Granada is a beautiful city right at the foot of the spectacular Sierra Nevada mountains in Andalucia. Granada is full of rich history, with Arab influences and Spanish charm reflected in the many independent hotels. We list 10 of the best cultural hotels in the city.
The Alhambra Palace Hotel offers guests the unique chance to experience the essence of Granada’s icon: the Alhambra. This luxurious hotel is faithfully inspired by the grand Alhambra itself, and promotes an ambiance of cultural exchange, elegance, and aristocracy. With 126 junior suites and double rooms, each with its own charm, there’s plenty of choice, with some offering unrivalled views of the city, and some of the enchanting forest corners of the Alhambra. Not only are the rooms charming, and the setting ideally suited to Granada, the Alhambra Palace hotel boasts its own restaurant complete with inviting terraces and balconies.
Notoriously hard to book, with reservations having to be made months in advance, but definitely worth the wait, the Parador of Granada is Spain’s most popular Parador. Actually situated in the Alhambra Complex, it is drenched in history, being part palace, part mosque, and dating back to the 1330s. At one point in time, it was even a former chapel in which the kings of Spain were buried. Inside, royal and classic furnishings complement Arab and Christian styles.
A hotel full of history, in which Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca was reported to have spent his final days, there’s certainly a strong cultural and historical ambience here, making it a fantastic alternative to chain hotels. Along with authentic antique décor and an Andalusian charm, Reina Cristina is complemented by excellent service, and an ideal location in the centre of the commercial centre of the city, and right next to the cathedral.
This modest hotel oozes with charm and character and is housed in a building dating back to the 16th century, and fully restored to reflect the time period. Hotel Santa Isabel la Real is ideally located in the picturesque district of Albaicín, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and ab ideal base for exploring the city of Granada. A hotel that has taste, simplicity, and a homely feel, it makes its guests feel comfortable, enjoying the authentic preserved architecture and delightful patio in summer, or fire-lit lounge in winter.
Informally known as the Arts Hotel, El Ladron de Agua is a beautifully restored 16th century house which is charmingly modest in size, featuring only 15 guestrooms. El Ladron de Agua is historic and atmospheric; try to book the ‘suite’ if you can, to enjoy spectacular views of the Plaza Nueva, Darro River Valley, the Alcazar, and, last but not least, the Alhambra. Rooms aside, El Ladron de Agua is more than just a hotel; this family run place also acts as a showcase for local and regional art, hence the informal name, and is a literary and artistic hub inspired by Juan Ramon Jimenez.
Ideally located near the Alhambra, the Arab baths, and the Plaza Nueva, this historic hotel, built within a beautiful 18th century house, still retains its traditional inner courtyard. Inside, it has attractive and authentic décor which brings history back to life while at the same time sensitive to contemporary trends. Guests can enjoy the charming wooden bar, or sophisticated reading room, and 49 well-appointed rooms.
Just a few hundred yards from the Granada Cathedral, this elegant hotel is full of Andalusian charm, and is ideally located in the historic heart of the city. With 68 rooms, each is decorated in an authentically Andalusian style, and some even boast views of the small square in front of the hotel. This modest hotel offers guests a sense of privacy and even boasts three beautiful Andalusian0style courtyards.
A five-star hotel in the historical and financial heart of the city, this 19th-century palace boasts both classical and industrial architectural influences. With exquisite interior decoration and good food in their very own restaurant, Palacio de Los Patos offers the all-round experience. This luxury hotel is renowned for its friendly staff and excellent service, meaning visitors are guaranteed a pleasant and stress-free experience. What’s more, Palacio de los patos even boasts its very own spa, complete with sauna, Turkish bath, and indoor pool.
Take the unique opportunity to stay in a cave house in the Sacromonte neighbourhood of Granada, an area near the Alhambra, and the neighbor of the historic Arab district, the Albaicín. The true beauty of staying in a ‘cave house’ can really only be appreciated when actually there; it’s a simple and modest, yet captivating experience which is free from exquisite decoration, but offers guests a true feeling of escape in nature.
Located in a historic palace that was also once a pilgrim hospital, Gar Anat is brimming with history. Refurbished in recent years, this hotel now has all the essential modern amenities, but has retained its authentic ancient roots. Still popularly known as an ideal place for reflecting and relaxing, Gar Anat is also a literary hotel, inviting guests to delve into the world of stories of pilgrims, writers, travelers and adventurers. Gar Anat offers an almost magical and escapist experience with each room boasting its own unique charm and story.