history kivir

origins of hotel kivir

Kivir came about as a wonderful and exciting challenge for the Martínez family, who had been in the hotel business in Seville since the 1920s.

Amadora Fonseca was the mastermind behind this family enterprise, establishing and managing several guesthouses in the Sevillian capital around 1920. In January 1932, she opened the Hotel Cécil-Oriente in the Plaza Nueva, which she managed (except when she was in Madrid after the crisis of 1929) with the help of her daughter Manuela Fonseca and husband Ramiro Martínez.

At the end of the 1940s, Juan Ramón Martínez, the eldest son of Manuela and Ramiro, took over the hotel. Unfortunately, in 1970 the hotel had to be closed due to lack of profitability after some changes in the regulations of the time, and the land on which the building stood was sold.

In 1971, however, a palace was purchased on Calle Reyes Católicos to build Hotel Bécquer, which opened its doors in 1973 and is still in operation today, recognised as one of the most emblematic hotels in the city.

Seeing the success of this hotel, in 2010, the Martínez family, headed by Luis Miguel Martínez (second son of Juan Ramón Martínez), decided to create a “little treasure” on the banks of the Guadalquivir River, a more modern and exclusive accommodation for visitors to the city. In 2010 and then in 2014, they acquired two buildings on the Paseo de Cristóbal Colón, both dating from the 19th century, which they converted into the current Hotel Kivir, a 4-star boutique hotel with 31 rooms, in collaboration with the renowned Cruz y Ortiz Architects.

After almost two and a half years of work, Kivir finally opens its doors on 29 April 2019, adding to the family tradition with Luis Miguel’s daughter, Andrea Martínez, becoming the fifth generation to manage the hotel. Since then, it has stood tall, illuminating the banks of the Guadalquivir and offering unique views of the Isabel II Bridge and the traditional Triana neighbourhood.