A 17th Century Convento Offers Respite for the Weary Traveler
Adapted from its original use to become a respite from the 21st century, a 17th century convent has been renovated to become the Convento de la Parra. The hotel offers books and games, and calming and reflective places, but no televisions or radios, and the management discourages the use of cell phones, all to further a quiet reflective retreat.
What it does offer is simplicity, kindness, comfort, calm, proximity, pleasure and tranquility. The virtues of ancient religious architectural design are adapted for a modern use in this convent that has been converted into a retreat for the weary traveler of the 21st century.
Thick walls and shutters act to cool the interior effectively, the long-lost natural way, as they have done in cloistered monasteries and convents for centuries.
In addition to the naturally green passive cooling effects of the thick walls, as former cloisters the hotel offers perfect spaces of light and silence, in perfectly balanced architectural proportions.
But with the modern-day travelers’ need for recuperation and rest from the hectic life of travel – hospitality architects have much to learn about peace and tranquility in design from the rule-based proportioning systems of the religious architecture of the past.
The religious architecture of the convent adapts quite well to the needs of the present-day traveler.
Even the serene pool area (while not included in the original 17th century convent!) embraces the overall historical proportions of the convent.
Children under 12 are not admitted, as the retreat is designed as a quiet, reflection-friendly space just for grownups.