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Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance +44 (0) 800 917 5992

Lovely Private House And Garden With Open, Beautiful Views Of The Alhambra

Bedrooms 5
Separate WC's3
Space 2,500 sq ft
Property type house
Minimum Stay 3 nights


About the property

Five Bedroom Private Retreat In The Heart Of The Historic Albayzin Neighborhood

The Albayzin is a legendary neighborhood of white-washed houses, secret gardens and narrow cobblestone streets. Roses, jasmine and plumbago cascade over high walls and residents step through dark wooden doors into lanes of dappled light and shade. Many visitors explore the Albayzin, but never get a chance to experience first-hand the hidden beauties of its historic "carmens", which are houses with walled gardens.

This five bedroom villa, in the heart of the Albayzin, is the private home of writer Steven Nightingale, who lived here with his wife Lucy Blake, and their daughter Gabriella while writing his acclaimed "Granada, A Pomegranate in the Hand of God". The house is full of antiques and family treasures meant to welcome you into the intimacy of a lovingly restored home. From the moment you walk into the cool front hall, with dazzling blue and white tiles from the 19th century, you are in a surround of beauties: painted ceilings, stained-glass windows over a century old, ancient tiled floors, and a fragrant garden alive with fruit trees, cooing doves, and the sound of running water. Day and night, the silhouette of the Alhambra dominates the skyline, as it has done for more than seven centuries.

The house is organized around a peaceful garden and patio, where water splashes softly from a octagonal marble fountain, flowing into a small "alberca" or pool used in Moorish times to cool the air and delight the eye. To the right of the entry way is a cozy, wood-paneled living room with a working fireplace and hand-painted windows, the perfect place to gather on cold winter nights, or retreat from the heat in summer. The kitchen and dining room are one big space, made for cooking, eating and enjoying the company of good friends and family. Small touches - like beautiful hand-made plates from the Fajalauza ceramic workshop in the upper Albayzin and bright yellow and white tiles in the star and cross pattern -- testify to the enlivening legacy of al-Andalus.

The main house has three bedrooms upstairs: the master bedroom with a queen bed and a balcony looking straight out to the Alhambra; and the Arab Room with a queen bed, stained glass windows with inset six-pointed stars, and a stucco band of Arabic inscriptions copied from the Alhambra. The third room, Gabriella's room, has a single bed, and on its walls original murals painted in the 1920s, showing children playing traditional games. These three bedrooms share a spectacular Moroccan-style bathroom, with an arched shower and bath and hand-painted tiles imported from Fez.

Taking the narrow stairs up to the third floor, you arrive at a library and study, with internet access, two desks, and a vaulted ceiling. The study's double doors open onto a terrace with astounding 360 degree views, from the original 11th century city walls to the houses and gardens of the Albayzin cascading down the hillside to the River Darro below. And, so close that you feel you could touch it: the Alhambra. Enjoy a drink on the terrace before dinner or come back after dinner to sit under the stars and savor the cool breezes flowing from the mountains.

Two additional bedrooms -- one with a queen bed and one with a double bed -- give directly onto the garden. Each has its own half bath and between them is a shower room with pinwheel tiles copied from a wall just outside thte Throne Room of the Alhambra. Outside the garden rooms, the garden is thick with scent, of orange and lemon, pomegranate and persimmon, jasmine, roses, mock orange and rosemary.

In spring, summer and fall, guests may eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner outside on a marble table shaded by an ancient grape arbor. After lunch, canvas chairs can be tilted back for a siesta in the shade before you venture forth to explore more of Granada.

The house has high speed internet access, a DVD player for movies, and a Bluetooth music player, but no television. It also has a washer and dryer that you are free to use.

Your hosts will leave you tips on their favorite restaurants in Granada, where to buy groceries and wine, how to find beloved walks in the hills above the Alhambra, who you can call to brush up on your Spanish, where you can see flamenco guitar, and other suggestions to make your visit memorable.

Travelers should be aware that the Albayzin is a quiet residential neighborhood, where the neighbors are close by. It is emphatically NOT a place for loud and boisterous parties that are disruptive of the tranquillity of the residents in the Albayzin. It is a place for families, for quiet gatherings, and good will, and we ask that all visitors respect the lives of our neighbors and the peace of the barrio.

We hope that our home will be a source of joy and delight for you, just as it has been for us. Go in peace.

More Details

Steven Nightingale
Member since: 2015
Premier Partner

This partner has demonstrated and is committed to fast response times, the best rates, and a great guest experience.

Speaks English, French, Spanish
Response time:
Within a day
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
18 May, 2018

About Steven Nightingale

Steven Nightingale is the author of Granada, A Pomegranate in the Hand of God (or, in the English edition, Granada, The Light of Andalucia). He and his wife, Lucy Blake, moved with their daughter Gabriella to Granada in 2003 and restored the Carmen de Nuestra Señora de la Purificacion. Steven is also the author of six collections of sonnets, two novels, reviews, and essays on education and the wilderness of the American West. The family now divides their time between the San Francisco Bay Area and Granada.

Steven Nightingale purchased this house in 2002


Accommodation and facilities for this holiday house in San Pedro in Albaicín

Property Type:
  • house
  • Self-catering
Floor Area:
  • 2500 sq ft
House Rules:
  • Max. occupancy: 7
  • Minimum Age Limit for Renters ...
  • children welcome
  • non smoking only
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Clothes Dryer
  • Fireplace ...
  • Hair Dryer
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room
  • Telephone
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Coffee Maker ...
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Kitchen
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Hob
  • Toaster
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 8 people
  • 2 Bathrooms
  • 3 Separate WC's
  • Bathroom 1 - Toilet , Bath (no shower) , Shower Enclosure , Lovely Moroccan-style bathroom in main house.
    Bathroom 2 - Toilet , Downstairs bathroom in main house.
    Bathroom 4 - Toilet , Private half bath for Small garden room
    Bathroom 3 - Toilet , Private half bath for Corner garden room
    Bathroom 5 - Shower Enclosure , Shared shower room between two garden rooms.
  • 5 Bedrooms, Sleeps 7
  • Master bedroom - Main house - 1 Large Double Bed , Great view of the Alhambra.
    Arab room - Main house - 1 Large Double Bed , Superb 19th C stained glass windows and Moorish stucco work.
    Gabriella's room - Main house - 1 Single Bed , Lovely little room with 100 yr murals of children at play
    Corner garden room - Garden access - 1 Large Double Bed , Tucked into the corner of the garden with a fountain outside
    Small garden room - Garden access - 1 Double Bed , Lovely room accessed from garden.
  • Books
  • DVD Player
  • Games
  • Stereo ...
  • Balcony ...
  • Terrace ...
  • Garden
  • wheelchair inaccessible
Pool / Spa:
  • Private Pool ...


Wonderful! 4.9/5 -
(14 traveller reviews)

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Lovely Private House And Garden With Open, Beautiful Views Of The Alhambra
average rating of 4.928571 based on 14 reviews

Albayzin paradise!

  • 5 of 5

We were excited about this Carmen from the pictures but they really don't do it justice. The house is like taking a step a back in time. It is very well appointed and fit our family of 7 very comfortably. The neighborhood is so interesting and fun and the views! You can't overstate the views of the Alhambra from the garden courtyard and top floor terrace.

We also had the pleasure of using the local contact as a guide (Arturo). He was fantastic in orienting us to the house and taking us on walking tours of the neighborhood and city.

  • Review Submitted: 22-Apr-2018
  • Date of Stay: April 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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Great location

  • 4 of 5

This was such an interesting and authentic experience to stay in this lovely home! We especially liked the gorgeous view and the fresh fruit/wine on arrival. We loved making fresh orange juice each morning. This home is a hundred years old so expect a few quirks (old key locks and radiator noises) but still would stay here again.

  • Review Submitted: 15-Apr-2018
  • Date of Stay: March 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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Richmond, Surrey

Wonderful house, perfect location

  • 5 of 5

The booking process was smooth and Steven promptly answered our questions, and we were met by the local manager and given a wealth of information on our walk to the Carmen (house). The location was perfect with stunning views of Alhambra, and the restoration of the Carmen was amazing, lots of original features, and lovely outdoor areas. We were 5 adults staying and had plenty of space. The orange and lemon trees were in fruit so we had lovely juice, fruit to eat and cook with, as well as olives. The staircase to the study and roof terrace is indeed steep (and I'd prefer a banister) and the views were amazing. We had a couple of 'quirks' with lighting and keys, and had a prompt response to assist, thank you. Lots of local information and we followed the owners' recommendations on restaurants, days out, and taxi back to the airport, and all were excellent, thank you. We would love to come again!

  • Review Submitted: 05-Aug-2017
  • Date of Stay: July 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Unique house in a great location with an amazing view of the Alhambra.

  • 5 of 5

The house is absolutely perfect if you want an authentic experience in Granada. There is no air conditioning (and itvwas very hot while we were there) but we didn't mind. The wifi only worked sporadically and on the top terrace. But this was fine as well. The house has amazing views of the Alhambra, especially at night. The views made it all worth it. Also, there are 5 bedrooms so everyone had their own room. The house is unique and beautiful. We enjoyed it.

  • Review Submitted: 28-Jun-2017
  • Date of Stay: June 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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  • 5 of 5

Well located comfortable Carmen with astounding views close to marvelous restaurants.

  • Review Submitted: 20-May-2017
  • Date of Stay: May 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Fantastic position . Great accomodation ,just a very relaxing and unique experience .

  • 5 of 5

Beautifully appointed house with everything you need and the view is amazing .

  • Review Submitted: 30-Sep-2016
  • Date of Stay: September 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Prices & Availability

Ask Owner a Question

Additional pricing information

Damage Deposit £439.13

The Albaicin is a largely pedestrian neighborhood with narrow cobblestone streets on a steep hill facing the Alhambra. It is not an easy place for anyone with mobility issues to access.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

100% refund for cancellations more than 30 days before check-in date.

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