Barcelona—a place where you strive to get lost in the city streets (and we particularly recommend near the Gothic quarter). The beauty of Barcelona lies in your surroundings: the colorful and inspiring architecture of Antoni Gaudi found all throughout the city, the scent of fresh baked “pan tumaca” drifting from restaurant windows, and the sound of locals chatting at La Boqueria—Barcelona’s oldest market dating back to 1217 —while picking up their Saturday produce. In other words, be prepared to spend your days on your feet roaming the city streets, but with your eyes to the sky as you take in the beauty of Barcelona’s iconic skyline and robust history.
Hotel Arts Barcelona
A dazzling display of contemporary architecture, Hotel Arts Barcelona (operated by the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company) is renowned the world over for its impeccable service and lavish accommodations, including 28 duplex penthouses. The penthouses are located on the top floors of the hotel and offer butler service and use of a MINI Cooper. The hotel has an exclusive spa, 43 The Spa, located on the 43rd floor. Visit the terraced gardens, infinity-edge pool, family pool, the stunning collection of Spanish art, or the five restaurants – including the acclaimed two-Michelin-starred Enoteca Paco Pérez, with a wine cellar topping 700 labels.
WIT Tip: Hotel Arts Barcelona’s amazing oceanfront location is just minutes away from the Gothic district. Book a room with stunning views of the marina and beaches.
Majestic Hotel & Spa
An icon in the heart of modernist Barcelona, Majestic Hotel & Spa is an exclusive 272- room hotel that sits across from Gaudí's famed buildings at Paseo de Gracia. Reserve the Majestic Royal Penthouse to experience catch-your-breath views over Sagrada Familia cathedral. Michelin-starred chef Nandu Jubany oversees the sophisticated buffet breakfast and hotel gastronomy. Try the farm-to-table SOLC restaurant and enjoy after-dinner drinks at La Dolce Vitae rooftop terrace. Save time for personalized treatments at Majestic Spa.
WIT Tip: Don’t miss sunset cocktails and tapas on the tenth floor at La Dolce Vitae outdoor terrace lounge – the city view, which includes La Sagrada Familia, is fantastic.
Mandarin Oriental Barcelona
Ideally located near all the city’s major attractions, Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona offers an atmospheric setting on Passeig de Gràcia. With contemporary interiors by designer Patricia Urquiola, the 120 rooms and suites (some with private terraces) are among the most luxurious in Barcelona. Carme Ruscalleda (one of the most awarded chefs in the world) is the leader of the two-Michelin-starred Moments Restaurant, casual Blanc, and Banker’s Bar. Terrat rooftop bar serves chef Gastón Acurio’s Peruvian delights. The spa is designed as a haven of serenity, making Mandarin Oriental the perfect base to explore the Catalan capital.
WIT Tip: Reserve a suite, where your butler will look after your every need, and don't miss the rooftop restaurant, with the best view of Barcelona.
The Serras Hotel
Stories of Pablo Picasso swirl around the rooftop pool bar at The Serras. The master’s former studio turned boutique stay – located in the historic city center, Barrio Gótico – is now a canvas of contemporary luxury, its ambience trendy yet unpretentious. The 28 rooms are comfortably chic, their natural color palette accented by bold geometric patterns with touches of wood and iron; balconies overlook the old city or yacht-filled Port Vell and the Mediterranean Sea. Look for Michelin-starred chef Marc Gascons behind the open kitchen at Informal restaurant, busily adding his own twist to seasonal Catalan favorites.
WIT Tip: The most breathtaking view in Barcelona is from this rooftop, which is open year-round and transforms throughout the day from a quiet poolside lounge to a chic cocktail bar.
Barcelona is one of the most visited cities in Europe, which makes avoiding crowds challenging, but not impossible! Chris and I recommend visiting during the months of September to November to avoid the bigger crowds while still enjoying the warm, sunny temps. Also, prepare to live on “Barcelona time,” where lunch begins around 2pm and restaurants don’t open for dinner before 8 or 9pm. In other words, enjoy the slower pace as you absorb everything Barcelona has to offer!