Valencia’s stunningly pretty – just blocks and blocks of gorgeous buildings that look like set pieces from The Grand Budapest Hotel.
The Westin Valencia, a Category 4 SPG hotel, happily falls in the former category. It’s very central – a ten-minute walk from the old town, or Ciutat Vella, and a two-minute walk to the Jardins del Turia, a park located in the old riverbed. The hotel is also an 8-10 minute and 8-10 euro cab ride from the Valencia Nord train station, where my dad and I had arrived from Barcelona.
Here are nine things I liked about the hotel:
1) Beauty is evident throughout. The hotel was built in 1917, but feels astoundingly fresh, in a rich, American hotel sort of way. The lobby had a massive chandelier that scattered well the light during the day and was an absolute torch at night and the central courtyard garden was in full bloom, even in the dead of winter. It was a great place to get a drink from the hotel bar’s generous pouring.
2) Westin Gear Lending – Five euros each got my dad and me New Balance technical shorts and t-shirts, brand-new socks and almost-new fresh sneakers for our entire stay. The sneakers were even available in half-sizes! A good deal, in my opinion, this program alleviates the need to pack extra workout apparel and made the stay even more luxurious, since there’s no need to re-pack stank clothes.
3) Piggybacking off the previous like, the workout center, or Caroli Health Club, was above-average. Even at deluxe hotels in Europe, the gym/pool area can be a complete whiff, but the Westin Valencia had a good mix of facilities. The workout room was just missing a pull-up bar, and had plenty of free weights, machines and yoga pads. There was also a dedicated cardio room, a decent pool and both a steam room and a sauna. I didn’t get to use the sauna, but the steam bath was not overhot and pleasantly scented.
4) Westin beds are titled “Heavenly Beds,” but since I had never stayed at a Westin, I thought it all corporate malarkey. Wrong! These beds are amazing, even the twin beds. We actually and accidentally napped from 6-11 p.m. the Tuesday night we were there after consuming gross amounts of paella and vino tinto. Each of the three nights were some of the hardest and deepest sleep I’ve ever had, too deep even for dreaming. I used to think W beds were the best SPG beds, but now, Westins are boss.
5) The concierge Karina emailed us beforehand and gave us a rundown of the hotel, area, confirmed our upgrade ahead of time (love when this happens‼) and also re-confirmed our reservation at Riff, a Michelin-starred restaurant we had researched ahead of time. Full of suggestions for the city, she was always ready to help, which is how concierges should behave. She was cuuuuute, too.
6) Our room had a private terrace. I tanned on it. Winter in Spain!
7) Room service was delicious, quick and not wallet-busting. Room service is fun stuff.
8) The beach is fifteen minutes by bus. Again, winter in Spain!
9) A marbled shower with a rainforest head will always get a #mention.
Overally, this hotel is good, and almost great, which is fantastic for a SPG Category 4 hotel, since Category 4s can run the gamut from random central-city Aloft hotels to, well, this one. Personally, I would rate this a Category 5, and a definite Category 6 if Valencia was Barcelona or Madrid. So, come enjoy it while the redemption is only 10,000 SPG points a night!