Suddenly Madrid is so full of minimalist modern hotels it’s impossible to make a decision — all over town you can have a room in any color, as long as it’s white. Bucking the trend is the De Las Letras Hotel & Restaurant. Like more than a few Madrid boutiques, this one (a younger relative of the Bauzá) features contemporary design in a classic wrapper: in this case a 1917 Belle Époque building on the Gran Via, in one of the city’s most desirable neighborhoods.
What sets the De Las Letras H&R apart from the competition is the fact that the interiors, while modern, aren’t minimal at all. They’re clean-lined, sure, but plenty vibrant as well, in rich colors (you remember colors), with custom-designed furniture alongside vestiges of the old building, including some intricate hand-carved woodwork and one charming old elevator. Natural light is plentiful when you want it, and walls are lined with quotes from famous authors, a step up from boutique-standard abstract art.
Best yet is that here contemporary design doesn’t mean lightweight services. Though it looks youthful, the De Las Letras H&R has clearly been studying the old-world luxury hotels — expect classic touches like full baths and daily newspapers as well as today’s must-have amenity, the pillow menu. Restaurant, bar, spa, library even — the only thing missing is some kind of way to take the place home with you when you’re done with it.
Gran Via, 11, Madrid
+34 91 523 79 80
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