5 Star Spanish Luxury – NH Hotel Group’s New Offerings in Barcelona & Madrid
December 1, 2016
Planning a trip to the fabulous Spanish cities of Madrid or Barcelona? Five star luxury awaits at the reborn NH Collection Suecia and the NH Collection Gran Hotel Calderon.
Having never stayed at an NH Collection before, I was delighted to discover the sheer luxuriousness of these unique properties at the heart of two cosmopolitan, buzzing, busy cities. Both, urbane indulgent havens with a wonderful balance of calm and cool, yet are right on the doorstep of the ‘loco’ vibe, so you’re smack bang in the centre of these amazing short break destinations, with all the action just a short walk away. That is, if you ever want to leave the hotel…
NH Collection Gran Hotel Calderon
The reception area at the Gran Hotel Calderon, decked out in the signature red and white colours, is like walking into a trendy bar. A sink-yourself-into sofa awaits next to quirky swinging pod chairs which are great for watching the world go by through the floor to ceiling glass entrance. Exceptional customer service is at the heart of the NH Hotel Group’s ethos and that’s exactly what you’ll experience as soon as you walk through the doors! That’s if you can take your eyes off the amazing 56 metre LED screen showing a constant stream of stylish images, paving the way in hotel innovation in the city.
Bedrooms are cosy, cool and compact. With 163 Superior and 63 Premium rooms, there are also an impressive 14 spacious Junior suites too though which make excellent use of the space, while two of the suites come with huge private outdoor terraces complete with comfortable loungers and views across Barcelona. You can expect huge mirrors, powerful rainfall showers, Nespresso coffee and tea machines, high speed wifi and 46″ LED TV’s as standard, as well as one of those beds you literally never want to leave! I particularly enjoyed returning to my room after a hard days’ sightseeing or shopping to find test-tubes of tealeaves, macaroons and brownies and ice cold smoothies – such a wonderful touch.
There’s so many things I loved about this hotel – the roof terrace is exceptional, with pool and panoramic views. The location, is absolutely fantastic and in just a few minutes, you can be on La Ramblas, or at Gaudi’s fabulous La Pedrera. The staff aren’t just brilliant, they actually go beyond the ensure you’ve got absolutely everything you need, and the food… well…
If you consider gastronomy to be one of your favourite pleasures in life (as I do), then there can be no better hotel brand. NH Hotel Group ensure Michelin star experiences in many of their hotels with celebrity chefs at the helm. The NH Collection Gran Hotel Calderon is no exception. Innovative cooking with flair and flavour comes courtesy of Andrea Tumbarello. While at the hotel, we were treated to the most fabulous gastro fest showcasing the skills of the kitchen. Melon ball caviar which exploded on the tongue, clusters of dried fruit frozen in liquid nitrogen and freshly shaved truffle dishes were just some of the treats on offer. The Don Giovanni restaurant on site is the perfect place to enjoy top notch award-winning, Italian cuisine.
What’s more, if you book now, you can take advantage of a room upgrade, late checkout until 2pm, and a 10% discount at Don Giovanni (subject to availability).
NH Collection Calderon: from 179€ including tax (Estimated price for December)
NH Collection Suecia
‘The House of Sweden’ is a pretty special hotel. Having opened originally in 1956, the newly renovated Hotel Suecia now boasts that all important five star rating and it’s not hard to see why. Playing host over the years to Ernest Hemingway and Ernesto Che Guevara, this amazing building boasts a super stylish Scandinavian vibe created by interior designers Lazaro Rose Violan and Mercedes Isasa. Their vision, to achieve warmth throughout each space with a combination of natural and artificial light – expensive fine woods on the walls and floors, quirky drop lighting, clean lines and stylish furniture, yet a nod throughout to a charming bygone era.
A stand out hotel in my opinion, I loved the design, the long bar and eating area at the front of the hotel and a huge long reception desk leading through to an extended sitting area behind. Again the rooms I stayed in was compact, but had everything I needed and incredible views over the city of Madrid. Important for all travelling ladies, I was impressed with the high power hair dryer, the lighting in the bathroom and the full length mirror which also doubled as the bathroom door. The bed was incredible with a mattress which was so thick and so comfortable, it immediately reminded me of the story of ‘Princess and the Pea!’ Six plumped up pillows added to a heavenly sleeping experience.
Room service was particularly good and the quality of the food really was amazing. Espresso Martinis at the long bar downstairs were delicious and breakfast which is actually served until noon on the weekends, offered up a fantastic cold buffet selection and a range of hot food on the menu – all included.
More stand out features of this hotel were the absolutely gorgeous roof terrace upstairs, which has a private further mezzanine terrace above. The views out across the city were just wonderful and in the moment, with the sun on my face in the middle of November, this felt like a very special place! Come May 27th, the roof terrace will open for summer and will no doubt become a destination roof top for the cool crowd in summer.
With a further nod to Hemingway, go for a little wander through the toilets downstairs, and you might just stumble on a little surprise! A hidden speakeasy cocktail bar which really comes to life at night. Its access through such a strange part of the hotel definitely added that something extra to the experience! If you want to venture further afield though, Hotel Suecia’s location is fantastic. Situated in the historic district of Circulo de Bella Artes and Gran Via, there are restaurants, bars, arts, culture and shopping all just a stones’ throw away. And should you be stuck for ideas, the Guest Relations Team who are dedicated to ensuring every aspect of your stay is exceptional, can advise on the best places to go – our new best friend Diego even helped us get onto a club guest list, really, nothing it too much trouble!
After four nights in this hotel, I felt completely at home, but all good things must come to an end. Luckily, I’m already planning my next Madrid adventure. If you’re planning one too, to Madrid or Barcelona, you can be guaranteed a really special stay with NH Collection’s Hotels…
NH Collection Suecia: from 185€ including tax (Estimated price for December)
Written by Luxuria Lifestyle UK’s Ashleigh Whitfield