Our Favourite Granada Hotels – their best bits!

There are all sorts of reasons for a mini break.  Any parent savouring the delicious liberation that teenagers bring when they reach the magical age of fending for themselves will know of at least one.

Where we live is a rural and lovely holiday spot – one for kicking back and relaxing, with some of the cleanest air in Europe surrounding our mountain-top village.

But, sometimes we want more… We love a quick city break – eschewing the rolling mountains and countryside of the Alpujarra and injecting ourselves with a little much-needed carbon monoxide.

Granada makes the grade

Granada is not only on the doorstep – it has everything we ask for.  Architecture, culture, jazz clubs and gin joints.

Choosing a hotel is usually the second thing we do, after checking to see what’s on.  Sometimes we go for one we have previously strolled past and liked the look of.  A Patio Andaluz is usually a deal-breaker.

I’m often asked to recommend places to stay – which is difficult, ‘one man’s meat’ etc.  Here are some we have stayed in this year – and their best bits!  So, here’s what they say, and what we say:

Gar Anat

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The Blurb:

This charming boutique hotel in a converted 17th-century pilgrim’s hospital with running balconies surrounding an interior courtyard is a 6-minute walk from Granada Cathedral and 3 km from Alhambra’s medieval complex of palaces.

Quaint rooms with beamed-ceilings feature décor themed around novels and poetry. They all have free Wi-Fi and TVs, plus room service. Some have balconies, Jacuzzi tubs and antique furnishings.

Continental breakfast, served in a stone-walled cellar, has a surcharge. Afternoon Teas are complimentary There’s a stylish lounge with a library of books in English and Spanish, as well as a computer for guest use.

Address: Placeta de los Peregrinos, 1, 18009 Granada
Our view:  The friendliest place we have ever stayed, staff who were chatty and knowledgeable, without that creepy servile attitude you sometimes encounter. Great room with double aspect windows, large bathroom and excellent toiletries. Centrally located in the Historical area.  Indian food stockist next door was a bonus!

Vincci

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The Blurb:

The Vincci Granada Hotel is located in the centre of Granada, Spain. This is a modern establishment equipped with all the comforts of a four-star hotel and the latest technology which makes this hotel, one of the best hotels of Granada.

It is ideally located so that both tourist and business travellers can enjoy this historical city.

The Vincci Granada offers the visitor a modern hotel, cosy and exquisitely decorated, which upholds the idiosyncrasies of the city. Of course, its hallmark is the personalised treatment and care for details which make any stay here unforgettable.

Avda Constitucion, 18 Granada , Granada , 18012, España | 902 515 555 | +34 93 269 11 26

Our view:  It’s not in the centre, it’s a 10 minute ride away.  But there’s a great secondhand clothes shop next door which sells designer labels and high street brands for a fraction of their cost, so worth a rummage.  The Vincci is actually a little old-fashioned, but the black and white décor and slightly Jeeves-ish staff shouldn’t put you off.  It’s cheap, and more than cheerful, with big rooms and beds, and a choice of pillows.  Bear in mind though, that the rooms start on the 11th floor – so no ground floor rooms available. Not for you if you dislike heights – great if you love Granada views.

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View from our room on the the 14th floor of the Vincci

Abades Recogidas

The Blurb:

Decorated with art showcasing Granada’s history, this modern hotel is an 8-minute walk from the Granada Cathedral and 1.9 km from the Alhambra.

The trendy, earth-toned rooms and suites feature free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs and minibars. Suites add separate sitting areas.

Amenities include a bar/lounge and a rooftop terrace. The hotel offers a breakfast buffet at an additional charge.

Address: Calle Recogidas, 7, 18005 Granada

Our View: Like the Vincci, we return to this one regularly.  It’s spotless, modern, art-themed, with huge showers on the second floor – small shower over bath affair on the 4th.  Slap bang on Calle Recogidas, opposite Zara so ideally placed for the sales, for nightlife, for discovering Granada.

Hesperia

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The Blurb:

The Hesperia Granada hotel is an elegant old building with an unbeatable location, right in the historic heart of Granada. It’s a short walk to the city’s most popular tourist spots, and it’s also very close to the city hall and the business district. Plus, you can walk to the Alhambra Palace in around 20 minutes. 

  • Central location in an elegant historic building
  • Close to the city hall, the cathedral, and Granada’s best tapas bars
  • 20-minute walk to the Alhambra Palace

The hotel is built inside an historic tenement block, so all our 68 guest rooms are unique. They’re spacious, with large bathrooms and sleek hardwood floors. Each one is decorated in a classic Andalusian style, and some of the Junior Suites and Superior rooms overlook the small square at the front of the hotel.

  • Rooms decorated in classic Andalusian style
  • Fully equipped bathrooms
  • Some superior rooms and the junior suite look out across an attractive square

The hotel serves a sumptuous buffet breakfast every morning. We also have 3 beautiful Andalusian-style courtyards, as well as private parking and free Wi-Fi .

Reservations: +34 91 6008146
Tel.: +34 958 018400
Our View:   Loved it.  Simple as.  Friendly, great value, spacious room that felt like home – or that we would like home to feel like!  Really friendly at the desk, a tranquil and very cool place to stay.  Will go back.  Wonderful wine bar opposite, gin joint to the right a few doors down, where Federico will pour until you stay stop. *There’s Cava and Oysters too 🙂
My top tips:  Always smile and ask for an upgrade at check in, if it’s quiet they’ll more than likely give you one.  Booking.com is brilliant for late great deals, the more you use it, the better the deal.   If you want a late check out at your chosen hotel, then ask – again if they’re not that busy they usually don’t mind. What are your favourite Granada hotels?
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Spanish Dreams? Reality Bites

“Are you mad?  Ah – go for it – lucky ba$tar*s.  Can we have your furniture?”

I admit most of our friends took the realistic approach when we shared the fact we were decamping from our very normal life to a leaking shack/money pit 1115 metres up a Spanish mountain.

pueblo

But, wait, stay right there.  This is not a “Hey look at us, didn’t we do well” lifestyle post.

It’s been, well, great – and almost 10 years on we are happy enough with our lot – although it has not always been easy.

Especially the cold and hard winters we have endured since we arrived with boxes of linen and cotton clothes, and a selection of flip-flops – our woolies and 15 tog quilts gaily abandoned in a Newport skip.

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©Carol Byrne

 

But –  this is the middle of summer.  Spanish summer.  The sun has got his sombrero on. Woop – right?

The expectation

Calls from home – wet and windy Ireland calling…

“You must have a great colour”

“How blue is the sky?” (This last one usually asked through gritted teeth, as in Ireland we wear the sky as a grey bobble hat)

“You’re off for dinner? Oh imagine, sitting OUT”

“Saw your area on A Place In The Sun – it looked FABULOUS.”   Er, no, you didn’t.  Just Christopher Columbus and us made it this far up a blasted mountain.  Maybe Mallory if he was lost.

Image of a glossy highway sign on blue sky

The reality

Actually no.  I’m a faded brown, sort of sludge colour.

Why? Well, since our day (note the singular) on the beach this year, when we overdid the idea of a day off and turned deep Gamba pink, we haven’t sunbathed.

I did buy a relaxer-lounger garden chair, but haven’t managed to sink my bum in it once.

Why?

Wiki commons

Wiki commons

 

 

It’s too bloody hot.

So, envy-filled friends and family, imagine a different picture.

Closed shutters, drawn curtains.

The fan whirring and pushing hot air around.  Re-runs of A Place In The Sun on TV.

Flies.  Big flies.  Flies that might normally be indicative of a dead body in close proximity.

Little flies.  No-Sees.  They salsa through the mozzie nets, laughing at us, and with needle precision torment us all night.

We eat out – sure we do.  At 11 or 12 in the darkness when it’s cool enough, the mosquitoes have us for postre as we sit there sweating and heavy breathing.

Entertainment is mostly checking the dogs for ticks.  And then checking us for ticks. *Shudder*

So, dear friends and family, look fondly at that ‘soft weather’ – and be bloody grateful.

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