RIU Hotel Plaza de España, Madrid

The RIU Hotel Plaza de España takes its name from the square in the heart of Madrid that it overlooks. It is situated in walking distance to the Palacio Real, the Plaza Mayor and Plaza de Sol.

The building has had turbulent history. Construction of the Edificio España, as the building is officially known, started in 1948 and finished in 1953. Since then it has been sold, threatened with demolition, sold again and then immediately re-sold…

Today the property belongs to the RIU group of hotels, who have invested a lot of time and money in doing it up. As you can see in the photos, the hotel is enormous. As such, it’s impossible for it to be intimate. Nonetheless, I think they’ve done a really good job with it, and part of that is certainly due to the exceptional staff they have at the hotel. They’re proactive in handling guests and crowds, so that even when it’s busy, you never have to wait for long to be seen to.

I booked a suite on the tenth floor, with a balcony overlooking the Plaza de España. The rooms is very comfortable, and despite the fact that it overlooks a busy square in the centre of Madrid, the noise from the traffic below cannot be heard inside the room.

The view from the tenth floor is brilliant, and in the evenings when the temperature cools down, you can just spend hours out there, watching the world go by…

… or watching the city awaken in the early morning. Although, this being Madrid, up until seven in the morning the impression is that the city is only just starting to go to bed from the night before!

Oh yes, and the breakfast is something to behold, because it’s enormous and serves an excellent array of local Spanish dishes as well as anything else you might just have a hankering for. The hotel is also excellent for public transport, there’s an entrance to the metro just a few metres away from the hotel.

I really enjoyed my stay at the hotel, because it was just very relaxing, and the view from the balcony was just so cool. Having said that, if you’re going to stay at this hotel, I would really recommend that you pay a little extra for a room looking out over the square.