If the Ritz caters to old-money Madrid, then Villa Magna is its low-profile, new-money counterpart. Located on the shady Castellana mall, Villa Magna is the city’s modern luxury hotel par excellence, frequented by celebrities, foreign financiers, and other high-society types. Rooms are understated in their elegance, all taupes and mood lighting, and suit-and-tie staff are ever-present yet unobtrusive. The property’s two restaurants, one traditional Cantonese and the other contemporary Spanish, offer memorable fine-dining experiences well worth the splurge.
With mahogany wood accents, bonded-leather desks, and fluffed white pillows, rooms are classic yet sumptuous, ideal for business and family travelers. Nespresso machines in every room are another perk, as is the twice-daily housekeeping service, which provides complimentary bottled water. Coloring books and toys are available upon request, and teepee tents can be set up in certain rooms. Larger families should inquire about the connecting rooms, of which there are 84.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Wi-Fi can be sluggish at times. Ask the front desk for a special PIN that will increase your browsing speed.
Spacious and overstocked with plush white towels (changed daily) and Asprey London toiletries, marble bathrooms offer all the comforts you expect from a luxury hotel. Cushy slippers and robes in every room are a nice touch.
Organic tear-free shampoo for kids is available upon request.
Comfortable enough for casual business meetings and small get-togethers, the hotel lobby is adorned with vintage furniture from the original Hotel Ritz in Lisbon. Check-in staff are so in-tune with your needs that they even ask what newspapers you’d like delivered each morning.
Thanks to a longstanding relationship with Real Madrid, the world-class soccer team, the concierge generally has two tickets (available for purchase) to home games at Santiago Bernabéu Stadium.
The wellness center by Kiara Kare offers more than 100 individualized treatments 24 hours a day, and many can be done in your own hotel room. Their organic products are so all-natural that allegedly they’re edible—though we don’t recommend testing the waters.
The ample fitness center, open daily from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., features the latest Technogym equipment, which means you can watch Netflix while you work out.
Villa Magna eschews the humdrum hotel restaurant stereotype with Tse-Yang, an upscale Cantonese dining room with flamboyant Chinese-style table-side service. Shatteringly crisp Peking duck steals the show, but don’t pass up the mouthwatering “cuatro felices” dumpling sampler. The equally refined Restaurante Villa Magna, located across the lobby, serves modern Spanish food on a verdant outdoor patio.
Restaurante Villa Magna’s huevos rancheros, drenched in salsa verde and served over crisp-fried corn tortillas, are one of the most satisfying breakfasts in town.
Magnum Bar is a swanky (if slightly fussy) hotel bar, ideal for sipping ice-cold martinis and impressing business contacts. The outdoor patio often features a pop-up station by a reputable international restaurant; the current menu offers Turkish mezzes from an Istanbul chef.
The Villa Magna is rather removed from most of Madrid’s top tourist attractions, so you’ll be making good use of taxis and the metro: Walk six minutes to Rubén Darío (Line 5) or seven minutes to Colón (Line 4).
The Salamanca district boasts two of the best spots in the city for tortilla de patata, Spanish potato omelette: Casa Dani (6-minute walk), a no-frills bar tucked in the back corner of Mercado de la Paz, and Estay (11-minute walk), a stylish restaurant that doubles as a café before noon. After sundown, embark on a tapas crawl through the neighborhood, hitting Babelia (cocktails and finger food), Cinco Jotas (premium jamón ibérico), and Ultramarinos Quintín (rawbar and flatbreads), all located within 15 minutes from the hotel on foot.
The Salamanca district, located just east of the hotel, boasts a chic nightlife scene. There’s Ten con Ten (12-minute walk), the gentlemanly “gin bar” that incited the gin tónic frenzy a decade ago that hasn’t abated since. After a cocktail there, make your way to Arts Club (13-minute walk), a buzzy bar, and discoteca that heats up on the weekends with international DJ sets.
WHY WE LIKE IT
You may not be steps from Madrid’s main attractions at Villa Magna, but the hotel is a vacation in itself with its decadent rooms and impeccable service. Real Madrid fans will appreciate its proximity to Santiago Bernabéu stadium, and every type of traveler will feel at home in Barrio Salamanca, a true-blue Madrileño neighborhood lined with boutiques and family-run restaurants.