InterContinental Madrid in a Nutshell:
In the fifties, the InterContinental Madrid was a home-away-from-home for visiting international stars such as Sophia Loren, Ava Gardner, and Liz Taylor. Elements including columns and a chimney and fireplace in the Carerra room that belonged to an earlier palace are still in place after recent renovations, as are later Art Deco touches. The hotel is just minutes from the underutilized El Retiro
park behind the Prado
as well as the ever-expanding Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum
. Sporting couples can easily reach Bernabeu stadium to the north, home of the Real Madrid soccer superteam.
Guest Rooms at InterContinental Madrid:
Among the InterContinental’s 302 rooms, the standard category are composed in classical dark tones and available with king-size beds. Spacious bathroom showers are separate from the enormous bathtubs. The 99 Club rooms come with lounge access. Four new Presidential Suites designed by the London studio J2 have corner views and modern Spanish art themes. Splurging couples can shoot for the 1,900-square-foot Royal Suite, with a personal butler, driver, and terrace large enough for an entire wedding party.
Dining at InterContinental Madrid:
With palms and modest chandeliers, El Jardin restaurant is a bright, airy (and thanks to carpeting) quiet spot to start the day with the enormous buffet breakfast spread. For dinner, the chef specializes in cocina madrileño and conjures up Mediterranean cuisine like Almadraba red tuna with exotic touches including wakame seaweed and marinated ginger. The InterContinental’s Summer Terrace in the courtyard looks like a scene out of Miami, both in terms of buzz and the surrounding Art Deco façades. Sunday brunch is served with live jazz music. Bar 49 (named for the street address) serves sushi and tapas.
Destination Weddings at InterContinental Madrid:
All seventeen of the InterContinental’s event spaces have natural light, while the Salon Albeniz’s marble floors, friezes, and marble/limestone columns make it a favorite reception choice. Wedding packages for more than 80 guests include appetizers, a tasting menu with three different choices, plus wines, liqueurs, Cava, and wedding cake. An open bar is available for either one or two hours depending on the venue. Bridal couples are booked into the Nuptial Suite for one night and receive a complimentary bottle of Cava, fruit basket. and breakfast. For their first wedding anniversary, couples receive one complimentary night in a deluxe room.
Honeymoons and Romance at InterContinental Madrid:
Honeymooners at the InterContinental receive amenities such as a bottle of Cava, a basket of chocolates, and a bunch of white orchids. For the most romantic places in Madrid, the concierge recommends sunset visits to the illuminated Egyptian Temple of Debod, and the Alfonso XII monument in Retiro park. For drinks, head to the elegant café in the Circulo de Bellas Artes on the Gran Via. A live flamenco
show at El Corral de la Moreria followed by tapas and vino at Va de Baco wine bar make for a romantic evening out.
Activities at InterContinental Madrid:
The lobby may have few shops, but fine local gifts like the iconic Lladró porcelain ware can be purchased there. The fitness room is modest but modern and open 24 hours; massages and beauty treatments available upon request. The Jardin restaurant hosts a full monthly schedule of culinary events. Couples may wish to opt for Club level access to enjoy all day appetizers, Spanish wines, and for its, well, very private clubby feel.
Nearby InterContinental Madrid:
Just outside the InterContinental doors, the Paseo de la Castellana is one of Europe’s great boulevards, and elegant Serrano Street draws world-class shoppers. Within minutes couples can reach the old Belle-Epoque post office now housing the CentroCentro cultural center and walk the Art Promenade that includes major museums. In the trendy, compact Chueca neighborhood, the San Anton market was recently modernized with organic foods, and dinner and drinks are served on the terrace restaurant. The small Romanticism Museum is chockablock with 18th and 19th century bourgeois furnishings.
Drawbacks at InterContinental Madrid:
The bathroom had a few bits of paper on floor; the shower could use a towel rack and better designed soap dish whose wide slits don’t let small bottles fall through. Poor shower drainage was fixed promptly by staff. Wi-fi is not free.
Vibe at InterContinental Madrid:
For those who appreciate local energy, the InterContinental crowd leans heavily toward Spanish guests and a business crowd taking advantage of the prime commercial location. With wedding parties and all manner of events, the lobby's enormous marble rotunda with its and garden view is lively at all hours. Likewise, the lobby’s Bar 49 is the place for a nightcap with movers and shakers. The patio hosts events such as rum tastings and, yes, ladies night. The historic spiral marble staircase featuring a world map on the wall looks right out of the Pan Am era and is not to be missed.
InterContinental Madrid Info and Reservations:
Paseo de la Castellana 49
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As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with complimentary accommodation and meals for the purpose of reviewing those services. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our Ethics Policy .