This shiny luxury property, opened in early 2018, overlooks the sprawling Plaza de España at the western end of Gran Vía, Madrid's main artery. Modern (if slightly sterile) interiors are accented by subtly patterned fabrics, clean lines, and neutral tones. There's a see-and-be-seen rooftop pool bar as well as a gym and spa. The hotel is still working out some service and maintenance kinks. Don't hesitate to ask for a new room or an upgrade if something goes awry.
YOU SHOULD KNOW This hotel earned ire and disdain among locals when it held an open "casting call" in January to fill 100 positions. Some 7,000 people showed up. The lines stretched around the block were an unnecessary, humiliating reminder of the precarious employment situation in Spain, and the hotel should've known better. Needless to say, most applicants were turned away.
The best rooms boast floor-to-ceiling windows with sweeping views of the square below, and some even have private gyms, walk-in closets, and sprawling outdoor terraces. Grays, dark woods, and taupes define the color palette, allowing the property to straddle both the leisure and business sectors, in terms of design.
YOU SHOULD KNOW The newfangled automated "do not disturb" system is confusing; until it's streamlined, ensure you've communicated to reception when you'd like your room tidied up and when you'd like to be left alone.
Well-lit bathrooms are outfitted with walk-in showers, L'Occitane bath products, and robes and slippers. For a five-star hotel, towels are surprisingly rough.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Shower troubles have plagued the hotel since opening. Check to ensure that you have good water pressure and that the shower door closes properly.
The high-ceilinged lobby—appointed with low marble tables, Danish sofas, and cushy armchairs—is an inviting place to read a magazine or plan your day's adventures.
The ground-level pool, part of the spa area, has floor-to-ceiling (tinted) windows that look out onto the street. A rooftop pool on the 12th floor is set to open for summer 2018.
Biloba spa offers a range of facial, body, and massage treatments hinging on Carita and Décleor emollients.
You'll love the modern, immaculately clean fitness center outfitted with the latest Technogym equipment.
Service may be slow and slipshod at Ginkgo, the rooftop restaurant, but the well-prepared, attractively presented nueva cocina tapas and entrées are worth the wait.
Colorful, inventive cocktails at Ginkgo's poolside sky bar taste particularly wonderful as you gaze out over the Parque del Oeste and Casa de Campo in the distance. This is a great spot to wow a date or seal a business deal.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Bartenders are notoriously slow to make Gingko's elaborate cocktails. If the bar is busy, you're better off ordering a beer or glass of wine.
The hotel’s westerly location means you’re close to the Royal Palace and surrounding sites, but you’ll want to take the metro at Plaza de España (Lines 3 and 10) or Santo Domingo (Line 2) to reach the Retiro and “Golden Triangle” museums.
You’re steps from Conde Duque, Madrid’s hottest new neighborhood, known for its eclectic mix of trendster tapas spots and dusty abuelo bars. Get your caffeine fix at Federal Café (7-minute walk), an American-owned spot that brews the only decent coffee in the vicinity. Come nightfall, head to El Maño (6-minute walk) for old-school tapas (garlicky white anchovies, Spanish-style meatballs, and spicy fried potatoes), or post up at La Carbonera (4-minute walk), a pocket-size “cheese bar” known for its hard-to-find quesos and funky wines by the glass.
Beer lovers unite at Fábrica Maravillas (8-minute taxi), Madrid’s only city-center brewpub, located in the neighboring Malasaña district. Choose from a dozen draft beers that were brewed just steps from your barstool. If cocktails are more your speed, duck into La Bicicleta, a retro café one block up that transforms into a low-key, dimly lit bar by night.
WHY WE LIKE IT
We see potential in this newcomer, not only because of its location by the trendy Conde Duque neighborhood but also for its excellent facilities. After all, how many other Madrid city-center properties boast two sexy pools? Barceló Torre de Madrid (the other new hotel located across the plaza) may have an edge on VP Plaza España when it comes to design, but the former can't hold a candle to the latter's chic rooftop pool area. Keep an eye on this hotel: When it irons out its pesky wrinkles, it's going to be one of the city's most sought-after properties.