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Murmuri, Barcelona 

104 Rambla de Catalunya
Spain 08008
Tel: 34 935 500 600
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From the editors of Condé Nast Traveler:
On a pretty boulevard off Las Ramblas, the 53-room Murmuri gives travelers a high-design option that's still sophisticated. Rooms by British interior designer Kelly Hoppen showcase her soothing if not particularly Spanish palette of black, cream, and chocolate brown punctuated by black-and-white photos, faux ostrich accessories, and flashes of color in the pillows and throws. It's a masterful first hotel effort from Hoppen (although the two single beds pushed together to make a double is a European throwback that should be thrown back). A small rooftop with box trees and chaises overlooks the city. The stylish lobby bar/restaurant, with its huge bead lamps and brushed-suede banquettes (and a humidor for cigar aficionados), has become a city meeting point. And although it's a bit away from the usual sights (except Gaudí's brilliant La Sagrada Família), the style and service compensate.—2009 Hot List

When to go: In October, when the weather is still pleasant but the summer tourists are gone.

Which room to book: A Privilege Room for a private terrace overlooking Las Ramblas.

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