The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Travel -

A stone’s throw from La Bo­que­ria, Barcelona’s fa­mous food mar­ket, this new bolt­hole of­fers sim­ple and stylish rooms with hard­wood floors and gi­ant mu­rals of Barcelonese scenes on the walls. Break­fast goes well be­yond a crois­sant and cof­fee with cheese, yo­ghurt and an as­sort­ment of Cata­lan char­cu­terie. Dou­bles from ($171); www.hotel­cu­ri­

This for­mer hos­tel has been bright­ened up with con­sid­er­able flair, in­clud­ing chocolate brown and cream bedding and ab­stract wall­pa­per. Break­fast is taken in a fin de siecle cafe next door. Af­ter that, it’s a short walk to Madrid’s mu­seum belt. Dou­bles from www.anali­nas­

Book well ahead for this charm­ing eight-room B & B that has taken its in­spi­ra­tion from a typ­i­cal riad. All rooms look on to a bougainvil­lea-filled court­yard, and are dec­o­rated with ob­jects and cu­rios found in Moroc­can souks. Dou­bles from www.el­ri­adan­

In Spain’s VIP hol­i­day cap­i­tal, awash with grandiose five-star ho­tels, this so­phis­ti­cated pen­sione in Mar­bella’s old town is a real find. Dec­o­rated by a well-known Swedish in­te­rior dec­o­ra­tor, all nine rooms ex­ude the fuss-free, or­ganic style that has made north­ern Euro­pean de­sign fa­mous. The same own­ers also have a beach­front lo­cale (www.beach­ that is slightly more ex­pen­sive. Dou­bles from ;­

Each of the 28 rooms in this funky, up­scale hos­tel has been dec­o­rated by a dif­fer­ent artist, so de­pend­ing on your luck you could be stay­ing in a rein­car­na­tion of a Bud­dhist tem­ple or a blue and white bisazza-tiled room in­spired by a swim­ming pool, com­plete with float­ies hang­ing from the ceil­ing. The triples are great value or dou­bles from www.rooms­ Suzanne Wales

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