A brief history of the Hotel Mireia

Merce-joan
Joan Carcereny and Mercè Beltran

The Hotel Mireia was one of the firsts hotels in Lloret de Mar, and its origin is in a love story.
During the Civil War, Joan Carcereny and Mercè Beltrán got married in Barcelona and, afterward, they spent their honeymoon in a rented house right in front of Santa Cristina’s beach, in Lloret de Mar. The just-married couple fell in love with the town’s beaches, the village and its beautiful landscape, up to the point of moving from Barcelona to start their new life there and, at the same time, leaving the war behind.
Joan would go fishing to Santa Cristina every morning. He was delighted by that sublime lifestyle and thought of starting a family there.


Pushed by a shared enterprising spirit, Joan and Mercè started several economic activities in Lloret. Firstly, making flour, selling fish oil, and producing bars of soap. Afterward, tanning hides, and finally, they bought a vineyard. In 1956, Hotel Mireia was built in this country estate surrounded by fields, in a modern and Mediterranean style, which also became the family’s permanent residence, which at that time had already had their three kids (Mireia, Enric, and Jordi). The couple’s courageous character allowed them to overcome the most adverse situations.

 

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Joan loved reading the Occitan poet Frederic Mistral, up to the point of picking her daughter’s name after reading one of the artist poems (Mireia) and also using this name for the hotel. That landscape, mountains, and vineyards perfectly recalled the essence of the Mediterranean spirit of the poem. He also addressed the city council and suggested that the hotel’s street was named Frederic Mistral.

The hotel was a dream come true and at the same time Lloret having the prospect of becoming a major touristic destination. Mercè radiated energy: she learned English, she would supervise all the tasks of the hotel and she made all the bed linen, tablecloths, and napkins. Her daughter Mireia worked as a receptionist, sommelier, and at the bar; she also learned French and English. Her son Enric worked as a maître.

Back in those days, Lloret was being promoted in Europe for the first time and, thus, new customs and outfits never seen before surprised villagers. For instance, a swimsuit fashion show took place in Hotel Mireia, and an exhibition of springboard jumps, which was fairly innovative back then.

Joan Carcereny was a pioneer of the touristic sector, in the sense that he made high efforts to make the town public and famous around Europe. The most remarkable contribution, as a chairman of the local union of the hospitality industry of Lloret de Mar (Sindicat Local d’Hosteleria de Lloret de Mar) or the cooperative of Costa Brava (Cooperativa de la Costa Brava), was the organization of the second international meeting of hoteliers and traveling agencies of Lloret de Mar (II Reunió Internacional d’Hotelers I Agències de Viatges), which meant a decisive boost to internationalize Lloret as a touristic destination. He also organized the sea festival (Festival del Mar), which counted on the presence of some celebrated artists like the Bolshoi Ballet of Moscow, the great pianist Iturbi or the Spanish National Ballet of Pilar López. Besides promoting Costa Brava as a touristic spot, Joan Carcereny was also engaged in social issues and was a defender of the most disadvantaged groups of people of the village.

Mercè at the III Internacional Tourism Meeting

From then on until now, the hotel has been growing and changing but without losing its familiar and Mediterranean essence. We (the family) still live in the hotel, so we are very involved in the hotel’s running, with the same eagerness to provide the best service to our guests as the one Joan and Mercè had when they started this adventure. Currently, Hotel Mireia has become one of the top-rated hotels in Lloret de Mar, and this is the best way to honor them.

Joan Carcereny with the poet Lope Mateo

Mireia Carcereny and her father with the pianist Iturbi

Enric Carcereny with his mother

Joan and Mercè at the hotel

The Hotel Mireia in 1960

Joan and Mercè dancing in the hotel bar