Deià – the artists’ village

The streets are narrow and decorated with colourful flowers. The shops, galleries, studios and boutiques are numerous, with temptation everywhere for potential customers. Deià on the north-western coast of Majorca is striking for its many carefully restored houses in the old village centre and its stepped paths. It is called the artists’ village because painters, actors, writers and composers have felt magically drawn to this place.

Pablo Picasso, for example, and Peter Ustinov, Ava Gardner, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Mati Klarwein, Pierce Brosnan, Anaïs Nin…The English poet and writer Robert Graves was so fascinated by Deià that he settled in the mountain village permanently in the 1920s. He lived there for more than half a century until his death in 1985.

Insights into the life and works of Robert Graves

The poet is laid to rest in the graveyard, which has an idyllic location next to the old church, overlooking the village. The stages of his life are documented in the Casa de Robert Graves on the Deià–Sóller road, where the original house furnishings have been preserved. Even his desk and original manuscripts are still there.

An important visitor – Sissi

The enterprising Austrian Archduke Ludwig Salvator (1847-1915) also became interested in Deià and he bought the nearby Son Marroig estate. Its circular white marble pavilion is familiar to many. He sometimes received aristocratic visitors, such as his cousin “Sissi” – Empress Elisabeth – who sojourned there, relishing the special place in the sun with a beautiful sea view. Sissi would have gazed not only at the deep blue of the sea, but also the peninsula of Sa Foradada. This feature has gained celebrity status in the photography world because of a circular hole in the rock…Today, Son Marroig houses a museum containing items in which the Archduke once took pleasure, including furniture, crockery and Majorcan paintings. The estate is also the setting for classical music concerts that you can enjoy there during the Deià International Music Festival.

Wonderful food, fantastic swimming

If you like good food, check out the Michelin-starred restaurant “Es Racó d’es Teix” owned by German chef Josef Sauerschell. There, you can tuck into mouth-watering dishes such as turbot with a herb crust or rack of lamb with caper sauce. This Michelin restaurant has been an institution on the island since 1999. If you want somewhere really nice to stay, why not book into the luxury Hotel La Residencia, which is now part of the Belmond chain. And in the hot summer, Cala de Deià – a little rocky bay with a shingle beach – beckons you to cool down in its crystal clear waters.