Fodor's Expert Review Hotel López de Haro

Calle Obispo Orueta 2, Bilbao, Basque Country 48009, Spain See on Map

In Bilbao’s bustling commercial center and an easy walk away from the endlessly celebrated Guggenheim museum is the old-world luxury Hotel López de Haro. The aging property doesn’t hold the same grandiose splendor as the Carlton nor the modern awe of the Gran Domine or Melía, making it awkwardly stuck between past and present compared to the other five star options in downtown Bilbao. Nonetheless, the hotel boasts well-appointed rooms, a fantastic location, and magnificent luxury service.


Cool white and gray tones accent the bespoke bedrooms that range from Standard to Suite. Standard rooms are on the cozy side but Superior and beyond become remarkably airy with open lounge spaces set with stylish furnishings. All 45 rooms of the hotel are equipped with flatscreen TVs, AC, and free Wi-Fi.

The hotel has a partnership with a nearby Basque business to offer 24-hour room service for any of those late night cravings.


Gray marble floors and walls surround the graceful bathrooms and feature big vanity mirrors rainforest showerheads positioned above the deep soaking tubs.


You know what they say: don’t judge a book by its cover. Hotel López de Haro's rather sober façade melts into a glitzy open foyer with crystal chandeliers hanging from the high gold leaf ceiling while gilded décor adorns the walls of lounge spaces peppered with plush leather seating. The opulent setting inside is appropriately paired by true lux service as well: bellmen and suited staff are immediately waiting to welcome you into the classic lobby space and are there for your every need throughout the stay.


There is no onsite spa at the hotel but they partner with a sensational full-service spa that is just steps away. S’Thai offers an array of massages and treatments with traditional Far East philosophies at their core. The tranquil space is decorated with beautiful Southeast Asian art and rich wood furnishings.

Guests can purchase reservation packages ahead of time that include a couple’s massage at a better price than if simply buying the treatment upon arrival.


Housed in a beautiful room with stained glass windows and chandelier lighting, Club Nautico is a seafood-focused Basque restaurant with a fine dining twist–think lots of caviar, foie gras, and local truffle to go along with fresh-sourced fish and familiar Basque ingredients.

Breakfast is a standard hotel buffet that does the job with a nice spread of hot and cold Spanish foods and morning staples.


The Le Club lounge is the best place in the hotel to hang out, split between a chic modern design to one side and a classic salon to the other, with a wraparound bar made of brilliant red oak reminiscent of an old British pub in the center of it all.


Getting Around

The hotel is right in the middle of the city center, halfway between the Guggenheim and Casco Viejo, which are both within convenient walking distance along with the main shopping neighborhoods. The public transportation in Bilbao is first-rate, always clean and on time and easy to use. Guests with cars will be greeted by valet parking service for a nightly fee.


Bilbao’s Old Quarter (Casco Viejo) is the best place to explore the city’s famed pintxo scene. We suggest starting your pintxo snacking at Plaza Nueva (15-minute walk) a charming neoclassical square in Casco Viejo with amazing pintxo bars running along the perimeter. Café Bar Bilbao (10-minute tram) has been here for a century and is still a crowd favorite.

On the other end of the spectrum, both in style and price, is Nerua (5-minute walk). This avant-garde Michelin-starred restaurant is housed in the Guggenheim itself, and like its surroundings, it pushes the boundaries in aesthetic and taste. There’s no better way to satisfy the hunger from wandering the halls of the museum all afternoon.


A few blocks from the hotel is one of Bilbao’s hottest new cocktail lounges, La Mula de Moscú (5-minute walk). The sleek space is one of the few places in the city where mixology takes center stage.

Calle Ledesme (5-minute walk) is the can’t-miss drinking row in Bilbao. The pedestrian-only street is always lively day or night. Start at Café Iruña (5-minute walk) before bouncing in and out of the rest of the fantastic bars lining the boulevard.


Though missing modern amenities like a gym and pool, the small hotel is regal European luxury incarnate with an exceptional location for exploring the city plus five-star service.




Phones: 94-423–5500

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