We are a positive, intelligent, easy-going, fun-loving couple who love open-minded, open-hearted folk. We are passionate about great food and wine and fantastic company, nature, literature, travel, art, film, photography, travel, hiking, dancing, music, animals and all kinds of exploring. We live by the old Celtic motto "Come as a stranger, leave as a friend." We enjoy stimulating company and sharing thoughts and philosophies and life stories with people from all over, and find this deeply enriching and rewarding at many levels so EatWith is the perfect platform for us to offer our best. Our home, The Unique Retreat, is one of our shared dreams – to live in an exquisite rural setting and offer our combined skills to people from all over the world looking for an optimal break and an authentic taste of Andalusia. The Unique Retreat is a beautiful and lovingly-restored 400 year old farmhouse set in 17 hectares of the Montes de Malaga National Park. It is surrounded by organic olive groves, almond trees and has its own organic vineyard with Shiraz grapes. The views are spectacular. We offer delicious, locally-sourced meals (often from our organic, bio-dynamic vegetable garden) to travellers and foodies from all over the world. We have hosted guests from Tasmania to The Outer Hebrides, South Korea, Indonesia, Slovenia, Scandinavia, Ireland, The USA and Argentina and many places between! We both feel our best roles are those of service and doing whatever we can to make people’s experience of life that much richer and more satisfying. We can offer vegetarian and vegan meals as well as raw food as well as local fish specialities and local meat (which is highly-prized here - people come form afar to buy local meats) and our speciality is Mediterranean cuisine prepared with flair and creativity. You can also come and stay here if that appeals to you - for as long or as short as you would like. Just ask about our availability and if we can, we can offer one of our gorgeous double rooms or maybe our Mongolian yurt if it is available at reasonable prices. Nacho is from Malaga and is from a long line of restaurateurs. He has worked as a Maitre d’ in the catering industry for over 20 years. He is passionate about taking supremely good care of guests and making delicious food, prepared with love and flair. He trained at the renowned ‘La Consula’ catering school where Ernest Hemingway once lived and where members of the Spanish Royal Family and other eminent clients and luminaries have sampled local delicacies. Nacho trained with Dani Garcia, Andalusia’s most famous chef as well as with other up-and –coming local culinary figures. As such, apart from cooking for you, he is very well-placed to recommend restaurants where he knows the chefs and owners and can be sure our guests will eat very well and at extremely good value. Nacho has worked in a number of exclusive restaurants, two of which have Michelin stars and in five star hotels. He believes wholeheartedly that much can be done to improve upon the level of care and attention provided by them. This is why he has chosen to create his own business. He is a warm, welcoming host and for him, one of our missions is offering delightful new experiences to our guests. He is a flexible and creative cook so can adapt happily to guests’ preferences. I am a professional translator and an experienced reflexologist and Thai Yoga Massage therapist and have worked with a huge variety of clients from athletes to quadriplegics to members of the British Royal Family. Prior to this, I worked for UNICEF in Colombia and a number of NGOs around the world supporting young people in difficult circumstances, through the rehabilitation of street children and those with alcohol and drug dependency as well as physically and sexually abused young people. Parallel to our work, we have always enjoyed having new and old friends around. I think this is part of our genetic make-up!! My grandparents' dinner parties were apparently legendary in Cambridge, London and then Dublin as they often entertained a lively mix of guests including Le Corbusier, members of The Bloomsbury set and engaging writers and artists of their day. I would have loved to have been 'a fly on the wall'!! Our most recent co-creation is a recipe book entitled “Cooking From the Heart. The Best of Andaluz Hospitality”. We wrote it at the request of many of our guests at www.theuniqueretreat.com. It contains 25 of the best-loved, most delicious, sometimes healthy ;-) Andaluz recipes which our guests have most enjoyed. It also contains fantastic photography by our dear friend and world-class photographer, Giles Bracher, of the meals and the spectacular area we are blessed to live in and inspirational reflections from some of the world’s greatest minds. Included are some wonderful, easy-to-make tapas, amazing salads, three versions of paella, the best of regional Andaluz cuisine and two exquisite desserts. You can preview it at http://www.blurb.com/b/6305855-cooking-from-the-heart. If you are unfortunately not able to physically get here to have a meal with us, then this could be a nice, second-best option. Just be aware, we are able to offer the book at a lower price than Blurb. For those who would like to simply download the book, you can buy the PDF for just €15 directly from us. Just contact me directly. You can also purchase it as a beautiful and original personalised gift for birthdays or Christmas or as a very sweet ‘Thank you’ present directly from us for €20 plus post and packaging. It is a perfect gift for fellow foodies!! Guests coming here can simply buy a copy or two direct from us. Here is what others have said about “Cooking From the Heart” “Generosity is the essence of good cooking. Think of a red-tiled Spanish farmhouse set amid hilly Andalusian olive groves. In the corner of the kitchen, juggling pans on the countertop, Nacho has a twinkle in his eye as he reaches for a pinch of paprika. Not the Hungarian kind, he tells us, but the good sweet Spanish variety of his uncle Antonio. With small, deft movements, he conducts the heat-ripples in the air as he infuses the little curvy Fideuá pastas with the rich scents of home and family. Next time you have a chance, go and visit and eat with Nacho and Marina – you’ll find them on the road from Colmenar, down a dusty track but if it will be a while before your trip, simply dive into this book and enjoy!” Dr. Breandán Knowltey, Executive Director of Historypin, a non-profit community archiving project in London. “Heart and soul are the essence of great home cooking — a philosophy that’s been core to what’s served up at The Unique Retreat since 2011. Cooking from the Heart celebrates the enduring connection between food, place, and the community that always comes with eating delicious food together. Simple to prepare for the home cook, these are traditional Andalusian dishes with a twist of love. Nacho and Marina are dedicated to providing enriching encounters with a family of friends from all corners of the Earth. Nacho is a gifted alchemist transforming food into joy with recipes to make your heart sing. Together they seek to foster a deeper connection in the ways in which people relate to themselves, each other, nature and to the delights of eating well. They consider the sharing of delicious food prepared with love as a bridge to creating deeper connections, whether through a common passion for great food or a heart-felt conversation. Open this book, get inspired, run to the kitchen, and call your friends or family to the table!” Dr. Anna Hammond, Executive Director of The Sylvia Center, a health and wellness culinary program for disadvantaged youth and families, New York We will provide directions once you have booked. We are 40 minutes from Malaga and one hour and a quarter from Granada. Equally we can arrange to pick you up if you are travelling without a car. We hope to meet you soon and wish you happy travels and delightful dining in the meantime!
I'm in my forties
Nacho is a Restaurateur and Maitre d' and I am a therapist.
Marina 's experiences
Marina 's experiences
Exquisite Aromas of Andalusia
What to expect at Marina's place
What was so special about dinner with Marina & Nacho is everything! ha ha. By that I mean it was the whole experience, not only was the food amazing, but or hosts and they beautiful home combined to create an experience greater than the sum of their parts. For our hosts Marina & Nacho, nothing was too much trouble, they were kind and generous with their time and energy. They were very knowledgable about what the food they served, local produce and the surrounding area. Their home too was an experience in its self decorated with things from their lives collected from around the world. All factors came together to make fore a perfect evening. I look forward to future similar events.