Where to stay in Madrid: the best areas for your perfect getaway!

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What we talk about in this article

Madrid is a popular city that is known for its vibrant nightlife, delicious food, and stunning architecture. With so much to see and do, it can be overwhelming to decide where to stay in Madrid during your visit. That’s why we’ve put together a guide to the best areas to stay, based on their unique characteristics.

Whether you are looking for luxury accommodation, a lively nightlife scene, or a more tranquil experience, Madrid has something to offer everyone. By choosing to stay in the right area, you can make the most out of your trip.

So, let’s find the best neighbourhoods and hotels for every budget & travel type!

The districts of Madrid

Madrid is divided into a number of different districts, each with its own distinct character and charm. 

The best districts in Madrid to stay at as a tourist are district 1, 3, 4 and 7.

Here, you’ll find a lot of top attractions that you can reach by foot, a good vibe and lots of shops, bars & restaurants.

Other interesting and up-and-coming districts are district 2, 5, 6 and 9

These areas are slightly more distant from the city centre, but they offer distinct advantages: a more authentic experience, lower costs, and lots to explore.

Madrid districts map
  1. Centro
  2. Arganzuela
  3. Retiro
  4. Salamanca
  5. Chamartín
  6. Tetuán
  7. Chamberí
  8. Fuencarral-El Pardo
  9. Moncloa-Aravaca
  10. Latina
  11. Carabanchel
  12. Usera
  13. Puente de Vallecas
  14. Moratalaz
  15. Ciudad Lineal
  16. Hortaleza
  17. Villaverde
  18. Villa de Vallecas
  19. Vicálvaro
  20. San Blas-Canillejas
  21. Barajas

District 1: Centro - The best area to stay in Madrid for tourists

Centro is an excellent choice for tourists as it is very central and has easy access to many of the city’s main attractions. It has an electrifying vibe with its bustling streets full of people, markets, and shops. Its nightlife is fantastic, with many bars and restaurants offering delicious Spanish cuisine. Safety is generally not a concern, just use your common sense. For tourists, it is great to have landmarks like the Royal Palace, the Almudena Cathedral, and the Puerta del Sol close by.

  • Home to many famous landmarks such as Puerta del Sol, Gran Via, and Plaza Mayor
  • Excellent transport links to other parts of the city, as well as to the airport
  • Plenty of shops, restaurants, bars, and cafés
  • The district has a lively nightlife scene, especially in the Malasaña, La Latina & Chueca area.
  • It is a pedestrian-friendly area, with many streets and areas being car-free.
  • Large crowds of tourists
  • It can be quite noisy due to the many bars and nightlife
  • The district can be quite pricey, especially in terms of accommodation and food/drink prices. But you can find a good place to stay for every budget.

The best neighbourhoods to stay in Madrid Centro

Madrid is a patchwork of diverse neighbourhoods. When choosing where to stay in Centro, it’s about finding an area that suits you.

Each neighbourhood has its unique vibe, architecture, food, cultural vibes, and historical significance.

There are plenty of accommodation options ranging from budget to luxury. It is always recommended to book in advance to ensure availability and get the best price.

Some interesting neighbourhoods in Centro are:

  • Las Letras
  • Chueca
  • Malasaña
  • La Latina
  • Lavapiés
Huertas street view in Madrid during pride
Huertas street view in Madrid during pride

So, what is the best neighbourhood in Madrid Centro for you?

Every neighbourhood in Centro offers numerous advantages, particularly for first-time visitors. With the ability to easily reach attractions on foot, you’ll find yourself right in the heart of all the action.

Let’s have a look at what the barrios of Madrid have to offer. 

1. Las Letras - Best area in Madrid to mix culture with a night out

Las Letras is a vibrant neighbourhood located in the heart of Madrid Centro. The area is known for its lively atmosphere, with plenty of restaurants, bars, and cafés that offer a variety of traditional Spanish cuisine. The vibe is energetic and cosmopolitan, with a mix of tourists and locals filling the streets.

One of the main attractions of the neighbourhood is its cultural heritage, as it was once home to some of the most famous Spanish writers such as Cervantes and Lope de Vega. Today, visitors can explore the literary history of the area by visiting museums and cultural centres.

> The Plaza de Santa Ana is the bustling heart of the Las Letras neighbourhood. Dotted with cosy pubs and restaurants, it draws a crowd of locals and visitors alike. You can find the Teatro Español here, it’s still a popular destination for theater-goers, showcasing a diverse range of plays and performances throughout the year.

> Plaza del Angel is another cosy square in Las Letras. Ideal to rest and people-watch while enjoying a cup of coffee or a bite to eat.

> Nightlife in Las Letras is also noteworthy, with several clubs and bars that stay open until the early hours of the morning.

> Las Letras neighbourhood in Madrid is considered a safe area. The streets are well-lit, and there are usually many people around. It is generally a safe neighbourhood with a low crime rate, but you should always stay vigilant.

> However, one downside of the neighbourhood is that it can get quite crowded, especially during peak tourist season.

Nonetheless, Las Letras remains a popular destination for those seeking an authentic Madrid experience. The ideal spot for tourists & first-time visitors

Where to stay in Barrio de Las Letras?

Mid-range
Room Mate Alba

Beautiful boutique hotel with welcoming staff. The hotel serves an excellent breakfast. You can relax on the sun terrace or get sporty in their fitness centre.

Room Mate Alba on booking Room Mate Alba on Agoda
High-End
Hotel Urban

Stunning boutique hotel that houses a permanent display of art from Papua New Guinea. Enjoy a culinary delight at their restaurant Cebo, run by a duo of Michelin-starred chefs, and sip from a tasty cocktail. In summer, you can enjoy a refreshing dip in the cute rooftop swimming pool.

Hotel Urban on Booking Hotel Urban on Agoda
High-End
Gran Hotel Inglés

Located in a 19th century building, this luxurious hotel, with 5* amenities, features stylish rooms in art-deco style. Start your day with a delicious à la carte breakfast and end it with a meal in the cocktail bar. Relax in the on-site wellness centre.

Gran Hotel Inglés on Booking Gran Hotel Inglés on Agoda

2. Chueca - Best neighbourhood for Bohemian vibes & diversity

Chueca is ideal for tourists looking for an enjoyable and lively atmosphere. The neighbourhood is known for its diversity, eclectic shops, bars, cafés and restaurants. It’s a great place to explore on foot, as you can easily reach popular tourist attractions.

> It has a vibrant nightlife, with numerous venues that stay open late into the night. Chueca is renowned for its LGBT scene, serving as a central gathering place for the local community. This district has a rich history of fostering acceptance and support for the LGBT community, highlighted by its annual Pride Parade that attracts thousands of attendees from across the globe.

> The Plaza de Chueca is the centre of this neighbourhood and you can find a lot of trendy bars and restaurants here.

> Also, the proximity to Paseo de Recoletos is a plus. This famous boulevard is known for its beautiful art and architecture. It stretches from Plaza de Cibeles to Plaza de Colón, and is surrounded by many famous landmarks including the National Library, the Church of San Manuel and San Benito, and the Palace of Linares.

> Chueca is generally considered a safe neighbourhood. Visitors and residents can feel confident walking around the area during the day or at night. However, it’s important to stay aware of your surroundings.

> While there is no doubt that Chueca is an excellent neighbourhood to stay in for tourists, it may not be suitable for everyone. The area can be quite noisy at night, and it’s not the place for peace and quiet.

In essence, Chueca is an exceptional choice for tourists. It situates you right in the heart of everything, and the vibe is relaxed.

Where to stay in Chueca?

Budget-friendly
Woohoo Rooms Hortaleza

This budget-friendly hotel is a visitor's favourite. Why? It's not only friendly for your wallet, the rooms are stylish, the beds comfortable, it's spotlessly clean, and the staff is super helpful.

Woohoo Rooms Hortaleza on Booking
Mid-Range to High-End
Only YOU Boutique Hotel

This 4-starred boutique hotel is set in a restored 19th century building. It has luxury amenities and every room is uniquely decorated. Relax and sip a cocktail or enjoy a gourmet meal in the gorgeous lounge area.

On Booking On Agoda
High-End
URSO Hotel & Spa

Go for the royal treatment in this high-end luxury hotel. All rooms in this restored palace are beautifully decorated, amenities are top-notch and the staff and their service is impeccable.

URSO Hotel & Spa on Booking URSO Hotel & Spa on Agoda

3. Malasaña - Best area to stay in Madrid for nightlife & street art

Malasaña is an authentic neighbourhood in Centro. The vibe of Malasaña is relaxed, artistic, and creative, with plenty of independent shops, cafés, and restaurants to discover. One of the main attractions in Malasaña is the street art that is seen on almost every corner. Visitors will have the opportunity to wander around and soak up the artistic culture of the neighbourhood.

> Plaza Dos de Mayo is a hub of cultural and social activity and serves as a meeting point for artists, musicians, and locals. The square is surrounded by bars and restaurants, making it a popular spot for nightlife and socializing. It also hosts various events and festivals throughout the year, including concerts, book fairs, and art exhibitions.

> You’re close by numerous cultural attractions like museums, theaters, and parks. Its central location also provides easy access to other parts of the city, with well-connected metro and bus stations nearby.

> Additionally, Malasana is known for its diverse culinary scene, offering visitors a chance to discover authentic Spanish cuisine and international flavors

> The nightlife in Malasaña is lively and diverse. It caters to all kinds of tastes, with music styles ranging from indie pop to electronic dance music.

> Malasana neighborhood in Madrid is considered a safe place. While tourists should still exercise normal safety precautions, such as keeping an eye on their belongings and avoiding dark alleys at night.

> One downside of staying in Malasaña is that it can be a bit loud and rowdy at night, so if you’re sensitive to noise, it may not be the best neighbourhood for you.

Nonetheless, Malasaña is perfect for those who are looking for a fun and exciting place to stay in Madrid Centro. It provides tourists with easy access to top attractions and a bustling nightlife scene.

Where to stay in Malasaña?

Budget-friendly
7 Islas Hotel

This beautifully designed hotel with spacious rooms is friendly on your wallet and has a great bar and breakfast. The staff is super helpful and everything is spic and span.

7 Islas Hotel on Booking
Budget-Friendly apartments
SmartRental Collection Gran Vía Centric

Lovely apartments in the heart of the Gran Vía with a fully equipped kitchen and all the amenities you need. Super plus: great rooftop bar with cool views over the city.

SmartRental Collection Gran Vía Centric on Booking
Mid-Range to High-End
VP Plaza España Design

This 5* hotel offers stylish rooms, luxuriously equipped with all amenities you might need. There is an excellent Mediterranean restaurant on-site, as well as a sky bar with scenic views of Madrid. For pure relaxation, visit the wellness centre.

VP Plaza España Design on Booking VP Plaza España Design on Agoda

4. La Latina - Best neighbourhood for a lively night scene & tapas bars

La Latina is a charming and historic neighbourhood that is popular because of its vibrant atmosphere, lively nightlife, and a wide variety of bars and restaurants that serve traditional Spanish cuisine.

> Puerta de Toledo, Museo de San Isidoro and Plaza de los Carros are among its main attractions.

>Plaza de los Carros is one of the most visited places in the La Latina neighborhood. This square bears a rich historical significance dating back to the Middle Ages when it was used as a marketplace for carts, hence the name “Square of the Carts”. Today, the Plaza is filled with lively outdoor terraces and traditional Spanish tapas bars. The square is also well-known for hosting numerous cultural events and festivities throughout the year.

> La Latina is considered one of the safest neighbourhoods in Madrid. With its relaxed atmosphere, beautiful orange tree-lined streets, and charming squares. Visitors should still take the usual safety precautions, like keeping an eye on their stuff and avoiding sketchy alleys at night.

> One negative aspect of La Latina is that it can get crowded and noisy, especially during peak hours and weekends.

Overall, La Latina offers a unique Spanish experience to tourists and is a great neighbourhood to stay in while exploring Madrid.

Where to stay in La Latina?

Budget-Friendly
Posada del Dragón Boutique Hotel

This quirky boutique hotel offers comfortable rooms with modern decor at affordable prices. Everything is so clean and staff is very friendly. Enjoy a good breakfast or a meal in the on-site restaurant.

Posada del Dragón Boutique Hotel on Booking
Budget-Friendly
Posada del León de Oro Boutique Hotel

Quiet and cosy budget-friendly boutique hotel offers comfortable rooms in a beautiful building. Staff is very accommodating and you can enjoy a good breakfast. Many high-quality tapas bars down the street.

Posada del León de Oro Boutique Hotel on Booking
Budget-Friendly apartment
Living Plaza de la Paja

Enjoy your own fully equipped apartment with quiet street views. Its rooms are spacious, clean and it has two bathrooms. The friendly manager makes communication easy.

Living Plaza de la Paja on Booking

5. Lavapiés - Most ethnic area of Centro

Lavapiés is a great neighbourhood to stay at for several reasons. It’s known for its multicultural vibe and bohemian atmosphere, making it one of the most diverse areas of the city.

> Some of the main attractions in Lavapiés include the iconic Lavapiés Square and La Tabacalera – a famous cultural and art centre.

> The neighbourhood is also home to some of the best vintage shops, ethnic cuisine restaurants, and live music venues. You can also find the famous flea market – El Rastro – here, that is open every Sunday.

> The vibe in Lavapiés is lively, artistic, and welcoming to all types of people.

> Lavapiés is generally safe during the day, However, the situation may change slightly at night. Just stay alert and be aware of your surroundings when walking alone.

Overall, Lavapiés is a safe and vibrant neighbourhood that provides an authentic Madrid experience with its unique and diverse community.

Where to stay in Lavapiés

Budget-Friendly
Casa du Soleil

This small modern boutique hotel is fresh, beautiful and located in a quiet street. Beds are comfy, everything is so clean and the staff is very welcoming.

Casa du Soleil on Booking Casa du Soleil on Agoda
Mid-Range
Artrip Hotel

This cute and artsy boutique hotel offers bright rooms and crisp linen on comfy beds. It has all the amenities you need, the staff is super friendly and helpful and they offer a delicious breakfast.

Artrip Hotel on Booking
Mid-Range
Atocha Hotel, by Hilton

This pet-friendly 4* hotel boasts gorgeous rooms with super comfy beds. Staff goes the extra mile to help you out with everything you might need. And they serve a delicious breakfast

Atocha Hotel, by Hilton on Booking

Best budget-friendly hotels in Centro

The Centro area in Madrid is a popular location for budget hotels, and there are plenty of options available that won’t break the bank. The average price per night for a budget-friendly hotel in the Centro area is around €110 to €190. However, prices can vary depending on the time of year and the level of amenities provided by the hotel. 

Budget-Friendly
Posada del León de Oro Boutique Hotel

Quiet and cosy budget-friendly boutique hotel offers comfortable rooms in a beautiful building. Staff is very accommodating and you can enjoy a good breakfast. Many high-quality tapas bars down the street.

Posada del León de Oro Boutique Hotel on Booking
Budget-friendly
7 Islas Hotel

This beautifully designed hotel with spacious rooms is friendly on your wallet and has a great bar and breakfast. The staff is super helpful and everything is spic and span.

7 Islas Hotel on Booking
Budget-friendly
Woohoo Rooms Hortaleza

This budget-friendly hotel is a visitor's favourite. Why? It's not only friendly for your wallet, the rooms are stylish, the beds comfortable, it's spotlessly clean, and the staff is super helpful.

Woohoo Rooms Hortaleza on Booking

Best boutique hotels in Centro

Finding boutique hotels in Madrid is reasonably simple, as the city is filled with beautifully restored buildings turned into hotels. The average price per night for a good boutique hotel in the Centro of Madrid depends on various factors such as location, amenities, and season, but generally ranges from €100 to €400 euros per night and up.

Budget-Friendly
Casa du Soleil

This small modern boutique hotel is fresh, beautiful and located in a quiet street. Beds are comfy, everything is so clean and the staff is very welcoming.

Casa du Soleil on Booking Casa du Soleil on Agoda
Mid-Range
NH Collection Madrid Palacio de Tepa

This 19-th century palace offers a premium decor with elegant and spacious rooms. There is a fine restaurant on-site and the breakfast offers a good selection.

NH Collection Madrid Palacio de Tepa on Booking NH Collection Madrid Palacio de Tepa on Agoda
Mid-Range to High-End
Only YOU Boutique Hotel

This 4-starred boutique hotel is set in a restored 19th century building. It has luxury amenities and every room is uniquely decorated. Relax and sip a cocktail or enjoy a gourmet meal in the gorgeous lounge area.

On Booking On Agoda

Best luxury hotels in Centro

The city centre has a great number of high-end accommodation options to choose from. Some of the top luxury hotels in Madrid are located in the Centro district. The average price per night for a luxury hotel in this area ranges from €400 to €600, depending on the property and the season.

However, there are some ultra-luxury hotels that can cost upwards of €1,000 per night. Despite the high prices, these hotels offer exceptional service, amenities, and comfort that are sure to make any stay in Madrid unforgettable.

Mid-Range to High-End
VP Plaza España Design

This 5* hotel offers stylish rooms, luxuriously equipped with all amenities you might need. There is an excellent Mediterranean restaurant on-site, as well as a sky bar with scenic views of Madrid. For pure relaxation, visit the wellness centre.

VP Plaza España Design on Booking VP Plaza España Design on Agoda
High-End
Palacio de los Duques Gran Meliá

This stunning 19th century palace offers a seasonal rooftop swimming pool, a terrace with scenic city views, 3 restaurants, a bar and tearoom. For relaxation, there is a private garden and a Thai room wellness centre.

Palacio de los Duques Gran Meliá on Booking Palacio de los Duques Gran Meliá on Agoda
Super High-End
Four Seasons Hotel Madrid

This 5* hotel is high-class. Every detail exhales luxury, the rooms are very comfortable with great attentiveness to detail. Staff and room service go above and beyond to pamper you. There are multiple restaurants, a swimming pool, spa and gym.

Four Seasons Hotel Madrid on Booking Four Seasons Hotel Madrid on Agoda

District 3: Retiro - The best area for a quiet and upscale retreat in a verdant oasis

El Retiro is one of the most peaceful districts in Madrid, and it’s a great place to stay for those who want a more upscale and quieter experience. This district offers a mix of residential areas, beautiful parks, and popular attractions.

> The most famous park in Madrid Centro is the Retiro Park (Parque del buen Retiro), which is a vast and well-maintained park filled with picturesque gardens and monuments, that include the Crystal Palace.

> Some of the most popular attractions in the area include the Prado Museum, which is one of the finest museums in Europe, and the Puerta de Alcalá, a magnificent arch that dates back to the 18th century.

> The neighbourhood itself has a relaxed, Bohemian vibe, with many artists and musicians hanging around the area.

> El Retiro is known for its vibrant nightlife scene, so it’s a common place to go out at night, and most places are fairly safe to walk around.

  • Central location with easy access to major attractions, including the Retiro Park, museums, and historic landmarks
  • A wide range of restaurants, cafés, and bars offering traditional and international cuisine
  • Plenty of shopping opportunities, with both high-end and independent boutiques and stores
  • Well-connected to transportation hubs, including the metro and bus lines
  • More upscale neighbourhood, good for families
  • Verdant oasis to relax
  • More expensive than some of the other neighbourhoods in Madrid.
  • Can be crowded, particularly during peak tourist season.

Where to stay in Retiro?

Mid-Range
Only YOU Hotel Atocha

Quirky and stylish boutique hotel with a rooftop breakfast room with stunning city views. There is a café, a bakery and several lounge areas to socialize and chill. Staff is welcoming and facilities are excellent.

Only YOU Hotel Atocha on Booking
Mid-Range
Petit Palace Savoy Alfonso XII

This stylish boutique hotel is situated next to the famous Retiro Park. They offer an amazing breakfast buffet with fresh products. The small bar café is ideal to rest in between city sightseeing.

Petit Palace Savoy Alfonso XII on Booking
Super High-End
Mandarin Oriental Ritz

A super high-end hotel with a large glass-roofed courtyard and luxurious wellness centre. This opulent Belle Époque palace offers a unique experience. Enjoy the 5 restaurants and bars, the swimming pool, vitality pool, dedicated treatments and more.

Mandarin Oriental Ritz Madrid on Booking Mandarin Oriental Ritz Madrid on Agoda

District 4: Salamanca - The best upscale area for luxury shopping

Salamanca is an upscale residential district, and it is often referred to as Madrid’s Beverly Hills. It is known for its excellent shopping and fashion boutiques and for being home to many of the city’s most luxurious hotels. It is a safe neighbourhood and offers a quieter atmosphere than Centro. Salamanca has a calm, elegant vibe with many high-end restaurants serving exceptional food.

> Salamanca is a highly sought after district in Madrid due to its prime location and upscale vibe

> Tourists love staying in Salamanca as it is known for its gourmet restaurants and trendy boutiques. Serrano street is famous for its famous luxurious flagship stores

> Some of the main attractions in Salamanca include the National Archaeological Museum, and the beautiful Puerta de Alcala monument on the edge with El Retiro

> Salamanca is also known for its elegant architecture, making it a great place to stroll around and admire the charming buildings

> Safety is not a concern in Salamanca, as it is known to be a safe and well-policed area.

The district is an excellent choice for those looking for a luxurious stay in Madrid. It is slso a good choice if you like high quality shopping and dining

  • Salamanca is a safe and clean neighborhood, ideal for families and solo travelers.
  • There is plenty to see and do, such as visiting museums, art galleries, and parks.
  • The shopping experience is fantastic, with numerous designer boutiques and luxury brand stores to explore.
  • Salamanca is well-connected to other parts of Madrid by public transport, making it easy to get around the city.
  • The nightlife scene is vibrant, with an array of trendy bars, restaurants and clubs to visit.
  • Salamanca is one of the most expensive areas in Madrid, and it may not be suitable for travellers on a tight budget.
  • It can be a bit too posh and pretentious for some, and lacking in authentic Spanish culture or charm.
  • While public transport is readily available, it can be crowded during peak hours.
  • The dining options are mainly geared towards high-end restaurants, and it may be difficult to find affordable options.

Where to stay in Salamanca?

High-End
ICON Wipton

Avant-garde boutique hotel with 2 super on-site restaurants located in an exclusive shopping area. Everything is cared for in great detail. Great staff and excellent buffet breakfast.

ICON Wipton on Booking ICON Wipton on Agoda
Super High-End
BLESS Hotel Madrid

This luxurious hotel stands out with its unique style and timeless design. Relax in the beautiful rooftop swimming pool & terrace with city views. Enjoy the gym, bowling ally, wellness centre, 3 bars and 2 restaurants.

BLESS Hotel Madrid on Booking BLESS Hotel Madrid on Agoda
Exclusive
Rosewood Villa Magna

The exclusive Rosewood Villa Magna offers elegant rooms and suites in antique style with modern touches. At the Rosewood spa, you can enjoy special treatments, massages, a spa and gym. There are multiple exquisite restaurants and the staff is incredibly kind and knowledgeable.

Rosewood Villa Magna on Booking Rosewood Villa Magna on Agoda

District 7: Chamberí - The best area to stay in Madrid for families

Chamberí is one of the best neighbourhoods to stay at in Madrid due to its charming and traditional ambience. It is a relatively peaceful area that is surrounded by trendy restaurants, cute cafés, bars, and vintage shops, giving it a unique character.

> The neighbourhood is home to the famous Museo Sorolla, which houses the artwork of Spanish painter Joaquin Sorolla. Other notable sights in this neighbourhood include the well-manicured gardens of the Canal de Isabel II, the vibrant Mercado de Chamberí, and the narrow but delightful Plaza de Olavide.

>In addition to its attractions, Chamberi is considered quite safe, even at night. The streets are well-lit and there is police presence making it a secure location for both tourists and residents.

This residential neighbourhood is a perfect blend of culture and quiet city life. It’s ideal for families or people who like the peaceful uptown atmosphere.

  • A central location with easy access to public transportation like metro and buses
  • A quiet, residential area with tree-lined streets and beautiful architecture
  • Plenty of local shops, bars, cafés, and restaurants to explore
  • Proximity to many of Madrid’s top museums and attractions like Museo Sorolla
  • A strong sense of community and the feeling of living like a true Madrileño
  • Prices for accommodation and amenities are higher than average, due to its sought-after location
  • Limited nightlife options compared to other areas in Madrid
  • Tourist crowds during peak season may make the area feel busy

Where to stay in Chamberí?

Mid-Range
NH Collection Madrid Abascal

This Mid-Range hotel is set in a former, stunning embassy building. It has a very nice restaurant, a gym and an attractive terrace.

NH Collection Madrid Abascal on Booking
High-End
Relais & Châteaux Hotel Orfila

Luxurious and fabulous boutique hotel with a Michelin-starred restaurant. Set in a 19th-century palace, it boasts spacious rooms with antique decor, a restaurant and tearoom.

On Booking On Agoda
High-End
Santo Mauro

This super high-end hotel is located in the former residence of the Duke of Santo Mauro. The old library is transformed into a restaurant that serves delicious meals. Enjoy the courtyard and gardens, and there is also a sauna.

Santo Mauro on Booking Santo Mauro on Agoda

Where to stay in Madrid: explore more neighbourhoods

There are a number of other districts in Madrid that are worth exploring as a tourist and that might be a good option for your accommodation. There is something for everyone in Madrid’s various neighbourhoods, and tourists would do well to explore beyond the more well-known areas.

District 6 : Tetuán - The best area to stay in Madrid on a budget

The up-and-coming district of Tetuán is also worth a visit, as it’s known for its affordable prices and burgeoning food scene. It is generally known to be a peaceful and quiet area, with a calm residential atmosphere that offers a perfect blend of modernity and tradition. However, it also has some lively areas with a bustling commercial area. While there may be some streets with a more Bohemian vibe or graffiti, the district is generally considered safe and friendly.

> Tourists are attracted to this district due to its affordable accommodation and convenient location, which makes it easy to explore the city.

> Tetuán is a great district to stay in for tourists on a budget due to its affordable accommodation and its easy access to other popular neighborhoods in Madrid.

> Its main attractions include Plaza de Castilla, on the edge with Chamartin district. It’s a large open square with fantastic views of the city and the iconic Puerta de Europa towers. Additionally, Plaza de la Remonta is a vibrant square bustling with activity.

> Other notable attractions include the lively Mercado de Maravillas, a bustling marketplace with a wide variety of food, and Parque Rodríguez Sahagún, a peaceful park perfect for enjoying a relaxing afternoon.

However, despite its many positives, some tourists may view the district as lacking in charm and personality compared to other neighbourhoods in Madrid. Some areas can be a bit rough around the edges, and visitors should exercise caution when exploring at night. However, overall, Tetuán is generally considered to be safe.

  • Relatively close proximity to the city centre
  • Affordable accommodation prices
  • Overall peaceful and quiet neighbourhood
  • Access to various public transportation options
  • Local markets and restaurants that cater to different tastes and budgets.
  • The cost of living is relatively affordable, especially compared to more central areas of the city.
  • Tetuán is not known for its nightlife, and there are relatively few bars and clubs in the district.
  • The area is not particularly tourist-friendly, with fewer attractions and landmarks than other parts of Madrid.
  • Some parts of Tetuán may feel slightly run-down or neglected.
  • There may be some noise pollution from the busy traffic that passes through the district.

Where to stay in Tetuán?

Budget-Friendly hostel
Far Home Bernabeu

This budget-friendly hostel has cosy and comfy private rooms and studio's as well as cheaper beds in dorm rooms. Get social on the rooftop terrace and in the communal living room. For a hostel, it's one of the more quiet ones, compared to those in Centro. So, if you like a good night's sleep and are on a budget, this is a perfect choice.

Far Home Bernabeu on Booking
Budget-friendly to Mid-Range
H10 Tribeca

Super stylish hotel close to the Santiago Bernabéu stadium in a quiet area. It's a big hotel but all the areas and rooms are very elegantly decorated in natural colours with an eye for detail. Rooms are spacious and inviting and beds are so comfy. The restaurant Tribeca is chic and serves a range of tasty dishes.

H10 Tribeca on Booking
Perfect for families
Melia Castilla

Are you travelling with kids? This hotel is a top choice for families. There is a wide range of family rooms available, they are spacious, comfortable and have a classic decor. There is an also a big seasonal outdoor swimming pool, a fitness and wellness centre.

Melia Castilla on Booking

District 9: Moncloa-Aravaca - The best area to relax out of the hustle and bustle of the centre.

The Moncloa-Aravaca district is located on the western part of the city, and it’s a great place for tourists to stay, as it offers a unique blend of urban living and tranquil surroundings.

> The district is known for its beautiful parks, such as the Casa de Campo, which is one of the largest green areas in Madrid, and the Western Park.

> Additionally, Moncloa-Aravaca is home to many cultural and historical attractions, including the Moncloa Palace, the American Museum and the Temple of Debod.

> You can also find many restaurants, bars, and shops here.

> The area is also home to several universities, including the Complutense University of Madrid and the Polytechnic University of Madrid, making it a popular location for students.

> It is generally considered a safe area to visit and live in. It is a well-established residential and commercial zone, which has a low crime rate compared to other parts of the city.

This district has a lot to offer visitors, and it is well-connected to the centre if you want to be in the lively area of the city. 

  • A great choice for those looking for a more peaceful and relaxed base from which to explore Madrid
  • Easy access to many popular tourist attractions
  • Well-connected by public transportation, including multiple subway lines and buses
  • Large selection of restaurants, bars, and shops within walking distance
  • Close proximity to parks, including the popular Casa de Campo
  • Wide range of accommodation options, including hotels, apartments, and hostels
  • It is not as centrally located as other areas of Madrid. While the district is well-connected to the rest of the city by public transport, it may take longer to reach some of the major tourist attractions
  • Some areas of the district may feel more residential and quiet, which may not be ideal for those looking for a more bustling and lively atmosphere

Where to stay in Moncloa-Aravaca?

Budget-Friendly to Mid-Range
The Social Hub Madrid

This 4* accommodation has a nice seasonal outdoor swimming pool and terrace, a fitness centre, and restaurant on-site. Socialize in the beautiful shared lounge room.

The Social Hub Madrid on Booking
Mid-Range
Melia Madrid Princesa

The hotel with view of the Royal Palace has elegant rooms. There is a heated indoor swimming pool to relax and unwind, and a top-notch restaurant and bar for delicious meals and drinks. The top floor has exclusive rooms with panoramic views of the mountains and the city, and a wellness area.

Melia Madrid Princesa on Booking
Mid-Range to High-End
Barceló Torre de Madrid

This beautiful designed hostel on the Plaza de España has modern and spacious rooms with comfy king-size beds and luxurious touches. For total relaxation, there is a sauna and therapy massages, as well as an indoor swimming pool and fitness area. The restaurant serves à la carte meals and you can get your groove on in the bar with DJ.

Barceló Torre de Madrid on Booking Barceló Torre de Madrid on Agoda

District 2: Arganzuela - the best district to soak up Madrid's cultural and historic charm away from the tourist crowd

The Arganzuela district is an up-and-coming area with modern buildings and trendy cafés. Nestled south of Madrid’s bustling city centre, this hidden gem offers an authentic experience, away from the tourists that flock to the popular attractions. With its prime location south of Centro and across the Manzanares River from Parque del Retiro, Arganzuela strikes the perfect balance between convenience and tranquillity.

> It is an excellent area for tourists to stay for several reasons. The district has a vibrant and diverse atmosphere that offers a rich cultural experience with plenty of art galleries, museums, and restaurants to explore.

> It is conveniently located near the city centre and many popular tourist attractions, making it easy to explore the city.

> Visitors can check out popular attractions like the Matadero Cultural Centre, the Madrid Rio Park, and the Planetarium, all located within the district.

> The Atocha train station is a major transportation hub located in the Arganzuela district. It is the largest railway station in the city and it has an amazing botanical garden inside. It spans over 4,000 square meters and hosts a wide variety of plants from all around the world. So, it’s definitly worth a visit. 

> Arganzuela is considered one of the safest districts in the city, making it an excellent option for travellers.

Overall, the area has a relaxed and friendly vibe, making it a great choice for tourists.

  • Great location, easily accessible to central Madrid via public transportation
  • Offers a mix of modern and traditional neighbourhoods
  • Plenty of green spaces, including the Madrid Rio park
  • Diverse range of restaurants and bars
  • Home to popular attractions like the Matadero Madrid cultural centre
  • Can be noisy around the Atocha train station, due to the train tracks
  • Some areas can be quite busy and touristy
  • Limited shopping options
  • Not as historic or charming as other neighbourhoods in Madrid
  • Fairly spread out, which can make getting around on foot more challenging.

Where to stay in Arganzuela?

Studio or apartment
Bob W Arte

Are you looking for a beautiful studio or apartment in a quiet area? Then this is a top choice for you! This recently renovated condo hotel offers comfortable rooms, a fully equipped kitchen and good amenities.

Bob W Arte on Booking
Budget-friendly
Rafaelhoteles Atocha

This hotel has modern styled rooms and the whole place is filled with artwork to get you in the mood to visit the art galleries and museums nearby. There is a pleasant garden terrace, a gym and comfortable lounge to chill and come together with friends and family.

Rafaelhoteles Atocha on Booking
Mid-Range to High-End
Hard Rock Hotel

This renowned 4* hotel offers comfortable rooms with a buffet breakfast. There is also an outdoor swimming pool and gym. Accommodations can have a private garden, terrace and private parking.

Hard Rock Hotel Madrid on Booking

District 5: Chamartin - The area where modern meets traditional

Chamartin is a popular district in Madrid that is ideal for tourists who don’t want to stay in the city centre, but yet close by. Chamartin is considered as the financial district of Madrid. It is one of the most important business and financial areas in the city, as it houses numerous national and international corporations.

> It is also home to various luxury hotels, high-end restaurants, and exclusive shops, making it a popular choice for business executives and for travellers alike.

> With its convenient location and excellent transport links, it is no wonder why Chamartin continues to be a prime location.

>The district’s main attraction is the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, home to the famous Real Madrid Football Club.

> Other notable landmarks include the Kio Towers and the new Four Towers Business Area and the Musuem of Natural Sciences. But there are also green spaces as the Berlin Park, to relax. 

> As with any district in a big city, there are some negative points, such as the high price point of its accommodations and its limited nightlife.

However, Chamartin is generally considered a safe district, making it an excellent choice for families and travelers who prefer a quieter atmosphere.

  • The Chamartin District is well-connected to the city centre and other areas of Madrid, thanks to its excellent public transportation options.
  • It offers an interesting blend of modern and traditional architecture, making it a great place for those who love to explore urban landscapes
  • The district is home to many luxury shops, restaurants, and hotels, making it an ideal destination for those who like to indulge in fine dining and high-end shopping
  • It tends to be more expensive than other parts of Madrid, which could deter budget-conscious travellers
  • There may be a lack of variety when it comes to local cuisine, as there are more international restaurants in the area
  • The Chamartin District is not as walkable as some other neighbourhoods in Madrid, as it is more spread out and has wider streets

Where to stay in Chamartin?

Budget-Friendly to Mid-Range
Hotel Puerta America

The hotel is designed by multiple world-famous architects, and every floor has its unique decor and vibe. In the summer, you can enjoy the swimming pool and lovely outdoor area. Rooms have an avant-garde design, you can eat in the on-site restaurant and enjoy scenic views on the rooftop bar.

Hotel Puerta America on Booking
Mid-Range
Barceló Imagine

This beautifully themed music hotel has it all, comfy, modern rooms with avant-garde touches, free toiletries, a gym, a pool, massages and a sky bar. What else do you need?

Barceló Imagine on Booking Barceló Imagine on Agoda
Mid-Range to High-End
NH Collection Madrid Eurobuilding

This big hotel near the Bernabeu stadium has bright and spacious rooms with nice amenities. You can enjoy a modern spa and massages and eat in a 3* Michelin restaurant. There is even a sports hall with padel courts available.

NH Collection Madrid Eurobuilding on Booking

What areas to avoid in Madrid?

Madrid is widely regarded as a secure and welcoming destination for travellers. Just like in any city, there are certain areas that may not be as recommended for tourists to explore, or where it is advisable to exercise extra caution, especially at night. Even in Centro, some parts of the generally safe Lavapiés, La Latina and Malasaña neighbourhoods, are known to be a bit more sketchy after dark.

 

Some streets and areas to be more vigilant:

  • Watch out for pickpockets at touristy places. Pay also extra attention on busy metro’s, buses and at the airport
  • Calle de la Montera, a known red-light district area
  • Area around the Atocha train station
  • Area around El Rastro Flea Market
  • Gran Via and the quieter, not that well-lit streets around it
  • Tirso de Molina, for pickpockets

As long as you use your common sense, you’ll be fine. As a general rule, it’s always best to stick to well-lit and well-populated areas, especially at night, to ensure your safety.

Districts that aren't that attractive for tourists

In addition to the well-known districts we discussed, there are less captivating areas in Madrid that may not appeal to tourists.

Some, such as Carabanchel and Cañada Real, might not be as attractive to tourists. These areas, though rich in local flavour, lack the tourist infrastructure and attractions found in more popular districts. The absence of well-known landmarks, museums, or shopping malls make these districts less enticing for sightseers.

Additionally, safety can be a concern in some districts, particularly at night. Incidents of petty crime or unwelcome attention can be higher in these areas, which can intimidate tourists, especially those travelling alone or unfamiliar with the city.

While these districts are part of Madrid’s diversity, they might not offer the quintessential Madrid experience that most tourists seek.

District 11: Carabanchel

Carabanchel district in Madrid is not necessarily unsafe, but it’s known to have high crime rates compared to other districts in the city.

It’s also considered one of the least attractive areas for tourists due to its lack of cultural sites and historical landmarks. And it’s more difficult to reach. 

Additionally, the district is known for its high immigrant population, which may make some people feel uncomfortable or uneasy. While it’s not necessary to completely avoid Carabanchel, visitors should exercise caution and be aware of their surroundings if they choose to visit this area. It’s advisable not to walk alone in Carabanchel during nighttime, particularly in the park area.

District 12: Usera

The Usera district in Madrid is a working-class neighbourhood located south of the city centre. It is known for its multicultural population, with a large Chinese community living in the area. However, it’s not considered particularly attractive for tourists, as it lacks the popular tourist attractions found in other areas of Madrid. The streets are not as well maintained, and there are fewer restaurants and shops catering to tourists.

Usera, historically, had a higher crime rate compared to some other districts. But it’s important to understand that, much like San Blas, Usera has seen extensive efforts by the local authorities to curb crime and enhance safety. Occasional incidents related to drug trafficking or gang-related crimes can occur, so it’s always prudent for visitors to exercise caution and adhere to basic safety guidelines, particularly during late hours.

However, many inhabitants and frequent visitors to Usera often praise it for its vibrant local culture and community spirit.

District 18: Villa de Vallecas - Cañada Real area

Cañada Real is an area located on the outskirts of Madrid. However, it’s important to note that it is often not considered a traditional neighbourhood due to its unique status as a shanty town. It’s one of the largest informal settlements in Europe.

Although efforts have been made to improve living conditions, it remains one of the poorer areas in Madrid, which is known for its poor living conditions, and higher crime rates.

District 20: San Blas

Situated in the eastern part of Madrid, San Blas is predominantly a residential area. The district is characterized by local residential blocks and lacks the grandeur of the central districts of Madrid. It is often overlooked by tourists due to the absence of major historical sites, renowned museums, or other iconic attractions that Madrid is famous for.

It’s a district where locals live, work, and go about their daily lives, which gives it an authentic neighbourhood feel but doesn’t necessarily cater to the typical tourist’s interests.

Moreover, the district’s location, being a bit removed from the city centre, makes it less accessible for tourists who are largely drawn to the much easier to reach, central districts of the Spanish capital.

This area was once overlooked and neglected. Today, it’s slowly gaining recognition as an up-and-coming neighbourhood. Previously, this area had a higher crime rate, but significant efforts have been made to establish a safer environment. But it is still a work in progress. 

While San Blas may not necessarily be considered “unsafe,” visitors should exercise caution and avoid flashing valuables or wandering alone after dark.

Wrapping it up: where to stay in Madrid?

In conclusion, Madrid is a fascinating city with a wide range of districts and neighbourhoods that offer unique experiences to visitors. From the historic and charming streets of Barrio de Las Letras, to the trendy and cosmopolitan atmosphere of Malasaña, each area provides a distinct glimpse into the Spanish culture.

The affluent Salamanca district is perfect for luxury shopping and upscale dining, while La Latina offers a more authentic and laid-back vibe with its outdoor markets and tapas bars. Visitors looking for a more central and tourist-friendly location may prefer the upscale and bustling Gran Vía area.

Ultimately, choosing the best neighbourhood to stay in Madrid depends on individual preferences and interests. However, one thing is certain – wherever you choose to stay, Madrid is a very cool city with a good vibe and lots of things to discover. 

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