Can you imagine yourself discovering some of Spains’s most emblematic historic buildings on your route through Spain? Have you ever dreamed of staying at a convent in the heart of the Alhambra, in Granada, or in the world’s oldest hotel, at the Plaza del Obradoiro in Santiago de Compostela?
This magical possibility is yours thanks to the efforts of the State-owned hotel chain Paradores de Turismo, considered one of the best in Europe, both for their amazing buildings, many of them historic palaces, castles, convents and monasteries, as well as for the quality of the service, their comfort and the excellent cuisine served at their restaurants.
Flying to Spain, too, is now much easier. Iberia British Airways, Lufthans ,not to mention Easyjet and Ryanair provide numerous easy connections to Barcelona or Madrid. Using these two cities as a base you can embark on routes through the country’s most important towns and monuments, or tour its most beautiful natural landscapes.
Wherever you are in Spain, there is always a Parador close to hand at any site of interest to tourists and always provides the most attractive accommodation in the area.
The Paradores chain recently celebrated its first 80 years of existence and its rooms have regularly been a home for such distinguished figures from the worlds of culture and politics, such as George Bush, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, Madonna, Tina Turner, … Many of the Paradores’ regular clients are from North America, UK and Europe but also far away Australia! They are highly appreciative of this special way of touring Spain from one emblematic monument to another as a way to understand its history.
The chain’s club of regular visitors, the ‘Amigos de Paradores’, also has many Internatonal members, giving them access to exclusive promotions and keeping them informed of new openings, itineraries, golf tournaments, etc.
Such historic cities as Toledo, Córdoba, Granada, Cáceres, Salamanca, Santiago de Compostela, León, Segovia or Valencia all have a Parador and many of them are housed in buildings of great artistic value right in the heart of their respective city centers. In addition, there are other Paradores standing amidst charming small villages and in the most impressive natural landscapes, making them well worth a visit in their own right.
In short, a network of 93 fine hotels, which, simply through having spent the night there, give travellers the best possible souvenir of their trip around Spain: the sensation of having lived a unique and exclusive experience.
Article Written by Axel Ritenis
Editor / Director of Connoisseur Magazine