The sea and a vast ecological garden elevate the experience of the Pepe Vieira hotel

Paying tribute to the seas, the species that inhabit it and the people who work there, is one of the main sustainability messages of the Pepe Vieira Hotel, a luxury venue that has the privilege of coexisting with the rural charm of Pontevedra and the Rías Baixas. Located in the middle of the Serpe road in Raxó, in the Galician council of Poio, Pepe Vieira, member of the sustainable hotel firm Relais & Chateauinvites tourists to live with nature, along with its organic gardens, its capsule rooms in the middle of the mountain and the fascinating gastronomic proposal.

Sleeping in the Raxó

Buildings, cities and worries often make us forget about rural environments, but what would happen if our daily life consisted of sleeping in a green environment? Wouldn’t we value it more? Under this concept, Pepe Vieira has 14 sheds in the middle of nature, which are protected only through giant windows. From this point, guests can enjoy a starry sky, the splendor of sunrise or a rain spectacle, in the comfort of their beds. These rooms have been built very carefully, to ensure that the environment is not damaged. Likewise, the hotel has a ecological gardencovered terrace, solarium and a seasonal pool.

Pepe Vieira It works with a philosophy based on respect for the environment, considering that in its spaces, nature is the boss. It has 15,000 m² of garden, where it is home to more than 200 tree species, some are cultivated and others are wild. In its surroundings we will also find some animals such as rabbits, deer, foxes, wild boars, as well as countless passing birds.

Pepe Vieira – Sustainable Hotels AyC

From the garden to the mouth

In addition to the attractive facilities, Pepe Vieira houses a restaurant with a gastronomic proposal that exceeds all the limits of excellence.

Perhaps one of the great secrets of the chef, Pepe Vieira, is precisely the use of plants from his garden and seafood from the nearest seas. Despite pursuing a professional career abroad, the chef always lived in love with his land, and returned to implement his techniques in this project, which was previously his grandparents’ farm.

For this reason, in their dishes, the flavor is linked to the history of Galicia, also building the argument of «The last kitchen in the world»in which anthropological research and a combination of the origins of Galician cuisine with the gastronomic avant-garde are taken as a reference.There are four fundamental axes that it puts on the table: The recovery of forgotten foods from traditional gastronomy, the rescue and reinterpretation of ancestral recipes, the experimentation of ancient techniques and the conversion of new gastronomy with a narrative based on the Galician intangible heritage.

In addition, the chef follows the international agreements of Relais & Chateâux, which consists of not including endangered species such as European eels in his menus. Specifically, the members of the Relais & Châteaux World Culinary Council have voted to immediately eliminate eel from their menus and have called on 580 hotels and restaurants in the group to do the same. This follows an alert from its NGO partner Ethic Ocean, which calls on public authorities to listen to scientists who recommend suspending fishing for European eel (Anguilla anguilla), a critically endangered species according to the IUCN Red List. ICES scientists have warned about the alarming decline of this species over the last 20 years and, in the last three, have recommended suspending fishing. Relais & Châteaux urges European Union ministers to take the necessary measures to protect this species in December. This effort follows a similar approach to that adopted in 2009 to save bluefin tuna stocks in the North Atlantic and Mediterranean.

Los Maios, Aromatic spring leaves and flowers with elderberry gel and rhubarb jam.  Pepe Vieira Hotel
Los Maios, Aromatic spring leaves and flowers with elderberry gel and rhubarb jam. Pepe Vieira HotelPEPE VIEIRA HOTEL

Under these parameters three menus are created: “Romasanta”, “O Señor de Andrade” and “A Santa Elección”, ranging from nine, six and three courses, respectively. The Bento Box is another room service culinary experience. It is an elegant wooden box, designed to be assembled into a table and seats inside the shed. Finally, Pepe Vieira presents its gastronomic breakfast as a novelty, a proposal with which it raises the standards of its establishment very high, as it is probably the only tasting breakfast in Spain. Although it has been recognized since its opening in 2000, with two Michelin Stars, a Green Michelin Star and Two Repsol Suns, the merits are few for the quality that this kitchen offers.

Beyond the hotel, exploring the wonders of the municipality of Poio is also a good idea, as we will be able to discover the beauty of Tambo Island and the picturesque towns that surround it. Only after having taken this tour will we understand the reason for the efforts of Pepe Vieira for preserving this wonderful environment.