Despite its direct location in Las Palmas at La Playa de Tauro, the restaurant Guantanamo is probably still a real insider tip that is actually not so secret.
The excellent quality of the typical Spanish restaurant is misjudged by many due to its direct location on the main street, where the excellent location is rather inconspicuous and without much pomp. But the Guantanamo in Las Palmas is something like the meeting place of the celebrities and all visitors of the island who know where to get the best Spanish dishes in an extraordinary ambience and with an excellent service.
For more than 20 years I have been familiar with the Guantanamo on Gran Canaria when it comes to a typical style and an outstanding culinary class. This is not only due to the excellent cuisine and the warm service, but also to the identical way in which the entire restaurant is run. In addition, there is the perseverance over the now two decades in which the Guantanamo has existed, serving its guests with a consistently high quality and hospitality. So it is no wonder that I already know one or the other employee in the restaurant personally, because the staff doesn’t change all the time, but relies on consistency and loyalty. This is not necessarily the case in the tourist industry or in gastronomy.
Already after my first visit to Guantanamo more than twenty years ago I knew that I would visit this restaurant again. And I have done that almost every year now, when I was allowed to visit Gran Canaria with my family. The typical Spanish ambience, the excellent hospitality and the excellent cuisine have been the epitome of Spanish pleasure worlds for me ever since. In a consistently traditionally furnished restaurant, one really feels at home and may also lose the stiffness that can be a little bit exhausting in many European star restaurants. Not so in the Guantanamo, where one can just feel comfortable. And thus, here, a feeling of welcome arises that can hardly be more Spanish.
This may also be one of the reasons why the Guantanamo has been visited by numerous celebrities since the beginning of its existence. And they come again and again and become more and more. The picture gallery on the walls of the traditionally furnished restaurant shows who has already done the honours here and this also makes a visit to the restaurant an absolute tip for people who want to personally experience the special flair of Guantanamo. And sometimes, one meets some real VIPs there that one does not even recognize at first sight because they love to simply indulge in the pleasure worlds of the Spanish cuisine as a normal person in this typical restaurant.
Who knows Guantanamo like me since many years and visits it again and again knows that there are also some surprising moments here. I will never forget a meal with family and friends, which in its quantity and quality would certainly have been worth around one thousand euros, but then was settled with only (attention!) 97 Swiss francs. No, no mistake of the service employees and also no calculation error, but simply a tribute to these guests, whom the owner always likes to make happy with such surprises. A special surprise on this day.
I myself am always surprised by Guantanamo in Las Palmas anyway. Especially the cordiality of the hosts, but of course also the typical Spanish but always excellent food. I like the fish soup as a starter, which is my absolute favourite. I don’t even have to look at the menu anymore. This fish soup is really freshly prepared every day and inside there is really fresh fish, accompanied by aromatic seafood and an aroma that always inspires. The fish soup as a starter alone is a recommendation that can stand alone.
The whole thing is topped by the main courses. I like to think of flambéed lobsters or flambéed fillets, where the final preparation is always completed directly at the guest’s table. So it is flambéed before the eyes of the guests and applied in a cordiality that is fun in itself. The excellent taste, of which I was never disappointed, is also praiseworthy. And this also applies to everyone with whom I had visited Guantanamo so far.
The gourmet meal is rounded off by typical Spanish desserts, which once again ensure that your mouth watered. In addition always the suitable beverages and even the small coffee becomes a taste experience that many a star restaurant somewhere in the world would like to book for itself. No wonder that the Guantanamo is treated as a real tip for connoisseurs on Gran Canaria and is then visited again and again with pleasure.
Those who have found and visited the Guantanamo will gladly be carried away to an individual evaluation. No wonder that there are no less than a thousand reviews to be found on the Internet on various portals. Whether on Google, Facebook or TripAdvisor, the Guantanamo is distinguished by a rating average close to the highest score.
Of course, there are also critical hints that make the result all the more credible. And of course the tastes and expectations of the visitors are also different, so that the ratings are also different. But this is exactly what makes the excellent ratings credible, because they are individual and identical. I always give the Guantanamo the highest score. The reason for this is that I can compare very well what quality and service in the Guantanamo are really worth. After all, I travel a lot in Europe and the world, and in one of my company areas, Mystery Shopping, we test and evaluate restaurants all over Europe. So I know very well how to assess and evaluate typical local restaurants. And for the Guantanamo there is always a raised thumb and many stars from me.
I can experience this positive perception again and again in my personal circle of friends. So there are always people from my surroundings who would build a Spanish restaurant in Switzerland just like the Guantanamo in Las Palmas. And there are certainly good reasons for that.
By the way, the Guantanamo on Gran Canaria does not only exist once in Las Palmas. Just as cultivated and reliable in the high quality with a cordial service is a second restaurant of the owner, a little further inland of the island. Also here, the visit is worthwhile, even if the second restaurant is a little off the tourist hotspots. But obviously, the owner of the Guantanamo is not interested in the prominent location at the most beautiful places of the island. Rather, the emphasis here is on identity, quality and consistency. And there is no damage if the Guantanamo in Las Palmas is almost hidden on the long main road. Nevertheless, it is found because the word-of-mouth propaganda works excellently here. And so the Guantanamo has been able to stay without its own website for the last twenty years and impresses with its good capacity utilization and the recurring visits of prominent personalities. By the way, this also includes a hotelier and restaurateur who runs about twenty restaurants on the island himself and still goes to Guantanamo for dinner at least once a week. Surely because of the excellent taste and the typical atmosphere, but possibly also because the price-performance ratio here always provides pleasant surprises.
For over twenty years now I have been visiting Guantanamo regularly whenever I am in Gran Canaria. And I have always been surprised by the warmth and culinary delights of Gran Canaria. In the meantime something like a deep friendship has developed, which is not based on any kind of relationship, but purely on quality and hospitality.
For me it was a corresponding need to create a small website for the Guantanamo, which summarizes the best tips, pictures and reviews of the Guantanamo in Las Palmas. This is my little thank-you to a restaurant that is probably not so common in Europe.
I am already looking forward to my next visit to the island and know that Guantanamo will again be one of my first and best addresses on Gran Canaria. Surely then again with a fish soup as a starter, which I have not yet rediscovered on my many travels in quality, taste and price. My clear evaluation: 5 of 5 stars and gladly still one more, if that would be possible.