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“Great hotel, poor customer service”

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Barcelona Universal Hotel
Ranked #79 of 512 Hotels in Barcelona
Certificate of Excellence
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Great hotel, poor customer service”
Reviewed April 7, 2013 via mobile

The hotel itself was very nice. Great location near the harbour with modern clean large rooms. I had a real issues with the customer service though, all the staff I spoke to seemed very sullen and uninterested in speaking to me. The most attention I got was when I walked in after a day of sightseeing and was stopped by the concierge as Iwas ttrying to get to my room as he thought I had just wondered in off the street. I can't complain to much as I got it on a good deal from lastminute.com but the least I expect is eye contact and a smile

  • Stayed March 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank suddenlyseymor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Baltimore, Maryland
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed April 7, 2013

Perfect, perfect location. Clean & the staff were great, especially Carlos. Free Wi-fi & great views of the city, depending on your room.
Walking distance to Las Ramblas, literally 1 block away. Near Metro Station. Just extremely easy to get around. On a busy street, can take a leisure walk to a cafe & even the mall. (The mall is beautiful by the way)

No airport Shuttle, though.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a view. The twin beds are still connected to each other.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank skittlesten4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed April 4, 2013

OK I accept that if I'm booking a hotel in the centre of a vibrant city there is going to be some noise but the level of noice in the street facing lower floors (we were on floor 3) is just not acceptable. Add to that a Hen party on the same floor and you dont get much sleep. We asked to move but the hotel was full and we ask them to have a word with the Hen party but we got the same on the second night. Reception were not overly concerned regards our sleep deprevation!

The other downside is that the bar and the public areas are small and I think the hotel is aiming more at the business market so not the most romantic hotel.

Having started with a good moan I must add that overall the hotel has good points:
- nice sized rooms
- clean
- nice bed and pillows (but two singles pushed together)
- nice bathroom with bath and good shower
- rooftop terrace and solarium is small but nice if not busy (a bar would make it better!)
- other than the noise issue the staff were friendly and efficient

The biggest plus is the metro right outside the hotel with two great lines - L2 is a direct line to Sagrada Familia (a must see by the way) whilst L3 is one stop to Plaza Espanya (Magic Fountain, Bull Ring shopping, NMAC etc) in one direct and the first three stops in the other give you the option of bottom, then middle of Rambla and finaly Plaza Catalunya. If you go further you can get off at Diagonal which has many of the better restuarants in town. (Tip - buy a T10 ticket which is good value for ten journeys and can be shared between people).

A ten minute walk to the Columbus statue takes you to the nearest Bus Touristic stop which is a good way to see the city and reasonable value.

In summary, if you can get a room on a high floor and at the back then well worth staying, if not bring some very good ear plugs!

Room Tip: Rooms from 16 onwards will be at the back e.g. 316-330; 416-430 etc - vital to avoid noise.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Terry C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lichfield, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed April 3, 2013

After much research by my husband, we chose this hotel for the first leg of our honeymoon, and it was a great choice. We didn't mind walking anywhere, and everything we did was pretty close. Lots of little bars right around the hotel, which is always fun! The room and bathroom were both quite large for Europe, which was a pleasant surprise. It was clean and quite and we had a very nice stay. And we had great views of the nearby cathedrals from our room.

Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank RachelandDallas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Surrey
Level 6 Contributor
128 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed April 2, 2013

We have just spent 4 nights in this hotel. Location good and hotel serves its purpose. We didn't have breakfast there as there are cafes about that are far better value. We had a room that slept 3 o one double/twin room and another room with a sofa bed for our son. Only complaint was that although we had 3 windows they were all frosted as they looked over internal walls and so it felt like the twilight world all the time - luckily we didn't go to Barcelona to spend time in our room.

Room Tip: Tip - ask for a room with a street view - at least you should get some daylight!
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TontoNorth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin, Ireland
Level 6 Contributor
300 reviews
297 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 316 helpful votes
Reviewed April 2, 2013

We enjoyed a four night stay in the Universal, as did our two accompanying granddaughters (13, 9).

The hotel is located on an busy thoroughfare at the W edge of the El Raval district, close to the once-notorious but now relatively sedate ‘Chinatown’. The immediate locality is uninteresting. There are better locations for those focussed on the Old City but the Universal has the advantage of a two-line metro outside the front door and many nearby bus routes. La Rambla is a 10 minute walk or two metro stops away.

The Universal is a contemporary (built 2001) hotel, with limited but pleasant public spaces and a soothing décor. There is free WiFi throughout but it’s rather slow and has no memory, so frequent log-in is required. There is a pleasant leisure area and a (seasonal) outdoor pool on the roof, with good views.

Our rooms were comfortable and adequately sized, with good storage. The only irritant was poor bedside lighting. The bathrooms were well equipped if somewhat functional in décor. We had sought quiet rooms and got them - but the downside is a view of the clotheslines of the nearby apartments.

Breakfast is a well-stocked buffet. The hotel also offers an inexpensive dinner. The bar offers a limited but good quality ‘tapas’ menu.

All the staff we met were pleasant, helpful and fluent in English.

The Universal is not a luxury hotel but it’s a straightforward and efficient four-star and we thought it excellent value at our advance booking rate of c. $165 per room, including breakfast.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank globaltraveller200
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Weybridge, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
37 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed April 2, 2013 via mobile

We have been coming to this hotel twice a year for two years and the reason being is I can not fault it at all.i have stayed at numerous hotels in Barcelona and this one wins hands down on quality and price.The rooms are cleaned to perfection and the sky line suites are well appointed and the one I stayed in had only just been redecorated,and looked buitifull.The views you get from the room over looks the city (6 floor)and what a view,these balconies are huge.i have also stayed in the standard rooms and they are large by city hotel standards.The resturant serves breakfast which consists of hot and cold buffet,it will take care of all your needs to get started for the day ahead.Like wise in the evening again you can use the buffet menu and order a main course as well.The wine selection is also very good and well priced,don't miss the bar they make very nice drinks and the brandys are good.The location is spot on for every thing you might want to do for site seeing,the metro is just steps away from the hotel as are the buses (2 euros ) will take you anywhere in the city,and the taxis are well priced.The level of service we experience here is first class,and is consistent through out the hotel.The management do a very good job in running this hotel.I would highly recommend this hotel to anybody coming to Barcelona and you will not be disappointed

Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank Mark A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Barcelona Universal Hotel

Property: Barcelona Universal Hotel
Address: Avda Paral.lel 76-80, 08001 Barcelona, Spain
Phone Number:
Location: Spain > Catalonia > Province of Barcelona > Barcelona > El Raval
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#36 Family Hotel in Barcelona
#38 Romantic Hotel in Barcelona
#61 Luxury Hotel in Barcelona
#101 Business Hotel in Barcelona
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Barcelona Universal Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 167
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Strategically located just a five-minute walk from Las Ramblas, Hotel Barcelona Universal grants its guests easy access to all parts of the city. Metro lines 2 and 3 stop just outside the main entrance, at “Paral·lel,” and nearby buses can take you to the beaches of Barcelona, Park Güell, and anywhere in between. A stroll from our hotel near Las Ramblas will take you to some of Barcelona’s favorite tourist attractions.Hotel opened in 2001 and renewed in 2011.Hotel Barcelona Universal has 167 rooms, each equipped with free Wi-Fi Internet. Three “Barcelona Skyline Suites” feature a Jacuzzi and private terrace. Families and larger groups may be accommodated in triple or superior rooms. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Universal Barcelona
Hotel Barcelona Universal
Barcelona Universal Hotel Catalonia

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