The Serras Hotel Barcelona, Barri Gòtic

Set back from the road facing the Port Vell marina and out to sea, this waterfront hotel has a laid-back tone set by the subtle background jazz playing in the airy lobby. “We didn’t want to be black and white and modern, nor just a classic hotel,” says general manager Antonio Bignone. “Instead we tried to play with wooden textures and Mediterranean colours.” The result is an artful accomplishment, with interiors by designer Eva Martínez and vast beds kitted out with comfortable Hypnos mattresses. The downstairs restaurant is run by Marc Gascons and prepped in an open kitchen overseen by a quiet mezzanine.

9 Passeig de Colom, 08002 
+34 93 169 1868

Hotel Brummell, Poble-sec

Located in an enviable spot between the city, sea and mountains, Brummell is a 20-room affair that’s (fairly) central but feels a world away from the touristy throng. Rusted tables and concrete walls sit alongside fronded plants and an edible garden. Owner Christian Schallert fell in love with the then derelict building back in 2015 and challenged architect Inma Rábano to fix it up. He also commissioned design duo Blankslate (famed in these parts for the Federal Café in El Raval) to give a tropical modern twist to the Catalan backdrop. Rooms are bijou but views are vast and if you book a penthouse (there are two) you can expect your own alfresco bathtub.

174 Nou de la Rambla, 08004 
+34 93 125 8622

Soho House Barcelona, Barri Gòtic

The UK-based hospitality firm Soho House & Co expanded into Barcelona in 2016. The on-point conversion of this residential building is a high watermark of hospitality, where original mosaic and parquet floors give way to vaulted red-brick ceilings (common in Catalonia). The downstairs restaurant, Cecconi’s, does a brisk trade in Venetian dishes, while the rooftop offers an enviable view towards the Port Vell marina and the sea beyond. 

The usual trappings are available to members, from an old-school gym to a 36-seat cinema and a horseshoe-shaped terrazzo bar on the fifth floor. The 57 rooms – available for non-members to book – feature a tasteful mix of found and bought furniture, with Bakelite telephones, his-and-hers sinks, Roberts radios and well-stocked minibars.

4 Plaça del Duc de Medinaceli, 08002 
+34 93 220 4600 

Images: Silvia Conde

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  • The Pacific Shift