We just returned from Barcelona where we spent three nights at Hotel Murmuri. The hotel was very clean (and we're picky about that point), and the staff was extremely helpful to us -- we simply could not have asked for more accommodating hosts!
Other reviewers have done a good job of describing this modern hotel's features, but I wanted to answer for others a few of the questions I found unanswered before my travels.
1) This is a very nice neighborhood. No worries there -- it's probably the nicest (and safest) part of Barcelona. If you're looking at the tourist guidebooks, the neighborhood is called Eixample.
2) In addition to the Bar Marfil and Restaurant Murmuri on the hotel premises, there are plenty of cafes and restaurants nearby. Be aware that many of them will be closed on Sundays, but some will remain open (your number of choices will be diminished, but you won't go hungry!)
3) There are a pleasant number of people on the streets in the evening. Rambla de Catalunya is NOT Las Ramblas (which is the loud and noisy and screaming area with a lot of bars and horns honking and whatnot). There is plenty to see and plenty of people to watch, but not the level of noise and revelry that will keep you up late at night. You can walk or Metro to Las Ramblas if you want the activity, but then escape to more civilized surroundings when you return to your hotel to rest.
4) There is LOTS of high-end shopping in this area. Not my thing, but if you want to gawk at Gucci and other high-end design stores, this is the place to be.
5) You're one block from Le Pedrera (Casa Mila), and the local tourist bus stop; 2-3 blocks from the "Block of Discord," where Casa Batllo is one of three stunning Modernista buildings; 1/2 block from Diagonel Metro stop, and right around the corner from a fabulous coffee and pastry shop (Cafe Mauri).
6) The staff at Murmuri are incredible and very helpful. They do speak English very well, which was helpful to us as our Spanish is poor (at best!).
7) The rooms do not have universal electrical adapters, but Murmuri has them -- just contact the front desk.
8) The hotel doesn't exchange currency, but there is a bank across the street that does, as does the more staid Hotel Majestic, which is located about 2 blocks away (Murmuri and Majestic are both owned/operated by Majestic Hotel Group). We thought exchange rates were decent at both places.
9) The rooms are spacious by European standards (less generous space than American travelers are used to, but our room at Murmuri was certainly more spacious than at the also-fine Majestic (see separate review for our first night stay at Majestic).
Here are a couple of hints:
HINT #1: Keep the hotel address at hand. This is not a giant hotel that every driver knows (in Barcelona, there aren't a lot of 1,000 room Hiltons -- it's full of the smaller, boutique hotels like Murmuri), so it's important to have the address in hand. It's also important to know the cross streets to look for so that you can find it (Carrer de Provenca on one side and Passtage de la Concepcio on the other); I recommend printing out the map on the hotel's website just to be sure you won't miss it the first time you look for it.
HINT #2: Know that you will need to look directly AT the building to see the sign for Murmuri -- it is tucked inside the alcove to the doorway, rather than standing out at right angles so oncoming traffic can see it. Murmuri is an old building that has had a wonderful makeover on the inside, but the outside edifice still the traditional stone facade. (I'm probably not explaining this very well: what I'm trying to say is it's a great hotel, but the signage isn't great and you need to look AT it or you'll miss it. See their website at murmuri.com to take a look at their photo of the sign and you'll see what I mean -- I mention this because we almost passed the hotel without noticing it.).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A new concept of Boutique Hotel opens in Barcelona in March 2008. Murmuri Barcelona is getting ready to surprise you, please you and serve you. A meeting point in the Rambla Catalunya where you can delight in the murmur of the constant throb of the city. Created in an intimate style, with reminiscences of classicism, not forgetting the most modern and sophisticated design. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Murmuri Barcelona Catalonia