Barcelona's Chicest and Most Elegant Budget Hotels in and around the City
By Sam Mednick
Barcelona Local Expert
Going on holiday is expensive enough and if you're the type of traveler who doesn't need to spend that much time in the hotel, then why not opt for a cheaper, more affordable option; and spend the rest of your money on tapas and sangria! Barcelona has almost as many hotels and hostels as it does bars, restaurants and nightclubs. It's a city full of swanky five star establishments, remodeled four star heritage buildings and plenty of budget hotels and hostels.
One of the best things about the city is that no matter how many stars your hotel has, Barcelona’s buildings are so aesthetically pleasing and architecturally beautifully designed, that even the least elaborate and most rustic of places gives off an elegant and classy vibe.
When it comes to deciding on where to stay, if you’re looking for budget options it really depends on which area of town you want to stay in.
The closer you stay to Ciutat Vella (Old City), in the Gothic Quarter and the Born for example, or by the beach in the Barceloneta neighborhood and anywhere along La Rambla, is going to be more expensive no matter how nice the accommodation. If you're looking for something slightly more luxurious but don't want to pay through the roof, consider staying slightly outside of the downtown core, perhaps towards the Eixample district and you'll be able to find a higher end hotel at a more affordable price.
Hostal Levante Barcelona
It is rumored that Picasso himself visited the Levante Hostal in his youth and that his painting, Les Demoiselles d'Avignon was created with memories of his time spent there. The Levante is a friendly and cozy Hostal in the heart of the Gothic neighborhood, fully equipped and newly reformed it's an ideal choice for an affordable place to stay in an excellent location. The hostel has 24 hour reception, wifi and is ideally situated in the center of town in the Gothic Quarter right in the heart of all of the action. This is a great place to stay if you're looking for cheap and central.
Roma Reial Hotel
You can't get more centrally located than Plaza Reial; one of Barcelona's most lively and busy plazas, directly off La Rambla, this is where the action starts and finishes, especially on weekends. If you're looking for an affordable, young, hip and vibrant place to stay, then Roma Reial is an excellent choice. The hotel is clean and tastefully decorated and the rooms have beautiful views overlooking the plaza. This is a great deal in the heart of the city center and in one of the most beautiful plazas right off La Rambla. There are plenty of places to eat, go out, listen to music and enjoy your time.
Hotel Peninsular Barcelona
When walking into this small hotel in the Raval you feel a mix of bohemian sophistication. The Hotel Peninsular is charming and well situated in one of Barcelona's most rustic and 'real' neighborhoods; you'll feel like you're experiencing the 'real' Barcelona and the genuine vibe of the city. The hotel has an interior patio which is great for relaxing at the end of the day and sipping a few cocktails before venturing out for the night. This is a great hotel if you want quiet, charming, affordable and to be situated in one of the less touristy parts of the city, yet still be extremely central.
Hostal Goya Barcelona
Ideally situated beside Plaza Catalunya, Hostal Goya is a friendly, unassuming, modernly decorated establishment and if you don't want to burn a hole in your wallet but still want to experience a comfortable and enjoyable stay in the heart of the city, then this place is perfect. Their rooms are decently sized, especially for European standards and the staff are friendly and more than eager to help you book tours, rent cars or help you figure out how to get around the city. This is an extremely affordable place to stay and ideally located in the heart of the city center.
Market Hotel Barcelona
A charming place to stay, the Market Hotel is located on the outskirts of the city center, in the Sant Antoni neighborhoods, but still only a short walk or quick metro ride to the downtown core. This place is all about comfort at affordable prices and if you want to splurge a little check out their one apartment suite; it comes fully equipped with a bed, pull out couch, TV & DVD player as well as its own private balcony with a bbq.This is an eclectic place to stay and if you want to discover the 'real' Barcelona it's a great neighborhood in which to do that.
Hotel España Barcelona
What used to be a three star hotel has recently been converted into a beautiful four star Modernist visage. It remains, however to be a very affordable option in the heart of the city; close to La Rambla, the Raval, the Gothic Quarter and the Born neighborhoods. Inaugurated in 1859, Hotel Espana was then designed by renowned Modernist architect, Lluis Domenech i Montaner and has always been regarded as a little Modernist Jewel centered, tucked away in the center of the city. If you want to be central and in a lovely, 4 star hotel, this is a wonderful choice.
Duquesa de Cardona Hotel Barcelona
This is not the cheapest of the bunch, however the hotel has excellent deals and special rates throughout the year. It's perfectly situated between the Gothic Quarter and Barceloneta neighborhoods and it has a small but quaint and relaxing rooftop patio, perfect for dining or having a few aperitifs while overlooking the port. This is a stunning hotel, small, charming and elegantly decorated. It's unassuming so even though its decor might make one think otherwise, it's quite relaxed. Most clients who stay at the Duquesa become repeat 'offenders' and stay loyal as the service is wonderful and it's just so perfectly located.
Hotel Sagrada Familia
The views from the rooftop terrace of this hotel give you front row seats to Gaudi's, Sagrada Familia and if you want to see the Church head on (which you should) it's about a two-minute walk. The hotel itself features a very basic accommodation, with friendly staff and a few amenities. It's ideal if you don't plan on spending too much time in the hotel but want a quiet and comfortable place to return to at the end of the day. This is a great hotel if you want to be close to the center, yet not in the heart of the action.
Hotel Medium Abalon
The Abalon's best selling point is its close proximity to Gaudi's, Sagrada Familia. It is a minimally decorated, simple, budget accommodation, with clean rooms and a cafeteria on the main floor. If you're looking for a very affordable place to stay, slightly outside of the city center yet easily accessible via foot and metro, then this is a good option. It's also a close walk to the upper Born neighborhood, which is great for shopping, browsing and trying new restaurants. From the Born you can easily walk to the Gothic Quarter and Raval neighborhoods, all of which are great places to explore.
Hotel Jazz Barcelona
It's hard to beat the Hotel Jazz's location as it's directly next door to Plaza Catalunya, close to the Raval and the rest of the Old City and a stone's throw from La Rambla and Rambla Catalunya (more elegant high end shopping). This is one of the best 'bangs for your buck' when it comes to accommodation in Barcelona. For a fairly spacious, standard room and a variety of amenities including a pool and solarium, the hotel is very reasonably priced. This is a great place to stay especially if you want to be close to the Old City as well as the more 'modern areas'.
About Sam Mednick
Sam’s passion for the sea and the mountains makes Barcelona the optimal living destination.
Sam's passion for traveling has taken her around the world including Fiji, Argentina, Lebanon, Uganda, Ghana, Israel the Philippines, and Canada. Before moving to Barcelona Sam worked in Ghana as a foreign correspondent for a Canadian NGO, as well as a the Executive Radio Producer for an internationally syndicated lifestyle show based out of New York City.
In addition to freelancing Sam works as a professional Life and Executive coach. She also hosts an English Radio Show every Friday and is interested in Real Estate.
Sam's coaching philosophies: www.blueprintcoaching.ca. Listen to her podcast: http://blueprintcoaching.podomatic.com.
Read more about Sam Mednick here.