How the flipping heck has one week passed since I left this place already? It’s gone *almost* as quickly as my 3 days in Barcelona whizzed by. Jeez September you’re a speedy one.
Anyway. Welcome to my Barcelona crib (I wish – for once a city I could actually imagine myself living in!). ‘My place of rest for 3 days’ doesn’t quite have the same ring to it. Retrome Urban Retreat sounds quite snazzy though, don’t you think?
If you’ve read part 1 of my Barcelona posts, you’ll know that I tried to arrange everything in a way to make my first solo trip as easy and stress free as possible. This girl is not about that stressy life. For that reason I didn’t fancy an Airbnb – much as I loved the one I stayed in with Saskia in Budapest, I thought a hotel would be an easier option. Just reassuring to know there’s someone in reception who can help you out, and breakfast available every morning right? Not that fending for yourself at breakfast time is the biggest task, but it’s the little things that help. 😛
Something else high up on my ‘make life easy’ priority list was being right slap bang in the city centre. Bearing in mind I knew I only had a couple of days to cram in the sights, wasting time schlepping to and from an outskirts hotel didn’t sound too appealing.
Also on my list: somewhere fun, bright, quirky, and preferably instagrammable. Shameless basic bitch right here.
Was I successful in ticking these boxes, I hear you ask?
Once the super-friendly Cora had met me at my taxi and shown me to the lobby, I immediately knew this was my kinda place. The fact that within minutes I had coffee in hand and was chatting away to a lovely couple from Israel didn’t hurt! Marina and Dvir, if you’re reading this, thanks for indulging me in chitchat and telling me about your interesting lives. 😀 I feel like travelling alone encourages you to make conversation with anyone and everyone, so you learn more about the lives of other people from different countries and backgrounds. You find out how others are spending their travels. Your hear recommendations. It’s all good stuff.
One thing that particularly enjoyed about Retrome was the way it felt more familiar and welcoming than most hotel lobbies. Had a real ‘home away from home’ vibe to it, which I now realise is exactly the phrase used in the press kit and is where the name came from. Duhh. The homely feeling is probably helped by the fact that the lobby is actually tucked upstairs away from the street, which confused me a little at first (the small sign below is all that’s visible!) but actually made the whole place safer as it was less obviously full of tourists. Winner. Oh and a communal fridge (with mini bottles of cava and beer, woop woop), coffee machine, and chillout area add to the home-y feels too.
Part of me thinks I should have probably embraced the Spanish siesta tradition and crashed out to enjoy my room a little more. However, I’m glad I left early-ish in the mornings, returned briefly for a freshen up, and headed out again in the evenings, because I had chance to see more of this pretty city. If I had spent more time getting acquainted with the facilities then I’d have become pro with a smart TV and a record player – both of which are in every room (record player on request). As it stands I pretty much just flopped on the double bed to recharge both mine and my tech’s batteries haha. Cool that you can control the TV from your phone and be part of a hotel messaging group to contact reception from anywhere in the city though!
Don’t let this photo fool you into thinking I’m tanned – I wish! Absolute #IHaveThisThingWithFloors dream. Instagrammable box ticked. 🙂
You know me, forever the breakfast fanatic. I’ll eat ‘breakfast food’ at any time of day, let’s be honest. Whilst Retrome’s own cafe/restaurant is still a work in progress breakfast is found at their partner restaurant over the road, where I opted for the Healthy Breakfast on all 3 days. Fruit, yoghurt, coffee and juice is pretty much my go-to so that suited me just nicely. Plus an added croissant for the energy to walk 24364 steps (accurate count) in one day.
Definitely not breakfast for one, fear not! I joined Marina and Dvir again for breakfast on this occasion.
Yes to morning tea and coffee on the balcony. Yes to mornings that are just that nice level of warm and watching the streets whilst they’re still sleepy. (Sunglasses link)
As for ticking the city centre location box, I literally couldn’t have been better placed. Eixample seemed like a really cool neighbourhood… Girona metro station is a lengthy 10 second walk away… the Sagrada Familia is 2 metro stops away… Barceloneta beach is walking distance… you get my drift. Practically all the main attractions in the city were within walking distance – I just didn’t have enough time, so made good use of a T10 ticket instead. More on that next time!
Thanks for having me, Retrome!
Rather than cram everything into one monster post I’m saving the rest of my Barcelona diary for part 3, but my vlog is live already if you’d like a sneak peek. Love love love making these!
My stay at the Retrome Urban Retreat was complimentary, however all opinions are my own.
lily kate x