LGBTQ travellers will receive a warm welcome in Spain’s vibrant, creative capital, especially if staying in a room at any of these centrally located hotels or hostels – bookable with Culture Trip.
In 2005, Spain became the third country to legalise gay marriage, and its stylish capital remains one of Europe’s most LGBTQ-friendly cities. The place to be is Chueca, a dynamic neighbourhood packed with bars, clubs and restaurants, and the colourful hub of Madrid Pride every summer. Read on for our pick of the best LGBTQ-friendly accommodation in Spain’s insomniac capital, from intimate boutique hotels to one of the grandest five-star properties in the city.
This design-conscious boutique hotel in the arty Barrio de las Letras area is LGBTQ-orientated but equally welcoming to straight travellers. The accommodation options take inspiration from the Movida Madrileña, an explosion of creativity and rebellion that engulfed Madrid in the 1980s. Book an Axel Deluxe Gold suite for a four-poster bed in a grand setting or an Axel City room for an intimate, playful space. Relaxation areas include a rooftop pool and a sexy basement bar. Axel also runs a footwear and accessories line aimed at the LGBTQ community.
The Hat is a friendly hostel just off Plaza Mayor, about a 15-minute walk from Chueca, Madrid’s lively LGBTQ hub. Accommodation is in mixed and female-only dorms or ensuite rooms, and the hostel has a boisterous bar and restaurant on the roof. Breakfast is also available for an additional fee. The staff can arrange free activities, such as walking tours of the city, and secure you discounted or free entry to the best LGBTQ nightclubs.
Courtesy of The Westin Palace, Madrid / Booking.com
LGBTQ travellers are welcomed in grand style at Marriott’s Westin Palace, a bastion of luxury commissioned by King Alfonso XIII in 1912. Rooms and suites feature belle-époque furnishings, and many overlook the 18th-century Fountain of Neptune opposite. The hotel sits on Madrid’s famous Art Walk and is within walking distance of the Reina Sofia, Prado and Thyssen-Bornemisza Museums. It’s also a 15-minute stroll from Chueca. The on-site eateries Green T Sushi Bar and Asia Gallery, a Cantonese restaurant, provide tasty alternatives to tapas.
This colourful, LGBTQ-friendly Barceló hotel occupies nine floors in the unmissable Tower of Madrid, once the world’s tallest concrete building. Rooms and common areas display bold, avant-garde colours and lines by Madrileño designer Jaime Hayón, and the Somos Garra restaurant has Gran Vía views through its large windows. Relaxing spaces include an indoor pool overlooking the city, a sauna and the larger-than-life Garra Lobby Bar that doubles up as a Hayón gallery. The breakfast offering was designed by a top Spanish nutritionist.
The four-star Hotel Infantas by MIJ is in the centre of Chueca, close to dozens of LGBTQ bars and a 10-minute walk from Calle Fuencarral, one of the neighbourhood’s major streets. Rooms come as doubles, premiums or triples and feature dark hardwood floors and attention-grabbing paintings above the headboards; many also have wrought-iron Juliet balconies. Rent a bike from reception to better explore Madrid’s premier LGBTQ neighbourhood, and ask staff for restaurant recommendations or to help with theatre or museum tickets.
The 7 Islas is another top LGBTQ hotel in Chueca, and it has put together a comprehensive list of the coolest places to eat, drink and party in the neighbourhood and elsewhere in Madrid (check out “Madrid by 7 Islas” on its website). Founded in 2002 and now run by the original owner’s granddaughters, the hotel has minimalist accommodation options, complete with furniture crafted from reclaimed materials by the Madrid-based studio Kikekeller. Book the penthouse suite for a private roof terrace overlooking Chueca; it also comes with a hammock and yoga kit.
Hostal Pizarro specialises in gay-friendly customer service, helping LGBTQ guests find bars, restaurants and activities throughout Madrid. Non-LGBTQ guests are also welcome. Architect Mauricio Jalvo Millán designed the building, which is one of the great and few examples of modernist architecture in the city. Hostal Pizarro has 16 double rooms and four singles, and all feature mini-fridges and flat-screen TVs.
On the Plaza de Pedro Zerolo in Chueca, the Room Mate Óscar has 74 rooms and a gorgeous rooftop pool and bar. The rooms are airy, bright and modern, and the hotel itself is decorated with style, juxtaposing geometric prints with bold colours. If you want to splurge, the suites have incredible views of the city.
Courtesy of Iberostar Las Letras Gran Vía / Booking.com
This hotel, known for hosting famous writers and poets (hence the name, Las Letras or the Letters), is an LGBTQ-friendly property on Madrid’s busy Gran Vía. Some of the 109 rooms feature outdoor terraces, while others have private jacuzzis. Many have poetry or stories written on the walls. The hotel also has a library where you can relax with a book or a cocktail in hand.
The LGBTQ-friendly Dear Hotel sits on Gran Vía in the centre of Madrid and has a gorgeous lounge, complete with a rooftop pool. The rooms are simple and chic, decked out in white, and all of them overlook the sprawling main street below. Not only is it one of the trendiest hotels in the city, but it’s also reasonably priced and a cool place to stay.
The Petit Palace Chueca underwent a renovation in 2017, giving it a contemporary vibe. The hotel isn’t just LGBTQ-friendly; it’s also pet-friendly and ecofriendly, offering bike rental services. Many rooms also have small balconies with French doors and great views of the city.
Courtesy of Only You Boutique Hotel Madrid / Hotels.com
The Only You Boutique Hotel has two locations in Madrid, but the one in Chueca is specifically known for being LGBTQ-friendly. With 125 rooms decked out in blue and white, the hotel is hands down one of the most stylish on this list. Here, the chic experience starts from the moment you walk through the doors and head into the lobby, with sleek interior patio furniture to the right and the bar mixing up delicious concoctions to the left.