Following my last stay in the Banke hotel in Paris from the same group (Derby's hotel group) I was a bit concern about what to expect. The pictures on the website or magazine for this hotel were not great honestly...the pictures don't do any justice to this excellent.
The fist impression is quite good, with the perfect city centre location, in a very quiet and secure "way too secure with dozens of bodyguards and bullet proofs car arounds" due to the actual location in madrid no need to explain who is next door.
The main entrance is a bit dull, the front desk staff efficient (although you might expect more from a 5*) and polite.
The Bar is good but again nothing special, the decoration is to my taste below average on the main floor, as for the fist floor (mezzanine) I would point out that there is only a handful of individuals tables (and too many large tables for groups of 8 or 12).
The drink selection is good and the prices are very correct.
The lifts are all ready old looking and not what you would expect for an hotel of such standard.
As a member of the "small luxury hotel of the world" I had the free upgrade, with a room on the 5th floor (mezzanine with terrace). Honestly this is probably the BEST VALUE FOR MONEY IN MADRID, with lot's of space, proper furniture and a nice decoration of "antique" mosaic. Fresh flowers (roses), a welcome card and a bootle of Rioja, not to mention a free glass of champagne of the bar....this was a real treat!!!
" toilets, a large sofa, 2 flatscreen TV's and a decent bed....a large bathroom with a massive (but very inefficient) Jacuzzi, double sinks and a good wardrobe.
The food selection at the bar is just average, although I would recommend you to check next door to the newly opened restaurant "la alpargateria" next to the church of scientology at the back of the hotel.
So the bad points first:
- 1) Very noisy and poorly sound insulated room (at least for the top floor mezzanine).
- 2) Small selection of food at the bar or restaurant, (no caesar salads....)
- 3) Again, the lighting is an issue, there is no "reading" light near the sofa.
- 4) The Jacuzzi maintenance is a serious issue, the actual pipes were disgusting (this is not so much a cleaning issue but more a maintenance issue!!!) this is not serious.
- 5) NO FREE INTERNET!!!! No comment!
- 6) Again the bathroom amenities aren't great (fair enough this is Derby's hotel choice but hey, I do not need to have half a liter of shampoos and body lotion, a small selection of exclusive soaps and perfumes would do just fine!).
- 7) The TV channel selection is simply pathetic, with poor signals and only a handful of international choice.
- 8) No iron board (Derby's policy?) in the room.
As for the good points:
+ 1) Excellent value for money overall.
+ 2) Very efficient front desk staff (but hey, not perfect yet....)
+ 3) Very nice Breakfast selection (I would like to point out that although this is a Spanish Breakfast selection it is actually well presented and fresh...way better than the Banke Hotel in Paris).
+ 4) The view from the terrace and the overall size of the room!
+ 5) Perfect location!
+ 6) A large and good selection of morning newspaper.
+ 7) Nice decoration throughout the hotel
+ 8) An efficient porter service.
To resume, this is an excellent hotel, but the rooms are not well insulated from the noise (not the outside noise but the room next door...), the breakfast very good, you do fell very welcome, the staff is friendly and efficient.
I would recommend this hotel, especially if you do get the upgrade.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Villa Real is a five-star hotel in the centre of Madrid, located in the Plaza de las Cortes, right in front of the Spanish Congress of Deputies and just a few minutes on foot away from Puerta del Sol. It is a unique location for exploring the sites of 'Madrid de los Austrias' on foot and enjoying the museum triangle formed by the Museo del Prado, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum and the Queen Sofia Foundation. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Real Hotel Madrid