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Chic & Basic, Barcelona 

3 Carrer Princesa
Spain 08003
Tel: 34 93 295 4652
view web site ›'s insider take:

The name Chic & Basic may suggest a rudimentary hostel with a bit of designer frippery thrown in, but there's a lot more to this good-value hotel in the trendy Born district. The renovated 18th-century mansion retains much of its original grandeur, particularly in the common areas—witness the sweeping creamy-marble staircase. While the 43 all-white rooms—each with its entrance swathed in curtains of crystal beads—are admittedly pretty small (around 183 square feet), the clever design makes a lot out of a little: The showers are housed in space age–style clear-acrylic cylinders, and there are metal clothes racks rather than wardrobes. Your brown-paper-bag "welcome pack" contains bath gel, lollipops, and a survival guide to the hotel, explaining how to work the lighting and TV. We recommend the rear rooms, which overlook a pretty interior patio—ask for one of the two rooms with a private terrace. At these prices, you shouldn't expect room service, but Chic & Basic has a stylish little lounge where you can help yourself to tea and coffee.

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