Marenostrum Hostal is a bright and cheery, cheep and cheerful hostal just off the Ramblas. On entering the hostal it is necessary to walk up a flight of stairs to the reception on the first floor. Just inside the building's front door there are large scenic and modern photographs of Barcelona mounted onto canvas, giving a clue as to the effort that has been made by the hostal to offer attention to detail with charming touches.
The stairway has a look of having been newly renovated, with sandy coloured tile flooring and freshly painted pastel coloured walls. There is a hint of Art Deco Miami to the place, with upturned wall lights and the use of light blues, yellows and purples throughout. The lobby reception area is small The radio plays in the background and the area smells fresh and clean. Light shines through the large windows. The hostal's standards are high - especially for one so close to the Ramblas, where other hostals are prone to using location as an excuse for lower standards.
The hostal's location is impressive for those who wish to be at the heart of Barcelona's touristic centre. However, it is worth noting that this is a very noisy, fast-paced and 24-hour area. Those hoping for a more relaxing break should look further from the Ramblas area.
The accommodation is a hostal rather than a hotel - therefore, its amenities reflect this. There is no pool or gym in the hostal. Breakfast is available. It is a buffet and is served from 08:00 - 11:00 . There is no restaurant or bar. However, in the lobby area there is a hot drinks vending machine, selling coffee, tea and hot chocolate for 80 centimes.
Room service is not available. Pets are allowed in the hostal as long as they are small. However, they must not be left on their own in the hostal room.
Check-in time is from 14:00 and check-out time is at 12:00 noon .
There are no meeting or conference rooms in the hotel. However, there is free Wi-Fi for all customers in the lobby area. There is also a computer available providing free internet access.
The hostal is located on the first floor of a building. There is no lift from the ground floor. Therefore, the hostal is not suitable for wheelchair users.
There are a total of 32 rooms in the hotel, over 4 floors. The rooms are singles, doubles, triples or four persons.
All of the four-beds face the Ramblas and have balconies. Some of the rooms are also facing Calle Sant Pau and should be slightly quieter. Those in hope of quiet rooms should request ones at the interior of the building.
Most of the rooms have their own private bathrooms. However, some of the smaller rooms only offer a communal bathroom. This should be checked when booking the hostal.
Each room offers air conditioning, a television with satellite and music channels a telephone.
Hostal Marenostrum is located directly on the Ramblas - Barcelona's most famous street. This street is a hive of activity, with street entertainers, tourist shops and restaurants for during the day. In the evening the street and its surrounding areas are packed with bars and restaurants that are popular amongst tourists. To avoid paying tourists prices it may be worth heading into Raval - directly behind the hostal. Those in search of budget food options should try Pollo Rico on the same street as the hostal - Calle Sant Pau. This small take-away/ restaurant is popular amongst locals for its spit roast chickens and other meats. They are served with salad and rice and a meal should cost little more than €5.00 .
|Teatre del Liceu|
However, the Ramblas itself does offer a budget option. The Boqueria market, a mere two minutes walk from the hostal, is one of Europe's most famous food markets. It is a bustling functioning market that is visited by locals just as much as tourists. It is crammed with stalls selling meats, fish, cheeses, fruits and vegetables. There are some great options for picnic ingredients. Also, there is a little known stall directly behind the fish section at the centre of the market, selling freshly made pizzas by the slice. This could be a great option for a cheap lunch and is recommended by Ferran Adriá himself - owner of El Bulli, one of the world's most famous restaurants.
The hostal is also located directly adjacent to the Teatre del Liceu. This is one of Barcelona's oldest opera venues and it has an international reputation. If you cannot afford a ticket to one of the shows it is still worth paying for a guided tour of the building to check out the structure and find out about its fascinating history.
The Ramblas also has many of the functional amenities that you may require during your trip - banks, pharmacies, internet cafés and supermarkets.
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.
Via Taxi: A taxi from the airport should take about 25 minutes and cost around €25.00 - €30.00 .
Via Train: The RENFE train leaves the airport every half an hour and will take you to Passeig de Gràcia in 25 minutes. You can either use the T10 transport ticket from the airport (T10 costs €10.30 for 10 separate journeys on Barcelona public transport) or you can buy a single fare ticket for €3.80 . You then change at Passeig de Gràcia onto the Green Line metro and travel four stops to Paral.lel. Your hotel is then less than 2 minutes walk from the metro. Alternatively you can take a taxi, this will take about 10 - 15 minutes and cost around €10.00 - €12.00.
Via Bus: Take the 'Aerobus' to Plaza de Catalunya from directly outside the airport. The Aerobus generally runs every 10 - 15 minutes and the journey time is 30 minutes. From here, the hotel is a 10 minute taxi ride that will cost about €8.00 - €10.00. Alternatively, you can catch the metro from Catalunya to Paral.lel, just three stops on the Green Line, from where the hotel is less than 2 minutes walk.
Marenostrun hostal Barcelona is a sunny space with a sunny atmosphere - clean, nicely designed and with friendly staff. It should be a top choice for those wishing to stay close to the Ramblas, where noise and hustle bustle are guaranteed.
Marenostrum Hostal - 2 star
Ronda de Sant Pau, 2
08001 Barcelona, España.
Metro: Paral.lel (Green Line, L3)