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“Tolerable”

Reviewed June 9, 2012

This review is also for the Trenhotel Joan Miro from Barcelona to Paris for the "Preferente" class (private 2 person cabin - washbasin/no bath & toilet). As everyone already knows, the Renfe site is a nightmare. After numerous calls with our bank (it doesn't accept AMEX), we were unable to book the tickets on-line at all, and went directly to the station (Estacio de Franca) three days before our departure to purchase the tickets. Most folks prefer to go through the website because of the "offerta duo" discount offered on it, but please be rest assured that the discount can be also be made at the station (there was a 10 Euro fee). Just ask.

The cabins are small yes, but comfortable. The train speed and time (its a night train afterall) doesn't allow for gazing at the country side. The service is pretty horrible - we called the attendant numerous times to pull our seats down into beds and after listening to the beeper at the attendant switchboard go-off incessantly for 20 minutes, decided to jimmy the seats ourselves with some butter knives borrowed from the kitchen.

The train itself is not pretty. I've ridden my fair share of 10 hr+ train rides in Europe and South America - and all have been pretty darn pleasant, if not a joy to ride. The Trenhotel is cramped, mechanically spartan and compounded with the rough service and time of day, you'll just want to hit the sack, wake up and arrive at your next destination.

That said, I feel its a much nicer alternative than flying and I would take it again in a heartbeat given the present options. Traveling such a distance overnight is cost effective - you're basically paying for a hotel + transportation, and that makes it a great value. The convenience of not having to lug your luggage via metro/taxi from the apt/hotel to the airport, check-in, go through security, etc is also immeasurable. So yes, while I recommend the Trenhotel, I would also keep my expectation low.

4  Thank tarinay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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13 - 17 of 23 reviews

Reviewed June 13, 2010

This review is the Trenhotel Joan Miró (the Trenhotel Salvador Dali goes to Milan but there is no separate listing for the Joan Miró).

We took the Grand Class, starting in Paris Austerlitz having travelled by Eurostar from London. When you board you are given tickets for the inclusive dinner and breakfast which you will need to present to the waiter before you eat.

It is important to go straight to the dining car after leaving your cases in your room as the best seats will get occupied very soon! We made the mistake of waiting and had to share one of the larger tables, but not too bad as the other 2 diners were very freindly.

The good thing about Grand Class is that everything is included starting with a glass of champagne, a 70cl bottle of wine (shared between 2), coffee and a large brandy. There are 3 courses with a main menu and a "special" menu featuring a regional dish. They have menus in both spanish and english so ask for the english menu if not so good at spanish! We had octopus a fiero starter, veal main and almond cake desert which was on the special menu and very tasty.

The room was quite small as you would expect, but had shower and toilet. The shower will switch off after 30 seconds, so remember to keep pressing the button every 20 seconds. They give you free shampoo etc for the shower. The return train only had a shaver socket and no separate mains socket and my european power adapter for my mobile phone was loose in this socket and fell out, so best to bring some tape to keep it from falling out!

There were quite a lot of annoying rattles in the cabin, but they do supply earplugs. I found the cabin a bit hot but not too bad, but I'd ask for an extra pillow as the pillows are very thin.

The breakfast gets served 1 hour before arrival and has coffee, toast, croissants, pastries, fruit juice and fruit. I would have also liked some bacon, egg etc but this did not seem to be offered - prehaps it was as special request but I saw no one else having it.

Finally once you have folded your bed away in the morning make sure that there is nothing left on the bed as it cannot be put down again without a special key that the staff have.

15  Thank boliston
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 5, 2018
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 26, 2015
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 1, 2014 via mobile
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