Reminiscent of the iconic Burj Al Arab in Dubai, the W Barcelona is a destination not to be missed. Rising up at the edge of Barceloneta Beach like a glittering sail, offering state-of-the-art design and experience at the mouth of the city’s port.
From trendy young jetsetters (including the tinder swindlers) looking to party to dapper businessmen, the hotel attracts the whole spectrum of chic clientele. The glitz facade continues throughout the hotel, and you'll be tempted to spend most of your stay gazing out of the window, daydreaming with 'that' famous view of Spain’s favourite city. Inside, there's a glitter-walled reception arranged around a swirling centre lined with hanging chairs, a plush sitting room with damask sofas, mirror lights, and an art-deco fireplace. The service is friendly and attentive, and we were whisked up to our room efficiently.
The hotel houses the brand's iconic infinity pool and deck, lined with cabanas and beds for those wanting to bathe in style under the Spanish sun. The W is also home to a stellar fully kitted gym – with the backdrop being that cool blue view. For the more creative crowd, a state-of-the-art recording studio is also available.
And onto our favourite bit – the rooms. We stayed in a 'Fabulous' room, and the title really doesn't lie. Request either a Sea or City view room and wake up and sleep to the thrum of the sea below. There really is something magical about staying here; from the dreamy signature W cloud bed, the amenities, the room service... the list goes on. Tip: If you're a gin fan, have a nosy at the mini bar. Barcelonans are famed for their fondness for Gin – and there are some great local favourites in there.
The fabulously large bed faces that sea blue view, and curtains open and close at the click of a button. Bathrooms are clean and minimal, with amenities from Davines – W Worldwide’s exclusive partnership.
The restaurant offerings at the W are vast. I tried FIRE for dinner, the hotel’s semi-casual restaurant serving up Catalan cuisine. The restaurant sits next to the ground floor pool facing the sea; think granite and charred details, amber accents with a wooden fire parilla, crushed-velvet sofas and leather armchairs. Influence is taken from the region, with the menu a fierce fusion of sea and land in a brazen reinterpretation of the classics. A sensational medley of Spanish fare, it really was a great way to begin the trip.
Breakfast time is buzzy, with as many locals as guests helping themselves to an international buffet choc full of waffles, Spanish Iberian cold cuts, healthy options, and a la carte. Served in both FIRE and the resident SALT, guests can opt to have dinner at either venue, depending on preference to views. Both serve the same selection. Whilst the bulk of Barcelona’s smart hotels are near the old town and centre, the W is uniquely on the calm blue waterfront by the promenade. It feels like an escape – and is still cool, even after all these years.