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October, 2019

The Yurbban Trafalgar Hotel located in Barcelona’s former garment district is the first of two adjacent properties opened in 2014 by the Smart Rooms Company.

The Trafalgar building began life as a textile warehouse before being acquired by the group and transformed into a 56 room boutique hotel. Yurbban Trafalgar brings together bespoke design, expansive common areas and a range of guest services to conjure what feels like a four or five star experience without the fuss or unnecessary trimmings of more traditional hotels.

Champ Travel correspondent Matthew Lennon visits Yurbban to explore the hotel’s design, offerings and location in the vibrant city of Barcelona.

Matthew Lennon explores the Yurbban Hotel's rooftop pool and city views

THE HOTEL’S STYLE

The hotel is relaxed, laid back and has a sense of humour that runs through the teams friendly disposition to the language used across their in room information sheets and various signage around the hotel.

The lobby, while dark and moody is also a place for guests to come together each day at 6pm during the hotel’s version of a happy hour in which their team serve a selection of complimentary local wines accompanied by platters filled with small bites. The evening is casual and relaxed, a perfect way to meet other travellers and break down the anonymity that is often so strongly associated with large hotels.

The Trafalgar building began life as a textile warehouse before being acquired by the group and transformed into a 56 room boutique hotel
The hotel is relaxed, laid back and has a sense of humour

THE ROOMS

With four different room-sizes available to guests the hotel is able to accommodate solo travellers, couples, and small groups. My room was simple but well appointed with all the comforts of home including an in-room espresso machine within reach of the bed and lightning-fast internet – a rarity in Barcelona!

THE SERVICE

One thing the hotel excels in is their ability to curate their guests experience. It began with the warm welcome I received from Anna at the front desk and was followed by a suggested itinerary and personalised greeting card in room. I found the team to be incredibly knowledgeable about the local area and to have the ability to make my experience in and around the hotel feel local and even, at times, familial.

With four different room-sizes available to guests the hotel is able to accommodate solo travellers, couples, and small groups
Lightning-fast internet is provided - a rarity in Barcelona!
One thing the hotel excels in is their ability to curate their guests experience
Rooms are practical and efficient, still keeping a feeling of luxury with their design details

DINING 

Each morning guests meet in the lobby once again to enjoy a buffet breakfast which I’m told by Anna at check in has earnt itself “quite a reputation”. I have to admit that a truly excellent buffet breakfast is something I look forward to and make time for whenever I’m travelling – when else can you enjoy 10 different types of cuisine before 10am and have the pancakes, too? The breakfast at Yurbban Trafalga did not disappoint with housemade omelettes and a fragrant chai being highlights of the menu.

For dinner, I visited the self proclaimed “flexitarian” restaurant Flax & Kale located next door to the hotel in Passatge de les Manufactures. An interesting mix of mediterranean and Asian the dishes were fresh and colourful. I’d recommend a visit if you’re missing plant-based meals amongst the many meat-centric restaurants found elsewhere in the city.

THE EXTRAS

Between the Yurbban Trafalgar and its sister hotel Yurbban Passage located right next door. Guests are afforded a wonderful array of extras during their stay. My first stop after checking in was the rooftop pool and bar. With panoramic views across the city and over to the Gothic Quarter one could quite easily spend a tranquil afternoon here to escape the bustle of the streets below.

If sunning yourself poolside leaves you feeling in need of deeper relaxation. Guests also have access to the Signature Organic & Vegan Spa located at Yurbban Passage. The only spa of it’s kind in Spain it’s treatments menu heroes plant based, holistic beauty while the experience is rounded out with access to state of the art sauna and steam rooms.

The other extra that I made good use of during my stay was the communal bicycles that are available to borrow free of charge. The hotel is located in an excellent area near many of the most popular attractions, so having a bike makes hopping between them even easier.

The Yurbban Trafalgar Hotel breakfast "does not disappoint"
Minimalist design for the restaurant interior
Additional restaurant interiors

THE VERDICT

Yurbban Trafalgar Hotel manages to deliver an experience that feels considered, caring and casual, in the best possible way.

I came away with the feeling that their vision is to reexamine what it means to visit a hotel and an understanding that even in a transient settings it’s possible to build community, I’m interested to see how this formula evolves over time and needless to say will be back at the buffet sometime soon.

Stay here if you’re looking for all the facilities without the fuss and to have some fun along the way too.

The lobby, while dark and moody is also a place for guests to come together

Yurbban Trafalgar Hotel

Carrer de Trafalgar, 30, 08010 Barcelona, Spain

Visited and reviewed by Champ team and Sydney-based creative consultant Matthew Lennon

#champ_barcelona

October, 2019