Duquesa de Cardona
A complimentary bottle of Cava, plus (if available) a room upgrade.
YOU’D BE HARD PUSHED to find a more appealing location in Barcelona than that of Duquesa de Cardona. This 19th century aristocratic townhouse – a one-time royal retreat – has wide open views of the waterfront while being just minutes from the Ramblas and the city’s famous Gothic quarter.
With the city behind you and the clear light of the Med streaming in from the port, it hardly feels like a city-centre hotel. From the rooftop terrace, with its sunloungers and cooling plunge pool, you can soak up panoramic views along the Paseo Colon promenade and the harbour. Spot the Olympic Marina, the Christopher Columbus monument, the passenger cruisers and Montjuic hill.
If Barcelona's bold boutique addresses and daring designer pads are not for you, then Duquesa de Cardona's understated style, soothing shades and ample comforts probably are. Spacious rooms (it’s worth paying the premium for those front-facing harbour views) are elegantly fitted out with a contemporary-classic feel and plenty of techno-touches.
Discreet shades of cream, chocolate and khaki green are set off by suede furnishings, silk cushions, pleasing artworks and tall vases of lilies. Sprawling junior suites have his-and-hers bathrooms and outsize sofas whilst deluxe rooms have views across Paseo Colon to the water.
Rooms are well kitted out comfort zones with everything from wi-fi access, a plasma screen TV and choice of pillows to spotless, Bulgari-stocked bathrooms in the junior suites, with robes, slippers and bath salts.
Downstairs, the marble-floored lobby’s arched windows and neo-classical façade lend a nicely historic feel. Upstairs everything turns contempo-cool, with a rooftop plunge pool and cocktail bar – atmospherically lit at night – perfect for watching the sun go down. Be sure to book a table here for breakfast, in summer.
Service at the Duquesa de Cardona is spot-on and willing staff go the extra mile to help. All the sights of the city are within easy reach, and there’s no better place to start than the waterfront packed with bars, bistros and gardens right on your doorstep.
© Room for Romance
Duquesa de Cardona was reviewed for Room for Romance by Tasha Munro