Emma Straub's research trip

05 June 2014

by Emma Straub

I decided to set The Vacationers in Mallorca on something of a whim. I knew I wanted it to take place on an island (metaphors!), and I knew I wanted the setting to feel somewhat remote to an American family. I wrote the first draft of the book without setting foot on the island, and then, when I was through, ha! I was pregnant. (Note: writing a book will not normally get you pregnant.) I suddenly had a very real deadline, both for finishing the novel and for completing all the air travel necessary. And so, my husband, bump and I set out for Mallorca. Luckily, it was as lovely as I'd imagined. Europeans, I learned, think of Mallorca as a party destination, full of tourists and big hotels, but I went in January, when it was empty and gorgeous. Here are some photos I took along the way.

Hotel room key

We stayed in a truly magnificent hotel, the Hotel Gran Son Net, about twenty minutes north of Palma. It had keys that looked like this, so imagine how beautiful the rest was.

Palma cathedral

The Cathedral in Palma at night.

Empty swimming pool

The view from our hotel – an empty swimming pool! In my novel, I fill it with water. Magic!

Tapas

Tapas!

Caia Deia

Caia Deia, the most magical and tiny beach in the world.

Emma Straub

Authors are notoriously sensitive to the sun. 

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