Barcelona is bursting with hotels for all types of travellers,
from five-star connoisseurs wanting a mud wrap to weary
backpackers simply looking for a pillow and a shower.
Though the city already has over 200 hotels to choose
from, more than 60 more - mostly luxury - will be built
by 2005 in conjunction with the hyped Fòrum 2004
. Barcelona is, without doubt, an increasingly popular
city to visit, but it remains to be seen if it can absorb
a 50 per cent increase in the number of available beds.
The low season has all but dwindled down to the winter
months of November, January and February, yet even these
months can book up for trade fairs, sporting events
and festivals. During busy times and at the height of
the summer season, it can be tough to find a room. Booking
in advance - by at least two weeks - is strongly advised,
but if you do arrive in the city without a reservation,
the tourist offices in Plaça
Catalunya and Plaça Sant Jaume
can usually hunt down a room. There’s no commission,
but a deposit is required. Some private booking services
are listed here and the tourist offices can provide
a complete list of all accommodation in Barcelona.
Many of the cheaper hotels, particularly
those in the Barri Gòtic, will
not accept reservations, although this is beginning
to change. However, even as the accommodation selection
has increased, so have the prices. Once one of Europe’s
most reasonably priced destinations, Barcelona is getting
more expensive. It still has an interesting selection
of budget rooms, but most of its new hotels are expensive,
and there’s less available than ever before in
the moderate price range.
The place to be
The highest concentration of hotels is located
in the Old City, which comprises three
areas: the Barri Gòtic, the
Raval, and Sant Pere
and the Born.
For a more sedate hotel experience, select a place to
stay in the Eixample. With its fair
share of designer shops, restaurants and world-class
architecture, the Eixample is home to some of the city’s
more pleasant pensiones and most luxurious hotels.