Castillo de Buen Amor - Salamanca

If you are not satisfied with just eating a meal without experiencing something new and interesting, then the Castillo de Buen Amor is definitely the place for you. Time appears to have stood still at this Medieval castle just outside Salamanca, which has now become a hotel and restaurant for history enthusiasts.

The Restaurant

Castillo de Buen Amor

Being a Spanish castle from the Medieval Ages, it comes as no surprise that this building and the restaurant and hotel within are full of history. The castle itself is actually called the 'Castillo Villanueva de Cañedo' or the 'Castillo de Fonseca'. The castle has been dated to the year 1227 when Spain was under the rule of King Alfonso IX. The castle was built in a Gothic architectural style but incorporates many elements of a Mozarabic influence such as the use of arches and criss-cross patterns - hardly a shock if you consider that the Moors occupied Spain for around 700 years!

According to a popular, and tongue-in-cheek, legend, the castle later became known as the 'Castillo de Buen Amor' or Castle of Good Love when it was taken over by the Archbishop of Santiago, Don Alonso de Fonseca, and his lover. However recent studies have revealed that this legend was probably not true and was actually named after the Archbishop's cousin, Don Alonso de Fonseca Quijada, who was himself a Bishop of many Spanish cities. However this Bishop also lived here with his lover and his children, so either the way, the name stuck!

Don Alonso de Fonseca Quijada also transformed the castle over the years into a more palace like home for his family. This means that although the exterior of the building still appears to serve its original military purpose, the inside is a different story, full of comfortable lounges and dining rooms. After the Bishop, the Castillo de Buen Amor was inhabited by many members of the upper classes in Spain over the centuries.

The castle's fortifications were declared an Artistic and Historical Monument in 1931. The Castillo de Buen Amor is a typical fairytale castle with large stone walls with four towers, one on each of the four corners. The castle is surrounded by a large moat that measures 15 metres across.

If the building itself was not impressive enough then you can always go for a walk in the castle grounds which extend over 15 hectares of land. There is also a large lake which offers you a great spot to cool down after walking in the hot Spanish sun.

The restaurant at the Castillo de Buen Amor in Salamanca is situated in one of the old stables and can seat up to 100 people. However for larger parties they also open up the Patio de Armas and offer aperitifs on the terrace. This Spanish castle is a extremely unique and one you should definitely go to when you visit Salamanca.

The Menu

solomillo morucha

The Castillo de Buen Amor offers its customers a traditional Spanish menu, with some dishes that have existed in Spain for centuries. Fortunately, you are not expected to eat them with a sword, and service is as it would be in any other great Spanish restaurant. However, there is no denying that when you are surrounded by medieval artefacts, you can't help but feel like you are being transported back in time yourself.

From the main menu, some of the best dishes include 'Solomillo de Morucha' which is Sirloin steak from a Morucha bull, 'Gallo de Corral en Pepitoria' or free range rooster in an egg and almond sauce, and 'Rodaballo con Piperrada y Berberechos' which is turbot with piperrada, a Basque Country dish made of with onion, tomatoes and peppers, and cockles. There are a variety of set menus which relate to the castle's history available alongside the 'à la carte' menu which include the Archbishop Menu and the Medieval Menu.