Chain hotels can offer a certain level of comfort and consistency but let's be honest, who doesn't get tired of the business trip bedding and buffet breakfasts? If you're planning a holiday to remember, a boutique hotel could be the fresh spark you need to light up your lodging experience. These independent, artfully designed accommodations provide immaculate attention to detail as well as specialised service. What will you choose? Modern furnishings in a setting surrounded by Roman ruins? A garden patio serving organic fresh food? A private outdoor bath? Astonishing views of some of the city's top landmarks? It might prove to be a difficult undertaking, but once you decide, you'll be thrilled to stay in one of Barcelona's best boutique hotels.
If you're looking for a basecamp right in the heart of Barcelona in a lovely boutique hotel, the Mercer could be your dream come true. Set in an ancient stone building in the Gothic Quarter, the motif is carried throughout the 28 rooms of the hotel with stone walls that add the perfect splash of extra charm. The three-story Mercer was built in 2012, so you've also got all the perks of modern, up-to-date facilities, combined with the beauty of the Roman ruins surrounding it. On the rooftop terrace, you can grab a drink at the bar or take a dip in the pool. And with major monuments just a stone's throw away, you've got plenty to explore when you head out.
Set in the Poble-sec neighbourhood near Montjuïc, the Brummell grants you easy access to both the city centre and the seaside mountain's museums and gardens. The hotel's fabulous garden patio has proved to be popular among the locals, so enjoy a drink or a snack and see what nifty knowledge you can pick up. If you're looking for the wow factor, splurge for the Penthouse among the 20 designer rooms, and take a plunge in the private outdoor bathtub with warm water and foam! All guests enjoy full access to the sauna and swimming pool, and you get free yoga classes (there's even a courtesy mat in your room).
The clue is in the name at this picturesque palace. As you may have guessed, it's in a small (by palace standards) former palace that dates to the 19th century, it's very close to the famous Boqueria Market on La Rambla, and it boasts a lovely private courtyard and garden – with trees that are a century old. With a dozen different room types, everyone's invited to feel welcome, whether you're travelling on your own or in a group of six, whether you need no more than a small double or if you're after an apartment duplex. Ask about bicycle rental, romance packs or other special offers to suit you.
Right on the beautiful, historic, and incredibly central Plaça Reial that's just off La Rambla, you'll find this five-star hotel that looks big enough to house more than the intimate 18 rooms it's got. That means lovely spacious rooms and common areas for you to relax in. If attention to detail and free extras are what you're into, you've found the right place: breakfast, a welcome drink, an hour’s free access to the spa, free non-alcoholic minibar, free snacks and fruit every day, and pillow and aroma menus are some of the items on the list. If you're looking to make your stay extra special, treat yourself to the rooftop room, El Terrat, with its own private terrace and pool. Lush!
The Ohla stands on enviable real estate between the historic Barri Gòtic and the lively Born neighbourhoods. You're practically opposite the famous Palau de la Música Catalana concert hall, and just down the road from the Barcelona Cathedral and La Rambla. When you're ready to rest, head up to the stunning rooftop terrace for drinks at the bar or a dip in the pool, weather permitting, as you take in incredible views of the Old City and beyond. For an extra special stay, definitely look into the Experiences packages: the staff will help you set up a romantic proposal, plan a memorable birthday celebration, provide you with a bath butler (we like the sound of this!), or even make sure you've got everything you can dream of for a perfect night's sleep
From the designer furniture to the promotion of slow food and the plant-lined rooftop terrace hosting DJs and aperitif sessions, the Pulitzer is hip with a capital H. The bedrooms are light and have a cool European loft vibe, with fittings made from natural materials and elements in bright colours to keep things interesting. The Pulitzer is tucked into a little street that leads onto Plaça Catalunya, so you can enjoy the glitz and glam of being in the city centre but when the torrent of tourists proves too much, it's a breeze slip back to the hotel. If you enjoy staying in places that focus on comfort, design and living well, the Pulitzer fits the bill.
Anna, Emma, Pau, Carla and Gerard are your Room Mates in Barcelona. They all live fairly near each other, and have a lot in common. Today we're introducing you to Anna. A bit farther out of the central hub, Anna's in the fashionable Eixample district, just off Passeig de Gràcia, where you can satisfy all your shopping needs, visit architectural monuments and stroll all the way to Plaça Catalunya, La Rambla and beyond. Anna's rooms are not shy, with bolder versions of colours found in nature: lilac, avocado, lemon and sunset. The plunge pool on the terrace's wooden deck is small but chic, and surrounded by zebra-striped sofas for lounging about. Bonus: breakfast is served until noon!
So close to the Sagrada Família that the views are slightly intimidating, the four-star Ayre is exactly where you want to be to admire Antoni Gaudí's life's work at all times of the day and night. When you can peel your eyes away from the basilica, you'll be happy to see you're in a stylish room with a modern, stripped-down design. There's no swimming pool on the chill rooftop terrace, but who cares – have you seen that view? Be sure to stroll up the pleasant Av. de Gaudí, lined with restaurants, bars and shops, which leads straight to another modernista treasure, the Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site.
That iconic corner building on Av. Diagonal in the uptown area of Sarrià-Sant Gervasi is home to the 52 soundproofed, contemporary rooms that make up the Wilson Boutique Hotel. The spacious rooms are loaded with natural light thanks to those fantastic windows, and you get a private balcony to ooh and ahh over city views no matter which room you choose. Being outside of the city centre has its benefits: this side of the Eixample has some of the city's best restaurants, and neighbouring Gràcia is great for hopping from square to square, taking time to sip a drink and do some serious people watching.
A design hotel that’s popular with cosmopolitan, image-conscious party people, the Axel’s main clientele is the gay crowd but it’s also hetero-friendly. Rooms are comfortable and elegant in calming neutral tones. King-size beds come as standard, as does erotic artwork. The hotel itself makes for an awesome hangout – thanks to the Sky Bar's rooftop pool, hot tub and chill-out area, a Peruvian-Japanese fusion restaurant, and an extensive spa that offers massages, a thermal circuit, more fitness machines than in your average city gym, and personal trainers in a gorgeously designed space. When you’re in the mood for a big night out without having to stray too far from your home away from home, the Axel hosts regular club nights and live music performances.