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At a glance

  • You'll love

    Peaceful poolside

    Striking period details

    Soak-it-up scenery

  • Kids will love

    The pool and gardens

    Riding bikes and horses

    Skiing (in season)

  • Don’t expect

    Hi-tech (or even a TV)

    Walking-distance towns

    Endless facilities


Hidden among olive trees, the rurally romantic, family-friendly Cortijo del Marqués hotel is Andalucia’s little secret. This revamped 19th-century manor boasts 10 beautiful rooms steeped in history; you’ll love the quirky details, such as mangers in the master bedroom, and weeny winding staircases leading to tower-top chambers. With a child-friendly pool, secret gardens and endless countryside to roam, it’s the perfect playground for leisurely, lo-tech family getaways.

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking Cortijo del Marqués with us:

A small bottle of cava in your room and one free children's dinner on the first night

Special offers

Exclusive rates, packages and special offers at Cortijo del Marqués

10% off stays of 3 nights or more


‘This place is a peach: whitewashed walls, dark-wood shutters, surrounded by glorious olive groves and distant mountains – it’s an instantly soothing place to relax as a family’

Smith & Family


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Cortijo Del Marques hotel – Albolote – Spain

Need To Know


15 unique rooms, including four spacious suites.


12 noon, but flexible, subject to availability. Earliest check-in, 2pm.


Double rooms from £94.91 (€110), including tax at 10 per cent.

More details

Rates don’t normally include breakfast. Children Cots or extra beds for under 2s are free in parents' rooms; extra beds for children aged 2–14 are €20 a night; for older children, a bed in parents' rooms costs €35.


Tablet-tappers rejoice: WiFi stretches throughout the hotel and grounds.

Hotel closed

From the beginning of November to mid-March, every year.

At the hotel

Extensive grounds with outdoor pool; restaurant; free WiFi throughout. Mountain bikes (including children’s bikes) for hire (€10 each, or €25 for a family of four).

In your room

Minibar with free bottled mineral water (one litre a day), and La Chinata toiletries in bathrooms. Superior rooms have fluffy bathrobes.

Our favourite rooms

Each room is individual and offers something unique, be it period features or a piece of upcycled original furniture. All rooms have beautiful vintage tiled floors and many have wonderful views from oversized, old-fashioned windows. Rooms in the main house offer a little more luxe and a lot more daylight, but if it’s quirks you’re after (like the old pigeon niches in the middle of the El Palomar Suite, say) then book one of the outhouses. The majority of rooms will accommodate a Baby Smith in a cot as well as the two of you; we like La Cuadra on the ground floor for a stay with infants. La Casita is a petite duplex 'cottage' with a sitting room, master bedroom and second bedroom with two singles (although note that the bathroom only has a shower). The spacious suites also all sleep mum and dad, two children and a baby – of these, our favourite is La Iglesia with its roomy roll-top bath and rolling countryside and pool views. Los Aljibes is the largest family suite, sleeping up to three adults and three kids, with an add-on room that can be bolted on to your booking if you and your crew need all the space you can get. Its sunken, mosaic-tiled bath is flanked by the building’s vast old olive-oil cisterns. With original stone pillars set in stone 'wells' and rustic flooring, this suite isn't suited to kamikaze toddlers, though. Los Olivos is also particularly family ready.


The outdoor pool is self-contained and has a 1.25m shallow end (good for kids) but is unheated (less so). Watch them splash around from your lounger while also surveying the rolling hills beyond its low stoe walls. The hotel has a clutch of armbands and floats.


Staying in high summer? Staying in high summer? All of the Cortijo's rooms are blissfully air-conditioning cooled.

Book ahead

Want a babysitter on your last night so that the two of you can finish the holiday with dinner under the stars? Book both the table and the sitter at least two weeks in advance.


Small dogs can stay too, for free. Ask on booking – some guestrooms are pet-free.

Food and drink

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Cortijo Del Marques hotel – Albolote – Spain


For such a pretty place, it’s a shame the dining room’s looks are a little lukewarm. But really, who cares when the service is so personable and the food so lovingly prepared (there’s a wood-burning fire in colder months to add a little extra calor, and in summer, the arched glass doors are thrown open to let in all that country air). It’s one three-course menu suits all. Wherever possible ingredients for the modern Mediterranean dishes (think stewed veal with greens) come straight from the Cortijo’s market garden and orchard and there’s an Arabic oven in the grounds that can be lit for larger groups (if you’re in luck and there are enough of you, you’ll get to enjoy slow-cooked lamb or suckling pig).

Family fare

There’s a rotating collection of children’s dishes on offer, including spaghetti bolognaise, croquettes or Spanish omelette, and staff will always heat up baby food or bottles, too. There are booster seats and highchairs in the dining room for easy tot-feeding.

Hotel Bar

There’s no actual bar to sit at but you can always order a jug of sangria for lounging by the pool or sip a gin and tonic in the courtyard at sundown. Drinks are available throughout the day, and you can order plates of manchego, chorizo or Iberian jamón, too. The downstairs lobby is light and cool – perfect for morning coffee and a catch-up with the papers.

Last orders

Drinks and snacks are available all day, with the last drinks poured at 11.30pm.

Smith Insider

  • Top table

    If you’ve nabbed a babysitter, the candlelit tables play Cupid on summer nights, ripe for romance and a dinner à deux.

  • Also

    If you’re travelling with a baby and making up bottles of formula, room minibars contain bottled water; there's no room service though, and no kettles in rooms.


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Cortijo Del Marques hotel – Albolote – Spain

Parent approved

‘This place is a peach: whitewashed walls, dark-wood shutters, surrounded by glorious olive groves and distant mountains – it’s an instantly soothing place to relax as a family’

Smith & Family


English-speaking babysitters can be arranged for €20 an hour (minimum booking three hours; book at least a day in advance).


There are no monitors at the hotel – do bring your baby monitor from home but be aware that the further away your room is from the restaurant, the less chance you have of getting a signal.

What's there already?

For babies

• Travel cot • Cot bedlinen • Soft toys • Board books

For toddlers

• Booster seat • Cot beds • Cot bedlinen • Toddler-proof toys • Bicycles with training wheels • Bike helmets • Crayons/pens • Picture books • Swimming aids

For older children

• Mountain bikes • Bike helmets • Swimming aids


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Cortijo Del Marques hotel – Albolote – Spain

Things to do

With acres of rolling countryside to explore, you and your brood might choose never to venture much beyond el Cortijo’s boundaries. Borrow mountain bikes for all the family and get lost among the olive trees, or set out horse riding to scale the surrounds. They’ll find surprises around every corner, be it a little door leading to the swimming pool or a fountain in the courtyard. Kids are warmly welcomed from nappies up – although, without organised group entertainment onsite, older ones might get itchy feet if you’re staying for more than a day or two, and will need taking on trips beyond the estate.

Hotel activities

Beyond the pool, little ones can run (contained) riot in the entrance courtyard with its pretty fountain as you keep watch and order a heart-starting cortado coffee. Roaming the Cortijo’s grounds is like exploring a vast secret garden and, outside the gates, acres of land provide a natural playground to roam on one of the hotel’s mountain bikes; hire costs €10 each or €25 for a family of four. Older children can hike with you along endless dirt tracks with majestical mountains as a backdrop). If you visit in winter, it’s all about skiing the slopes of the nearby Sierra Nevada.

And there's more…

From April to October, the whole family can set out on horseback for an accompanied tour around the gorgeous groves and beyond, or have riding tuition. You don’t need a gold medal in dressage; everyone (aged 6+) can have a go, even if you’ve never ridden a horse in your life: instructors will lead your little ones out safely on ponies. Ask about special tours, such as moonlight rides. Riding costs €30 a person an hour; tours require a minimum of four people.

Local Guide

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Cortijo Del Marques hotel – Albolote – Spain
Smith tip

Book Alhambra tickets well in advance, especially in high season; select later time slots for Nasrid Palace tickets – they're a long way from the car parks and you'll have time to meander through other parts of the site first.

Don't miss…

… a day trip to the Playa Granada on the Costa Tropicale for sunbathing on the sand, swimming or snorkelling in the sea: ask Cortijo staff for directions.

This patch of Andalucia is the soul of real Spain. Beyond the Cortijo del Marqués, a journey to Granada takes in distant rugged mountains and fragrant orange and almond trees. There, you'll find the Alhambra – a sightseeing must – while wildlife-loving kids will wolf up the Lobo Park at Antequera.

Down the road from the Cortijo at Carretera Jaen in Albolote, Restaurante Romero (+34 (0)958 453 268) offers typical Spanish cooking via its decent €15 menu del día. There’s an outdoor terrace and bar and, on summer nights, you’ll often find the barbecue lit. The short kids’ menu is in Spanish only, but staff are super family-friendly and will go out of their way to help with little ones.

The Unesco World Heritage site of Alhambra (+34 (0)958 027 971) has a day's worth of wonders, including the 9th-century Alcazaba fortress, Nasrid Palaces and Generalife gardens. Intriguing history, beautifully landscaped grounds and spectacular feats of water engineering make for a fascinating archi-tour, and the converted palace stands today as one of Europe’s most important historic records of Moorish architecture. Book tickets well in advance to avoid lengthy queues (or the possibility of not getting in at all). The site is enormous, so pick your priorities. Little ones can play make-believe conquistador up turrets and on terraces, or hide-and-seek among ornate columns, hidden courtyards and fountains. Don’t forget to bring bottled water, snacks and sunscreen: the summer sun can be punishing. There are also two museums and various other monuments on site.

If you’re in Granada, stop by La Buena Vida at 12 Calle Almireceros (+34 (0)958 994 616). It has a good selection of Spanish beer and some excellent, keenly priced tapas (try the tapenade, goat’s cheese with honey or chicken paté). Lively, authentic and popular. You’re not going to find a highchair in here but the small portions of croquettes and meatballs are perfect for mini appetites. Expect it to get rowdier and busier as the evening goes on.

Support wolf conservation and learn about el lobo itself at Antequera’s Lobo Park Wolf Reserve (+34 (0)952 031107), about 40 minutes away by car. All the animals that roam free here do so in an entirely natural environment – most were reared within the park so they’re used to being around humans. This is a unique opportunity to observe these wild animals and their social practices – you can even visit for a Full Moon Party with a difference and watch the reserve’s residents howl at the proverbial moon. There’s a little zoo area where youngsters can meet foxes and goats as well as baby wolves – it has an educational bent, so your would-be park wardens will come away having learnt where cheese and milk come from, how a sheep’s woolly coat becomes a jumper, maybe even what came first, the chicken or the egg. Entry €11; €7 for under-12s

+ Enlarge
Cortijo del Marqués
Camino del Marqués, Albolote, Granada, 18220
Hotel setting

Among the olives

Getting There

Half an hour north of Granada, between Andalucia’s Sierra del Pozuelo and the Sierra Arana mountain ranges, Cortijo del Marqués is tucked away in Albolote, down a 4km-long gravelly road and surrounded by olive groves and fields of sunflowers and wheat.


Smallish Granada-Jaén Airport is 25km away – about 35 minutes by car – and receives visits from various domestic and European flights, with many connecting via Madrid or Barcelona. Malaga airport, a 90-minute drive, gets more and more frequent visits from international carriers.


Granada rail station is 30 minutes by car with connections to Malaga, Sevilla, Cordoba, Madrid and all other major Spanish towns (via Antequera).


If you want to get about independently you’ll definitely need to hire a car: the access road alone is 4km long. The hotel is just off the A44 that runs between Granada and Jaén. From the main road, take the 108 exit (marked Deifontes), turn onto the service road at the roundabout and then follow the signs. On-site parking is free. The GPS coordinates for the roundabout, from where the service road starts, are N37°19.515 and W3°38.157.

Parent travel tip

Don’t forget to book a baby seat or booster seats for your hire car.


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Cortijo Del Marques hotel – Albolote – Spain

Smith & Family  Parent Panel reviews

Every property featured in the Smith & Family collection – including Cortijo del Marqués – has been selected and approved by parents.

Getting to the Cortijo is part of the fun. Negotiate your way past 4km of potholes and you and the kids will be squealing with the adventure of it all. And once you open the unassuming door and walk into this centuries-old manor, that intrepid air will turn to a smug grin. The place is a peach – whitewashed walls, dark-wood shutters, surrounded by glorious olive groves and distant mountains: it’s an instantly soothing place to relax as a family. It was love at first sight for owner Silvia Roth-Bruggers, who poured her heart into its renovations, preserving all the Cortijo’s to-die-for period features: original tiles, solid beams, the stables’ old troughs and mangers. And boy did she make it ever-comfy, too, with crisp sheets, rainfall showers and roll-top baths. Food, like the renovations, is delivered with passion, kids are welcomed with open arms and the scenery’s so striking it’ll send your teen’s Instagram feed into overdrive.

Book babysitters so Mr & Mrs Smith can have a romantic moonlit ramble; explore secret gardens hiding a child-proofed pool; and roam fields of sunflowers on the Cortijo’s bikes or ponies. Why don't more families know about this place? Because those that do keep it to themselves…

Smith & Family

If holidays are about refreshing and recharging the senses, then this was a fabulous reboot. My abiding memory of our time at this small, relaxed, incredibly friendly hotel, is of my daughter and her new friends playing make-believe in the grounds of the hotel as a warm night descended and stars blanketed the inky sky. Free to roam safely, with imaginations fired by stories of the Alhambra and its dazzling royal history, the courtyard became a palace, and the long galleried space used for wedding receptions and parties, was a ballroom fit for princesses.

Add to this, happy memories of splashing in the walled pool (which we had to ourselves for much of our stay), enjoying air perfumed by honeysuckle. Lunch was brought to us in shady porticos by the sunloungers as the midday sun baked the mountaintops around us. The dramatic view of the Sierra Nevada in the near distance meant that we could listen to the thunder and lightning a few miles away while we reapplied our SPF…

Anonymously reviewed by Anna Jones, Hearst Media

The Guestbook  Smith member reviews

Whenever you book a stay at a Smith & Family hotel, we'll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what real-life family guests had to say about Cortijo del Marqués in the Guestbook below.


Stayed on

We loved

The pool, warm welcome, beautiful decor and relaxing atmosphere. Great experience for the children. The owners' children as well as those of other guests made great companions. Children were kept busy swimming, playing football, chess and other games that they invented.

Don’t expect

Access to technology

Rating: 10/10 stars


Stayed on

We loved

The peace and quiet, the beautiful surroundings - both inside and outside the hotel, and the food, and the staff, well everything really! We didn't leave the hotel once we arrived, had everything we needed there.

Don’t expect

Much happening, just enjoy the serenity.

Rating: 10/10 stars


Stayed on

We loved

So much! When you arrive at the Cortijo, surrounded by olive trees and mountains, you know you're heading for somewhere special. The hotel is completely walled, so you feel like you're entering your own special sanctuary, helped in part by the fact that there is a beautiful old chapel on site. The suite we had (La Iglesia) was huge and full of history, as well as incredibly comfortable and with beautiful views of the Cortijo and surrounding countryside. The owners and staff were very welcoming and helpful and it was lovely to see the owners and their two impeccably behaved (and we think trilingual!) children dining with us in the restaurant in the evenings. All in all, a really fabulous stay. We were very sad to leave after four nights.

Don’t expect

A lively nightlife - this is definitely a peaceful location. To be satisfied with only staying one night - make it two at a minimum!

Rating: 10/10 stars


Stayed on

We loved

The room - with original features including horse troughs from the old stable. The courtyard, and the setting.

Don’t expect

Buzzing nightlife.

Rating: 10/10 stars