Daily Escape

Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona

Photo by Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona

Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona

Barcelona, Spain

It’s easy to viva la vida when you’re staying at the Mandarin Oriental Barcelona. Situated along the city’s famed Passeig de Grácia, the hotel is the perfect destination for a luxe trip filled with shopping, dining and cultural sites. Intimate and boutique in style, the hotel offers just 98 rooms and suites, ensuring that every guest enjoys the full array of Mandarin’s high-touch services, including Catalan cuisine from Michelin-starred chefs and an 8-room spa.


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Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona
Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona

Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona

The 98-room Mandarin Oriental, is one of the most luxurious hotels in Barcelona. It has a great location on Passeig de Gracia, and offers high-end amenities one would expect from the reputable hotel chain, including a rooftop dipping pool, a beautiful spa, and numerous restaurants (one has a Michelin star). While the service is excellent, some guests complain about street noise. 960 1280

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Hotel SixtyTwo Barcelona

Hotel SixtyTwo Barcelona

SixtyTwo Hotel’s rooms are sleek with bright, minimalist furniture and sexy open bathrooms that are large for Barcelona standards. Beyond the inviting design and a free wine tasting for guests every Wednesday, the hotel’s location -- in the upscale Eixample neighborhood, within walking distance of numerous attractions -- is a major draw. 960 1280

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Hotel Catalonia Catedral

Hotel Catalonia Catedral

Located near great shopping, dining and many tourist attractions, Hotel Catalonia Catedral sits on a quaint residential street in the Gothic Quarter. The hotel’s decor is similar to many others in the area — minimalist and sleek, with lots of gray and white. Better than most, though, is the rooftop pool, which is large and attractive with nice lounge seating. There’s also a tasty brasserie on-site where guests can grab a bite or enjoy a leisurely meal. 960 1280

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Ohla Hotel

Ohla Hotel

The stylish and luxurious, Ohla Hotel is centrally located in the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona. This boutique option offers 74 modern rooms with high-tech amenities and free Wi-Fi. One stand-out feature here is sexy stall showers that are located right in the middle of the rooms. The hotel has a chic rooftop pool and lounge and Michelin-starred Sauc Restaurant. This is the place for an upscale romantic getaway, and an eco-friendly one at that: Ohla Hotel contains solar panels, LEDs and natural toiletries. 960 1280

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Hotel Villa Emilia

Hotel Villa Emilia

The Hotel Villa Emilia is a chic boutique option close to the Passeig de Gracia and the metro. Rooms are cozy, clean, inviting, and large. Floor-to-ceiling windows actually open fully, maximizing fresh air in the room. The common areas of the hotel -- such as the tasty Zinc restaurant and the rooftop -- maintain this stylish vibe. With free Wi-Fi and a superb central location, the 53-room Villa Emilia is a solid pick. 960 1280

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Gran Hotel La Florida

Gran Hotel La Florida

With a fairly removed location in the hills that ring the city, the 70-room Gran Hotel La Florida has a history as a luxurious getaway far from the frenzy of Barcelona’s crowds. Relax in the beautiful indoor/outdoor pool or the tranquil Zen Zone Spa. Contemporary guest rooms have great views of either the city or the Pyrenees Mountains. Apart from an adjacent amusement park, there is not much in the immediate vicinity, so those who seek convenient sightseeing should consider a hotel in the city center. 960 1280

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Casa Fuster Hotel

Casa Fuster Hotel

The 105-room Casa Fuster Hotel is an upscale historic boutique surrounded by high-end shopping and Modernist architecture. Elegant rooms have pastel-colored walls, oversized headboards, and great amenities. Some even have small in-room saunas, balconies and hydro-massage showers. Quarters can be tight. Nonetheless, the hotel offers great features including a Mediterranean restaurant, a beautiful rooftop deck, and Café Vienes -- a favorite among artists, intellectuals and locals. 960 1280

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Abac Barcelona

Abac Barcelona

Abac Barcelona is an exclusive, 15-room luxury boutique hotel that embodies contemporary style at its best. Rooms are avant garde, from the clean, white and beige decor, to the modern under-lighting, from the remote-controlled blinds, to the Bang & Olufsen sound system. And the hotel’s amazing spa with Turkish baths shouldn’t be missed, nor should the hotel’s Michelin-starred restaurant. 960 1280

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The Mirror Barcelona

The Mirror Barcelona

The Mirror Barcelona is a boutique hotel with a unique design, white-on-white decor, mirrors galore and a few stylish amenities, including a wonderful restaurant and rooftop pool. This upscale boutique sets the bar for Barcelona chic. Sleek rooms are clean and feature all-white furnishings with a couple of beige accents, huge murals, large flat-screen TVs and comfortable beds. 960 1280

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Hotel Murmuri

Hotel Murmuri

Housed in a lovely 19th-century building, the Hotel Murmuri is an elegant boutique that has been completely modernized -- and yet maintains a romantic feel. Rooms are stylishly decorated in creams and browns, and feature full-body mirrors and floor-to-ceiling windows. Stand-out features include the chic Murmuri Restaurant and artsy Marfil Bar. Even though the hotel only has a small rooftop terrace and limited pool and fitness center; guests do have free access to facilities at the nearby Majestic Hotel, a sister property. 960 1280

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Dromoland Castle
Dromoland Castle

Dromoland Castle

Dromoland Castle, near Newmarket-on-Fergus in County Clare, Ireland, was built between the 15th and 16th centuries and once belonged to the Earl of Thomand. Today, it’s renowned for its golf course and Michelin-starred restaurant. 960 1280

Dromoland Castle  

Dromoland Castle

Dromoland Castle

The luxurious 5-star Dromoland Castle features Queen Anne staterooms and suites, complete with bathrobes, slippers and room service. Just call down for champagne, chocolates, or even fresh flowers and they’ll be whisked up to your room immediately. 960 1280

Dromoland Castle  

The Culloden Estate and Spa

The Culloden Estate and Spa

The Culloden Estate and Spa in Belfast, Ireland, was built in 1876 with stone brought over by boat from Scotland. In the 19th century, it was passed down by the original owners of the estate to the Church of Ireland Bishop of the Diocese and became known as the "Bishop’s Palace." 960 1280

Hasting Hotels / Culloden Estate  

The Culloden Estate and Spa

The Culloden Estate and Spa

Join other guests of the hotel in Culloden’s drawing room for tea and sandwiches, admire the 12 acres of secluded gardens, or pop by the spa for a fresh smoothie and holistic treatment. 960 1280

Hasting Hotels / Culloden Estate  

Cliveden House

Cliveden House

Cliveden House in Berkshire, England, has been host to many of the politically powerful since 1666, when it was first built by the 2nd Duke of Buckingham to entertain his mistress. Guests to the hotel are still greeted today by the Fountain of Love, commissioned in 1897 for the garden. 960 1280

Cliveden House & Pavilion Spa  

Cliveden House

Cliveden House

This French dining room at Cliveden House was constructed in 1897 to match Madame de Pompadour's 18th-century dining room at the Chateau d'Asnieres. It’s available to rent for private lunches or dinners -- if a meal at the Michelin-starred chef Andre Garrett’s restaurant is a bit too pedestrian. 960 1280

Cliveden House & Pavilion Spa  

The Castle Hotel & Spa

The Castle Hotel & Spa

The Castle Hotel & Spa is an oasis on this side of the Atlantic in Tarrytown, NY. Built between 1897 and 1910 by General Howard Carroll, the castle was originally called Carrollcliffe. In 1997, it was transformed into the lavish hotel and spa it is today. 960 1280

Castle Hotel & Spa  

The Castle Hotel & Spa

The Castle Hotel & Spa

With its 40-foot vaulted ceilings, Gothic stained-glass windows and crystal chandeliers, the Great Hall at the Castle Hotel & Spa is available for weddings and other events. Your guests will be glad to take in a massage at the THANN Sanctuary before diving into their goose-down beds. 960 1280

Castle Hotel & Spa  

Schloss Fuschl Resort and Spa

Schloss Fuschl Resort and Spa

Austria’s Schloss Fuschl Resort & Spa is like a castle right out of a fairytale, perched on the edge of Lake Fuschl. Its history goes back to the year 1450 when it was built as a hunting lodge, and in 1947, it became a first-class hotel. 960 1280

Schloss Fischl Betriebe GmbH  

Schloss Fuschl Resort and Spa

Schloss Fuschl Resort and Spa

Schloss Fuschl’s wine cellar is an intimate place to enjoy a little fondue along with their wide selection of red and white wines. Take your wine out to the terrace to enjoy the sunset over Lake Fuschl. 960 1280

Schloss Fuschl Betriebe GmbH  

Grand Hotel Dei Castelli

Grand Hotel Dei Castelli

The Grand Hotel Dei Castelli in the town of Sestri Levante, Italy, was built between 1925 and 1929 when the peninsula was bought by a financier for his villa. It was transformed into a hotel full of history and art in 1950. 960 1280

Grand Hotel dei Castelli - Sestri Levante  

Grand Hotel Dei Castelli

Grand Hotel Dei Castelli

Known as the "pool of castles," this natural swimming pool forms right below the grounds of the Grand Hotel Dei Castelli and stretches out into the open Mediterranean waters. Grab a cocktail at the beach bar before braving the rocks or lie beneath an umbrella on the sandy part of the pool’s beach. 960 1280

Grand Hotel dei Castelli - Sestri Levante  

Castello Chiola

Castello Chiola

On the highest hill in the small, medieval town of Loreto Aprutino, Italy, sits the Castello Chiola, dating back to the year 864. Its 36 spacious rooms have been renovated with every modern convenience, all situated in historic, ancient elegance. 960 1280

Castello Chiola  

Castello Chiola

Castello Chiola

Back in the day, the celliere, or cellar, at the Castello Chiola was where the poor travelers would gather for wine, fruit and maybe bread, before heading back out on their journey. Now the cellar has been transformed into a modern restaurant embracing simple food in the tradition of the Italian region of Abruzzo. 960 1280

Castello Chiola