Chosing a Barcelona Raval hotel is for the intredid only…
If you are looking for Raval hotels, you must be adventurous: I wouldn’t recommend to stay here to anyone that isn’t easily scared. Although it can be fan to stay a bit off the beaten path, but close enough to some of the main sites.
The Raval is a part of the Old Town that gives me mixed feelings. While the upper part benefited from the creation of the MACBA and the other refurbishment projects before and after the Olympics, in the lower part still hide some not too recommendable streets, and there are more chances to cross a pickpocket than in other areas in town. To learn more about that, please check out my googlemaps including the top hotels in El Raval, local sites and areas to avoid.
But if you are still attracted by the narrow streets and the opportunity to mix with the locals and explore a more real and exotic Barcelona (many immigrants live and own businesses there, and young Barcelona people love hanging out in Raval bars and cafés), then you’ll want to check our recommendations for hotels.
This are our 5 favorite hotels in el Raval:
This Raval hotel is owned by the Spanish shoe company Camper, it’s a trendy hotel in a safer area. You’ll be around the corner from the MACBA, a couple of blocks from la Rambla and Plaça Catalunya, and perfect to explore the Gothic Quarter and Passeig de Gràcia. There are plenty of local food options nearby.
To stay here you need to be a bit more adventurous, as you’ll be a longer walk from la Rambla and the non-recommendable streets are close by. But if you are looking for the reliable services of a well-known Spanish hotel chain, and specially if you enjoy hanging out in drink bars at night, this could be a good choice for you. The roof-top bar of the Barcelo Raval Hotel is coveted by local singles that meet up to socialize in the summer, and there are plenty of informal and bohemian restaurants and bars around.
If you are committed to traveling sustainable, then you should check out this Raval hotel, one of the few with a green certification in town. Located in one of the few wide avenues of the district, it offers all exterior rooms that have been designed with a modern and comfortable touch, plus they are conveniently sound insulated. The infinity pool in the 11th floor with incredible views over the city is a plus.
Usually, you’d avoid 1-star hotels. But this raval hotel is actually nothing like the other 1-star hotels you’ve been before. Modern, clean, comfortable… if boutique hotels could be low-cost, this could probably be a good example. Close to La Rambla and the Boqueria Market, and walking distance from the Gothic Quarter and Plaça Catalunya.
Chic and Basic Hostels
This chain owns 2 hotels in El Raval. Chic&Basic Tallers is closer to the University and Plaça Catalunya, walking distance from La Rambla, Passeig de Gràcia and the main shopping area. Chic&Basic Ramblas is located in a backstreet off the bottom of la Rambla, close to the Port Vell, Gaudi’s Palau Güell, walking distance from the Gothic Quarter… but also close to some darker alleys to avoid.
AND BONUS! This is the most gorgeous af all the hotels in El Raval:
If you prefer a more old-fashioned style, you’ll love this modernist hotel built by Domènech i Muntaner (Gaudí’s peer, and architect of the gorgeous Palau de la Música Catalana concert hall): probably the only classic hotel in El Raval. The street is a bit more noisy and with more chances to run into a pickpocket, but you’ll be around the corner from La Rambla, two blocks from the Boqueria Market, walking distance from the Gothic Quarter, and well connected with other tourist areas by subway.
I hope this tips will help you figuring out what Raval hotel to chose!
So what about you? Go to the comments and tell me: would you stay in a Raval hotel?