Barcelona is known and loved for its style and energy, rich cultural heritage, designer shopping, great night life and above all Gaudi’s fascinating Art Nouveau architecture. El Palace, Hotel Miramar and Hotel Rey Juan Carlos I are all right in the centre of the city, yet each gives an entirely different take on this all-time favourite city for short breaks and weekends.
Hotel Miramar – Best for… Romantics
Housed in a former art deco palace, Hotel Miramar is the hotel for romance in Barcelona. Set high on Montjuïc Mountain and commanding spectacular panoramas over Barcelona and the Mediterranean, Hotel Miramar is quietly set apart from the hustle of the city, so guests can enjoy the best of both worlds. Steeped in history, the building was opened in 1929 by King Alfonso XIII and epitomised the Catalan style of that period. Today, the hotel lobby is dominated by a six foot fibre-optic chandelier, a stunning centre piece representing the historic Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. The swish spa with indoor pool is perfect for romantic relaxation, while the elegant outdoor pool is made for lazy days in the sunshine. Many of the rooms and suites have terraces, and extensive private gardens await for quiet hand-in-hand sunset strolls. Sleek and contemporary, it’s no wonder Hotel Miramar was listed in Condé Nast Traveller’s ‘Hot List’ within weeks of its opening in 2007.
Rates from €150 per night. Plaza Carlos Ibáñez 3 08038, Barcelona
T: + 34 93 281 16 00 www.hotelmiramarbarcelona.com
Set high on Montjuïc Mountain, Hotel Miramar
Hotel Rey Juan Carlos I – Best for… Sporting Prowess
Barcelona has a rich sporting legacy. Hotel Rey Juan Carlos I is the ideal hotel for football fans – the hotel is just a short walk from the FC Barcelona stadium – and is also close to The Royal Polo Club, one of Spain’s most celebrated equestrian organisations. Set in 25,000 square metres of private, historic and lush Mediterranean gardens dating back to the nineteenth century, the hotel was also designed by the prestigious Catalan architects Ferrater and Cartañá and was the recipient of the 1992-93 National Architecture Award. The Royal Club Fitness & Spa offers over 5,000 square metres of fantastic facilities – indoor and outdoor swimming pools, and the series of Jacuzzis, saunas and treatment rooms are unbeatable for a time-out. Hotel Rey Juan Carlos I also houses four bars and two restaurants, and is just a 15 minute drive from El Prat international airport.
Hotel Rey Juan Carlos I
Rates from €150 per night. Hotel Rey Juan Carlos I, Avda. Diagonal, 661-671, 08028 Barcelona
Hotel Rey Juan Carlos I has both indoor and outdoor pools
El Palace – Best for… Occasions When Only Grand Will Do…
A longstanding member of The Leading Hotels of the World, El Palace has been exquisitely restored to its 1920s glory following a magnificent two year €30 million refurbishment. Set right in the heart of the city on Gran Via, El Palace’s interiors are resplendent with silk and antiques, while the new Mayan Luxury Spa features a detoxifying Temezcal Mexican sweat lodge – a first for European luxury hotels. Outstanding food is overseen by Chef Romain Fornell, the first French chef to be awarded a Michelin star in Spain, while guests can indulge in late-night live music with cocktails at jazz bar Rien de Rien. Cesar Ritz opened El Palace in 1919 with the philosophy that a grand hotel is much more than just somewhere to stay – and that initial spirit is still very much alive today. It’s no wonder previous guests include Sophia Loren, Paul McCartney and Salvador Dali.