I loved the history of this hotel and the way that it is depicted without being too much "in your face". If you want to learn the history of the building and its former occupants, you'll find plenty of information all around the hotel. I could easily have spent a whole afternoon walking around the hotel and reading about the knights and the pilgrims. Actually an afternoon just sitting in the cloister reading a book would have been nice too!
We were fortunate to have a room in the old section of the hotel. I'm not sure it would be worth staying in the new section, you wouldn't get the same sense of history. The room was a good size and looked out onto the river. With the door open, all we could hear were birds and the river flowing past, it was very peaceful. The shutters on the door when closed completely block out the light, so that we slept really well.
The room had everything you would need and the water pressure in the shower deserves a special mention - it was like standing underneath a waterfall!
We didn't eat in the hotel. We walked into the old city to sample some of the local bars.
My only grumble with the Parador was that the wifi wasn't working. We called the front desk and they just confirmed that it wasn't working! It seemed they had no plans to fix it so at 11.30pm I went down to the front desk to ask them to reboot the router. They told me that it had been down since that afternoon and they were waiting for parts from Madrid. I tried to explain that they probably only needed to switch it off and on again. The attitude of 4 employees sitting there thinking it was acceptable to have a 5 star hotel without internet access made me quite cross. Luckily, something seemed to sink in as by the time I got back to my room, the wifi was miraculously working.
Breakfast the next morning was fantastic; a really good choice from cereal to fresh fruit, to cakes and pastries to bacon and eggs. The staff were very friendly - one even rustled up a teapot for me, once I had managed to translate what I was looking for.
There is a car park at the back of the hotel which we used as I didn't want to leave a car with a foreign number plate on the streets.
I would definitely stay here again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Hostal de San Marcos is one of the most extraordinary historic hotels on the Old Continent. Construction of the building was begun in the 16th century, together with the bridge across the River Bernesga in the outskirts of León. It was built to house the peninsula's western headquarters for the Military Order of Saint James. The project was financed by King Ferdinand the Catholic. The magnificent hotel is a museum of stately function rooms, with a spectacular cloister and chapter house; spacious, elegant guest rooms; a library; and a wonderful restaurant that offers beautifully prepared traditional cuisine. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Parador De Leon Hotel Leon
- Parador De Leon León
- Parador De Leon Hotel León