Wander into Can Calo on the majestic North-West Coast and you feel an overwhelming sense of tranquility.
This six-bedroom home lies between Deià and Valldemossa. It was built by Archduke Luis Salvador, the 19th century aristocrat who fell in love with this majestic coastline. At Can Calo you’re not far from Sa Foradada, the world-famous headland with a hole.
The Archduke built Can Calo around an ancient chapel. This, along with the gentle sea breezes, creates an air of exceptional serenity.
Born in Florence in 1847, Luis Salvador was a member of the grand House of Hapsburg-Lorraine. His family was exiled from Italy in 1859 when the country was reunited. He entered into a rootless existence drifting through Europe.
Prodigiously gifted, Luis Salvador spoke 14 languages and was tireless in his pursuit of knowledge, especially of botany and the natural world. In 1867, he arrived in Mallorca to write a book about beetles and fell hopelessly in love with the island, especially the stretch of coast from Valldemossa to Deià.
As his desire to protect and cherish the North-West Coast deepened, Luis Salvador began acquiring land and grand homes here. In 1872, he purchased Miramar, the former monastery built by philosopher mystic Ramon Llull in 1273. Not long after, he bought majestic Son Marroig, now a cultural centre, and made it his main home.
Luis Salvador didn’t only buy up the coast for his own private pleasure. He preserved and created paths and lookout points along the coast for Mallorquins and visitors to the island to enjoy. The Archduke also offered employment to many local people and helped preserve their traditional way of life.
The great Mallorquin poet, literary critic and cultural activist Josep María Llómpart described Luis Salvador as ‘a curious and encyclopaedic scientist, doomed to the most fabulous adventures, like a Jules Verne hero.’
Apart from his tireless efforts as a conservationist, the Archduke was a prolific writer. His seven-volume collection The Balearic Islands is an invaluable record of the natural history and wildlife of Mallorca.
The Archduke’s presence and his literary endeavours may well have also been one of the primary reasons the North-West Coast began attracting foreign visitors from the late 19th century onwards.
Among these were artists and writers who appreciated the unspoilt natural beauty of the area, including the German population who were in Deià even before Robert Graves arrived.
In fact, Archduke Luis Salvador created Can Calo in the 1880s as a refuge for visiting friends. He built approximately 30 houses.
At a time when Europe was in a state of turmoil with political unrest threatening the security of aristocratic families and the Industrial Revolution transforming everyday life it’s not hard to imagine what bliss it must have been to wake up under Can Calo’s roof.
In 1914, on the eve of WWI, the Archduke left his beloved Mallorca, not through choice. He died just one year later, perhaps of a broken heart.
Can Calo offers a space to enjoy a creative and healthy Mallorquin lifestyle to the full.
Enter the drive down to Can Calo and the air instantly becomes quiet and still. Intriguing paintings of ancient symbols on the tiles underneath the roof of the house add an air of romantic mystery.
You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how light, airy and spacious this recently renovated house is. Can Cala offers a cosy study, cinema, music and games rooms and a gym and sauna.
Room after room opens up to a vista in which olive terraces drop away from the surprisingly large pool and tennis courts down to clifftops and sea and sky merge at the horizon.
On one terrace, you spy life-size metal sculptures of two elephants and a giraffe that look surreal but oddly right at home.
Strolling outside, you realise that there’s plenty of room to dine al fresco and entertain guests who might perhaps be staying in the two-bedroom casita tucked away below the main house.
It’s clear that life at Can Calo is devoted to the principles by which Archduke Luis Salvador lived his life in Mallorca. Creativity, appreciating and preserving nature and sharing its abundance.
To find out more about Can Calo, offered exclusively by Charles Marlow, please get in touch with us at email@example.com