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Barcelona Hotels

We are planning 2 nights in Barcelona prior to a cruise in November (at least we are hopeful that this cruise will launch). Never been to Barcelona before and we are trying to educate ourselves on the different areas of the city to make a wise hotel choice. While we are seniors, we love to walk and are pretty active, but think that something close to mass transit is desirable.
Appreciate thoughts of you seasoned travelers!

Posted by
744 posts

Check out Hotel Continental. Stayed there a few years ago and loved it. Recommended it to my uncle and aunt in their 70's and they loved it too.

  • rooms with balcony right on the Ramblas, to watch all the city life go by.
  • near Placa Catalunya (main transit hub)
  • near market
  • near Barri Gotic (old Gothic quarter, with Cathedral)
  • lovely stroll down the Ramblas to the beach.

Posted by
20860 posts

Are you limited to just two nights prior to the cruise? That will give you only one full, non-jetlagged day in Barcelona. It's a city with a lot of sights, many of which require timed entry tickets (usually purchased in advance). It's not a city one can cover well in one day plus a few hours. I'd opt for at least four nights myself. More time would be advisable if you want to day-trip to Girona, Figueres, etc.

I stayed in a small hotel (in an even smaller room) on a pedestrian street just southeast of Placa de Catalunya. I found the location very convenient, being between the medieval Barri Gotic and the 19th century Eixample area with its modernista buildings. It's also the termination point for the airport bus. However, the nearest Metro stations were some distance away (close to 1/3 mile, I'd guess). That didn't affect me because I mostly moved around on foot. The Metro is very handy, so it is a good plan to try to be near a station.

Posted by
7501 posts

Honestly, I would avoid taking Barcelona’s metro and I grew up on NY subways. There is an exceptionally large pickpocket problem in Barcelona. Our hotel staff and the restaurants we dined at all reminded us about it. Take a taxi or walk.
We liked Hispanis7Suizas, an aparthotel with wonderful front desk help.
Add at least one more day, two more would be better, to see Barcelona . You are cutting it short.

Posted by
3256 posts

I would also opt for 4 nights especially if it’s your 1st time to Barcelona. I can recommend the quiet location of Hotel Jazz. It’s an unbeatable location in the center of Barcelona, between Plaza Catalunya, the Passeig de Gràcia and the Rambla (200 yards away); easy access to Gothic neighborhood and the modernist buildings, Boqueria marketplace, Catalan Music Palace, etc. it also was the best breakfast buffet we had in Spain. We took two excellent free walking tours with Runner Bean Tours. runnerbeantours,com. 2.5 hr tours. One was the Gothic Tour the other was the Gaudi Tour. The Gaudi Tour ended near the Sagrada Família, so we planned ahead & booked tickets there after lunch. The only time we used a taxi was to & from the airport and to Park Güell, otherwise we walked.

Posted by
758 posts

We're planning a 2022 Douro river cruise and ending on our own in Barcelona. Never been but did some looking at hotels and found they have a Kimptons. We stayed at the Kimpton in Amsterdam at the end of a river cruise there and loved it. Not super fancy, but clean, excellent customer service, and it had some nice perks like free wine happy hours. Based on our experience we're planning to give the Kimpton Vividora in Barcelona a whirl.

Posted by
5221 posts

I stayed several nights at the Catalonia Portal de l'Angel and liked it. Nice room, helpful front desk, attractive courtyard in back, nice bar with food, good breakfast. On a pedestrian street about a block from Placa Catalunya, close to Bari Gotic and the Ramblas. Acraven is right about Barcelona being worth more time than you plan, try to stay longer if you can.

Posted by
1743 posts

After our cruise we stayed at the Ibis Barcelona Centro ( Sagrada Familia ). Decent price, near the Sagrada Familia and two metro lines.

Posted by
9 posts

We thank all of you for your input. Will try to squeeze in an extra day. My Barcelona tour book certainly has many enticements!

Posted by
7 posts

We are seniors. We have found the BCN metro very safe and efficient. I got careless in Rome and got pickpocketed - but never in half a dozen or so trips to Barcelona. Give yourself more time. Wonderful city. Use the “jetlag rooster” (google it) to prepare so you can hit Europe running. Taxis are plentiful and cheap. Take one from the airport to your lodging. Worth it - you will be disoriented. Plan to walk a lot. Stay in north-ish Barrí Gotic or el Born by Picasso museum. Rick’s Barcelona Guide is great. DO NOT SKIP the Sagrada Familia. Reserve in advance.

Posted by
1324 posts

I can also recommend Hotel Continental. We call it the pink palace -- all the rooms were in shades of pink, at least when we were there. It had probably the most comfy bed I've ever had in a hotel. The breakfast wasn't the best, but it has beer and white wine available 24/7, help yourself. Our party's men had a lot of that beer. The white wine was poor, but I took to mixing it half and half with OJ and calling it a mimosa.

As mentioned by the prior poster, the location can't be beat. Definitely get the balcony room overlooking the Ramblas. And try to fit in more nights. There's lots to see in Barcelona for a first timer especially.

You say you are active, but still be aware that when we were at this hotel the elevator was broken more often than it worked, and the stairs to reception and the rooms are quite steep.

Posted by
1842 posts

Another happy Hotel Continental patron. We were quite pleased ...great location, nice price, friendly staff, coffee and wine and snacks. We had a balcony room and it was very nice each evening. Andrea got it right. ! I’m sometimes reluctant to recommend this hotel as we don’t object at all to pink plastic end tables in the room or free wine in plastic cups but not everyone shares our level of standards. When the clerk at the desk saw me walk by one day with my Rick Steves book in hand, he stopped me to say he’d apply the Rick discount to our bill. Forever in our hearts.

Posted by
4939 posts

We also stayed at the Catalonia Portal D'Angel, and loved it. The staff was great, the room was fine, and the breakfast was amazing. I don't know if they'll still be doing the breakfast buffet, but I could have parked myself down there and stayed all day.

And the hotel is very convenient to many popular tourist sites, including the Cathedral, a number of museums, and Las Ramblas. I would definitely stay more than two nights, if possible. There is so much to see!

Posted by
81 posts

We stayed at the Gaudi Sagrada Familia family apartments, just down the street from the Gaudi's cathedral. It's on, has availability for November, if you would be interested. It is an older property, and certainly not luxurious, but the location is incredible. The street is closed off and local eateries have tables outside. The food is tasty, and the Sangria is to die for!

Locals would stroll and greet each other with a kiss. One night a gentleman sat on one of the benches and played the cello. It was great. The cathedral is within walking distance and is beautiful at all times of the day. (be sure to make a reservation online before you go...) The entrance to the subway is across the street and easily accessible. Hope everything works out for your cruise!