on July 10, 2010
I spent three nights at the Majestic about 5 years ago for an international conference. I was lucky that the hotel and conference were a package as I’m sure I’d never have been able to stay here if I’d needed to book it separately as no company I’ve worked for has ever been happy about booking you into five-star hotels.The best thing about the Majestic is the location. It has a prime position on the Passeig de Gracia, surely Barcelona’s most beautiful street, and is midway between Gaudi’s two most famous houses - Casa Mila (La Pedrera) and Casa Batllo. The building itself is grand and attractive but can’t really compete with those two masterpieces.It occupies a corner plot which means a lot of the rooms have good views out over the streets. When you pass through the rotating door, nodding to the liveried doorman as you pass, you find yourself in a swish marble lobby with a large reception desk. The staff checked me in quickly and I had high hopes that the stay would be impressive as I headed off to look for my room. I knew that this hotel had a fantastic reputation and was very expensive and I was looking forward to seeing how the other half live.The room was down several long corridors and was rather disappointing. I’m not sure what I should expect in a Spanish 5-star but the room was rather dull, quite dark and generally disappointing. Fortunately I was there with a very busy programme and didn’t need to spend too much time in my room.The conference facilities were in the basement and everything ran very smoothly. Lunch was served as a buffet each day and was of good quality with plenty of choice. The bar was busy but expensive and the hotel offered a gym which I studiously ignored and a very swanky rooftop pool which I didn’t use because it was far too early in the year and much too cold. I loved the brightly painted wall beside the pool which brightened up even a grey day.The Majestic was once one of Barcelona’s best hotels. Sadly I think it’s not keeping up with the times and some of the modern giants like the Hotel Arts are now wiping the floor with this old lady.
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