Central Barcelona, Spain
We've hand-picked the very best boutique and luxury hotels in Central Barcelona to bring you our collection of stylish romantic retreats. Find your perfect hotel and get the low-down on holidays in Central Barcelona – just choose your destination from the list below…
Areas in Central Barcelona
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Ex-El Bulli pastry chef Oriol Balaguer’s Easter eggs resemble Dali-esque fetishes, with laser-cut cubist choc sculptures, trompe-l'œil fruits and some that look like incubating Giger beasties. He’s also famed for explode-in-your-mouth sherbert and popping-candy chocolates and surrealist gateaux. His 40-hour, €2,200 gastronomy course (for English and Spanish speakers) tops many a pâtissier’s bucket list. You’ll learn to craft gallery-worthy cakes, chocolates, pastries, pies and even sweet cocktails; it’s hardly a cakewalk in the park, but well worth the effort if you want to end every meal with a bang – perhaps literally…
Stay Hotel Omm (nom nom) has a holy trinity of Michelin-approved fraternal chefs: pleasingly alliterative Joan, Josep and Jordi Roca. Restaurant Roca Moo’s menu has two excellent tasting menus highlighting haute Catalan fare.
These apartments in the happening heart of Barcelona are a designer's dream: housed in an elegant 1906 art nouveau building, with dazzling original features – frescoes, architraves, stained-glass windows and high ceilings – as well as fabulous furniture courtesy of top talent, including steel wire Platner chairs, Saarinen dining tables, Jacobsen egg armchairs and Mies van der Rohe pieces. Mezzanine Suites are graced with opulent frescoes and soaring ceilings, and you can watch the world wander by on the streets below through stained-glass windows. The suite also includes a personal assistant who can arrange seemingly everything. Private chef? Personal shopper? In-room couples’ massage? Done…
Pioneers of the all-dessert tasting menu, and masters of El Bulli-inspired deconstructed tapas – by way of meaty Catalonian fare – Barcelona’s gastro scene is bold and boundary nudging.
What’s cooking? Surf ’n’ turf, bulging bocadillos and custard-filled xuixos doughnuts, washed down with a judicious slug of vermouth.
• Blow off tremendous but touristy La Boqueria market for Mercat de San Antoni, to summon a generous aperitivo at Milano Cocktail Bar and gourmet sandwiches at Bar Mariana; chase with vermouth at little-known Tarannà nearby.
• Van Van Market reflects the city’s growing hunger for excellent street food, where a convoy of delicacy-proffering trucks descend on Parc de la Ciutadella. Find bite-size bliss at Reina Croquette and the Jamoneta.
• Much like attendees after its first two outings, Eat Street food festival has grown in size. Come October scour this (potentially) moveable feast for Eureka Street Food’s fresh and zingy ceviche.
Stay at Stock up on the abundant fruit and veg, and decently sized slabs of carne, at the Mercat de San Antoni, to cook up in DestinationBCN’s designer kitchens.