- Travel and Places
Hotel Check: Radisson Blu Madrid
This booking was made through our Corporate Booking office.
ARRIVAL AND CHECK-IN
Due to the late arrival of my flight into Madrid, I finally got to the hotel at around 01.00 am. Nevertheless, just to be on the safe, I had called advising them of that and they confirmed my room was already guaranteed for late arrival.
The hotel is located in a restored neoclassical building in the old, historic, and very traditional part of Madrid.
The entrance is very small, however once inside the building the interior is surprisingly deceiving, with minimalist decor, emphasising on glass, neon and black panelling; a very stylish and funky design.
The reception desk, again given the small dimensions occupies a reduced area, yet there is no feeling of cluster, thanks to the clever designs and panelling.
The gentleman who checked me in was very alert despite the ungodly hour and completed the process swiftly and in a very friendly manner. He also took the time to ask whether I needed any directions, maps, any kind of help in general. I gratefully declined explaining I have been a regular visitor to the city.
Finally, he directed me to the lifts and wished me a pleasant rest.
Again, I was pleasantly surprised with the well-sized lift (in fact there are two) despite the small dimensions of the building.
ROOM SWEET ROOM
My room was a Standard category, and I cannot stress enough how deceivingly well appointed it was. Despite being an interior facing room, as in windows looking to the inside of the building, that was not an issue for me. After all, I didn’t come to this hotels for the views.
The room was bigger than expected, given the category. The double-sized bed had a good 70 cm of space on each side. What the room lacked in width it surpassed in depth. There was ample space between the foot of the bed and the wardrobe and small worktable.
The wardrobe was deep and wide enough and apart from the clothes rack and three drawers, it also held a well sized safe (big enough for a laptop to fit in comfortable as well as all other debris that one tends to keep in the safes.
The other door opened to reveal the mini-bar as well as the coffee/tea making facilities.
Just as importantly; the bathroom. Again ample space with a long table for the basin with more than enough space to comfortable lay your toiletries.
The wet-room cubicle was very spacious, with a big round shower-head on the ceiling, cascading with a waterfall effect when in use. The glass panel didn’t close, leaving a gap to enter yet which nevertheless kept the water inside the cubicle.
Again, the grey tiles, long mirror, and fluorescent lighting exuded a funky, yet minimalist feel to it.
Double sized bed, firm mattress, four exaggeratedly large pillows, thick but light duvet; what better way to hand yourself over to Morpheus?
I did, at first have a bit of struggle to acquaint myself with the lighting system, but in the end, more precisely on the second night, I finally got to master it from the bed.
For a city centre hotel, it had the perfect balance in terms of facilities.
Free WiFi throughout the building with excellent speed and connections, a big plus if you’re there on business, or simply want to make the best use of your gadgets or simply stay in touch – viber, skype, worked a treat!
A very basic but functional gym located in the basement is at one’s disposal to shed those extra pounds that are so easy to pile in this gastronomic capital.
With regards to food and beverage, I cannot comment as I was on a room only rate and I found it painful to pay €18.00 (£14.65/US $22.70) for a Continental Breakfast quite honestly.
What I did manage to savour was the delectable whisky menu at the Cask Bar. Unfortunately, but this was more ill timing than anything else, their famous ‘Cask Whisky Bar’ closed the day before I arrived as they intend to blend that with the other bar to create one stylish bar and lounge. I was very much looking forward to the atmospheric surroundings one can find in a proper whisky bar. Nevertheless, the waiter who explained the new plans did bring me the Whisky Menu, and in the company of one of my great friends that lives in Madrid, we drank the night away until the early hours. Literally, we had the bar to ourselves!
Surprisingly, and despite the type of lounge and its location inside a hotel, the prices were unusually reasonable, and more importantly, the measures were generous. 8/10
The downside, and this, was a major disappointment was the spa area. A nice decent sized Jacuzzi, let down by the low water temperature. Adding to that, the Steam room didn’t seem to be up to its steamiest. I suspect poor maintenance was the main cause as I noticed that the door supposed to seal the steam room from the adjacent shower didn’t fit or close properly thus allowing it to lose heat and steam. 3/10
LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION
Well, in Madrid you don’t get better location than this. Steps from the impressive Paseo del Prado, Cibeles plaza just a few minutes away on foot, Atocha rail station another five minute walk and the best of Madrid’s exhilarating nightlife just inches away, this hotel is enviably well located. Even Anton Martin metro station is but a mere five to seven minute walk up Calle Moratín.
I had a two pm flight back home so I rose early to have a quick workout at the gym, enjoy breakfast in one of the nearby cafés, which I had been doing every morning and make some headway with my work before check out.
The process was quick, efficient, and hassle-free. The receptionist again took the trouble to ask if I required any assistance with my onward plans and explained very clearly, whatever queries I had.
CONCLUSIONS – OVERALL IMPRESSIONS
Spa disappointment apart, there was nothing I could fault this hotel with. Great location, warm , friendly and efficient service, comfortable room with well appointed bathroom.
I would not hesitate to recommend this hotel, and I for one, would not think twice to stay here again should my regular travels to Madrid require me to stay in a hotel if the rates are right.
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