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#1597 - 03/01/01 09:40 AM (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
joe z Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/01/01
Posts: 6
Loc: deerfield, ny usa
My wife and 2 teenagers just returned from a week-long vacation in Madrid (which we thoroughly enjoyed!). Although we were able to easily make e-mail reservations with Hostal Lopez beforehand , we were somewhat disappointed with the accommodations, given the glowing reviews on MM's b-board . The rooms were clean, but they were tiny (and I mean REALLY tiny), barebones (no TV, no dresser, only a hand-held shower sprayer) and very loud at night (not from the street, but from within the hostal itself -- you could hear whispers 2 hallways away at night) . Between our recovery naps on our 1st day there, we toured 4 or 5 other hostals in the neighborhood and chose to move to the Hostal Cervantes - larger rooms, full shower, dresser, tv, common lounge area and immaculately clean. Also, the proprietor, Fabio, was "bend-over-backwards nice" to us and spoke quite a bit of English. If you're not a fussy, claustrophobic light-sleeper, I'd say that the Hostal Lopez might work for you - otherwise, I'd highly recommend the Hostal Cervantes.

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#1598 - 03/02/01 04:25 PM Re: (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
granny Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/17/01
Posts: 15
Loc: clw. Fl usa
Well we have reservations for the Lopez for one week in june/july and we are 3 of us.
I wasn't aware that the rooms were TINY!
How can one communicate with the Cevantes?
I checked on the web and found nothing. How was the location? What floor is it on, was there an elevator? How were the prices per night? thanks for the info

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#1599 - 03/02/01 06:02 PM Re: (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
joe z Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/01/01
Posts: 6
Loc: deerfield, ny usa
I can't speak for all of Hostal Lopez's rooms, but the 2 that we had sure were small!

If you're interested in Hostal Cervantes, I'm happy to try to help:
Hostal Cervantes
Calle de Cervantes, 34
2nd Floor (Yanks would call it the 3rd)
Madrid, Spain 28014
phone: 011 34 91 429 83 65
fax: 011 34 91 429 27 45

I'd advise dialing a "10 10" number (like 10-10-220) to get a cheap overseas phone carrier . And just call or fax them (remember that they're 6 hours ahead of EST). If you call, ask for Fabio -- I'm sure he will try his best English for you.

Location is great. It's a block-&-a-half from the Prado Museum. And, there are no discos or tapas bars anywhere around it (a rarity, when it comes to hostals, for some strange reason).

Yes, there was a 2-person elevator -- quite fast , I might add. Lopez, FYI, did not have one -- the very worn wooden stairs there could pose problems for all but the most sure-footed (I only mention that because of your user name, "Granny" ).

Prices were competitive. Lopez was getting 5600 pesatas($32)/room/night (no multi-room, multi-day discount available). Cervantes did give us a discount (2 rooms for 6 days) -- Fabio came down from his ordinary rate of 6500 pesatas ($37) to 6000 pesatas ($34.25). We definitely would have stayed, even without the discount. I noticed, at all the hostals we checked out, the rack-rate charges went up a bit in the summer, so you may have to pay a bit more anywhere you go.

Good luck!

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#1600 - 03/02/01 09:39 PM Re: (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
MadridMan Offline


Executive Member

Registered: 05/06/00
Posts: 10011
Loc: Madrid, Spain (was Columbus, O...
Hi joe Z!! I'm so sorry you weren't totally happy with Hostal Lopez . To be honest, yours was the first not positive thing I've heard about them. I don't really consider their lack of an elevator to be an issue for most people, but I know that it can be a concern for those who have difficulty getting around or with a lot of luggage.

The standard room size at Hostal Lopez, in my experience, is typical. joe z, if you had a decent sized room then you were lucky. I did stay in Hostal Lopez' largest room with three double beds in a HUGE room. Looked like it was a living room/dining room at one time.

granny, if you prefer a larger room you might consider requesting this larger room, but you might pay a little more - not sure. Otherwise, keep in mind that the room is not the most important part of your trip. If you can walk around the beds without problem then, to me, the room size doesn't matter. You're only there for sleeping afterall.

I too have heard good things about Hostal Cervantes. Too bad they didn't snag that domain name before the OTHER www.HostalCervantes.com , located outside of Madrid, did. BUT, the GREAT news is, Hostal Cervantes IN Madrid will soon have their website ready. I just checked and it seems your friend Fabio registered www.Hostal-Cervantes.com 3 days ago!!!! WOW!! Nothing there now, but soooooon!!! WOO HOO!!!

Saludos, MadridMan

[This message has been edited by MadridMan (edited 03-02-2001).]
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#1601 - 03/02/01 10:13 PM Re: (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
Ed S Offline
Member

Registered: 09/25/00
Posts: 53
Loc: Harrisburg, PA, USA
We also just got back from after a 6 night stay at the Hostal Lopez. We probably were there at the same time Joe Z. As far as the rooms, ours (#2 - directly off the reception area) was small, but we had no complaints. I tend to think of the room as cozy. The room was clean, we had a nice, little balcony overlooking the street and you can't beat the location. Plus with a member of the famliy always checking who was coming in, we knew everything would be safe. It was a little noisy with the compact set up of the first floor, but after walking all over Madrid and a few glasses of wine at dinner, we never had a problem falling asleep.

I guess it really depends on what you are looking for. Eight years ago I did the backpacking thing throughout Europe. After sleeping in paper sheets in a gymnasium full of people in Nice and sharing a room with 2 bunkbeds and matresses on the floor in Paris, I consider the Hostal Lopez to be a luxury.

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#1602 - 03/04/01 01:47 AM Re: (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
SpainSpud Offline
Member

Registered: 01/12/01
Posts: 37
Hi, joe z!

Could you answer a a few more questions for me and my mom who are narrowing the field for our trip in April-May? Were the rooms warm enough for you? Did you get enough blankets? Any control over the heat? And how was the air (meaning, was the room aired out enough to clear out (if any) smoke? The "full shower" in your scenario, I take it, means a shower, sink and toilet?

Much appreciated and thanks, in advance! :-)

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#1603 - 03/04/01 08:45 AM Re: (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
MadridMan Offline


Executive Member

Registered: 05/06/00
Posts: 10011
Loc: Madrid, Spain (was Columbus, O...
SpainSpud, are you asking about Hostal Lopez , Hostal Cervantes , or both?

I think it was Eddie who mentioned in a previous posting that Madrid turns off their city-wide heating on April 1st, but I'm not at all sure that most hostels haven't upgraded to a self-regulated heating system. And no, you won't have any way to raise or lower the heat yourself. I guess the only way to lower the temperature would be to open the windows. If it's too cold you could ask for extra blankets and I'm sure the proprietors would be happy to give them to you.

I doubt you'll find most rooms to be "smokey" as they typically open the windows during the 45-60 minutes they're cleaning the rooms top to bottom. I never noticed during my 4 nights at 4-different hostels in Madrid last October.

As for the bathrooms, they're typically small: some smaller than others and never all the same size. The tubs are usually half-length tubs compared to what we have here in the USA. I think I only stayed in one hostel (can't remember which) which had a full, "American"-sized bathtub.

Hope this helps! Saludos, MadridMan

[This message has been edited by MadridMan (edited 03-04-2001).]
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#1604 - 03/04/01 02:51 PM Re: (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
Sofia Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/00
Posts: 166
Loc: Seneca Falls, NY
I love those little bathtubs and the little showers! We laugh ourselves silly as one of us heads into the bathroom to shower or bathe. It wouldn't be Spain without them!

When I was a college student in 1976 we would stay in hostales. If we got a room without the bathtub/shower, we would pay extra to bathe in a shared bathroom. I remember that the bath used to cost more than the night in the hostal! Once I was so dirty that I paid to take the bath. Otherwise, the girls and I considered a bath to be a swim in the Mediterranean Sea.... those were the good old days : )

Being a fan of good hostales, I hope to someday stay at Lopez and Chelo. I didn't get to recently because I arrived in Madrid without reservations and there was the Feria de Arcos. Later that week when we did get a room at Hostal Santa Barbara. The owner told us that if he had 2,000 rooms he could have rented them all during that weekend of the feria.We loved our room at the Hostal Santa Barbara. What a view!
http://www.geocities.com/srasofia/desales2000.html



[This message has been edited by Sofia (edited 03-04-2001).]

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#1605 - 03/04/01 06:48 PM Re: (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
karenwishart Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/00
Posts: 299
Loc: York,PA,USA
Just a note..Hostal Lopez must be doing something right..they already could not accomodate 3 pers. 6/24&6/25 when I recently inquired and responded nicely within 1 day!

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#1606 - 03/04/01 10:43 PM Re: (Madrid) Hostal Cervantes: Thumbs definitely up! Hostal Lopez: thumbs somewhat down
joe z Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/01/01
Posts: 6
Loc: deerfield, ny usa
I will try to succinctly address all the responses that my comments have elicited, before I say, "no mas:"

MM – I guess the old saying is true – "You can please some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all the people all the time."

MM – Lack of an elevator at Hostal Lopez was a complete non-issue for us (we rarely used the one at Hostal Cervantes). Granny asked about an elevator at Hostal Cervantes and I thought that the lack of one at Hostal Lopez would be an issue for her. And, if anyone who has ever stayed at Hostal Lopez can recommend it and its extremely-worn wooden stairs to a senior, I would be very surprised (I couldn’t).

MM – Maybe we were just unlucky to get 2 tiny rooms at Hostal Lopez. Your "litmus test" of adequate room size is whether or not you can walk around your bed – we were all just barely able to (our courtyard rooms were on the 3rd floor, fyi – none of us could remember the room numbers). Also, with no dressers, we would have been forced to live out of our suitcases for a week (and they would had to have been closed and stood on their ends at night!).

Ed S – Sounds like you got "the luck of the draw." Being a non-drinker and a light-sleeper, I had one heckuva time getting a good night’s sleep our one night there, despite being totally sleep-deprived from the transatlantic flight, due to the echoing hall noises.

SpainSpud – For both Hostal Lopez and Hostal Cervantes, I’m in complete agreement with MM’s response, with one exception – Hostal Cervantes did have the full "American-size" bathtubs with real shower heads (and not the spray-yourself kind).

Sofia – As quaint as the small Spanish showers may be, I’ll take a full-sized one every time!

Karenwishart – I thought that I complemented Hostal Lopez when I said "we were able to easily make e-mail reservations with Hostal Lopez beforehand." And, I don’t think that I said that they weren’t doing something right – the rooms we were assigned just weren’t "right enough" for us.

Everyone – All I have tried to do is give everyone a factual account of what happened to us, hoping that MM’s webviewers might benefit from our "experience." Once we decided we needed to relocate, we looked at Hostal Lesboa, Hostal Dulcinea and a couple of more hostals (who’s names escape me) before we decided upon Hostal Cervantes – every one we looked at was clearly preferable to Hostal Lopez. If you’ve had a nice stay at Hostal Lopez, God bless you. If you want to take your chances at getting one of the "good rooms" at Hostal Lopez, go for it! If, however, you want a hostal that’s not too hostile, a "safe bet" is Hostal Cervantes.

This is Joe Z, saying a final "adios, amigos" (i.e., I will not be reading or, thus, responding to any further postings on this). Good luck!

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