” El Hotel Rural El Patio is declared by local authorities to maintain its high ecological, historical and heritage value”
A short trip over the history of Hotel Rural El Patio
The land upon which the hotel El Patio is located, known as “Malpais” (badlands), was given to Cristóbal de Ponte in 1507. This gentelman, a banker from Genova, lived from 1447-1554 and was the founder of Garachico.
The chapel at the entrance was built by Juan de Ponte in 1565 and was called Nuestra Señora de la Consolación. The chapel is used for mass and can be visited. In 1608, the king of spain -Felipe II-, gave Melchor de Ponte y Prieto the first mayorazgo (land title) of Tenerife. Throughout the past for centuries, the house has grown and adapted according to the crops planted and consequently we know that the layout of the house in the past was as follows
The chapel at the entrance was built by Juan de Ponte in 1565 and was called Nuestra Señora de la Consolación. The chapel is used for mass and can be visited.
The Salon, originally a granary store/barn, was later the coach house and later still the garage. Room nº1, was the turbine room for the electric generator in the 1940s, and later became the workshop for mechanical repairs. Room nº2, was the kitchen for the five families who lived in rooms 3 to 8. Room nº 9 and nº 10 were the servants quarters, 11 to 14 were at first a bodega to keep the renowned malmsey wine, later a packing shed for tomatoes and most recently my grandmother´s rooms. Rooms 15 to 18 were the animal cowsheds built 200 years ago. The little garden at the entrance was the chicken coop and next to this, there is a greenhouse for houseplants.
The dragon tree that presides over the patio is about 400 years old and the palm trees were planted by my grandmother in 1902.
The canary mansion stands out in the middle of the property, a large building with a central courtyard. The structure is made up of canary pitch pine, balconies, staircases, galleries and accommodation for the workers on the estate. The entrance to the main house was an extension built at the beginning of the century. As you enter you see the Ponte coat of arms over the staircase, on the right those of Castilla, Ayala and Guzman, made in Genova (this used to be in the house of Marquis in Garachico in the main square) and on the left the coat arms for the Prieto family.
The little house next to the chapel was used by Augustinian monks from 1662-1701, when their monastery was destroyed by fire in 1706 when Garachico was engulfed by lava.
At that time, the Prieto household moved to Malpais.
The chapel is of worked stone, carved with moulds, a half pointed archway is the entrance the altar is neoclassical. The most valuable painting is the central one –the adoration of the kings and is of Flemish origin. All the wood used in pulpit and walls is of Canary pitch pine and the wall hangings are of damask.
At the entrance of the farm there are two enormous water reservoirs. The square one takes 38 million liters and the circular one 13 million liters. These storage tanks were built by the last generation using rudimentary tools and methods, such as baskets, spades, and a cart to tip out the rubble which can be seen below on the left. Construction of the largest one began in 1939 and it took two years to build. 50 labourers worked on this. The 51 million litres are enough to provide irrigation for the farm for 1 month. If you look up to the mountain you will see a water gallery. About 1600 meters of penetration has been necessary to obtain water.
The farming estate that you are staying on is made up of 60 hectares of land and 40 years ago was made up of 60% lava stone. My forebears had earth bought down from the mountains and higher ground, organized drainage and a layer of top soil in order to plant bananas. Today, the farm is irrigated by a mechanical system but it used to take 15 men to water the plantation. The banana that is grow here is the Cavendish, a small but resistant type of banana, the sweetest of them all.
Hotel Rural El Patio, Finca Malpais, 11
38450 El Guincho,Garachico
Santa Cruz de Tenerife
N 28º 22' 34.801 / W 16º 44' 20,662