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Hospes Palacio del Bailío, Cordoba 

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10–12 Ramirez de las Casas Deza
Spain 14001
Tel: 34 957 498 993
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From the editors of Condé Nast Traveler:

One of the most storied palaces in Córdoba has been converted into a dramatic 53-room retreat that has immediately become the best hotel in this Andalusian city. The palace, built between the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries, incorporates subterranean Roman ruins into its spa, and the spectacular outdoor pool occupies half of one of the Moorish-style gardens. The palace's stone walls are exposed in several rooms, although juxtaposed against the historic bones is a striking contemporary design of the hotel's public spaces—which include a reading lounge with Internet corner—and its elegant guest rooms, with their dark parquet floors, doors paneled with gray stained rough-hewn wooden planks, and beds made up with fluffy white duvets. In most rooms, the spacious baths are paneled in dark-gray marble and have separate tubs and showers; service here is expertly executed by a friendly young staff. Ultimately, the draw of the Palacio is its power to channel the dreamy atmosphere of Andalusia in such a quiet, cosseting corner of Córdoba.

—2008 Hot List

When to go: Summer here is a scorcher; the weather is more comfortable April through June and September through October.

Which room to book: Go for a deluxe double like No. 116 with a view of the gardens, and avoid black holes like Nos. 110 and 111, which give onto a noisy interior courtyard.

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