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#4622 - 09/21/02 11:01 AM Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
Lipstique Offline
Member

Registered: 08/11/02
Posts: 65
Loc: Wichita, Kansas
I didn't realize that finding accommodations would be so frustrating, difficult and time consuming. Many of the hostals, apartments and hotels I have contacted won't accept reservations for March 2003 until January. My initial thought was to stay in Madrid on the Huertas at Rosa and Alberto Garcia-Hill Heras\' apartment , but they won't accept a reservation until January.

After receiving valuable advice laugh from many of you, and after doing further research on the Fodors European Board, I've decided to not stay at the Tryp Capitol on the Gran Via (see pictures at Spanish Living ) because of the noise and hustle and bustle on the Gran Via, and instead stay at the Hostal Adriano for 6 nights in March. The Hostal Adriano is located at Calle de la Cruz 26, which appears to be a short walk to both the Plaza Mayor and Puerta del Sol. I've traded some very nice emails smile with the owner, Alberto DiStefano, who writes in perfect English. Subsequently, after reading Mongo's positive messages about the Hostal Adriano , I understand that the DiStefano family lived in Minneapolis for a period of time. Because this exchange of messages has been so pleasant, and the location is so ideal, I've abandoned my idea of keeping my fingers crossed that the Hotel Suecia might have availability for the 6 nights in March, so that I can use the Bancotel vouchers. Seems that many of the hotels that participate in the Bancotel program in Madrid and Barcelona, only accept vouchers for the weekends.

If anyone has any current information about the Hostal Adriano , I'd certainly appreciate reading your reviews.

Anyway, I've FINALLY made my decision smile laugh . Now, I just have to keep my fingers crossed and hope that the elevator being installed at Hostal Adriano is operational in mid-March. Schlepping up four flights of stairs with my duffle bag is not going to be a pretty sight. frown mad

Now off to figure out where to stay in Barcelona. I'm booked into the Hotel Rivoli Ramblas on Las Ramblas, but have been advised by friends that used to live in Barcelona to stay elsewhere; also, the Hotel Rivoli Ramblas has received a lot of negative reviews on the Fodors Rants & Raves pages. Does anyone have any suggestions for me for hotels in the Exiample District for up to $100 per night for four nights? Otherwise, I'll end up splurging and making a reservation through Bancotel and stay at the Ritz -- 150 Euro/night (3 vouchers/night) through Bancotel versus 360 Euro/night booking directly through the hotel. I'll need to buy 1 additional voucher instead of a whole checkbook of 5, so if anyone has a Bancotel voucher for sale, or knows where I can just buy 1 voucher (I have to buy 5 complete checkbooks), I'd appreciate a heads up.

By the way, through Bancotel , in Seville, I am staying at the Hotel Alfonso XIII (3 vouchers/night), a Westin property, and in Granada, I am staying at the Melia Granada (1 voucher/night).

Thanks for all of your sage advice smile thus far, I'll have many more questions later.

Muchas gracias! cool
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Lipstique

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#4623 - 09/23/02 08:33 PM Re: Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
MadridMan Offline


Executive Member

Registered: 05/06/00
Posts: 10011
Loc: Madrid, Spain (was Columbus, O...
Lipstique, I/we can't thank you enough for your detailed review of Hostal Adriano. It's great to have some indepth account from travelers themselves for OTHERS to find and read later when they're trying to decide between them all.

We look forward to your future reviews on your other destinations. smile Again, YOUR experiences us all in our future travels to Spain.

Saludos, MadridMan
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#4624 - 09/23/02 09:28 PM Re: Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
Lipstique Offline
Member

Registered: 08/11/02
Posts: 65
Loc: Wichita, Kansas
Madridman, thanks for the kudos, but my review is only preliminary, or I should say just based on the emails that I have swapped with the owner. I'm really looking forward to my stay at the Hostal Adriano in March.

Truthfully, the owner, Alberto DiStefano is charming (well, that's from a femme's perspective) and very friendly. We swapped about a dozen email messages on Saturday, and Mr. DiStefano could not have been nicer to a total stranger. He provided me with a great deal of information that he didn't have to go out of his way to give me -- a lot of it was not about the Hostal Adriano, but was amongst other things, about train travel, sightseeing tours, arrangements of how to get from the airport to the hostal, and how much to pay for a cab.

Mr. DiStefano was very modest when he responded to my email about my itinerary for Spain -- I had mentioned the other hotels that I have reservations at. He said "Your trip seems great and well planned, so well in advance! Your tour to Andalucia is also a good choice. I love Sevilla. The hotels you will stay at are excellent. I feel flattered, but also a little worried: our rooms are very nice, but certainly the building and facilities are not the ones of a 4 or 5 star hotel such us the ones you will stay at in Andalucia!"

In another email I had mentioned Mongo's review of the Hostal Adriano here at the Madridman board. Mr. DiStefano was most appreciative that the Hostal Adriano was positively reviewed, and said that he will write to Mongo to thank him personally.

By the way, the Hostal Adriano is doubling in size, and all renovations except the completion of the installation of the elevator will have occurred by the end of 2002. The elevator should be operational by March (when I arrive). I've also been invited to stay in the new 'Maria Callas' room -- in case you haven't figured it out, Mr. DiStefano is an opera buff.

So, I feel very comfortable with my decision. I'll certainly write a detailed review when I return.
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Lipstique

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#4625 - 09/23/02 10:24 PM Re: Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
MadridMan Offline


Executive Member

Registered: 05/06/00
Posts: 10011
Loc: Madrid, Spain (was Columbus, O...
Thanks for the clarification, Lipstique. I too have exchanged a number of emails with Alberto and he seems quite nice and his English is good too. Did you correspond with him in English or Spanish? Just curious. Good luck!
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#4626 - 09/23/02 11:01 PM Re: Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
Lipstique Offline
Member

Registered: 08/11/02
Posts: 65
Loc: Wichita, Kansas
Madridman, luckily Alberto speaks and writes in perfect English, because my Espanol is muy poquito -- hope I said that correctly -- very little, actually, and from high school, no less.

This is what Alberto wrote to me:

"Finally, you said you found comments about us in the Madridman's website. Yes, there is a nice guy from Minneapolis [Mongo] who stays with us very often. I will thank him for the comments! (I did not know it, this is the first notice). We lived in Minneapolis many years ago - a long story -, and went back to the U.S. for business and pleasure almost every year since then. But I am not American, I am Italian, raised in South America - Argentina. The reason for my fluency in English is mostly due to the great English-American teachers who taught me, and then my frequent trips to the U.S., and of course, the long stay in Minneapolis."

Anyway, if it had not been for the many that participate on this board that advised me to not stay on the Gran Via, and the many that have posted comments about the hostals that they have stayed at, and especially Mongo's positive review that swayed me about the Hostal Adriano (also the Hostal Adriano website and map helped a lot), I would still be searching for a place to lay my head.

This is an absolutely wonderful forum and it has the best participants. rolleyes laugh smile wink :p cool
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Lipstique

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#4627 - 10/05/02 01:16 AM Re: Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
Mongo Offline
Executive Member

Registered: 03/17/01
Posts: 582
Loc: Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
I am always conflicted as to whether to tell the world about a good thing. I consider the Adriano a "find", giving far more room for the money than other hostals. I just hope I can continue to get reservations!

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#4628 - 10/20/02 02:53 PM Re: Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
Lipstique Offline
Member

Registered: 08/11/02
Posts: 65
Loc: Wichita, Kansas
Just wanted to post a note regarding the expansion at the Hostal Adriano , as I received two email messages from the proprietor, Alberto DiStefano over the weekend. The expansion is going smoothly, and the size of the hostal will double by the end of the year. An elevator is being installed, however, I am unsure as to the date of completion. The rooms in the original portion of the hostal were updated in 2001.

Alberto DiStefano asked me to let you know, that he is having problems responding to email messages for reservations that come specifically from Hotmail accounts. The messages are being returned to him as undeliverable. I don't know if there are problems with email addresses such as Yahoo, as Alberto didn't mention it. Alberto is unsure what the glitch is, however, if you have not received a response within 36 hours, please use a different email program, call or send a fax (Tel: +34.91 209 02 07, +34.91 521 13 39, Fax: +34.91 209 02 07). Also the email address of the hostal is hostaladriano@terra.es . The Hostal Adriano uses Spain's "Terra" internet service provider, which is the premiere ISP throughout Spain.

Also, if anyone is looking for reservations the first week of November, the Hostal Adriano is fully booked.

If you have any problems getting through, let me know and I will forward your email messages along. There doesn't appear to be any problem with email messages sent by Earthlink email accounts.
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Lipstique

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#4629 - 10/20/02 10:12 PM Re: Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
Mongo Offline
Executive Member

Registered: 03/17/01
Posts: 582
Loc: Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Being in possesion of one of those early November reservations, I'll give a construction update when I return on the 18th.

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#4630 - 11/22/02 04:49 PM Re: Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
Lipstique Offline
Member

Registered: 08/11/02
Posts: 65
Loc: Wichita, Kansas
I just wanted to mention how helpful Alberto DiStefano,the owner of the Hostal Adriano is. cool smile laugh

Whether you've been following my planning for my 16 day trip in March to Spain, I just thought that I would mention that I have been having a difficult time finding the right transportation from Granada to Barcelona.

The only airline that flies a non-stop direct route is Iberia, and the one-way cost is approximately 207 Euro for a 75 minute flight. There's the option of the train, but the ride is 11 hours, and that cost is about 67 Euro.

After much research, I decided to write to Alberto DiStefano to see if he might be able to help me find a reasonably priced flight. I did this for a couple of reasons, I don't have a broad enough vocabulary to read the Spanish websites, and I thought that there might be some deals from Spain offered by agents or websites that I haven't come across.

Alberto came to my rescue and did a lot of research for me, both online and by phone. He didn't find a better fare, but he has really gone out of his way to help me. I'm now confident that I haven't overlooked a reasonably priced flight.

This is what customer service is all about. I just wanted to mention Alberto's kindness, as he is really trying to help me in anyway that he can. laugh
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Lipstique

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#4631 - 11/22/02 07:05 PM Re: Hostal Adriano in Madrid - March 2003 and hotels in Barcelona, Seville and Granada
sel Offline
Member

Registered: 03/27/02
Posts: 459
Loc: Columbus, Ohio
We stayed at HOTEL CONTINENTAL LA RAMBLA while we were in Barcelona last summer. It was not cheap, because we had a double room. It was secure and clean and included a continental breakfast. ramblas@hotelcontinental.com Its location was WONDERFUL once we found it!! They did not give us very clear directions and we struggled in the crowded street to find the entrance.
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sel

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