This recently renovated Art Nouveau gem is among the oldest and best of Barcelona's smaller hotels. And for location, decor, and price, it can't be beat. Abutting the Liceu opera house and 100 yards from the middle of La Rambla, the España dates to 1857 but was renovated in 1904 by architect Lluís Doménech i Montaner, who also designed the Palau de la Música. The decorative and sculptural detail is remarkable: don't miss the alabaster fireplace in the bar lounge, by
Eusebio Arnau. Rooms are ranged around a breathtaking top-to-bottom skylit corrala (central gallery) with wrought-iron railings. Accommodations are a bit small, but are handsomely decked out in grays and dark browns, with iPod docks, wood floors, comfortable desks, and office chairs.
Jul 17, 2006
I visited the hotel on a school trip. And we were first greeted with the view of a back alley which was home to beggars, prostitutes, druggies and gangs. The only reasonable part of the street was the 10th century hotel, or it looked that old anyway. We checked in and went up to our rooms. Lo and behold numerous complaints were made regarding the fact that the old rusty keys we had been given had snapped already in the old stiff locks on the narrow
18th century doors. Now when we finally managed to get into our rooms we weren't exactly pleased. We walked into a room full of pipes and cracked walls. In fact i would have felt more at home in a prison cell. The only thing that attempted to brighten the room up was the musty orange/brown duvet covers which was cleverly colour co-ordinated with the bottom of the toilet. The 3 man room was too small for any inhabitants and the big bed stuck in the middle of the room was apparently 3 single beds rather than the double bed it actually looked like. A single wardrobe was given for a 3 man room. The bathroom was acceptable if a bit small and the dirty showers were more like a trickle of water from a pipe. To be honest you could have bought a beter room from a car boot sale. The food was atrocious. Breakfast was not a breakfast. It was a choice between orange and pineapple fruit juice and bread or croissants. Oh no they were actually quite generous as they did offer us ham. FOR BREAKFAST! The evening meal was disgusting, a plate of salad and pea soup for starters and undercooked meatballs or gone off chicken for the main course. Oh and leftover breakfast yoghurt for desert. I do not recommend this at all.
Jul 14, 2006
I stayed at the hotel on a school visit and was suprised at how basic the hotel was. Although an attempt had been made to patch up some rooms on the higher floors, pipework and cracks were visable in most rooms. The centeral courtyard could be a shot location for a scene in Bad Girls, with the tall narrow doors that have seen better days. The staff were very helpful and kind, especially the Sven Goran Erikson look alike. The food was of a poor
standard, but edible. Overall, i beleive that with a bit of decoration and slight modernisation, the hotel could be pushing the 2?3 star boundry.