On a recent trip to Spain, with only a couple nights in Madrid—I found myself at the Dear Hotel. Opened in July, 2015, it’s considered a boutique designer-type lodging: minimalist, modern, and cutting edge—with a spectacular rooftop pool and bar area.
Situated across the street from the pretty fountain-filled Plaza de España, the hotel is in a great location; it’s only about a 15-minute walk to the city’s famous Puerta del Sol and within 10 minutes of the Palacio Real. It’s also practically on top of a metro stop and near wonderful side streets that wind through trendy restaurants, bars and shops.
Its entrance off the busy Gran Via leads into the hotel’s small lobby and even smaller check-in desk area—neither of which allows much room should a group of guests with all their luggage arrive at the same time. Such was the case when I was checking in; creating a crowded space and some stress-filled and overwhelmed check-in help. Once the rush was over, desk clerks relaxed and seemed more friendly and helpful.
An elevator services the hotel’s 14 floors (and 162 rooms), but do check out the cool stairway when you’re up on the 14th for breakfast. Gazing down the stairwell, it looks more like a contemporary art piece.
My room was definitely minimalist. In fact, it felt almost too bare bones. Can a room be too…zen? There was nothing on the walls except a flat screen t.v. The splash of color on the bed consisted of black, grey and beige throw pillows. I loved the beautiful wood floors, but even the area rug was grey. Windows opened to let in fresh air and when closed, the double paned glass kept out traffic noise. (Most rooms overlook Gran Via or the pretty Plaza de España). There was no closet, but a metal wall unit which also housed the mini bar and safe. With plenty of room for a table and two chairs, I did wonder why there was only one chair. Or with that extra floor space, a luggage rack would have made sense too. Still, the biggest reason you’re at a hotel is to sleep—and the bed was most comfortable, and made up with lovely Egyptian cotton sheets. All rooms feature free wi-fi (good strong connections too).
The bathroom was stylishly modern, although the particular black wall tile that was used made it feel a little less sexy and more dreary. I have never been fond of the popular flat sink that seems to be so “in” these days either—it looks cool but it takes up precious counter space needed for some (ahem) who travel with massive makeup bags. The room had a spacious walk-in rain shower and huge luxurious towels, and all have comfy bathrobes and slippers provided along with a hairdryer and magnifying makeup mirror.
The Nice to Meet You Restaurant & Lounge on the 14th floor serves a buffet breakfast (not included with room price) with a la carte hot entrees that change daily. On a sun-filled morning, there is nothing nicer than enjoying coffee on the 360-degree panoramic terrace; but even from inside, the views over the city are fantastic.
In the evening, the terrace is a great place to watch the sun setting on the Plaza de España. Still, the hotel’s highlight has to be its “sky pool” which overlooks Madrid’s rooftops. Drinks and tapas taken out here with the lights of the city sparkling make the setting a Spanish moment to treasure.
Review and photos (except where noted) by Donna Tabbert Long who was a guest of the Dear Hotel.