Maintaining its legendary view over Barcelona since 1924, Gran Hotel La Florida meant the realisation of the dream of one man, Doctor Andreu, who wanted to build the best hotel in Barcelona at the best site in the city, constructing an emblematic building, full of style.
However, as with so many other buildings and monuments, the hotel suffered the consequences of the civil war and it was used as a military hospital during the conflict. It would not be re-born as a hotel until 1950, when it became a spot that was beloved by Barcelona high society, especially as a summer residence for well-to-do Catalan families.
In subsequent years, Ernest Hemingway, James Stewart, George Sanders, Rock Hudson, Princess Fabiola and the prince of Belgium stayed at the prestigious hotel. But in 1979, La Florida succumbed to the passing of time and it closed its doors. This boutique hotel of Barcelona was rescued in 2001 thanks to a meticulous renovation that lasted for four years. Today, at the Gran Hotel La Florida, wrought iron and antique tapestry are combined gracefully with stainless steel and glass. In the same way, the hotel has a wide range of services; such as a restaurant, the Lobby Lounge Bar, the Lobby Lounge Bar, bar Miramar with live relaxing music on the swimming pool terrace, a beauty centre, a spa bath, gymnasium and hairdressing service amongst others.
As can be observed just by looking at the building, one of the main goals of the renovation was, as far as possible, to gain back the original decorative and structural elements, and this traditional architecture blends with modern design. In this way, this has again made the Gran Hotel La Florida an authentic icon of hostelry of Barcelona and one of the most prestigious hotels in Spain.
1952 saw the birth of a great hotel: the AVENIDA PALACE. This landmark establishment was built on the site of the legendary tea house and restaurant Casa Llibre. Its inauguration was attended by many top personalities from the political, cultural and social circles of the time, including Bishop Modrego, who was in charge of the inauguration.
Over the years, its elegant and noble air has made it the lodgings of choice for many celebrities who have visited the city. From Ernest Hemingway to Joan Miró and Liza Minnelli, the list of personalities has been very diverse.
But the visit that sparked the most excitement was undeniably that of The Beatles, (“a group of happy youths, full of life” according to Mr. Rojas, reception manager) who came to Barcelona to play the final concert of their European tour at the Plaça de Toros Monumental on a historic 3 July 1965.
From its very beginnings, the hotel settled into the structure of Barcelona's Gran Via with a perfect understanding of the city's urban planning concept and incorporating a new symbol that would prove to last over time.
Since then, the hotel has been refurbished many times and has worked hard to maintain the balance between classicism and the modernity deserving of a Barcelona hotel of the twenty-first century.