Parador de Limpias - 19th century palace (4*)
The Parador is only a short drive from the coast in the village of Limpias. Conveniently situated just south of the point half way between Bilbao and Santander, an easy distance to drive to either city, their airports or ports. The Parador de Limpias comprises a 20th-century palace designed by Emilio de la Torriente for a local nobleman.
The original Palacio de Eguilior was used as the summer home of the council of King Alfonso XIII (reigned 1886–1931). It is surrounded by 5 hectares of park land containing so many rare specimen trees that it has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
A recently added extension to the palace is a light and airy modern wing, designed in the Bauhaus style. It offers bright, spacious rooms. The entrance to the palace grounds consists of a 20th century arch, truly reflecting its noble history. A pretty courtyard to the front of Parador de Limpias is perfect for evening strolls leading into the grounds. These include expansive gardens, a tennis court and a swimming pool (which is open in peak summer). The interior of the Parador has all the elegance one would expect of a former palace. Guests are greeted by a grand staircase fit for royalty. Other facilities available at the Parador include a gym.
The Parador de Limpias boasts a restaurant which comes with excellent reviews. Its menu includes seafood from the nearby coast, such as Marmita (a traditional fisherman’s stew) and clams sautéed in parsley sauce. Hearty fare from the Cantabrian mountains, such as Cocido montañés (a bean and sausage casserole) also features on the menu. The large dining room offers lovely views over the river and the countryside along its banks.