Design Buzz: The Principal Madrid

principal madridDesign Hotels and Unico Hotels group have announced the opening of new luxury property The Principal Madrid.

Housed in a building on Madrid's Gran Via that dates back to 1917, the new property has 76 rooms and suites, a restaurant by chef Ramón Freixa, a bar and year-round pergola, and a rooftop terrace and bar with a sundeck and sweeping views of Madrid. 

Guests are received at the heart of the hotel, the sixth floor Ático (Spanish for penthouse), in an informal reception area next to the Ático restaurant, bar and open fireplace. 

“We wanted to create a mix of styles: influences of a posh British club, the flamboyance and glamor of a palace in France, and the modern masculinity of a Manhattan loft,” said designer Pilar García-Nieto, who created the design concept along with Barcelona-based studio Luzio.

The design of the interior is meant to celebrate the grand scale of the turn of the 20th century style building: high ceilings, iron railings, large windows and marble floors, with an ornate exterior that complements the Art Nouveau and Art Deco facades of its neighbors. 

“We wanted to capture the era and feel of the grand hotels that were once sprinkled across Europe,” Guardans said. “Most of them were linked to this concept of ‘traveling without speed’, which is an old concept and at the same time a very modern one. This idea of slow travel, taking advantage of time, truly discovering a location."

principal madrid guestroom

Strong lines and muted colors dominate the 76 rooms and suites. Charcoal-hued carpets and sofas are complemented by the cool greys of the fabric wallpaper and bed covers. Mustard yellow benches and design classics like BKF’s Butterfly Chair provide contrasting highlights.

In terms of room amenities, laundry and room service is available 24/7, and a butler, babysitter and personal shopper are also available. There is also a fully equipped gym, sauna and the Wellness Suite, offering a variety of massages and treatments. 

rooftop terrace at principal madrid

Chef Ramón Freixa's restaurant at sister property Hotel Único Madrid has been awarded two Michelin stars, and his restaurant Arriba is also well-known. Overseeing The Principal Madrid’s cuisine, Freixa’s diners can expect modern Spanish food with dishes like crispy monkfish morsels with herbed mustard, or foie-gras en figue éclairs, to tapas classics like ham and porcini croquettes. Along with the full dinner menu, a selection of empezamos (finger foods) is available around the clock. Freixa’s cuisine is also served on the rooftop terrace.