In the bohemian district of Barcelona’s Ciutat Vella (Old City), Abba Rambla is a simple but modern hotel whose friendly service and great location make it a perennial favorite. The neutral-toned lobby sits next to an impressively funky breakfast area that has high wooden tables and bar stools, dangling designer lamps, and brown-and-cream armchairs for post-prandial lounging. Rooms are a blend of the comfortable and the functional, favoring pale woods, bright and breezy colors, and crisp white linens. All modern conveniences are present, from well-stocked minibars and satellite TVs (some are plasma) to free Internet access, and you can choose from views of the hills or of the charming square outside. Extra beds are also available for family rooms.
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Here in the historic center of the city, the broad avenue Rambla del Raval sits right on the hotel's doorstep. Attractions such as La Boqueria Market, Teatro del Liceu, and the MACBA Museum are within walking distance. Abba Rambla is surrounded by bars, cafés, and intimate restaurants; if you like live music and low ceilings, try Iposa behind the Boqueria food market. Also, on nearby Calle Sant Pau, Pollo Rico is a dinerlike restaurant that’s popular with locals thanks to its fried quarter chickens, tasty paella, and other regional dishes.
Need to Know
Rooms: 49 rooms; from $95. Check-in: 2 p.m.; check-out: noon. Dining options: The hotel serves up a generous Mediterranean buffet breakfast that includes olive oils from various regions, top-quality jamón serrano, cereals, and seasonal fruit. There’s no restaurant, but a pizza delivery service (Telepizza) means you can still enjoy dinner without leaving the hotel (or your room). Spa and gym details: There is no spa or gym on-site, but in-room massage services are available.
Who’s it for: Travelers wanting to explore the myriad charms of Barcelona's Old City and enjoy the simplicity of unpretentious but friendly accommodations. Our favorite rooms: Only 2 of the 20 rooms that face out onto the Rambla del Raval have balconies. Guests who manage to bag one can take advantage of the fantastic views. Easy parking: Parking is available next door—a big plus, given the area’s narrow and pedestrianized streets are notoriously difficult when it comes to finding parking spaces.