Contributing to a Good Cause – Children and Education

Heart of Pamplona Apartments contribute to The Taste of Rappahannock Annual Fundraiser Auction – Heart of Pamplona has proudly contributed to the Headwaters Foundation’s annual ‘Taste’ Rappahannock Children’s Education Fundraiser this past Saturday evening. Participants enjoyed wine-tasting, a silent-auction cocktail along with the dinner gala and live auction.

One of the highlight items of the evening event was a ONE WEEK STAY in ZAPA PALACE in the historic quarter of Pamplona including a city GASTRO TOUR. Many thanks to Jane W. who purchased the travel package. Jane, we are certain you will have a most memorable stay with us in


A Dreamy Account Of The Evening 

It was a sweltering evening – temperatures had hovered in the mid 90sF all day and dusk brought little in the way of relief.   The crowd, some 250 persons, gathered in the lower barn for wine, munchies, conversations that were held in the upper octaves as the volume swelled on waves of friends meeting up with friends at summer’s end.   The event has been referred to by one wit as the First Touch of Fall – a play on words as this is normally the first fund-raising event of the season.   It is also the first major social event of the season when friends gather to reconnect and spend their money for an excellent cause – Headwaters Foundation – a foundation that raises money to enhance and enrich the educational experiences of school children in this rural county.

The silent auction (art work, landscaping, deliveries of pies and bread, yoga and massage, and other local “essential luxuries”) is held while the drinking, greeting, chatting continues in what, in earlier days, was the cow shed.   Now all remnants of cows, stalls, mangers and troughs have been removed, the floor flattened to a smooth concrete.

But upstairs, in the former hayloft, dinner is served and the live auction is held.   The roof timbers soar overhead, a complex meshing of support and cross beams, reminiscent of European cathedrals.   This barn is reputed to have once been the largest barn east of the Mississippi.   The floors are wooden and a little uneven.   The entire space breathes of country, history, and charm.   But it is also horribly hot despite the height of the roof which, in theory, should be attracting all the heat to its lofty spaces!

After the main course, and as delicate desserts are being served by eager and shiny teenagers, the live auction begins.   The apartment in Pamplona is the fourth of six items to be auctioned.   All items are selling well, with lively back and forth between the auctioneer, her assistants, and the bidders.  Items 1 and 3 sell for over their listed value.   Item 2, a week in a cottage in Maine (sleeps 10) sells for twice the listed value, and is sold twice, bringing in a “gift” of $17,000 to the foundation.   Item 3 is expected to bring in a high price as it includes two excellent tickets for a highly desirable musical in New York City and two nights in a Relais et Chateau boutique hotel near Central Partk.   Had the dates fitted my calendar I would have joined in the bidding, especially as the amounts involved hovered only marginally over the posted value of the package.    I began to worry about the implications for item 4 if Item 2 had sucked up all the bidding energy.

Item 4 – One week in Pamplona. I hold my breath and inwardly pray for a successful sale.  It has been well presented on the poster board on show before dinner, and is again described in some detail by the auctioneer.   The bidding is brisk.  Many bid paddles are flapping – but it is hard to tell which ones are being raised as part of the bidding and which ones are being used as fans to creating a cooling breeze!   Several parties are interested, back and forth it goes, finally reaching a closing bid of $5,500, double the listed value.  I am pleased with the outcome as this will bring wider publicity to the fabulous Zapa Palace as well as bring funds into the most deserving cause of education for children.

I barely pay attention to the two remaining items in the live auction as I’m smugly enjoying the success of Zapa.

Written by Jennifer Manly

Zapa Palace Apartment

The travel package to Pamplona included a one week’s stay in the heart of the city of Pamplona- a historic city,and the capital of the state of Navarra, in northern Spain.   It is within striking distance of the Rioja wine country, Bilbao (think Frank Gehry’s stunning building at the Guggenheim Museum), the Pyrenees, the ocean.  Navarra is also known for its excellent food.

This spacious second floor apartment (in one of the few buildings in this part of the city to have an elevator) has a 31 square meter, high-ceilinged, living room with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Calle Zapateria (Street of the Shoe Makers).  There is a dining room off the kitchen, 3 bedrooms, a 3-piece bathroom, and a fully equipped kitchen.  The apartment accommodates 6 persons comfortably.   Up to 4 more persons can be accommodated at additional expense.

Amenities are: dishwasher, fridge, microwave, stove, blender, kitchen utensils, pots, pans, plates, glasses, a washing machine, iron and ironing board, towels and bed linen and anything else which makes this place a “Home away from Home”.

The apartment is located one block from the Plaza de Castillo which is the centre of entertainment.  Cafes, bars, a bakery, a traditional food market and a modern super market are all within walking distance.

Available any time between September 15, 2016 and August 31, 2017, excluding the San Fermin  (Running of the Bulls) celebration July 6 – 14 2017.   Reservations should be made through  Stephanie –