Review: Fairmont Rey Juan Carlos I, Barcelona

fairmont rey juan carlos 1, barcelona hotel, spain
Fairmont Rey Juan Carlos I lobby. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

Barcelona, Spain is a city of art, culture, wonderful site seeing and sensational food. When flying into this Spanish city, ease of getting from the airport to the hotel is often a factor I take into consideration when I’m traveling. While some luxury travelers prefers taxis to public transportation, I’d rather spend my travel dollars (or Euro) on dining. That’s why I opt for the Metro when I land in this pedestrian-friendly city. Fortunately for us, 5 star luxury is within easy reach at Fairmont Rey Juan Carlos I.

fairmont rey juan carlos 1, fairmont hotel, barcelona, spain, carlos ferrater architect
The hotel was designed by Catalan architect Carlos Ferrater. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

The hotel opened in 1992 during the Olympics in Barcelona. Catalan architect Carlos Ferrater created the modern looking structure. It wasn’t until 2014 that the property became part of the Fairmont brand, undergoing a complete renovation in the rooms, suites and gorgeous lobby. I’m a fan of Fairmont hotels, so I was pleased to learn that I was staying in the first Fairmont Hotel in all of Spain! Able to host large groups due to is proximity to the convention center, the hotel boasts 25,000 meters of 19th century gardens and its own private lake, providing a resort feel and relaxing place to stretch your legs between meetings.

For the leisure traveler, I love the proximity to the Metro. We flew (non stop) from the San Francisco Bay Area and took the Metro from El Prat Airport directly to the hotel. (See Insider Tips below.) Located on Avinguda Diagonal, Metro Zona Universitaria station, Line 9, is a quick, easy and affordable way to get to the hotel and start your Barcelona vacation.

hotel room, fairmont rey juan carlos 1, barcelona, spain
Executive suite photo © Nancy D. Brown

Our room, executive suite #1420, rented for 409€ per night and provided a fantastic view of the Barcelona skyline at night and the Royal Polo Club equestrian center. The Royal Club Fitness and Spa is private, but Fairmont guests have access to the indoor pool, spa area and fitness center and may pay for access to tennis courts. Additionally, the hotel offers two outdoor pools (open in the summer.)

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executive suite, hotel room, fairmont rey juan carlos 1, barcelona, spain hotel
Executive suite photo © Nancy D. Brown

Fairmont dining

Barcelona, and Spain in general, is known for its tapas. In the United States, we tend to eat dinner much earlier than the Spaniards. Fortunately B-24 restaurant and lobby bar is open 24/7. Serving Mediterranean cuisine based on seasonal produce and local fare, you’ll want to try the shrimp, octopus, Iberian ham and Manchego cheese. I tried it all!

tapas, b-24 restaurant, fairmont rey juan carlos 1, barcelona hotel, spain
B-24 restaurant for tapas. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

If you plan to eat in downtown Barcelona, come back to B-24 for Fairmont classic cocktails or a sparkling glass of cava. I knew we were headed to Sain Emilion on this trip, so I ordered the signature cocktail, La Vie en Rose, and saved my wine fix for France.

la vie en rose, fairmont classic cocktail, b-24 lobby bar, fairmont rey juan carlos, barcelona, spain
Order a classic cocktail at the bar. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

Breakfast options include cooked-to-order breakfast and breakfast buffet at Market Restaurant, as well as room service. In Summer they open The Terrace, and they offer lunch and snacks at the Pool Restaurant and Lounge next to the main pool.

My husband loved the strong European coffee, while I looked forward to my scrambled eggs with cheese, fresh breakfast pastries and lovely Jing tea with black currant and hibiscus. Indeed, I can always count on a wonderful cup of tea whether it’s at the Fairmont in Vancouver for afternoon tea or at Jasper Park Lodge. The same can be said for consistency of the Fairmont mattress and pillows. Like Goldilocks searching for the perfect bed, I’ve found the Fairmont Rey Juan Carlos I to be a perfect fit for a king (or queen.)

Need to know:

Rates range from 229€ for a Fairmont Room to 1,569€ for the Signature Corner Suite (rates fluctuate depending on season. Check the website for current pricing.)

On site, secure parking is available at a charge of 30€ per day. The hotel also offers Tesla superchargers for electric cars. The property is a member of the Barcelona Guild of hotels.

Breakfast is not included in the rate but they serve cooked-to-order breakfast & breakfast buffet in the Market restaurant, as well as room service.

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breakfast, market restaurant, fairmont rey juan carlos 1, barcelona, spain hotel
Breakfast is served at the Market restaurant. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

395 guest rooms & 38 suites

Pet-friendly 50€ per day

The Royal Polo Fitness Club and Spa is also open to paying members of the Royal Barcelona Polo Club.

No Resort fee

Free wifi for all guests throughout the rooms and common areas. Typically, guests need to be President’s Club members to receive complimentary internet access at many Fairmont hotels, so this a bonus here.

Check in: 2:00 p.m.

Check out: 12:00 p.m.

Insider Tips: Easy access from airport via Metro. Concierge will arrange excursions to Codorniu winery, 30 minutes from the hotel, and to nearby Camp Nou, FC Barcelona’s stadium for soccer matches. Ask for a high floor for incredible views over the whole city and to the Mediterranean Sea (the hotel has 16 floors.) For additional insider tips follow luxury travel writer @Nancydbrown on Twitter or Instagram @Nancydbrown and @fairmontreyjuancarlosi  on Instagram and @Fairmont Barcelona on Twitter.

swimming pool, fairmont rey juan carlos 1, barcelona hotel, spain
Take a swim in the pool. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

If You Go:
Fairmont Rey Juan Carlos I (800) 257-7544
Avenue Diagonal, 661-671
Barcelona, Spain 08028

Fairmont Rey Juan Carlos I Resort review, video and all photography by travel writer Nancy D. Brown. As is typical in the industry, I received a complimentary media stay, however, all opinions are my own.