Simon Rees has a luxury hotel in Mallorca – for dogs!
A glass of delicious-looking cava started it.
– Two friends had bubbly at Hotel Bendinat and sent me a photo. I decided Mallorca was irresistible, says the owner of Pooches Luxury Hotel for Dogs in Molinar, Simon Rees, with a chuckle.
Simon, originally from Wales, has been living on the island for a little more than three years now. Anyone who visits loves the stunning views of the turquoise sea from the luxurious penthouse at Simon’s Pooches Hotel. As we approach, we can see the sleek grey and clear crystal of the stylish facade, and hear the pitter patter of tiny paws, followed by some sweet yelps.
– Come in and join the crazy crowd, says Simon, and one by one six little doggy darlings approach the entrance to shower us with kisses.
There are two golden-haired spaniels, Kanga and Roo, who are just about to check out of the hotel. They have had a great holiday. They are bursting with energy and doggy love. Little Teacup is shy, and very cute, with a natural coat of brown and white, and loves getting attention.
Hooper is black and brown and looks a little sleepy in front of the telly. Definitely the relaxed vacation mode going on there. Remo, on the other hand, a gorgeous golden brown bundle of joy, bounces about a lot, as if she was in charge of the aerobics. Meanwhile, little Mallorcan princess Fudgie, the only permanent visitor at the hotel, likes to tell the other dogs who’s boss…WOOF!
Garden strolls and snuggles
Like the hotel director he is, Simon Rees uses just the right tone of quiet authority as he steers his clients, and the reigning diva duchess, about among the fancy facilities.
Downstairs the TV-room is full of lavish lounges and comfy dog beds, all meticulously cleaned every few days or so. If the hotel guests feel so inclined, the decorative garden next to it is available for strolls and sniffs, or even for a snooze in the shade.
Upstairs bedrooms, with real beds and dog beds, are ready for when the guests wish to get tucked in. Some dogs even get to snuggle under covers…
The Balinese Dog Bed
But long before then, the pièce de la résistance, the party area on the third floor beckons with treats and gossip. The penthouse provides panoramic views, a Balinese bed and a lovely sofa area, and lots of opportunity to watch dogs and people passing by.
What a wonderful existence, I can’t help wishing I was a dog that could check in too.
– Dog rates are 25 to 30 euros for 8 hours of day care and 40 euros including an overnight stay (pups are 50 euros), says Simon. And no, I have never regretted liking the look of the cava my friends were drinking in the photo they sent from Hotel Bendinat. I am so glad I came to Mallorca – I love my life here with the dogs!
In London Simon Rees worked with first banking, and later in property development in the northwest, buying properties, working on architectural aspects and seeing if the properties could be made better.
– I had a super life in London driving Bentleys and living in super glamorous homes, says Simon, who spent 25 years there before he decided to retire and enjoy life, just before turning 50.
– When Brexit was about to happen the economic climate was changing. and I needed to do something else. Mallorca provided a great opportunity to do that. When the last dog I owned, a chocolate coloured lab, died, my mother said I should never have another, but I missed having dogs in my life, and I know it is much easier to meet new lovely doggy people when you have dogs too. I decided a Luxury Hotel for Dogs might be just the thing for me.
Simon has two dear friends staying in houses some 20 metres away on each side of Pooches Hotel. Friends often come to see him, and bring their dogs over too. Thanks to Facebook and Instagram people with semi permanent or permanent homes on the island from Switzerland, Spain, Scandinavia, France, Germany and Britain have found Pooches Luxury Hotel for Dogs.
Most days there are 6 or 7 doggies staying there, and despite the time it takes to feed and entertain the clients, Simon has started a charity sideline as well.
– I wanted to give something back, Simon says. There are rescue dogs who badly need new homes, and I like to help provide dogs like that with good homes. We have placed 7 dogs so far, and have handed out lots of blankets, doggie beds and other dog items.
One of the dogs who needed a new home was lovely Fudgie, who actually spent two months with me as well, in my perfectly non-luxurious ordinary home in the centre of Palma, when her former owner had to go to hospital in the UK. Later, Fudge’s owner came back to Mallorca and Fudge returned to him. Eventually he had to take care of his health again in the UK, and Simon Rees opened his generous arms to include Fudge as a permanent resident at the marvellous Pooches Hotel.
– I absolutely adore her, even though she is bossy, says Simon, with a laugh, and whispers that she has got a boyfriend now too.
And guess what, it’s one of the frequent hotel guests….
It’s Kanga Spaniel ! Ooo, we love a bit of romance….
Text: Charlotte von Proschwitz.
Photo: Thomas Engstrom.
To contact the Luxury Hotel For dogs check out www.poocheshotel.com