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150 Pau Claris, Barcelona, 08009, Spain

The highlight here is not the service (if you check out during prime time, you may learn a few Catalan obscenities from the harried staff)—rather, inexplicably, it's a second-floor museum of Egyptian artifacts and the Andy Warhol portraits in the East 47 restaurant. A small but sleek rooftop pool accessible by futuristic glass elevators proves more popular with guests than does the downstairs broom-closet-sized "business center." The even smaller, glass-enclosed "gymnasium" is simply a stair-climber and two exercise bikes. On the bright side, the rooms are filled with original artwork and unexpected accents of rich color, such as deep-purple bedspreads and matching curtains. Located one block from the bustling Passeig de Gràcia, the late-night traffic can be noisy; book a room on the fifth or sixth floor for a quieter stay.

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Hotel Claris

The highlight here is not the service (if you check out during prime time, you may learn a few Catalan obscenities from the harried staff)—rather, inexplicably, it's a second-floor museum of Egyptian artifacts and the Andy Warhol portraits in the East 47 restaurant. A small but sleek rooftop pool accessible by futuristic glass elevators proves more popular with guests than does the downstairs broom-closet-sized "business center." The even smaller, glass-enclosed "gymnasium" is simply a stair-climber and two exercise bikes. On the bright side, the rooms are filled with original artwork and unexpected accents of rich color, such as deep-purple bedspreads and matching curtains. Located one block from the bustling Passeig de Gràcia, the late-night traffic can be noisy; book a room on the fifth or sixth floor for a quieter stay.