Land of bull fights, jamón, flamenco, tapas, fútbol and oh so much more, Spain needs no introduction and nowhere can you better experience the captivating mosaic of Spanish culture than Madrid.
That’s exactly where I started my visit to Spain, a return 10 years in the making. Having called the vibrant city home a decade ago I was eager to return and just as keen on finding the ideal home base. My previous stay in Spain, I lived with a family in the ‘centro’ district and was hopeful I could find an equally central location without giving up that great sense of what it feels like to be a local.
With my new location independent career path and given that I’d be dedicating a few hours each morning of my stay to work, I was looking for a place with more elbow-room and flexibility but also somewhere that would give me integration with locals. Eschewing a hotel, I was on the hunt for the perfect ‘apartmento madrileno’ and scored big. Eric Vökel Boutique Apartments offered to host me at one of their Madrid apartments and it proved to be an ideal and quite luxurious locale to base my stay.
The apartments are designed by a Copenhagen-born design and architecture enthusiast and I was treated to a stay in the penthouse suite which offered a two bedroom, two bath apartment and a spacious terrace with views over the Madrid skyline. What I particularly liked about the apartment design is the combination of bright, warm Mediterranean colors with minimalist elegance and simplicity. The natural wood flooring was the perfect complement to the fresh design and comfortable furnishings, all which played together beautifully. It was a superbly inviting ambience to relax in after a day of exploring the city or to work from each morning.
The eco-friendly apartment is fully-equipped – washer, dryer, dishwasher, etc. – but it was the extra touches that really set the apartment apart. The check in process was seamless. I had a delayed flight in from Rome which got me in hours after reception had closed. An uber efficient check-in kiosk allowed me to check in at whatever time I pleased and I was welcomed in my room to a basket full of gourmet goodies – olive oil, olives, pate and a handful of other Madrid delights.
The only downfall? The apartment was so comfortable I had trouble getting myself motivated to venture out each day – no joke!
The apartment is truly ideal for the independent-minded or business traveler. You have access to all the amenities of a luxury hotel (fine linens, soaps, etc.) and the comforts of home in a foreign city. What more could you ask for?
Eric Vökel Boutique Apartments
Price: Ranges from €135 and up
(Note: Many thanks to Eric Vökel Boutique Apartments for hosting my stay at their wonderful boutique apartments – our opinions are, as always, our own.)