This boutique apartment hotel offers great value on a quiet street just a couple of blocks from Retiro Park, the Prado, and Madrid’s main shopping area. Its large lobby, with marble floors and a wood-paneled ceiling, adjoins a café, restaurant, and the hotel's restful outdoor garden, an after-work magnet for Madrileños working and living in the neighborhood.
Rooms are large and feature modern furnishings, and they all have a sofa bed plus a kitchenette with a microwave, stovetop, and refrigerator (complimentary bottled water and soft drinks). Some are triples. "Superior" rooms, a tad more expensive, add sizable terraces. Pillow menus are a nice perk.
Check the hotel's website for periodic deals.
Though nothing out of the ordinary, bathrooms are comfortable and impeccably clean. Toiletries go beyond the standard shampoo and body wash to include dental and shaving kits.
Outmoded yet inviting, the marble-floored lobby features a small seating area, l-shaped winder stairs, and a twinkling chandelier.
Breakfasts feature a bountiful spread of pastries, cereal, and cold cuts is accompanied by cooked-to-order eggs. The indoor-outdoor restaurant is open for lunch and dinner as well and attracts a local clientele with Madrileño classics such as huevos rotos, sunny-side-up eggs served over fried potatoes, and rabo de toro, braised oxtail in a meaty wine sauce.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Sadly, breakfast is not served in the outdoor garden.
Many of Madrid's main attractions are within walking distance from the hotel, but if your legs need a rest, hop on the metro at Retiro (Line 2) or Colón (Line 4).
The Salamanca district boasts two of the best spots in the city for tortilla de patata, Spanish potato omelette: Casa Dani (9-minute walk), a noisy bar tucked in a 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 Los Gallos (cocktails and finger food), Cinco Jotas (premium jamón ibérico), and Ultramarinos Quintín (rawbar and flatbreads)—all about a 5-minute walk from the hotel.
The quiet streets surrounding the hotel belie a number of glamorous nightlife venues. There’s Ten con Ten (10-minute walk), the swanky “gin bar” that incited Madrid's gin tónic frenzy a decade ago that hasn’t abated since. After a cocktail there, make your way to Arts Club (5-minute taxi), a buzzy bar and discoteca that heats up on the weekends with international DJ sets.
WHY WE LIKE IT
Jardín de Recoletos may keep a low profile as an "aparthotel," but it offers terrific value, thanks to its parkside location, spacious rooms, and tranquil back garden. Travelers who don't like eating out for every meal will appreciate the kitchenettes, while those who enjoy romantic strolls will be enamored by the neighboring Retiro Park. Though certain design elements might make a millennial cringe, the warm service and comfortable digs make this hotel well worth seeking out.