Strolling through any corner of Menorca, and of course, through the centre of Mahon is a real journey back in time. Filled with elegant mansions and majestic houses dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries.
It is easy to imagine the carriages strolling through the narrow streets of the town centre, the balls and social gatherings of high society in the impressive salons, and even the gatherings and debates in the coffee shops of that period.
Witness to this time, the Alberti family, owners for generations of the building that today houses the Can Alberti 1740 Boutique Hotel, serves as a thread of history to help us understand this time, in which Menorca underwent convulsive times of great change, but which forged the character and identity of what is today Menorcan society and culture.
Although there are traces of the name Alberti in writings from the time of the reconquest of Menorca from the Arabs in the 13th century, it is not until the beginning of the 18th century that there are references to the lineage corresponding to the building that concerns us.
Named knight on 11th May 1711, we can consider Vicente Diego Alberti Mercadal the first patriarch of the line of succession directly linked to the building that today houses Can Alberti 1740 Boutique Hotel and which proudly displays the noble coat of arms on the façade, as a commemoration of such an important event. He died in 1713, and was the first of a long list of successors, including politicians, military men and intellectuals.
The first-born son, Jose Alberti Carreras, was the one who promoted the construction of the building at 9 Isabel II Street in Mahon formerly XX Street. He was unable to see the completion of the building, as he died in 1745.
His great-grandson is the most important figure and the one for whom most records are preserved: Vicente Alberti Vidal. Born in 1786, he was a man of letters until the end of his days. He was fluent in five languages: Catalan, Spanish, English, French and Italian, as well as two dead languages, classical Latin and Greek.
His greatest legacy is the translations, especially into Catalan, of works by great authors of the 18th century enlightenment such as Goldoni, Metastasio, Molière, Beaumarchais, Rodríguez Arellano and Fernández Moratín, among others. On his death in 1856, thanks to his brother José Alberti Vidal, among other people, an important donation of his manuscripts was made to the Royal Spanish Academy of Letters, where they remain to this day.
Despite his death without descendants, the Alberti legacy continued for generations in the family home located at Calle Isabel II, 9 in Mahon, with prominent figures such as his great-nephew Juan Orfila y Pons, member of the Spanish Parliament and Provincial Councillor for Menorca, among others.
The building was owned by the Alberti family until the second half of the 20th century, when it was separated into different parts.
Most of the original façade has been reunited, Can Alberti 1740 Boutique Hotel is today a boutique hotel located in the centre of Mahon, where you can breathe the traditional air that once pervaded Menorca, but with a renewed spirit where art and hospitality go hand in hand.