Mini Guide to Madrid, Spain
Hotel de Las Letras combines classical architecture with understated rooms. The grand proportions ensure big windows and high ceilings, while angled lamps and moulded sofas lend a modern edge. Each room has a literary quote on the wall (00 34 91 523 79 80; hoteldelasletras.com; Gran Vía 11; from £100).
The glass edifice of Hotel Urban is a fine example of art-inspired cool and a wonderful counterpoise to the more classic approach of many five-star hotels in Madrid. The rooftop pool and candlelit terrace are Madrid's best, (00 34 91 787 77 70; derbyhotels.com; Carrera de San Jerónimo 34; from £165).
The metro is fast and efficient. There are 11 colour-coded lines, and maps are available at stations (single 80p; 6am-2am; metromadrid.es). Taxi ranks are all over town. To call for a taxi, try Radio-Teléfono Taxi (radiotelefono-taxi.com).
How to Go?
Iberia, British Airways and easyJet fly direct to Madrid from Gatwick (£50), Manchester (£50) and Edinburgh (£70). Aero City is a private doorto- door minibus service from the airport (from £5; aerocity.com). A taxi to the centre costs from £20.