Transport yourself to an unspoilt corner of the world rich in history and heritage.
Aracena is steeped in history, culture and links to its past. In this traditional Andalusian enclave it is easy to experience many of these customs first hand, in a very authentic way.
Plan your visit to coincide with a local Romeria or Feria, or Semana Santa, and you will feel like you have stepped back in time. Traditional music, dress and celebrations are nurtured in this area, and for the tourist provides insight into a time gone by.
For the avid enthusiast, La Casa Noble's library also contains many books covering the intriguing history of Andalusia!
The town of Aracena sits in the "Sierra de Aracena y Picos de Aroche", one of the largest nature reserves in Europe. The town is presided over by the ruins of a 12th century Moorish fortress which was destroyed by Napoleon's army during the war of 1812 and a 15th century gothic-mudejar church built by the Knights of the Templar. The walk up to the castle is well rewarded with gorgeous sweeping views extending all the way to Portugal.
Aracena is situated one hour by car from Seville and three hours from Lisbon. It is about one hour away from the beaches of Huelva and less than two from Jerez de la Frontera, the city made famous by its Sherries and dancing Andalusian horses. In short, Aracena is well positioned to serve as a home base to explore the many attractions that Andalusia and the Southern Iberian peninsula have to offer.
In February 2004 in the Andalusian town of Aracena, the historic home now known as Hotel "La Casa Noble" was purchased.
Built at the turn of the 20th century, this historic home needed a great deal of restoration and reconstruction to bring it to the level of comfort it is today and convert it into Aracena's leading luxury accommodation.
The house reflects local Andalusian elements, in particular many well maintained frescoes, the "piece de resistance" being that of the formal dining room where the elaborate frescoes adorn both the walls and the ceiling.
The heart of the house is the central staircase which is flooded by natural light from the glass rooftop pyramid - a typical Andalusian architectural feature in buildings of its era.
While we have made a conscious decision not to have any modern intrusions upon your space in your rooms, we have an extensive collection of DVD's that are available to be viewed in the screening room. We also have a library of books written in English that we invite you to peruse and enjoy.
Our restored historic home is now the perfect boutique hotel and we have much pleasure inviting you to share this spectacular home with us to give it the love and attention it deserves.
During the restoration process much care was taken to preserve many of the original elements, with original doors being transformed into furniture and art works, and antique floor tiles have been mixed with new for maximum effect and continuity.
We recognise that we are a part of this home's ongoing history, and during the three years of the restoration process, have engaged many of the local artisans in recreating this beautiful historic home to provide every modern comfort in an exceptionally picturesque part of the world.
The frescoes were the reason we fell in love with this enchanting house, and the rehabilitation and protection of them a key consideration throughout the construction. Many of the frescoes that you see in the house today are in original condition, yet amazingly they are still fresh and vibrant.
Unfortunately, water damage had destroyed large sections of the frescoes in the formal dining room. The restoration of this room was particularly challenging needing five different passes with the various colours to complete the intricate design. If you look closely at the ceiling in this room you can see that whatever image was originally in the ovals has been removed somewhere along the history of the home. Just why remains a mystery and we have to chosen to leave this section "untouched" as a reminder of the house's past.
An Australian by birth, Melanie Denny moved to Aracena from Los Angeles in 2004, having worked in the garment trade in the United States for 10 years.
Having fallen in love with the property now known as La Casa Noble and possessing a passion for design, she set about redesigning and restoring this grand house into the stunning architectural celebration of old and new that it is today. She also indulged in her passion for oil painting in creating the canvases for Serenidad and Castillo along with lending a hand restoring the frescos.
It is Melanie's fine eye for detail, respect for the historical elements of the architecture and determination to ensure quality in even the most minute details that have seen La Casa Noble restored to the grandeur of days gone by.
Melanie has sought out and featured the work of the areas most accomplished artisans, who have, through their talents and skills, maintained a traditional Spanish ambience in the house.
There has been extensive work done by the master craftsmen of Muebles Sayto under Master Carpenter Ceferino Dominguez Tovar from Galoroza, a nearby village renowned throughout Spain for its quality carpentry.
All of the exterior doors have been replaced with new doubled glazed handcrafted doors using local aged chestnut. The blending of new and original doors within the interior of the house is achieved seamlessly by these craftsmen and ensures the integrity of the original home is intact.
Being as the house is highly decorative in nature, it was important to use not just a painter, but an artist, to complete the painting of the home.
Manolo Romero Rodriguez and Luis Dominguez Dominguez of Pinturas Aracena were able to meet the challenge.
Manolo painstakingly restored the frescoes with great attention to detail and hand tinted the wall colours for each room ensuring they were exact.
The talents of Luis were called upon in the application of Venecian Plaster to the bathroom walls transforming them into sanctuaries for your retreat.
It was decided early on that due to the intrinsic decorative nature of the house, a key feature of each room would be an original piece of art.
A young American artist, Rhea Rebbe, was commissioned to produce the head boards in Madrugada, and original works in Mariposa and Nobleza suites.
After completing her degree in Fine Art at the University of Southern California, Rhea spent time in La Casa Noble as its first ever "Artist in Residence" using the time to complete her pieces while inspired by the tranquillity of the Sierras.
More information about Rhea and her work can be found at www.rhearebbe.com.
Tile artist Patrick-Henri Gougne of Azulejos Terra-Viva Portugal, a ceramics workshop specializing in the creation of decorative tile panels, was commissioned to create the stunning "Three Swooning Women" piece featured in the Jacuzzi Garden.
Using the slip technique and paints specially prepared for the design, the panel consists of 15x15 tiles which are entirely hand-painted. Patrick worked closely from photos of the original sculpture - which can be found in the Parque Maria Luisa in Seville - and line art created by Melanie Denny to complete the piece with his own embellishments infusing it with a truly whimsical quality.
More information on his work can be found here.
The Sierras of Aracena and Peaks of Aroche are dotted with tiny white washed villages and towns, typical of Andalusia.
Each town and village fiercely maintains its own traditions and because they tend to be staggered throughout the year, it is easy to enjoy virtually all of them.
Many of the fiestas have religious significance but can be enjoyed by all as truly cultural celebrations of traditional dance and song.
Whether it be a Romeria (religious pilgrimage), a bullfight, local village fiesta, celebration of local product or Semana Santa, the ferias and festivals of the region are the purest display of everything that is intrinsically "Andalus" - they are the window to the soul of Southern Spain.
For more details look on the
Aracena website under 'Turismo' for 'Fiestas y Tradiciones'
Unlike all other celebrations in Spain, Semana Santa; literally "Holy Week", is a sombre time of quiet reflection. It is, however, no less enjoyable.
Week-long celebrations are held throughout the country, the first on Palm Sunday and culminating on Easter Saturday, honouring and re-enacting the last week of Jesus Christ's life. The most famous in all of Spain is held in Seville and although Aracena's celebrations are much smaller than those of the nearby Andalusian capital, they are no less dramatic or less moving.
With the gorgeous backdrop of the Templar Castle Church and the ruins of the 12th Century Moorish fortress, it is difficult to imagine a more beautiful or magical setting for this longstanding Spanish tradition. We would highly recommend taking it all in from the terrace of La Casa Noble for a truly unique and unforgettable Easter experience.
Every care has been taken to ensure that your stay here in La Casa Noble is unique and memorable - and for all the right reasons. We want you to enjoy the time spent in your room as much as the time you spend exploring Aracena and our beautiful area.
Unlike a hotel, each luxury suite has been designed to have its own unique feel and character and we invite you to explore and find the room that suits you best.
While each has its own mood, every suite includes the following: