Barcelona Hotels

By: David Leigh

This shortage of hotel rooms has led to the opening of a number of new hotels, both new constructions as well as renovated and re-purposed palaces from the 19th century and new hotels should continue to open well into the foreseeable future. 

When choosing a hotel it usually comes down to three considerations; location, cost and facilities. Many tourists prefer to stay in the historic old town, within easy walking distance of the sites and the famous Ramblas, while businessmen my choose the hotels close to the Fira, or a hotel situated close to where he will be doing business. 

Apart from the Ramblas area, the top spots for tourists tend to be the gothic quarter and Passeig de Gràcia. Hotels such as the 5-star Hotel Arts are a bit too much out the way for my liking, although taxis are cheap compared with many places – if you can find them. The Arts is right next door to Barcelona’s casino, so if you’re a high roller then it could be the right choice for you, although personally I prefer the old world charm of hotels like the Majestic. 

One thing to watch out for when you’re looking for a hotel is the location.

Some websites display inaccurate maps and hotels that are described as being in Barcelona are in fact some way out. An easy way to check this is using the postcode – all Barcelona city addresses have a 5-digit code that only starts 080; if it starts differently then its not in Barcelona and you may experience some difficulty to travel there. 

Although the choice of hotels on the Ramblas is mixed, you should be aware that the port end of the Ramblas is a red light district and distinctly uncomfortable to walk at night. The top end is fine though. 

The top end of the Ramblas, towards Plaça Catalunya, is much better and home to such hotels as 5-star Le Meridien and Hotel 1898. Close by, in the gothic quarter is the Rialto and directly opposite the cathedral is Hotel Colon. Other hotels of note include Banys Orientals in El Born, to which the popular Senyor Parallada restaurant is attached; the 5-star Majestic Hotel on Passeig de Gràcia, with the Claris nearby; and Barceló Sants. The latter is really aimed at business travellers, but as it is directly above Barcelona-Sants station is ideal for the metro and mainline stations, although there are currently massive works going on there due to the high speed train.

Barcelona hosts dozens of major exhibitions and conferences and so there are several hotels within easy walking distance, although you’ll probably want to make your way into the city centre too. 4-star Hotel Plaza is the obvious example and there is a metro station that runs straight into the centre too, but the three big hotels near Sants station are a good bet too.

However, if you’re looking for luxurious surroundings and first class service then you won’t beat the elegance of hotels such as the Majestic, Claris or Le Meridien.

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