La Fortaleza overlooking the bay of Pollensa from its position on the Formentor promontory. | R.D.


La Fortaleza is privately owned, its owner is reportedly the British banker Lord (James) Lupton who bought it for between £30 and 35 million in 2011. Lupton, who is also the Conservative party’s co-treasurer, donated a week’s stay there at last year’s Tory fundraising ball. It was apparently auctioned off for £210,000.

And it has to be apparently opened to the general public four days of the year, with tomorrow (Saturday) being one. Pollensa town hall, as part of its History of Pollensa programme, is organising the guided tour of La Fortaleza. However, there is a ban on any members of the press attending the tour and those going on the excursion are not allowed to take any pictures at the request of the owner.

Nevertheless, tens of millions of viewers in the UK have seen the property because it has a starring role in the BBC thriller, The Night Manager, which is currently showing on Sunday nights on BBC1. This weekend is episode four out of the six-part series which was filmed on a budget of 20 million pounds and involved the local production company Palma Pictures.

A number of other locations were used in Majorca such as one of the restaurants in the Cala at Deya and various spots around Palma. But La Fortaleza, which has two pools, seven villas in the grounds and over 25,000 square feet of immaculately manicured terraces and gardens is considered one of the most expensive properties in Spain and is home to Hugh Laurie’s character in the star-studded series.

Laurie plays Richard Roper, an arms dealers considered the most dangerous man in the world and his home is La Fortaleza. But the thriller was shot at a number of stunning locations.

"It was deliberate to make it very sexy," explained the Oscar-winning Danish director Susanne Bier. "The story takes place in a very lavish world – the world of Richard Roper – and part of the excitement is that Jonathan Pine and the audience get sucked into this world because it’s so lavish and glamorous. We all want to be there even if we know that it’s an evil world. So that world needed to be attractive."

Starring Tom Hiddleston, Hugh Laurie and Olivia Colman, it’s based on the 1993 bestseller of the same name by John le Carré, but Bier and her team have updated the story. Instead of doing business with drug cartels in South America, arms-dealer Richard Roper (Laurie) jets between Europe and the Middle East.

The series, which is averaging seven million viewers a week in the UK, is also proving extremely popular in Spain and soon screens in the United States.