This page will give you a review of the popular Hotel Royal Ramblas in Barcelona which is in a prime location on La Ramblas, the famous boulevard running through central Barcelona.
Hotel Royal Ramblas has been going since 1973 and has recently had a complete renovation. The exterior may not be pretty but inside the hotel is sleek and expensive-looking.
The hotel has 108 rooms which are comfortable but simple, what you would expect from a central city hotel. All rooms are soundproofed to save you from the noise of the street below. This should be the case as it is 4 star hotel. But even with this you will hear the hum of the street from your room. If you don't mind sacrificing a good view onto La Rambla you might want to ask for a room at the back of the hotel which won't be as light, or have a good view but will mean you get a quieter night's sleep. The rooms also have air-conditioning, a mini-bar and satellite TV. The marble topped bathrooms also have a hair dryer.
Other facilities include a baby-sitting service which is great because Barcelona's night-life just doesn't get started till at least 22:00. There is also a laundry service and private parking which is a real bonus in the middle of the city where it can be difficult to find these facilities.
The breakfast and the room it is in is lovely though hotel-like in its décor and slight lack of character, however the big bonus is that if you get there early enough you can grab yourself a table by the window which looks straight onto La Rambla and do some very entertaining early-morning people watching!
There is also a restaurant called Poma attached to the hotel. Don't expect a Catalan feast but it's good enough for a pizza or a steak. It is a perfect place to watch people go by and the street performers go on with their acts.
The Business centre in the hotel consists of four large rooms, all facing out towards La Rambla. They are fully equipped with everything you would need, are soundproofed and have a good amount of natural light which is so important when keeping spirits up (no-one wants to work when there is so much fun going on outside!).
The biggest supermarket nearest the hotel is Carrefour Express, a 2 minute walk left out of the front entrance, a further 2 minutes would take you to La Boqueria, Barcelona's best-known food market.
Plaça Catalunya and the tourist office is a 5 minute walk up La Rambla, here you will also find EL Corte Inglés and a good shopping street called Calle Pelai. There are many cash points on either side of the hotel, or indeed just opposite under Hotel Rivoli.
This hotel is in the perfect location for experiencing one of Barcelona's most vibrant districts: El Raval. To the left as you exit the hotel is a very trendy street full of little boutiques and one-off shops, perfect for a bit of a stroll. This street, Calle Bonsuccess, also leads you straight to the MACBA (the museum of modern art) which is worth checking out. The imposing building overshadows the skaters below and you can get a very well-priced meal in any of the cafes at the foot of the museum.
Walking around the Raval is one of my favourite things in Barcelona and provides a welcome break from the hectic pace of La Rambla. Here you can find quiet little squares to have coffee and wander round the labyrinth of streets which wind to and from the Rambla.
At night the Raval comes alive with loads of bars and busy restaurants all jostling for business. However the Raval also has the reputation of being quite dodgy at night so I wouldn't recommend walking around alone, or with any obvious bags, and try to stick to well-lit areas.
Across the Rambla you can explore the Barri Gòtic with its winding pathways and beautiful churches.
If you don't speak Spanish and you are unfamiliar with Barcelona booking a private airport transfer is a good option to consider. Once booked, you will have someone waiting to meet you at Barcelona airport to take you to your hotel. They will be holding a sign with your name on it. You need to book this service online before you leave by following the links below.
Taxi This hotel is right in the centre of town. A taxi from the airport should take about 25 minutes and cost around €25.00 - €30.00 depending on traffic and luggage and time of travel.
Train The RENFE train leaves the airport every half an hour and will take you to Passeig de Gràcia , in 25 minutes and you can use the T10 ticket from the airport or you can pay a single fare of €3.80 . From Passeig de Gràcia you can walk to the hotel in 10 minutes.
Aerobus The easiest way would be to catch the Aerobus which costs €5.90 and will take you to Plaça Catalunya in 25 minutes, from where you have a 5 minutes walk to your hotel.
All in all Hotel Royal Ramblas is a good choice for anyone who wants to be in the middle of the action but might not want to be reminded of it at all times of the day and night. It's comfortable and convenient, perfect for a weekend stay.
Hotel Royal Ramblas Barcelona 4 star
Las Ramblas, 117
Metro: Plaça Catalunya, (Green Line, L3) 5 mins