How about spending some time in a walled hilltop town in Spain that’s kept under the tourist radar? Add in art and cookery courses and time to relax and sightsee and you’re feeling tempted, right?
Villa operator, Trujillo Villas Espana has launched three new art and cooking courses for 2012.
The seven night course is based at Villa Piedras Albas, a grand Palazzo and one of Trujillo’s most historic properties. An important example of 16th century Renaissance architecture with a Florentine style arched loggia, Villa Piedras Albas overlooks the main square of the town, which is full of cafes and restaurants.
Guests on the course stay at the Palazzo and can relax in its walled garden, which has a swimming pool, a games area and a summer dining pavilion. Sounds good, doesn’t it.
The course includes two days of art tuition with English art teacher Noelle Griffiths, who focuses on individual requirements according to the level of expeience.
The final two days of the course are spent touring the area, including a guided cultural tour of Trujillo and a day trip to the Roman UNESCO World Heritage site of Merida.
The art course teaches basic observational skills for beginners and improving existing skills for the more experienced. Guests are given the opportunity to sketch local scenes, wildlife and Medieval architecture under expert tuition.
The two-day cooking course focuses on Iberic and Moorish cuisine with English cook Pippa Sharman. Local ingredients, such as Iberico ham and pimenton are used and guests learn how to make regional specialities such as Caldereta, a local lamb stew. Other dishes are heavily influenced by ingredients brough back from the New World by Trujillo’s conquistadors, such as chocolate, peppers, tomatoes and maize. Lunches are served in the garden, dinners on the loggia and the conquistador feast in the formal dining room.
Trujillo Villas Espana is the only villa operator in Trujillo with a portfolio of five properties. The seven night course costs £980 per person, including accommodation, tuition and all meals (excluding the Tapas lunch in Merida). Guests staying at one of Trujillo Villas Espana’s other villas can join the course on a daily basis from £95 per day.
Course dates for 2012 are 23rd-30th June, 15th-22nd September and 13th-20th October.
Trujillo is approximately two and a half hours from Madrid. It is advisable to hire a car or there is an express coach (www.avanzabus.com). Transfers from the local bus station are included. For more information and bookings visit http://www.trujillovillasespana.com or call 0207 385 5345.