Turning up at your rented accommodation past 1.00am can be a slightly daunting experience, even more so when you were meant to be there an hour earlier…
Flight delays and the laborious journey straight from work hadn’t dampened our spirits and, luckily, my group of friends and I were in a party mood. Standing outside the graffitied wall of our apartment building in Madrid, it was fantastic just soaking in the buzzy atmosphere of the late night revellers spilling out into Malasaña square and its cobbled streets.
Even after a few attempts at trying to ring our host, and having no luck, we were relieved to eventually be greeted by Andreas, the host’s brother, who had been patiently waiting for us nearby. He let us into the building and after riding the cosy lift to the fifth floor, we came to our penthouse apartment. Even at that late hour of the night, we were all impressed by what we saw – and the view below into the main square wasn’t too shabby, either.The living space
The apartment can easily sleep up to six people if you use the comfortable sofas in the living room. It’s compact but by no means poky and the design means it utilises the space to its maximum potential. It has two double bedrooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen/lounge and an outside roof terrace.
There was one quirky addition that we all had a giggle at and that was the shower cubicle situated in the main bedroom. It was pretty novel, but joking aside, apart from the privacy aspect, it was only used once because the water leaked onto the floor pooling into a dangerous puddle which we had to mop up.
Elsewhere, the flat was well equipped with clean towels, hairdryer, washing machine, coffee-maker and all the kitchen essentials – even though we didn’t actually cook anything. The hosts were very kind and left us with cold beer and bottled water in the fridge, as well as fresh coffee for the morning.
A gesture that we all appreciated the following day when we woke up parched and desperate for caffeine. We were also grateful for the newly installed air conditioning throughout the rooms, as well as the electric shutters that blocked out the sunlight.
The pièce de résistance, though, was the roof terrace which is accessed via a set of astro turfed stairs. Once you reach the summit you are met with the most spectacular views across Madrid. Even better when you can in enjoy it reclining in a jacuzzi hot tub – which incidentally wasn’t so hot but cold – perfect for cooling down from the blistering Spanish heat.
Malasaña is considered one of the most popular nightlife areas in the city. A mix of traditional restaurants, second-hand shops, trendy bars, and urban art, it’s where the hipsters like to hang out (of course!) alongside the old-timers who remember what Malasaña used to be like back in the old days. And this apartment is right, slap bang in the middle of it all. As soon as you step outside you’re met with a gin bar – and I won’t even lie and say we didn’t go in there the first night we arrived…
In terms of position, our apartment was a fantastic base for us to explore the city. Only a few minutes walk to the metro stop Tribunal, we travelled everywhere by foot – even walking to the city centre in around 25 mins at a leisurely pace. Meanwhile, getting lost in the backstreets surrounding Malasaña was the fun part but we always managed to recover our bearings and easily navigate our way back to the apartment block.
Being so close to all the action, we were all concerned about how noisy it might be with the constant street noise below, but the glazed-windows worked wonders and we could barely hear a peep inside the flat. A good thing, too, when we all wanted to enjoy a lie-in.
I would highly recommend this apartment to anyone who wants to spend time in Madrid. Not only is it easily accessible from the airport – around 25 minutes in a taxi – it’s also in a superb location in terms of dining and drinking out; It’s well-placed for visitors to easily reach the city’s main attractions; And the apartment is clean, bright and well-equipped.
The roof terrace and jacuzzi is the icing on the cake – it’s a delightful sun trap that can be enjoyed after a hard day’s sight-seeing and, with outside space a premium in the Spanish capital, it’s such a luxury and we wish we could have made more use of it.
Meanwhile, the hosts were friendly, communicated well and were available at any time in case we had questions. They even let you check out of the apartment at 2.00pm which is really handy if you have a later flight.
Lastly, we found the rates to be reasonable and, even though I went with a group of friends, I wouldn’t hesitate to bring Monkey to stay here – I think it would be perfect for families, too.
Malasaña Penthouse Apartment via Airbnb From £105 per night for the whole apartment