1. Chic & Basic
At Chic & Basic, the clue’s in the name. Guest rooms are small and space-efficient, containing just the essentials – a bed and a privacy-lite shower space, separated from the main room by just a pane of glass (an interesting choice of design – with the potential to become awkward if you’re staying with colleagues and/or your mum).
This is teamed with some non-essentials – e.g. whimsical lights that change colour to match your mood. Functional and fun.
There’s no hotel restaurant, so dining out is on the agenda; no hardship in a city with as wide a food offering as Barcelona.
2. Praktik Bakery
If baked goods are your thing, then you’re likely to think that Praktik is best thing since sliced bread. It’s the world’s first hotel-bakery, with the onsite oven churning out goodies from pizza breads to pastries and cakes for guests and the public to enjoy.
Those wanting some live but low-stakes entertainment have a front-row seat to the action, with glass windows revealing the bakers working their doughy magic.
Despite the homely addition of a bakery, the hotel’s design is sleek and minimalist – more urban than apron. Not surprising – it was concepted by well-known interior designer and Barcelona native, Lázaro Rosa-Violán.
We’ll leave you to imagine what could be on the menu for breakfast…
3. Ciutat de Barcelona
This hotel is set right in the middle of Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter, giving you countless options for entertainment right outside your front door. From the Picasso museum to La Seu Cathedral, many of the city’s main attractions are within skipping distance of Ciutat de Barcelona.
But if a day spent even closer to home is what you’re dreaming of, the hotel’s rooftop swimming pool, sun terrace – which plays host to yoga classes – and tapas restaurant should offer you enough space for some serious rest and relaxation.
4. Hotel Market
As the name might suggest, this hotel places guests in pole position to delve into the foodie side of Barcelona, with Sant Antoni market, which has just this year emerged from a €80m renovation, just next door.
Guests can gorge themselves on all the charcuterie, cheese and other delights on offer at the market – one of Barcelona’s largest – before rolling themselves the few paces to the hotel to recover from their epicurean adventure.
The hotel itself is modern and chic in its monochrome design. Rooms come with rain showers as standard – and if you’re lucky, you’ll be able to snap up a private balcony, to enjoy the Spanish sunset in total peace. Well, relative peace – this is Barcelona we’re talking about.
5. Banys Orientales
If location is everything, then those staying at Banys Orientales have little to quibble about. Set back in Barcelona’s bohemian Born neighbourhood, just 500 metres away from the famous main drag, Las Ramblas, and a 10-minute walk away from the beach, the city is your proverbial oyster.
The hotel itself has a lot to recommend it, too; in a characterful, converted 18th-century building. Plus, the hotel’s restaurant, Senyor Parellada can trace its roots back to the oldest restaurant-owning family in Catalonia and serves authentic local dishes. It’s sure to add a sprinkle of traditional Catalonia to otherwise modern-day proceedings.
6. Generator Hostel
Don’t be put off by the ‘hostel’ title – this is a hostel/hotel hybrid. Cast off any residual memories of dingy buildings with cleaning standards leaving much to be desired; Generator Hostel is more boutique than backpack.
Certain traditional hostel-esque features add to the venue’s common areas – like a pool table and foosball table – but private rooms are available to retire to when you’ve fulfilled your socialising quota.
The addition of numerous careful touches – such as hanging birdcage chairs and oversized lanterns – make this feel like a hotel of choice rather than necessity.
And when you want to explore the local area, there’s lots to see. The hotel’s placed just off Barcelona’s Champs Elysees equivalent, the high-end boulevard, Passeig de Gràcia.
For a stay that will take you back to a simpler time, Retrome’s top of the class. The hotel’s schtick is ‘retro’, with every room designed to a 60s and 70s theme.
Retrome’s dedication to the retro conceit is impressive – think vintage wallpaper in the bedrooms, genuine 70's HiFis and authentic yellow tiling in the bar/café area.
But don’t worry – this boutique hotel brings only the best of the past with it; helpfully, there’s high-speed WiFi throughout the building, for all your social media needs. After all, what’s a trip back in time if not shared on Instagram?
8. TOC Hostel
It’s no secret that Barcelona can get warm – very warm. So, any hotel with a pool quickly becomes prime real estate over the summer months. Here’s where TOC Hostel comes in. With a rooftop swimming pool and sun loungers, as well as an onsite bar area letting you enjoy cocktails on the terrace, a stay at TOC is a sunny prospect.
And despite the name, it’s not just dorms and shared showers – private rooms are available to give you a stay with more peace and quiet. Though ‘peace and quiet’ can be fleeting – pool parties are liable to spring up on the roof at a moment’s notice.
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