Tenerife’s Tastemakers: Maria Gotlib

The first in our Tenerife Tastemaker series, Maria Gotlib is Director of Sales & Marketing of The Ritz-Carlton, Abama, and knows plenty about the island…

How long have you lived in Tenerife and what is it about the island that you love the most?

Although my parents are not from Spain, I was born in Tenerife and grew up on the island. When I was a teenager I studied abroad and graduated from the Swiss Hotel Management School Les Roches. After graduating I did my internship in the US and then worked abroad for another 8 years, returning to the island 10 years ago to start with this amazing project and resort which is The Ritz-Carlton, Abama.

What I love about Tenerife is its natural beauty, wonderful climate, clear ocean, food and sense of safety/security.

How does the island inspire your work and creativity?

Getting up every morning and seeing the beautiful mountain range with its pine forests and high peaks, gazing across the ocean and horizon, seeing the neighbouring islands of La Gomera, La Palma and El Hierro, enjoying the stunning blue of the sea and breathing in the first rays of sun in the morning, just gets me going!

Are there any new openings on the island that can’t be missed?

Not from my hotel chain, The Ritz-Carlton. And I am not aware of any new hit “openings” coming up. But it is a very vibrant and dynamic island, so there are always new concepts and projects coming up.

If you only had one day to show us the best of Tenerife, where would you take us?

1) To enjoy Los Gigantes from the mirador on the road going down to the village.

2) The National Park of Las Cañadas del Teide, and go up to the summit on the cable car.

3) Take a hike or horseride through the pine forests of el Chinyero

4) Hike down the Masca gorge

5) Go to visit Garachico, La Laguna and La Orotava

Have you got a favourite island event or festival?

La Romeria of la Orotava has a local flair and is full of colours, music and energy

Where is your favourite local’s hangout? Why is it so special?

Any place on the coast that oversees the ocean and the sunset. It is not only the place, it is the views that you get.

What’s your favourite time of year in Tenerife and why?

May and September. The temperature is ideal, the air is clear, sunsets are beautiful, and the island is less crowded than in peak months.