Spain’s Best Paradores
This time, we would like to tell you about how you can visit Madrid and the surrounding area, as well as all of Spain, staying at ancient manor homes, palaces, monasteries and other historical buildings which have been turned into luxury hotels and which make up Spain’s famous “Paradores” network.
If you wish to stay at a luxurious and historical building, we recommend you consider an unforgettable stay at some of Spains’s best Paradores.
Paradores in Spain
Whether you are looking to see Spain from a cultural or historical perspective, or you are just looking to relax in a charming accommodation, immersed in beautiful surroundings, Spain’s Paradores are an excellent option to ensure an unforgettable trip. This amazing network of historical buildings turned into luxury hotels is state-owned, and was started by King Alfonso XIII to promote tourism in the country.
The family of Paradores is made up of some magnificent fortresses, medieval castles, convents, monasteries and other historical places which are found all over Spain and have been carefully refurbished and restored to meet modern standards.
If you wish to see some of the most popular cities, or instead, you wish to stay at some off-the-beaten-track rural destination, you will make the perfect choice among the country’s incomparable 97 Paradores. Here they really excel at providing excellent customer service and every detail is cared for during your stay.
At Madrid Experience we are very familiar with the choice of accommodation provided by the Paradores and we want to share with you a list of some of our favourite Paradores. This list includes those which have been given a 4-star rating minimum by guests who stayed there and ate at different restaurants. It is important to point out that each Parador boasts within its premises a restaurant and a coffee shop where you can taste the local delicacies of each region.
Paradores Nacionales- National Paradores
All of the National Paradores hold within their walls a valuable historical and artistic heritage. The Spanish state endeavors to maintain these buildings in a well-kept state while promoting sustainable, yet high quality, tourism. In so doing, guests contribute to keep Spain’s art and culture and, at the same time, enjoy the finesse which underpins this hotel chain.
Some of the best Paradores Nacionales according to guests are:
Zafra’s Parador: The Palace of the Dukes of Feria
This spectacular XV-century castle is located in Badajoz province, in the region of Extremadura. Both the building and the small city of Zafra boast antiques from a time prior to Spain’s reconquest. It’s Mudejar style is a testimony to the era’s style.
Among the highlights of this walled fortress is the Renaissance style inner garden where you can relax during your stay. The views from the castle, as well as the grand rooms which will leave you speechless, would not be out of place in a fairy tale.
We encourage you to get to know the region of Extremadura if you are not familiar with it. You will fall in love with its cuisine, which you can try at the Parador’s restaurant, and we recommend local dishes such as the lamb stew, or the migas del pastor dish, as well as the city’s famous homemade desserts.
Almagro’s Parador: St. Catherine of Siena’s Convent
This parador is located in Ciudad Real province, in Almagro, one of the most beautiful towns in Spain. St. Catherine’s Convent origins are in the XVI century, and it would serve as a hospital centuries later. Like all Franciscas convents, it is an austere building, peaceful and welcoming, which houses several galleries and 14 inner courtyards.
The best time to visit Almagro is during the Classical Theater Festival, which is held annually in July and August. During the festival the hotel is kitted out in such a way that you will feel and breathe the stage everywhere you go.
And when you feel hungry, the Parador de Almagro restaurant will surprise you with the cuisine of the region of La Mancha. You can’t miss dishes like the aubergines, roasted lamb, suckling pig steaks and the best wines in the region.
Cangas de Onis Parador: St. Peter of Villanueva Monastery
For many, this Parador stands at the top of the list of the best Paradores in Spain. Located in the town of Cangas de Onis, in the principality of Asturias, the town is surrounded by the Europa Peaks mountain range and the Sella river meanders through it. This ancient monastery boasts elegant halls and a riverside garden. It’s warm aura makes it a favorite for celebrations and romantic getaways.
The natural beauty of the surroundings will astound you. Mountains, white beaches, caves, lakes, and crystal clear, yet slightly cold, rivers turn the place into a real jewel.
Among the local specialties you can try the famous cachopo steak, the beans stew, the chorizo in cider dish, or the cabracho pate.
Paradores near Madrid:
If you fly into Spain, it is very likely that your trip will begin in Madrid or Barcelona. And if you are pressed for time, the best thing to do is to stay in some of the best Paradores in the country, which are located just outside Madrid.
Siguenza’s Parador: Siguenza Castle
Sigüenza, located in the province of Guadalajara, is one and a half hours from Madrid. The castle was destroyed during the Spanish Civil War and rebuilt years later, when it was turned into one of Spain’s most exclusive Paradores. Decorated with wooden furniture in the Castilian style, it also has a cobblestone courtyard and a manorial dining room. It also holds a XIII century Romanesque chapel. According to guests this Parador is also at the top of the list among the country’s finest.
The cuisine of Castile, similar to Madrid’s, will surprise you with dishes such as braised suckling lamb, Manchego cheese, and the migas local specialty dish.
La Granja de San Ildefonso’s Parador: House of the Infantes of the Royal Palace of La Granja
Just over an hour from Madrid, this parador is located in the Guadarrama mountain range. The Royal Palace of La Granja was the summer residence of the monarchs of Castile, and then Spain, since the time since Medieval times.
The House of the Infantes palace was turned into a Parador ten years ago. The building was built in the XVIII century Baroque style. With its impressive gardens, it is the perfect place to relax.
Chinchon’s Parador: Augustine Convent of Chinchon
Chinch on is a beautiful town which houses a great historical heritage such as the church of our Lady of the Assumption, the Clock Tower, and it’s famous town square: the plaza mayor.
The former convent of the Augustine’s is now a parador. This XVII building was exquisitely refurbished and now has an inner courtyard and gardens. Emperor Charles V himself stayed within its walls.
Oropesa’s Parador: Álvarez de Toledo Castle.
This castle, or palace, is a spectacular building. One of Spain’s best Paradores near Madrid. It was made a part of the Paradores family in 1930 and has since been declared a National Monument and a Cultural Interest Good. The building was once the residence of the earls of Oropesa, the Alvarez de Toledo dynasty, in the XII and XIII centuries.
The property has gardens, an interior courtyard, celebration halls, and large, well-lit rooms. It’s restaurant boasts specialties such as the pink veal flank with roasted potatoes, or the local version of ratatouille: cochifrito, made with tomatoes, eggs and white wine.
These unique spaces, filled with history, culture and art, are available to you for most of the year. If you want to live this unique experience, sleep in luxurious rooms, eat at some of the country’s best restaurants, and try the local specialties, try Spain’s Paradores hotel chain. We invite you to experience Spain’s most luxurious side.
At Madrid Experience we can arrange for you to stay at any of these Paradores. We can also organize private VIP visits to the surrounding areas so you can access the region’s best-kept secrets.
Contact us at:
Tel: 00 34 915 417 099 – 00 34 644 355 651