Unique design elements like fingerprint scanning instead of room keys
Serene feel and quiet rooms with plush bedding
Large plasma TVs and free Wi-Fi
Well-constructed, spacious rooms with chic décor
Flat-panel TVs, free Wi-Fi and free minibar
Marble bathrooms with luxury toiletries, bathrobes and slippers
Expensive breakfast buffet
Entry-level (Deluxe) room category feels a bit bare and undecorated
A smartly designed luxury boutique hotel, the seven-floor Alma Barcelona has 72 quiet, upscale rooms with flat-panel TVs and free Wi-Fi. Unlike the nearby Claris and Majestic, the pool here is indoors, so weather will never spoil your swim. The rooftop terrace has first-rate views of the Eixample and Sagrada Familia. Style here has a starring role: design elements include fingerprint swiping instead of room keys, and architectural features such as a minimalist light-filled atrium. The Alma is a chic and serene spot for travelers who want Barcelona cool and an Eixample location a half block from Passeig de Gracia shopping.
A serene and stylish haven, with an indoor pool and chic but comfy rooms
Despite its setting in a 100-year-old townhouse-style building with wrought-iron gates, the seven-floor Alma features a modern interior with zen-like calmness in its decor and feel. The centerpiece of the hotel is a seven-story atrium, minimalist in its design, done in hues of grey and bathed in natural light. Imaginative design elements abound: room numbers on the doors look like typewriter keys and instead of a room key, and you scan your fingerprint to enter your room. But there's lots of substance with all the style. The hotel is filled out with high-quality materials such as hardwoods, metals and leather, the beds are plush and comfy and the smartly suited staff provides attentive service.
The guest list tends toward sophisticated singles and couples. The spa offers a relaxing respite from all that pounding the Barcelona pavement. In addition to massages and treatments (for a fee), there is a sauna and steam room. The rectangle-shaped indoor pool is a shimmering blue-green color and it's set in an atmospheric, serene space. At 20 yards it's long enough to swim genuine laps in. When you finally repair to the rooms, you'll find plush beds, free Wi-Fi, wall-mounted plasma TVs and marble bathrooms. Rooms are quiet and spacious, and start at 269 square feet.
An Eixample locale near high-end shopping and Gaudi's greatest
Shopaholics and Gaudi-philes gravitate to the Alma for its location a half block east of the Passeig de Gracia and 1.5 blocks south of the Gaudi's undulating stone Casa Mila. More good Gaudi where that came from: Casa Batllo is 2.5 blocks south and the Sagrada Familia is eight blocks (about 15 minutes' walk) northeast. The Placa de Catalunya and northern end of La Rambla are about 10 minutes south. The Passeig de Gracia Metro station is 2.5 blocks south, providing easy access to the rest of Barcelona. If you're driving from the airport, the hotel is about 20 minutes northeast.
Spacious, minimalist rooms with plush beds and marble baths
How's this for an entrance? Instead of a dull room key, you scan your fingerprint to enter the room. Inside are smartly designed and well crafted, with hardwood floors, leather furniture and headboards and glass dividers. The entry-level (Deluxe) rooms are a little spare, and might benefit from more art on the walls. The 72 rooms feature plush cotton bedding, free minibar items and big marble bathrooms with rainforest showers, luxury toiletries, bathrobes, and slippers. The rooms are high-ceilinged, spacious (starting at 269 square feet), and quiet. Many of the Grand Deluxe rooms feature views of the Casa Mila. In-room tech touches include free Wi-Fi, plasma TVs and sleek phones.
Featuring an indoor pool and seasonal rooftop terrace with Sagrada views
To put it charitably, many hotel pools are just big enough to splash around in. The one here is not only nice to look at, it's 20 yards long, which means you can get laps in. The spa also features a relaxing sauna, steam room, massage and beauty treatments (for a fee). A small fitness room has a few cardio machines and free weights. The seasonal rooftop terrace bar exudes Barcelona cool and features good views of the surrounding Eixample and Sagrada Familia. Also on site are a quiet lobby bar and fine dining Mediterranean restaurant.