists, but the attention is in the detail, and with a kitchenette, fully stocked fridge (manchego cheese, freshly squeezed orange juice and cava), while hot croissants and fresh bread are delivered to your door each morning to accompany the coffee beans. You have also have a freezer and log fire, numerous sofas, a kitchen table, cd player, full size bath, shower and own private balcony with plunge pool, meaning nothing was neglected. Apart from a TV. But who comes to a place as stunning as this to watch TV?

At just 45 minutes from Malaga airport, you can indulge in some serious downtime in a matter of hours. Set in the rural mountains, the fresh air will bring a glow to your cheeks, but in house spa menu treats are worth a peek too. I had the foresight to book in for a ninety minute full body massage on my day of arrival (pre booking required) as I knew that I needed to unwind, and what better place to do it, than half way up a mountain, listening to the faint sound of cowbells?

Guests come to Fountainhead for the tranquility, location, great food and amazing views. They leave feeling virtuous and smug! With a cute as a button gym, teeny tiny sauna, meditation space, yoga room and pilates classes for every level, you might not realise how easy it is to take time out for you, but as a lone traveller, I enjoyed every second of being selfish!

I even ventured into the Bath House for what can only be described as being back in the womb. A deliciously indulgent, mineral enriched hot tub awaited me in a candle lit cavern, and my only instructions were to lay back and float star-fish style for approximately 20 minutes, before scrubbing my city skin away with homemade salts and essential oils… The freedom of getting naked, coupled with erasing away my dead skin in the mountains, is as unusual as it gets. I could have been transported back to the dark ages, and even though this room was big enough for two, but I was quite happy hogging it all to myself.

My final treat was a facial which was undertaken by Amy, who is one of the siblings, and has the touch of an angel! I wasn’t expecting to notice too much difference, as I got forgone makeup for the duration of my stay, but even fresh faces can be improved with a natural exfoliating face mask!

Truth be told I had a bit of a crush on Angus, even though he was a good (aherm), decade younger than me. So polite and courteous, no request was too big or too small, and he certainly knows his cocktails! With other brothers and an unseen sister running the show, the Fountainhead is truly an exceptional family affair. Helen and Peter remain behind the scenes, cooking the delicious food and creating the art, but the rest of the family are well versed on cherishing your privacy and keeping a discreet eye on any requests.

The three nights flew by, as I slowly slipped out of my city ego, and just became content with being me! It was a great place to write- the inspiration from the landscape and the peace of it all was heaven in itself; And I even ventured out on a hike around the mountains (yes, I did bring boots!) and enjoyed the medley of flowers such as orchids, gladioli, wild sweet peas and barbary nut as well as looking out for the local eagles and woodpeckers.

Whatever you get up to in the daytime, the evenings are pretty spectacular. Still secluded, (but you might be sharing the restaurant with other guests) and at a time to suit, I headed through the meandering path, past the fishpond, cacti plants and palm trees, to the mountainside restaurant. I timed it so I could watch the dramatic sunset with a glass of cava, whilst perusing the mouthwatering menu, and then heading inside for some truly delicious homemade delights.

Having come to the Fountainhead to restore my batteries after a stressful few months, I can safely say that I left there floating! If you need to relax and unwind and are looking for peace and tranquility, this slice of heaven should be high up on your lust list.

For more details check out the website
www.fountainheadinspain.com/

Read about more of Sara’s travel adventures here >

Sara Darling, is Fashion and Content Editor of 55Factory, a freelance stylist and fashion, lifestyle and travel writer.

Having worked with a cross section of celebrities including Ana Matronic, Alexandra Burke, Eliza Doolittle, Craig Roberts and Will Poulter as well as for Channel 5’s CBB and E! Entertainment, she also regularly shoots fashion both here and abroad.
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Her commercial clients include Reebok, Gossard, Godiva and Foot Locker and an array of videos ranging from The Arctic Monkeys, The Freemasons, VV Brown and Vanquish.

No stranger to the media, Sara was featured in a ‘Women in Fashion’ TV documentary on Sky and participated in Twiggy’s reality show “Frock Swap” show on BBC2, gaining the top title “Top of the Frocks”; She has also been filmed for a “A day in the Life” for cable TV.

With her written work featured in Fault, Drafted, Beige and MSN Style, you can follow her on twitter @fashion_darling

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