Hotel Duquesa de Cardona
What We Love
- Sensational views of the Port Vell from the roof terrace and pool
- Lovely service and an unpretentious atmosphere
- Historic property with plenty of original features
What To Know
- A city tax of approximately $2 per person, per night, will be collected by the hotel at checkout.
- The spacious rooms are soundproofed, but not sound-tight
- There’s no formal restaurant, but light meals and snacks are served throughout the day
- Free WiFi
A former palace and noble residence dating from the 16th century, Hotel Duquesa de Cardona is a stately sleep on Passeig Marítim, overlooking Barcelona’s bustling harbor. A drawing of how the street once looked hangs in the lobby, along with a copy of Cervantes’s Don Quixote in which he describes the area. The building was bought by the Duchy of Cardona in the 1930s, and although the Torres family has owned it since 2003, plenty of original features remain, such as the swirling staircases and Modernisme tiles laid like carpets on the floors, and the soaring columns and arches in the ground-floor dining room, which housed a horse and carriage in the 19th century.
Bed and Bath
The most recent renovation, completed in January 2013, spruced up nearly all of the hotel’s 44 guestrooms in muted tones of oatmeal, ecru and beige. It’s not the most exciting decor on earth, but it is calm and unobtrusive, which makes for a supremely comfortable stay. In Barcelona’s old city spacious rooms are something of a rarity, so it’s a plus to come across a place where even the smallest rooms (interior) are well proportioned. Book a room at the front for views of the port or at the back to overlook the Gothic quarter. Damask cushions depicting country scenes in sage and duck egg–blue combine with cozy throws to create a restful vibe, and the bathrooms are spacious too, especially in the Deluxe Rooms, which are painted in a sultry elephant gray and have a tub and walk-in shower. Cable TV, decent toiletries, fluffy bathrobes and a kettle with free tea and coffee, complete the offering.
The jewel in the hotel’s crown is its roof terrace and plunge pool, where guests, and indeed many Barcelona residents, chill beneath a balmy night sky from May to September. The recent addition of heaters and blankets should extend the season well into the winter, when the sunsets are spectacular. The carriage house on the ground floor makes for an impressive start to the day, with a generous breakfast buffet including eggs cooked to order and the more traditionally Catalan pan amb tomaquet (toast rubbed with tomato, olive oil and salt) with cold cuts and cheeses. The rest of the menu is fairly simple — tapas, salads, sandwiches — but it’s tasty enough. The intimate library on the mezzanine is a lovely place for a glass of wine on chilly evenings. There’s no spa, but the hotel can arrange for in-room massages as well as tours of the city’s highlights.
In the Area
The back of the hotel leads onto Carrer de la Merce, Barcelona’s emblematic tapas street. There’s no finer time to be had than bar hopping along it in the early evening, stopping at Bar Celta for Galician octopus and the best patatas bravas in the city, La Plata, one of Ferran Adrià’s favorite bars for little fried fish, and El Corral for chorizo flambéed in Galician orujo (a grappa-like brandy). On the other side you have the Port Vell, home to Maremagnum, a floating mall, and Barceloneta, the fishermen’s district, with its myriad seafood restaurants. Among the best are La Mar Salada for an excellent value lunch menu and Kaiku on the beach for smoked rice paella.
How to Get There
Very nice hotel, great location, clean and fresh and even has rooftop terrace with pools. The staff went out of their way to help with maps and bookings for sightseeing and even lent us the hotel wheelchair to take away on our cruise. Super hospitality and very best service from Ruben and Luna in particular! Thank you, warmest recommendations and we would love to come back another time.
I loved this hotel! I will stay there any time I make a trip to Barcelona! The staff made the stay worthwhile, while the terrace was an added treat and the little snacks during the day were a unique benefit. This group has their people skills down, and should be teaching classes. I am constantly traveling, but have never felt so comfortable. Kudos to the staff at the Hotel Duquesa de Cordona!
As an added feature, the hotel is near almost everything! They assisted with making spa arrangements, knew the drinks we liked, and even kept up with personal wagers my husband and I had. Of course, they made taxi arrangements and things of that nature, but this group is a step above the rest!
Great location at the edge of the Gothic Quarter, near many attractions. Staff are very helpful. Ruben, the concierge is OUTSTANDING. It was like having knowledgeable family to assist you at every turn. He is truly committed to making your stay perfect. The hotel is elegant, and very clean. There were amenities that, sadly, we did not have time to take advantage of like the roof deck (only open until 7:00 pm) and the breakfast (I'm not a breakfast person but if you are, definitely add it on-it looked amazing!). The bed was the most comfortable I have ever slept on. Tried to stay longer after deciding to ditch plans to head to Madrid but they were fully booked (Ruben helped us find another hotel nearby). Overall, an excellent stay.
Excellent location for visiting Barcelona. Several metro stations are in the neighbourhood. Famous touristic attractions, good restaurants are close to the hotel.
People of the reception are very kind and helpfull.
Rooms are clean and well equipped.
We just stayed one night however cannot wait to come back! The hotel was lovely and the service first rate. It is conveniently located with views of the sea, walking distance to many museums and the Ramblas.