Happy Monday! I'm on a train to Germany with Haley and am so excited to explore another country for a few days!
This week I'm trying out something new on the blog. My travel guides have become pretty extensive (which you already know if you read my posts about Ireland or Amsterdam). So rather than cramming everything into a singular post once again, I'm going to be breaking Barcelona down for you piece by piece in 4 separate posts:
Where to Stay.
Where to Eat.
What to Pack
What to Do.
First up? Where to stay in Barcelona. But before I dive into the details, let me set the scene of the city a bit for you. For starters, I adore Barcelona. I went for the first time last year with my family and instantly fell in love. Nestled along the Mediterranean, Barcelona offers incredibly beautiful scenery: cliffy, rugged coastlines and sparkling blue waters. The Barcelona architecture is equally as stunning as the landscape: somewhere in between the romantic structure you see in Paris and the pops of color you’ll find in Italy. As if that doesn’t already sound appealing enough, just add the brilliance of Gaudi peppered all throughout the city for the cherry on top. It doesn’t just look beautiful either. It also tastes delicious (but more to come about that in my “Where to eat” post later this week).
Long story short, there’s so much to love that it’s hard not to be smitten with the Catalonian capital.
When I was planning my list of places to visit in Europe, my friend Sarah told me she wanted to spend more time in Spain. She had already been to Barcelona as well, but we both agreed we had to go back. One of the first orders of business was to find a place to stay.
If you’ve read my blog before, you know that I like to mix it up in terms of accommodation types. I realize everyone has different budgets and boxes to tick before selecting a place to stay. So I searched for all sorts of hotel options (I stayed in an Airbnb the previous time so this time I wanted a proper hotel for the sake of diversity.)
During my hunt, I stumbled upon Generator. I previously only categorized them as a hostel, so I was intrigued when I saw that their Barcelona location also had a hotel option.
Let me preface by saying even their hostels are designed to look like boutique hotels, offering chic decor in the lobbies that far surpass traditional hostel expectations (I stayed at their Venice location back in August for a night).
Between my positive experience in their Venice hostel (while still a private room) and my curiosity about their hotel experience, I was sold on giving them a try. Once again, I was pleasantly surprised.
The Generator hotel and hostel share a lobby, which once again I found to be as beautiful as a boutique hotel. The only difference between the two are the rooms.
Naturally the rooms in the hostel are simple and minimalistic (bringing down the cost by eliminating any unnecessary decor.) If you’re on a tighter budget, you can opt for this portion of the building (there’s still an option for a private room, or you can cut the price tag even more by option to do a shared room.)
If your wallet allows and you’re looking for a little more luxury, you can upgrade to the Generator Hotel. Contrary to the rooms in the hostel, these rooms include decor, which is just as chic as the lobby. But my favorite part? Our terrace that overlooked Sagrada Familia.
Aside from the competitive price and the beautiful interiors, the location is in the buzzing district of Gracia and central to all the major attractions you’ll want to see in the city (which I’ll touch on later this week).
But one of the things I love most about staying at Generator is the ability to connect with other travelers- something that’s a bit harder to do in a standard hotel. The bar is always buzzing at night with travelers from all over the world. Sarah and I met a rugby team from England and talked to them for a while about Brexit and the US election.
All in all, I was very happy with our decision to stay there and would definitely recommend it. Obviously there are also lots of other hotel options in Barcelona you can also choose from. But since you should be spending little time in your room (other than to sleep), I’d advise saving those “splurge” funds for a destination where you’re likely to spend more time at the hotel.
I’m a believer that Generator has something to offer for just about every traveler- no matter your budget. If you prefer to forgo the hotel route, there is always the option to do Airbnb (if you do that, I would recommend staying in the nearby area for the same conveniences).
What else do you want to know about booking accommodations in Barcelona? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!
Stay tuned for the rest of my Barcelona recommendations coming this week: where to eat, what to pack and what to do.