Gran Hotel Princesa Sofia
Travel Blogs from Barcelona
... World Fair by architect Josep Vilaseca i Casanovas. The front contains the stone sculpture Barcelona rep les nacions ("Barcelona welcomes the nations").
Opposite the archway was the Parc De La Ciutadella gardens/park. It was a stinking hot day so we took a lovely stroll through and found a huge beautiful fountain in the middle. Although we all wanted to jump in, the green water put ...
... the car exhausts turn. Not surprisingly the IC3 has an environmentally friendly vehicle and it was not capable of topping the 2,000ppm produced by heaving breathing. We should have tried the bus that took us to the PobleNou area of Barcelona, where IC3 is located.
Once in PobleNou our excellent host showed us an area of Barcelona we had never seen before, the original industrial area ...
... have been more grateful to my friends for telling me to buy tickets beforehand. After an eye opening look at the outside, inside, and tower climb, I was in disbelief that someone could design, with such detail, such a monument to a religious belief. Anyways, the day continued with sightseeing and lots and lots of walking, and ended in Salsa with a new friend who was something of a professional.
The next day I would meet up with a group of friends to go to a 50 cent concert, ...
So, the park. When you've got one like King's Park in your backyard, other parks have to be pretty damned impressive. Parc Guell is interesting for its history, and obviously for its Gaudi creations, but, aside from realising I pretty much understood what the little old Catalan man had told me on the way up, for me the highlight is the view from the Turo de les Tres Creus. ...
... a kitchen and laundry – two amazing commodities in longer-term travel!
I lucked out at Pilar’s, because they actually have two flats in the building, so all their spare rooms are rented to travelers – hooray - instant friends!
As such, I walked in the door and was served a breakfast of tomatoes, charcuterie, and coffee and I met The Two Alexes ("Los Alexes"), blonde Amazon girl-Alex from Serbia, living in Madrid, on a scholarship for her masters, ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
- Shuttle bus service
- Swimming pool
- Room service
Historical Traveler Reviews Gran Hotel Princesa Sofia Barcelona
Very nice place!
A lovely place, I particularly thought that the staff were wonderfully polite! We steered clear of the hotel restaurant simply because it was tres expensive (coming from 2 students who spent most money on gallery trips and shopping!)
Be prepared for a good 10 min walk.. to find the decent shops.. Ohh and do go on "Bus Touristic" its top notch! We enjoyed listening to lots of other foreigners jabber away in their own language.. whilst we were being whisked around the city.
I thoroughly enjoyed my stay for the whole week, alongside my sister! I, most certainly do not find the Spanish folk very welcoming.. let's say some of the locals like to spit and curse a lot as you speak..
But, I think one week is enough to visit and tour around Barcelona!
Pretty good place if you can afford it
I stayed for two days in the hotel. It's a beautiful hotel. Close to the subway station. The only thing is that there aren't many restaurants or things to do around that area. If you were looking for a place to stay with lots to do...that's not the place but if you want to be away from the crazy downtown area...it's a great location. You can still get to the touristy area by subway or by bus. There is a mall 5-10 mins walk away.
The hotel was quite removed from the city centre but we loved the long, shop-filled stroll into town. We wanted peace, quiet, and tranquility--and that is what we got. The rooms were completely soundproof--not even a hint of traffic or guest noise. The bathroom was sweet (a bidet?!?!), the pool lovely, the bedroom itself a standard size but well-equipped, and the service fantastic. It was not quite a five star hotel but damn near enough for two weary parents of young children escaping for a weekend of solitude.
Some helpful Barcelona tips? 1) Take the most comfortable shoes you own and walk everywhere. It is a glorious city, worthy of the sore legs and blister-filled feet you will get while exploring the amazing architecture. 2) Bring sunscreen! 3) We were there on a Th, F, and Saturday--and the shops (ALL of them) were closed on Saturday. That was quite distressing, especially since we left buying presents until then. (Our two and four year olds were not impressed upon our return empty handed.) 4) For great food right on the beach, try Agua. One of the best salads on record--and the rosotto?!? Beyond compare. 5) Must see? La Sagrada de Familia. Must miss? Renting a car. The driving is insane! We saw at least five accidents in three days, two of which involved scooters.
Lovely hotel charming staff
Near the beginning a long twelve stop tour of Europe in the Fall of 2003 our spirits had been dashed by poor service in three top hotels in a country other than Spain. We phoned the Sofia and asked if we could come to Barcelona early. The gentleman in charge said that he would be very pleased to assist us and quoted us a very good rate over the phone. We arrived late by several hours, after 11PM. We realized we didn't have a confirmation number and feared the worst after our recent experiences.
Instead we were greeted warmly by name by the same gentleman to whom we had spoken. He made us feel like welcome guests! We nearly dissolved in tears on the spot in gratitude. We had a lovely room with a glorious view of a garden. The breakfast buffet was wonderful and our waiter again treated us with incredible warmth and the service was excellent.
I can't say that it is a five star hotel because the furnishings were slighty worn but everything was very clean and the structure is very elegant. The subway is a block away to all destinations. We extended our stay twice because we enjoyed the lovely city and the hotel so much. The Sofia changed our vacation luck and the remainder of the trip was just as enjoyable. If anyone at the Sofia ever reads this - we send our thanks!
Sofia - So good
Stayed here in October 2003 for 2 nights and got a special rate (200 euros per night). Included in price was upgrade to club level which had fantastic views all over Barcelona from the coast to the Sagrada Familia. Marble bathroom was a delight with luxury cosmetics. A huge bowl of fruit was waiting for us in the room together with a complimentary bottle of wine. Also as part of the deal we had admission to the club floor which meant FREE yes FREE bar from 6pm until 9pm and tapas too! All day soft drinks/coffee and snacks were complimentary in addition to a huge breakfast in the restaurant. It was fab. Yes it is a taxi ride away from the Ramblas (about 5 euros) but the tourist bus stops just outside and the football pitch is a stone's throw away. I cannot recommend this place enough - but be warned you will not want to leave to do any sightseeing.
Five star shake down
This is not a cheap hotel and it was disappointing to find that there were problems with service together with unexpected supplements and restrictions which ruled out some of the leisure facilities, on our budget, during our stay over the new year.The health club was closed on 1 January and 6 January (both bank holidays I believe, but this was shame during our 6 day stay and we were not warned of the closure when we booked)Additionally as a hotel guest you could use the pool at no charge, but if you wanted to use the jacuzzi and sauna/steam rooms you had to pay an extortionate supplement -about £35 a time per person. You would expect to pay for health & beauty treatments, but not to use the sauna if you are a hotel guest.There were also swimming caps shannanigans. Our room information told us that Spanish law dictated that we had to wear caps - confusingly these were chargeable from the health club but free from the concierge. However... the concierge didn't have any the first time we asked & it took perseverance to avoid being charged a tenner or so for this.We also had to contact the manager to get the room safe opened - it was locked on arrival - and to get a bath robe, as reception overlooked our requests in this regard for a day. The safe was opened and bath robes provided, but unfortunately no word of apology.Call us fussy, but this was budget not five star service.Hey, but Barcelona's great - along with it''s well known glories we'd recommend Buigi's restaurant near the hotel, best veggie pizza on the planet amongst other treats and the lovely park at the ceramic & design museum - again near the hotel with its pretty fountain, parrots (parakeets?), great little dragon spout and terrapin.
Very Good InterContinental business hotel
Handsome hotel with excellent service, located away from the crowded las Ramblas or marina sections. I liked the rooms [we stayed there before and after a cruise] and the helpful staff. Two cavils: 1) the concierge made an error and, instead of booking the large-size taxi we asked for to take us to the ship, booked a private car, which cost at least $30 too much. 2) We were charged for our second-day breakfasts and informed that the breakfast option did not apply without charge to the day that was free on my Six Continents Club voucher. It is complimentary under those circumstances when I stay at the Toronto InterContinental Hotel, and it was complimentary at InterContinental's legendary Carlton Cannes; so I can't imagine why we should have been charged for breakfasts at this business class hotel.
Good value if you book ahead
After having lived in Barcelona for 2 years, we were already aware of this hotel. It's around the corner from Camp Nou and all the football teams stay there when playing in Barcelona. It's also where the pilots & cabin crew stay overnight.
We booked this hotel on the inter-continental website and the advance purchase rate was the same as staying at a 3* hotel in the centre of the city.
It is in the financial district of the city and it's a good area.
There's a huge El Corte Ingles across the road and if you walk further down Diagonal, you will come across a shopping centre L'Illa which is the nicest in the whole city.
It *is* outside the main centre but there are loads of buses that go down Diagonal and to Placa Catalunya. It's also right next to the Maria Cristina metro stop on the green line. This makes it more convenient than some of the more central hotels which can take a 20-minute walk to get back to.
The price we paid didn't include breakfast but the rooms were lovely with a huge bathroom. You must go to the top floor conference rooms and have a look over the city.
So overall, I recommend it as we got a 5* hotel for the same price as a 3* - which is always nice isn't it?
For the well-heeled expense-account traveller
I was at the hotel for a congress during the first week in November 2003. The hotel is located on The Diagonal next to a main shopping centre (double glazing takes care of the traffic noise) with all the facilities that go with its 5-star rating. There is a metro station within 5 minutes' walk and numerous bus lines pass in front of the hotel. The buffet breakfas is sumptuous, however, the hotel is anonymous: once through the revolving doors you could be anywhere in Western Europe. One small gripe - a double room should have two soft chairs, not one. As for the price - if I had been paying for myself it would have been out of the question; I certainly cannot afford $200 per night!
Great Hotel & Facilities
Stayed here for a weekend in July, great hotel right next to the football stadium and numerous great shopping centers and away from the madness of the city center. Only a five minute walk to the metro station if you want to visit all the attractions. Hotel has an excellent health club and swimming pool which was ideal for the children. All the staff were extremely friendly especially in the restaurant where the buffet is first class. Recommend it to everyone.