HOTEL Boutique Elvira Plaza
Review by Fiona Flores Watson
Why should I stay there?
To stay on one of Seville’s prettiest and most historic squares, the tree-lined Plaza Doña Elvira, so you can explore barrio Santa Cruz on foot
Where is it?
The hotel is located right on the pedestrianised square, which is located in barrio Santa Cruz, close to the Alcazar. Many rooms overlook the plaza's orange trees with their lush foliage, providing essential shade in summer, and beautiful ceramic-tiled benches which line its cobbled walkways. The square is named after Doña Elvira de Ayala, and was the setting for Don Juan de Tenorio, the play on which Mozart's opera Don Giovanni was based - the object of his affections, Doña Ines, lived with her father in this very house.
The plaza has a long and turbulent history: at first it was located in the Muslim quarter of the city, then after the Reconquest by Fernando III, this square became part of the Jewish area, until the late 14th century when the Juderia was sacked. King Enrique III bestowed property and land upon Don Pedro and his daughter, the eponymous Doña Elvira, as a reward. Later on, Cervantes' plays were performed at the nearby corral de comedias (public theatre).
What kind of person stays there?
This hotel appeals to those who like small, quiet properties without luxury trappings, but with bags of charm. Note that taxis cannot take you right to the door, as the plaza itself is not accessible to cars, so those with mobility challenges might find it problematic.
What's it like?
A typically Sevillano white and albero-yellow building with wrought-iron balconies, the hotel is made up of three houses. It has just nine rooms, which vary from cosy to comfortable- The roof terrace has rosemary and lavender for the full scented-air experience, and views of the cathedral. A tapas bar and a restaurant sit on either side of the hotel entrance.
What are the rooms like?
Rooms have simple, white-painted walls, making them very light, and recycled wooden headboard and tables. The feel is rustic chic; original floor tiles and ceramic details add character. All rooms have Krups coffee machines, impressive in such a small hotel - the two suites looking onto the square have good-sized balconies, with canopies for shade and filled with jasmine and bougainvillea.
What should I eat there?
The tapas bar, Vinela, to the left of the hotel entrance, has lively, colourful décor and ancient stone columns, and offers dishes such as tartar of salmon and bull's tail croquettes, while Doña Elvira restaurant, the right on the corner with Calle de Gloria, is more formal and has traditional classics such as hake in green sauce and Iberian pork cheeks in sweet wine. Both places have outside terraces, so you can eat in the plaza.
What should I see and do in the area?
The old Jewish quarter of barrio Santa Cruz is a maze of picturesque windy streets, churches, museums, art galleries, and restaurants. The Alcazar and cathedral are five and ten minutes' walk away, respectively.
Hotel Boutique Elvira Plaza,
Plaza Doña Elvira 5,
Tel: 943 227 388