Arrival Experience: Tucked away on a protected side street directly on the bustling Paseo de la Castellana, this is one of the city's top luxury properties attracting international business travelers and well-heeled tourists including a solid base of Americans. Revolving doors with top hat-fitted bellmen swirl into a stunning marble lobby decked out in fresh floors and modern lighting. The compact reception desk sits in a corner to the left while a friendly concierge maintains his post on the opposite corner. Staffers are swift and competent providing excellent and welcoming service. Four elevators on the other side of the lobby transport guests to meeting space and guest rooms.
Dining: The rotunda squarely behind the lobby's reception area is a wonderful place to sit with a cocktail in the evening hours listening to the live piano music or chatting about business plans. Often, local executives can be spotted here between meetings chatting over a café con leche. Further in lies the Bar 49 shaking and stirring cocktails throughout the day and evening hours. Light bar snacks and tapas can be enjoyed here at any time although continuing further into El Café restaurant is worth it for Spanish delicacies and haute cuisine prepared by a talented chef. A lavish breakfast buffet is also served here each morning including eggs prepared to order and a wide array of Spanish specialties. During the warmer months, El Jardin, the outdoor garden patio opens for al fresco dining and a similarly tasty menu. Room service is also served round the clock.
Accommodations: Classically appointed hallways with beautiful Madrileno artwork lead to elegant guest rooms with soft carpeting and marble foyers. Eschewing the modernist décor of other hotels in town, this more traditional approach is impressive and well-maintained. Large beds with thick duvets swallow guests into a deep slumber, especially important for jetlagged travelers. Work desks proffer high speed Internet (both wired and wireless) and face large flat-screen cable TVs sitting atop armoires housing minibars and cupboard space. Sitting areas with side tables are in the corner of guest rooms by windows that open for fresh air. Robes are a luxurious touch in bathrooms as are the walls and floors of marble and verbena-scented Agraria toiletries. Glass shower stalls and soaking tubs are a great way to relax after a day of shopping at this street's famous boutiques. Housekeeping works morning to night and keeps hallways and guest rooms looking impeccable. Guests booking Club Intercontinental rooms have special access to the club lounge where complimentary breakfast and all-day canapés, snacks, cocktails, and beverages are available. Turndown service also arrives nightly with bottled water, refresh bathrooms, and to lay slippers bedside.
Conclusion: An impressive workout facility and spa center are located on the first level past several meeting rooms. More expansive meeting space for larger groups is located on the lobby level and features a separate entrance and coat check for conferences so as not to disturb other guests. Bellmen are always at the ready to summon a taxi from the street although a Metro station is just around the corner with convenient access to the main tourist sites and the airport. This hotel is often compared to Madrid favorites The Palace and Ritz, but is preferred by business guests because it is out of the touristic bustle but still within short distances to the commercial center of town. American tourists appreciate its distinctive luxury and friendly service as part of the IHG group.