Madrid is a treat for those who make the journey to Spain. The lovely parks, world-class museums, cobble-stone streets bustling with shoppers, and delicious coffee all make for a great time. Places here evoke images, woven together into a tapestry of time. That tapestry now includes one of my favorite Hyatt Hotel properties, the Hyatt Centric Gran Via, Madrid.
I stayed at the Centric for 10 nights. Cash rates were $365 a night, so I used a combination of options for my stay. Some nights I redeemed points for free nights, and others I used World of Hyatt’s cash and points options. Remember, if you do use cash for hotel stays, do what I do and let Pruvo monitor your reservations for price drops!
The Centric Gran Via is a new hotel, opened a few months prior to my June stay. I had no idea how suite upgrades might work, even for a Globalist, so I decided to apply one of my suite upgrades for my stay.
I was upgraded to an Executive Suite on the 4th floor. I usually don’t like to stay at a hotel when it first opens; I’d rather let them work out the kinks with other hotel guests. In this case, I’m glad I broke one of my own rules because much to my delight, the kinks were few and upon entering the suite, I knew I’d be comfortable and pleased using the Centric as homebase for my time in Madrid.
The Hyatt Centric Gran Via, located in the heart of Madrid’s downtown shopping district, is a World of Hyatt Category 5 property, meaning free nights start at 20,000 Hyatt points per night.
Using my Hotel Room Scorecard I broke down the individual elements of my Executive Suite at the Centric Gran Via, which scored a 44 of 50 points.
Having never stayed at a Hyatt Centric property before I had no idea what to expect in the way of service. Being that it’s a Category 5 property though, I did expect service to be top-notch, and it was.
As I mentioned in my interview with hotel General Manager Gonzalo Maggi, he hired for personality and then could train service skills. This was obvious when interacting with the whole staff. Housekeeping was attentive and kept my boxed water stocked and were very generous with Nespresso pods.
The front desk crew was amazing: warm, friendly, and funny. Same for the breakfast crew that greeted me at the breakfast buffet every morning. After ten days in residence they knew all about my breakfast preferences, that’s for sure. Great staff, each and every one.
The Centric Gran Via is on Gran Via boulevard. It’s a very busy street. Think of a major street such as Oxford Street in London, Shibuya in Tokyo, or Times Square in New York City. Gran Via is busy like that. Primark is a department store chain and the biggest Primark in the world is across the street from the Centric Gran Via.
This made for some interesting gazing out my window as I could see into all five floors of Primark even in the wee hours of the morning. So while I want to impress upon you how dense this location can be, it also means that the Centric Gran Via is in a great central location! I loved it. You’ll be able to easily walk to many sites and neighborhoods as well as have a metro stop no more than a few meters away.
The suite enjoyed great natural light. However, it struck me as odd that the lights cannot be dimmed or brightened. For a brand new hotel room this doesn’t make sense. The night lights on each side of the bed are barely bright enough to read by and as this was an open space, there were no lights on the ceiling above the bed for reading.
The floor to ceiling windows covered just about the whole room. You can open the windows in four separate areas of the suite, including the bathroom. Opening windows in a bathroom is a plus, though rare in a hotel room.
The suite had two levels of shades. One was a sheer white linen curtain for privacy, and then the hotel used a much heavier fabric for black-out curtains. You can either pull close the curtains or close them electronically. I preferred the electronic closure and it was simple to use. During the summer months Madrid will stay light until 10:30 PM or so. That can be tricky when you need to get to sleep early and it’s still light out. The black-out shades worked well for creating night-time when I needed to get to sleep before the sunset.
There are two bathrooms in the suite. One is just to the right as you enter the suite and has a full shower. The master bathroom has a big tub and separate shower. The bathrooms are done in marble. Both the hot water for showers and the water pressure were excellent.
The showers were quirky, though. The master shower had no lip by the bottom of the door so water spilled out onto the floor, flooding the area.
There was no way to change the shower head direction to keep the water streaming away from the door. When I inquired as to whether the hotel had any tips regarding this shower, they clearly knew about this and attributed it to a fancy design that was too fancy! The showers in the other bathroom worked better without flooding, but the shower door, if you closed it all the way, was very hard to open from the inside. Don’t travel alone and shower in this bathroom!
The number of hooks in the bathrooms for towels were better than in most hotels. I’ll never understand why in a hotel, a bathroom door doesn’t have a hook behind it. Maybe in my next life I’ll be a hotel designer and solve all these issues! Both bathrooms had good counter space on both the sink level and underneath the sink.
There wasn’t an entertainment center, per se. There was one TV screen in an awkward location facing the bed but off to one side. As you’d expect in a new hotel, there are lots of well placed plugs to choose from throughout the suite. There were outlets near the beds and universal plugs and USB charging ports at the desk.
Interior Appointments and Furnishings (5/5)
The suite is essentially one big open space with the bedroom area on one side of the suite. The living space contained a couch, a nook with a table, a counter for drinks, a Nespresso machine, snacks, and a long built-in desk area. There was also a Murphy bed in the suite, hidden behind a photograph!
The color scheme for the suite is red/brown/grey/black, and suited my taste quite well.
This suite may have had some of the best seating options of any hotel room I’ve been in. I really enjoyed the nook and table area, both for working and for eating.
The couch got great natural light and had a lounge couch at one end of it.
The long counter-top surface desk area opposite the couch was an added benefit because it gave me another place to work and stay organized. In the bedroom there was a comfortable chair by one window and also opposite the bed a small table with two chairs beside it.
There are hardwood floors throughout the suite with area rugs in the living room and bedroom. As an added feature, above the couch was a bookshelf filled with artistic books about Spanish and European art, history, and food.
Some people might say a room like this at a boutique style hotel tries too hard. It did look arty and creative in its use of furniture, fixtures, and space. For me though, I didn’t mind that it was trendy and modern looking, some might say artsy, because it functioned very well. Even though it sounds like there was a lot of furniture in the rooms, the rooms were big and the suite felt very spacious. It felt like an apartment, rather than a hotel room.
Bed Comfort (2/5)
The bed was my least favorite aspect of the room. It was lumpy in parts and then too hard in other parts. The pillow choices were OK for me but the blanket situation seemed a bit off. The blanket was a medium weight down comforter and was too warm for springtime in Madrid. There was no separate sheet I could use as a blanket, so many nights I ended up using a sarong as a blanket. I have no idea if they’ll swap out blankets, but Madrid gets hot in the summer, so I surely hope so.
Snack Area (5/5)
The area above the refrigerator was a spacious snack area. It also housed the Nespresso machine. It served as an excellent surface area with plenty of room and shelving for whatever snacks you enjoy. I experienced something else I haven’t yet seen in hotel rooms: water in cardboard boxes.
Hotels are moving away from plastic and I think going forward we’ll see more environmentally favorable changes like this one. The fridge was on the small size but once you took all the hotel beverages out, it provided plenty of room for your own food.
The Hyatt Centric is a great choice for a Madrid hotel stay. There is a delicious restaurant for breakfast, which for me as a Hyatt Globalist was included with my room. It’s well worth the $25 if you choose to pay for it. The food and concierge service was spot on, and the suite itself was fantastic. The location, amenities, and exceptionally attentive staff sets a really high bar for any other Centric I visit. I love Madrid and will absolutely stay here again next time I’m in Spain. I hope you’ll get to enjoy your first Centric experience as much as I enjoyed mine.
Shelli Stein is a health and fitness entrepreneur who travels the world in search of culture, food, and fun! Besides contributing to PointMeToThePlane, you can find her at Joy in Movement.
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