We stayed at the Maydrit from Saturday evening to Tuesday lunchtime. It was strictly a base for our city break and, for us, it served that purpose perfectly. I can't really comment on staff or service, other than to agree that reception staff, though clearly very efficient, are impersonal. The hotel is spotless throughout, and our room was very well appointed and comfortable. We were given the choice of a double bed or 2 singles on checking in, and the bathroom had a good shower, and a hairdryer. We made use of the hotel's free transport service from the airport, and this is an excellent service, though at the time of our visit it was on offer only from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m., and then again from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. We did have a little difficulty getting it organised, as for some reason the hotel failed to answer our e-mails, and my husband eventually phoned them to set it up. We were advised to wait outside our terminal, and on going outside we found that there's a dedicated bus stop for hotel transfers, with a list of numerous hotels giving this service, along with their phone numbers. We were picked up by mini-bus within minutes, and were settled in our room about 20-25 minutes after that. We ventured out in search of food, and my tip is to by-pass the Chinese restaurant and head for La Bekada on Calle Catamaran. It's definitely not geared up for tourists, no-one spoke English, and the menu is solely in Spanish, but with our pigeon Spanish and the lovely waiter's short or long "sizzle" sounds (for medium and well done steaks!!) we managed to order a delicious meal within the restaurant, and afterwards we moved through to their cafeteria area where the staff kindly made room for us among the locals who had congregated to watch the Read Madrid v Atletico Madrid match. We stayed for hours, and it was a great first evening, and a perfect introduction to the city and culture. El Capriche metro station is only a few minutes walk from the hotel. I would recommend when first venturing out on the metro that you simply go straight from El Capriche to Gran Via, which doesn't involve any line changes at all, takes about 25 minutes, and goes right into the heart of the city. Madrid's metro system is very good and very easy to use. We bought "10 trip" tickets (12 euros) which were great value, but I would warn people that if returning to the airport by metro you'll need to buy a 3 euros "supplement" ticket from the machines, before they'll let you through the turnstiles into the terminal building.
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