Things to do in Madrid – Spain Travels Day 6

On Day 6 of our travels in Spain (first day of January), we decided to try out the buffet breakfast at TOC Hostel Madrid. For a mere 5 Euros, you’ll be able to eat to your heart’s content with these goodies!

Breakfast Buffet Spread TOC Hostel Madrid
Breakfast Buffet Spread TOC Hostel Madrid
Coffee Milk & Cereal
Coffee Milk & Cereal
Kate's first round
Kate’s first round
Kate's 2nd round
Kate’s 2nd round

After the excellent breakfast (along with a few cups of coffee to kick start our day), we headed over to one of the most atas (classy) hotels we’ve ever been to – Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques. Thanks to the great folks at Gran Melia, we also got to experience the ultra exclusive Red Level service there…

Where to stay in Madrid – Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques

View from Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques
View from Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques

At the entrance to the hotel, there’s a doorman that checks if you’re a guest in the hotel. Unless you’re dining at the restaurant, you’re probably not gonna enter without your name on that list. Once we’re identified as Red Level guests, we were brought to the Red Level lounge where the check-in process was done. As we were still a little early, we were given a little tour around the premise which included the spa, gym, exclusive courtyard and of course our favourite – the rooftop terrace of Gran Melia De Los Duques, complete with a rooftop swimming pool!

Rooftop Pool Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques
Rooftop Pool Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques
Tom lounging at the Rooftop Terrace of Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques
Tom lounging at the Rooftop Terrace of Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques

We were so awed by the views from the rooftop terrace that we spent a fair amount of time just soaking it all in. Check out this video taken there…


Spectacular views from Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques Rooftop Terrace

Unlike the other hotels that we stayed in during this trip to Spain, we realized that the staff had very high standards of English. Even the porter who was showing us around the hotel premise. We soon found out that he had 8 years of experience at another Gran Melia hotel and spent a fair amount of time in an English language school before being sent here. Talk about emphasis on service… For the rest of our stay, we were identified by our names and were given first class service at the Red Level Lounge.

Once the room was ready, we were given yet another surprise…

Red Level Deluxe Room Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques
Red Level Deluxe Room Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques

The Red Level Deluxe Room at Gran Melia Palacio de Los Duques was HUGE! We also loved how the bath tub was located with the rain shower in an glass “open-concept”. That way, we were also able to enjoy movies while taking a leisurely bath. A welcome gift of Spanish Nougat Candies also left a pretty good first impression

Welcome Gift - Spanish Nougat candies
Welcome Gift – Spanish Nougat candies

After checking in, we took a short walk to the Royal Palace to soak in the atmosphere…

Royal Palace Madrid
Royal Palace Madrid
Cathedral Madrid
Cathedral Madrid

There was a busker playing on the accordion that brought out the atmosphere in the area. Passers-by even started to dance to the music. Kate and I spent that leisurely afternoon just taking in the sights, listening to the songs on the accordian (felt like it was our honeymoon in Paris again!) as well as watching the locals enjoy the first day of the new year. We headed back to Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques and spent our evening in the Red Level Lounge.

What to do in Madrid – Red Level Lounge Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques

2bearbear @ Red Level Lounge Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques
2bearbear @ Red Level Lounge Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques

During meal times, there are mains served at the Red Level lounge while light refreshments and drinks are available throughout the day. But one of the highlights of the Red Level Lounge at Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques is the jamon (Spanish cured ham), oysters as well as the premium Ruinart Champagne…

Jamon - Spanish Ham
Jamon – Spanish Ham
Free flow of Ruinart Champagne at Red Level Lounge Gran Melia De Los Duques
Free flow of Ruinart Champagne at Red Level Lounge Gran Melia De Los Duques

There were of course many other delectable finds such as fresh oysters, cakes as well as an open bar. The quality of food and drinks were probably one of the best for lounges we’ve been in.

Breakfast at Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques

Breakfast Setting Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques
Breakfast Setting Gran Melia Palacio De Los Duques
Juice, fruits and sliders
Juice, fruits and sliders
Eggs Benedict & more Spanish Jamon
Eggs Benedict & more Spanish Jamon
Chocolates and pastries- Kate's favourite!
Chocolates and pastries- Kate’s favourite!

Breakfast spread was really good. Definitely one of the best we’ve seen in Europe. Well, the best was probably at Intercontinental Hotel Warsaw. Harpist playing while you enjoy breakfast? Now, that’s really quite something.

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Although we reluctantly left Gran Melia de Los Duques that day, we were so glad to be flying to yet another paradise. Cancun Mexico! Thanks to our friends there, we were able to check out the ultra-luxurious, all-inclusive resort : Secrets The Vine Cancun!

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