Hotel Alhambra Palace Review – The Luxury Editor
A wealthy duke commissioned the hotel a century ago, brought in Gustave Eiffel’s engineers to build the first multi-storey hotel using a steel frame – essential given it’s built into the side of a mountain under the ‘Alhambra. This grand dame hotel has hosted royalty, celebrities, actors, including Douglas Fairbanks, and renowned artists and authors, including Orson Welles, over its 100-year history. Now is the perfect time to lose yourself in the magic of the history of Al Andalus in Granada and in the comfort of the Alhambra Palace Hotel.
The Alhambra Palace Hotel is truly an iconic property. With over 100 rooms, with spectacular views of the city, this 5-star hotel is a destination. It has a gourmet restaurant, a lobby bar and a famous cocktail terrace that overlooks Granada, the green valleys and the mountains beyond.
Rooms are comfortably designed, with balconies with impressive city views. I really like the welcome convenience which was artisan cookies in the shape of “La Pajarita” ceramic tiles found in the Nasrid Palace.
Visit the Alhambra
From here you can walk to the Alhambra and discover the magic of the citadel which was once the seat of the Sultanate of Granada. If you visit the Alhambra in the summer or early fall, I recommend visiting this remarkable World Heritage Site in the evening for a completely different perspective. It is at sunset, casting warm tones on the ocher walls of the Nasrid palaces, that the small queue begins to form to enter the most complex rooms of the Alhambra, once the seat of the Sultanate of Granada. . Looking at the plain terracotta and earth-toned exterior walls of the buildings, it’s always a surprise to later discover the intricate and ornate craftsmanship that lies within. Wandering through the palaces of the sultans at night lends a more intimate perspective to these remarkable spaces. You can find all the details here.
The hotel is a magical place! This is the oldest 5 star hotel in Spain so definitely worth a stay. When I stay in a hotel, I always look forward to the site visit, yet here it was unforgettable. During my visit, my guide took me to the hotels there. With a few clicks of the switches, the chandeliers in the ceiling shimmered and shone, filling the space with light. On either side stood sturdy columns, decorated with “mocarabes,” neo-Mudéjar motifs reaching to the ceiling. Ahead of me was a small stage, under a bold horseshoe arch, overlooking small clusters of vintage chairs and coffee tables. “It’s the theater of the hotel” explained by the guide. ‘Federico García Lorca performed his poetry here in the 1920s!’ she added, as she began to tell stories and anecdotes about one of the capital’s most iconic buildings.
Alhambra Palace Hotel is a marvel of theatrical and flamboyant Moorish architecture. It is always a pleasure to return to this city, as it never fails to capture the imagination. In the 18th century, European ‘Romantics’ such as artists and wealthy tourists came here to be fascinated by the unusual architecture, colors and designs that inspired painting, music and writing – and it is now one of the most visited destinations in Europe.
A few hundred years ago, the arduous journey to Granada was rewarded with the chance to be immersed in the romantic ruins of an enigmatic Arabian kingdom straight out of the storybooks. Later, writers like Washington Irving, former United States Ambassador to Spain in the 19th century, also fell in love with Andalusia. He wrote extensively on Granada, fascinated by the myths and stories surrounding the Christian conquest of the Moorish Alhambra and its Albayzin by the Catholic Monarchs. He collected tales and legends from the locals, and his books continued to create waves of tourism. With so many visitors, of course, comes the need for places to stay.
Thus, it was on January 1, 1910 that the Hotel-Casino Alhambra Palace was inaugurated by His Majesty the King, Alfonso XIII. With the Alhambra citadel above, and the city of Granada and its verdant valleys below, this property has quickly become the fashionable place to stay when visiting the Alhambra. Built by an enterprising aristocrat, the Duke of San Pedro de Galatino, the Hotel-Casino Alhambra Palace opened its doors at a time when more than 18,000 visitors a year were drawn to the Nasrid Palaces, their richly decorated courtyards and the magnificent Generalife gardens. .
Alhambra Palace Hotel has since been part of Granada’s heritage. The casino is long gone (only one original roulette wheel is on display in the lobby) but the extravagant decoration in the neo-Mudéjar “mocarabe” style remains – it’s like being on a movie set. Each door is an elaborate arch with stucco plasterwork with intricate Arabic calligraphy suras; each wall has geometric patterns, carved plaster, vintage marble or tile mosaics; an over-the-top romantic take on a story from One Thousand and One Nights.
Explore the Albayzin
From the hotel you can not only admire the beauty of the Nasrid palaces of the Alhambra, but also easily reach the adjacent medieval Moorish quarter of the Albayzin. It is a joy to explore the evocative narrow streets.
Granada also has magnificent traditional style baths, the Hammam Al Andalus Granada. A visit here transports you to another era. The different bathing areas allow you to live the experience of a traditional hammam, including massages and rituals. You can discover all the details here of Hammam Al Andalus Granada.