My wife will be traveling with our then 16 month old daughter as well as my 60+ year old parents. We would like to stay in a somewhat quieter area with walking or metro access to the sites of Barcelona. Ramblas seems like it might be too noisy, any other suggestions?
Have you considerred an apartment? Apartments Sixtyfour at 64 Passeig de Gracia is a 2-bedroom apartment in the Eixemple, close to the Gaudi houses and right by a Metro stop. It is a short walk from Placa Catalunya and the top of Las Ramblas. You can buy groceries at El Corte Ingles right on the near corner of Place Catalunya. Passeig de Gracia is a tree-lined boulevard with wide sidewalks sprinkled with sidewalk cafes. There is a narrow, one-way lane for taxis and bikes along either side, then a row of trees separating the sidewalk and buildings from the main part of the street. Check it out on Google maps street view to see. This area is very centrally located, has a good feel to it, and has lots of shops, restaurants, and tapas places. We walked everywhere (including Sagrada Familia, the harbor, and Montejuic) from our hotel near this spot, with the exception of Parc Guell. The bus down from Parc Guell (I think it is the # 24) lets you off practically in front of the apartments. But if you don't want to walk that much, there is the metro stop right there, as well as stops for the major buses.