ME Madrid Reina Victoria is an achingly cool hotel: sprawled out in the lobby, sipping cocktails in the rooftop bar or snaffling plates of modern Spanish tapas are the type of young, good-looking folk who look as though the probably made their first million in an internet start-up by the time they were 25.
The Spanish capital already has heaps of fashionable bars and slick restaurants, but not necessarily the hotels to match, many of which tend to be of the grand heritage or backpacker dorm ilk. But ME Madrid really rasies the bar for chic accommodation. It’s located in the sociable Plaza Santa Ana, where from late morning to nightfall, the square is filled with tables of tapas, lazy boozy lunchers, and people smoking in the sunshine (this is Spain after all – there’s a lot of smoking). The façade of the hotel, which was built in 1919 is still beautifully traditional, but inside, rooms are modern and minimalist, with the odd cheeky touch to liven things up. The bathroom mirror is stamped with; ‘Oh you pretty things! Bowie. ’ and on top of the mini-bar is an X-rated bedroom kit. In other words, this is the kind of hotel you could have a lot of fun in.
Food and Drink: Now we’re talking. The slick ME restaurant just opened this summer, and serves a small but phenomenal menu of modern tapas dishes, oysters and main courses. Admittedly, the food is considerably more expensive than nearby traditional tapas joints, but it’s worth it – every morsel is delicious. After dinner, you can pop upstairs to The Roof for cocktails in the night air, looking out over the Plaza Santa Ana and beyond. This is definitely Madrid at it most glamorous.
Price: Rooms from £139 per night.
Address: Plaza Santa Ana, 14, 28012 Madrid, Spain, Phone:+34 902 14 44 40, www.melia.com
Radio Times travel rating: 9/10 Upbeat, modern hotel with plenty of charisma.