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Such is the plethora of hotels in Barcelona that the mayor temporarily stopped issuing new licenses in 2016. Due to the popularity of the city, there's a desire to preserve some of the most historic buildings in Barcelona before they’re all turned into accommodation.
While this may have put a few big projects on hold, the truth is that several exciting new Barcelona hotels opened shortly before the regulation came into effect, and there is already a huge range of lodgings, from brilliant Barcelona beach hotels to amazing budget stays.
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If you’re after the ultimate in luxury, there are plenty of five-star hotels and four-star hotels in Barcelona in the Eixample and along the seafront.
If it’s a more boutique spot you want, you’ll find several taking over a floor of a Catalan modernist apartment block, and in pokier buildings in bohemian Gracía, towards the north of Barcelona.
If the temptation to stay near the sea is overwhelming, there are plenty of excellent Barcelona beach hotels to choose between. Looming over the shore, no other Barcelona hotel stands out as much the W Hotel, which is shaped like a sail, and looking very much as if it’s about to enter the sea.
Many mouth-watering dishes are cooked up along the shimmering shoreline too; visit our guide to eating out in Barcelona to discover some of the top picks.
If you are looking for luxury Barcelona hotels in the city centre in 2017, look no further than its heart, the Passeig de Gracía.
The discreet Margot House is one of the picks of the bunch here, though you’ll have to keep your eyes peeled as there are no signs indicating its existence at street level. There are just nine rooms in this hotel, and with the friendly, attentive staff you’ll have the feeling of a home away from home – albeit a rather trendy home.
A bit further up the road, close to the long, cross-city street Diagonal, Ca La Maria is a stylish boutique B&B property that occupies the first floor of a 1920s building. You’ll find quirky art and furnishings in and outside the rooms and a wonderful interior terrace between buildings filled with plants – the sort of breakfast spot that will have you leaping out of bed in the morning.
Head towards the Catalan-modernist Palau de la Música on the edge of the charming El Born district and you’ll find Yurbban Trafalgar, which claims to be the ‘first hipster hotel’ in Barcelona. There’s something of a retro Californian feel to the place, with dining spaces scattered around the pool on the rooftop terrace and in the gardens. The rooms have their own little terraces, too.
The hippest area in Barcelona right now has to be Raval, with lots of dive bars, live music and grungy locales.
Check into the smart and lofty Barceló Raval, poised above the palm trees and drinking holes of the barrio’s central street, Rambla de Raval, and you’ll have easy access to the coolest spots in Barcelona while being able to get away from it all in the comfort of a spacious, modern hotel.
This is the best area in which to look for cheap hotels in Barcelona, along with adjacent Sant Antoni, which has plenty of three-star Barcelona hotels.
The neighbourhood of Sant Antoni may be out of the tourist centre but it’s becoming increasingly trendy and is a great place to look for a budget place to stay.