More about Hotel Alminar
Seville's Best-Kept Secret--But Not For Long!!!
I just got back from a fantastic stay at the Hotel Alminar. I picked this hotel because I am a concierge at one of the highest rated hotels in the United States on Tripadvisor (we're ranked No. # 3 in the United States) and when I travel I always like to stay at hotels that get great reviews on Tripadvisor so I can learn from them and bring back interesting new tips and techniques to use in dealing with my own guests.
I chose this hotel back in July for my October trip to Spain by using the "phone test." I had narrowed it down to three hotels that were highly ranked in Seville on Tripadvisor. All had great reviews--how to choose? So I called up each of the three hotels and asked for each staff member that I talked to recommend a tour guide to take us around Seville.
The first hotel said they didn't know of anyone specifically, but that they "would research it for me." Okay--they were out. The next hotel also said that they also didn't know of anyone specifically, but that "they had brochures in the lobby of the various tours when we got to the hotel." Ouch--bad customer service. Finally, I called the Hotel Alminar and asked the same question of Antonio, who was working at the desk that day. Within seconds, Antonio quickly recommended two specific tour guides AND gave me their cell phone numbers! I told Antonio, "You passed my test---I'm staying with you!" In my business, finding staff that is competent and knowledgeable about their city is always the key to making me book a hotel.
We arrived at the hotel late one Saturday afternoon and were warmly greeted by Francesco, the manager of the hotel. Unpretentious, kind, and full of good humor, Francesco had a manner that was good for the soul. I had several conversations with him throughout my stay and he struck me as one of the nicest, friendliest people I had ever met in any hotel that I've ever stayed. He said that he and his staff like to recommend things that were a little off the beaten path and not the tourist cliches, which is always one of the hallmarks of a great hotel staff. He ended up recommending the best restaurant that I went to in my 10-day trip to Spain on our last night. Francesco gave me the feeling that he truly cared about my stay, which is something that you can't teach. He was just terrific.
On our first day, Francesco introduced me to Maria Palacios, who he described as the "soul of the hotel." I have one word to describe Maria--WOW. Beautiful, kind, and just super-friendly, to call her "charming" would be like calling Tiger Woods a "pretty good golfer." Charming? After a 45-minute introduction to Seville my first day of everything Seville had to offer, I walked away thinking this woman had INVENTED charm. I was simply dazzled by her friendliness and her willingness to bend over backwards for the guests. I watched her interact with several different guests throughout the course of my stay, and I call all I can tell you is that I got to see many beautiful things while I was in Seville, but nothing I saw was more beautiful than watching Maria Palacois assist a guest. Quite simply, she's the best I'ver seen.
The hotel itself is an incredible location about a one-minute walk from the cathedral, so if you like to be in the center of things, you'll love Hotel Alminar. We did stop in and had a drink at some hotels that had much grander public spaces than the Hotel Alminar (their lobby is tiny ) but if you a want big opulent lobby, you're missing the point of why you should stay at this hotel. Like any great hotel, it's about the people. And take it from someone who is in the business--when it comes to the staff at the Hotel Alminar, they don't come any nicer.
Holiday Inn Historic District
Charleston, South Carolina
Great staff and great location make this a great place to stay
Travelling with a girlfriend on a 12 day trip to Spain, Sevilla and Hotel Alminar was our first stop.
The staff at the hotel was just wonderful. My companion's luggage was lost (Iberia, the worst airline I've encountered). The staff were beyond helpful with the situation, making phonecalls for us to the airline so we could be out enjoying Sevilla instead of our hotel room waiting for the luggage. Advice on where to buy new clothes, etc. and just general sympathy that comes with the nightmare that is lost luggage. (We eventually had to pick it up ourselves at the Sevilla airport, 3 days into our trip.)
For those of us who don't speak much Spanish, their english is quite good as well. Reservations, directions, you name it, they were there to help.
The rooms yes, are small and nothing fancy, but they are clean and updated. The breakfast we thought was fine and we were glad to be able to get a bottle of water for the road on our way out each morning.
I think the best thing about the hotel though is the location. It's on a cute winding street, stones throw from the cathedral, and walking distance to most everything. We were able to stop back by and check on the luggage situation we were so central. Really I can't complain about anything and I would recommend anyone going to Sevilla to stay here. We loved it and hope to return some day.
my boyfriend and i stayed there for 3 nights, the hotel is really in the centre of Seville, 10 min walk from the bus station and train station, 2 minutes from the mega cathedral and the fab Alcazar, its an old building refurbished to be a hotel.
the rooms are lovely, with air con in moorish style but totally modern. its a tiny hotel, i think a bit pricy but the staff was lovely and extremely helpful with tips on the city and things to do and see.
the only thing i would say is that it doesnt really have any breakfast /restaurant , the breakfast facilities are pretty poor due to the structure of the building which probably is not extenable due to the position, all i am saying don't expect breakfast, its really poor and you are basically sitting in the hallway of the hotel to the rooms!
the hotel suited us because we did a tour of the south of spain and went to few different cities so we wanted to be in the city centre and visit everything without having to walk too much or take taxis anywhere if were going back we would probably take more time to find a more charming place.
Great Service, Great Location, Loved Sevilla
This hotel was excellent, from the moment we arrived to the moment we left. Service was friendly and efficient. Rooms were very nicely done. Big bathroom, nice wood floors, beautiful rooms. We didn't eat breakfast there, but the complimentary coffee and tea (excl. breakfast hours) was very nice. Free wi-fi Internet which was nice. Location is very good. Close to the cathedral and a Starbucks down the street for those who can't live without it (This is not a very commercial area, just happened to be one near). Sevilla itself was very beautiful and the hotel was on a quiet street.
There's a great wine store a few blocks from the hotel (go towards the cathedral, turn right at the cathedral, ahead on the left about 3 or 4 blocks). Try the Bar Empresa for very authentic food.
I would agree with everything Kevin McQuade said in a few reviews below. We stayed for 3 nights and wouldn't mind staying longer. Everything was wonderful.
Excellent downtown hotel, great choice for business and leisure
I can only second the positive reviews written here, but I would really single out as the #1 feature of the hotel the wonderful staff - friendly, extremely helpful and knowledgeable, and truly identifying with their hotel. The hotel itself is very nice as well, splendid for a ***, in my opinion it is a **** with some formal features missing, but for a *** it surely deserves the "excellent" rating.
There are some problems as well: The singles are small and have - for me - slightly too short and narrow beds, the breakfast is very frugal (but for me, it was, to my great surprise, included in the already good rate of EUR 70), there is some construction noise and traffic noise outside (but that is what happens in downtown Seville, unless you face a courtyard), and I had quite some flies in the ground floor bathroom, which was the problem of the sewage system and the warm January, but still.
Nice features include the free wifi, the free coffee machine, the free minibar - but location, atmosphere and staff really make this hotel happen.
I thought I'd just spend a few words in praise of this excellent hotel. Special mention goes to Maria, at the reception, you would wish that every hotel had her to greet you and help you! Her colleagues, along with Mr. Naranjo, the manager, all deserve recognition for being attentive, polite and helpful.
Our room was absolutely spot-on. Clean, queit and with a great bathroom. Last but not least, their free tea/coffee outside breakfast time is definitely a perk!
Next time you go to Seville, just look no further.
Anna M. Bindi
Great hotel, great staff, great location
Stayed here for 4 nights. Fantastic location only 100 metres from the Cathedral, less than that from a couple of decent restaurants. Smallish rooms but spotlessly clean and with a great bathroom. Front desk staff were all first rate and friendly with excellent English, and were interesting to chat to. Hotel is in a pedestrianised street so make certain that the taxi drops you off at the Cathedral end of the street to avoid a walk of 300-400 metres. Would (and will) stay here again without any hesitation.
Clean Hotel with great location and excellent service
We booked the superior double room with the Cathedral view. It was great waking up to the chimes of the Cathedral's bells every morning. The staff was really helpful and recommended a few restaurants. He even gave us some suggestions on what to order. The room was extremely clean and the location is superb. Will certainly stay there the next time I am there again.
A comfortable, convenient and friendly hotel.
Having just returned from a 5 night stay at the Alminar, I can thoroughly recommend the hotel as a comfortable, convenient and pleasant place to stay when visiting Seville. Its location near the cathedral is excellent and at the heart of the city it is perfectly placed to enable you walk to most places, should you wish.
Like many hotels in old city centres, space is at a premium but importantly my room was adequately sized and comfortable, with an excellent bathroom that was spacious, well-equipped, clean and inviting to use.
But what makes this hotel particularly recommendable, are the personal qualities of the staff who run it. The manager and the staff behind Reception are genuinely friendly and desirous of being helpful in such a positive way that you don't feel that you are being a bother should you ask for information and advice. As a result, there is a pleasant atmosphere around the place that is relaxing and welcoming.
I would certainly return to the hotel, not just to see more of the many attractions of Seville but also to enjoy the friendly ambience at this particular place.
Your Favorite Hotel/Hostel in Seville?
A long time ago I stayed in a really cool Andalucian house near the Barrio de Santa Cruz that was converted into a hotel but I can't remember the name of it. I am looking for something similiar or a just a nice, reasonable place close the historic district.
RE: RE: Your Favorite Hotel/Hostel in Seville?
I stayed at Hotel Alminar (Less than 5 min walk from the Cathedral). My superior double room comes with Balcony and Cathedral view from my window. The location is excellent.
RE: Your Favorite Hotel/Hostel in Seville?
Was in Seville a few months back, loved the place!
check out www.hostelworld.com and read the ratings.There are lots to choose from and may help you find your special place. I discovered a little place called Triana in TRIANA. The hostel is quite new and the photos are recent, so what you see is what you get. Has to be one of the nicest hostels in the world. Run by a brother and sister with very high standards, and the cost is is very reasonable. Currently there is a lot of construction going on in Santa Cruz and Centro so when you make a booking make sure you are not effected by noise and road works. Enjoy your holiday!!