You know a hotel is doing something special when even the locals start raving about it. And let me tell you, my foodie/blogger friends in Barcelona have done a whole lot of talking about this beautiful boutique designed by trailblazing hotelier Ian Schrage.
Toward the end of summer 2018, some two or three months after opening, I was lucky enough to stay at Edition Barcelona so I could write about it here on my blog and the various travel publications I contribute to.
I spent 24-hours without leaving the property even once, eating and drinking and generally making full use of the stellar facilities. Here’s what I experienced.
The five-star Barcelona Edition may be a ‘hip hotel’, but by definition only. In reality, this trend-setting, genre-creating urban retreat is something new altogether. It is a universe unto itself, a dynamic social scene where guests rub shoulders with locals.
As well as being quite the looker, the Barcelona Edition also sets new standards within the sustainable travel sector. The company’s ‘Stay Plastic Free’ initiative aims to lead the high-end accommodation sector by example by banning the use of single-use plastics. A small step it may be, but it’s also a giant leap in the right direction.
This is prime accommodation for a new breed of luxury traveller.
As with the the overall vibe of the hotel, the service style is unfailingly professional while retaining an air of youthful playfulness. From the doorman to the sommelier, staff members really go out of their way to connect with guests on a personal level and are always available to customise your experience, without being obtrusive.
Pretty much spot on in my opinion.
Barcelona Edition Hotel boasts a prime central location in the heart of the city – one of the most convenient spots in the city. Guests have the very best of the Catalan capital right on their doorstep, and the most spectacular views over the neighbouring Santa Caterina Market.
From the Picasso Museum and Modernist marvels of Antoni Gaudi to the glistening city beaches and world-renowned restaurants, it’s all within strolling distance from the hotel’s front door.
I believe originality is more important than ever in the homogenised modern-world. I like it when people/companies do away with the rulebook and have the guts to do something unique, and I think it’s safe to say that’s what Edition has done here.
The 100 rooms and suites at Edition Barcelona are refined-yet-understated, with plush walnut panelling, clean cut marble bathrooms and breathtaking views.
They’re packed with technology, but on the whole I would describe them as minimalist and extremely comfortable.
I spotted a group of glamorous young things partying on the terrace of one of the hotel’s two penthouses and have to say I was filled with awe and envy. If you’re really looking to push the boat out…
The Bars and Restaurants
Edition Barcelona has no less than four dining/social spaces that have been causing quite a stir among Barcelona’s foodie/nightlife scene. The main thing I’d like to mention is that these spaces don’t feel like they belong to a hotel. They are unique and attractive venues that stand on their own two feet and attract Barcelona locals as well as guests staying in the hotel.
On the ground floor, the sun-soaked Bar Veraz is a cool but casual all-day restaurant.
As well as a fantastic à la carte breakfast, there’s an excellent selection of classic Mediterranean dishes pepped up with a creative twist.
There’s also a particularly excellent selection of natural wines from boutique Catalan bodegas (I asked my waitress to ‘surprise me’ and was delighted when she brought me my favourite wine), as well as a serious selection of house special cocktails.
The Rooftop Bar
With its impressive panoramic views over Barcelona, the Edition’s leafy rooftop bar rumbles day and night with a palpable sense of virility.
Here guests can salut the morning sun with healthy fruit juices, smoothies and a selection of breakfast dishes.
Lunchtime here is all about Latin-American dishes fused with Asian influences – perfect for sharing with friends.
The main draw here, however, is the creative cocktail menu and live DJ sessions that have seen this 10th floor utopia become one of the hippest places to be at sunset in Barcelona.
Hidden away in the basement is the clandestine Cabaret bar and restaurant, a smooth and almost surreal space for late night revelry.
Diners are treated to a creative tasting menu, with each course accompanied by a brief live performance, before the finale gets into full swing (quite literally).
Punch Room (Speakeasy)
Hidden behind an unmarked door on the first floor, the candle-lit Punch Room is a bonafide speakeasy with soft leather sofas, oak-panelled walls and a full-size billiards table.
Head here after dinner and sink into one of the soft-leather sofas with a glass of the homemade punch (I highly recommend the Wedding Punch) and feast your eyes on the graceful self-portraits created by local Catalan photographer Andrea Torres.
The fitness centre is a good size and filled with the latest cardio/lifting machines, as well as a good selection of free weights.
The swimming pool, located on the rooftop, offers spectacular views over the city but is a bit small for anyone who likes to start their day with a few laps. More of a plunge pool than a swimming pool.
The meeting spaces and business facilities are top notch.
This sensational and often surprising property really does redefine what a luxury hotel can be.
It’s not cheap, but if you’re looking at hip boutiques in the centre of Barcelona and want something a little bit more progressive, you’ll struggle to find anywhere that competes with this (other than Almanac Barcelona).
Make it Happen
Rooms available from €375 per night, including breakfast.