I’m eager to get to Monrooms as I’ve been staying at a hostel for the last few nights. The thought of having a room and bathroom to myself, at least until Chris gets there, is bliss. It’s situated further up from La Rambla, in the Gràcia district of Barcelona and very near to Park Güell. The closest metro stop is Lesseps and I alight from the escalators into a green space with lots of trees, the shade is welcome as it’s a hot day.
I rock on up to Monrooms’ entrance and realise that I’ve told the host that I’ll be there between 1 – 2 pm. Since it’s only just past 11.30 am I have a while to wait. I buzz anyway but there’s no answer. Sighing at my own lack of foresight I trundle my bag back down the way I’ve come and think I’ll try and access a WiFi hot spot and see if I can contact the host so I can check in early.
I get a drink from a shop but it doesn’t have WiFi, I sit on a bench outside and idly look at Google Maps before spotting that there’s library nearby. So I head in there to hang out for an hour or so, at least it’s air conditioned.
Finally it’s time to check-in to Monrooms for the three night stay, so I retrace my steps. The host Jordi immediately opens the door on my buzz and I’m ushered inside. Relief!
I’ve encountered this kind of set-up in Budapest with several rooms available on one floor of a building, a communal kitchen and a reception only open certain hours. The Monrooms set-up seems more streamlined, however, and our room (or should I say suite) has a private bathroom and balcony.
It’s generally basic accommodation but with added touches of personality here and there, each room has painted decals on the white walls, ours has Japanese bamboo, and there are travel quotes and artworks on the hallway walls.
There’s a balcony with a wooden love seat and with the afternoon sun streaming in you’d pretty much cook, but it’s perfect for drying washing. We do take advantage of it one afternoon with a session of homemade sangria.
I don’t really have any issues with the room apart from the fact that it has no air con and you need to have the doors and windows shut at night to take advantage of the double glazing. As it’s only early June it was slightly hot for us but the temperatures are worse in August. The receptionist we speak to the next morning (not Jordi) confesses that he feels sorry for guests who stay in August. There’s a ceiling fan connected to the light switch but it’s noisy and just moves the hot air around.
The communal kitchen has everything you need in terms of plates and cutlery for eating in and we get a shelf in a fridge for storing food items. I do a breakfast run to the grocery store directly next door and come away with cereal, juice, some kind of soy milk, croissants and bananas with the slight feeling I’ve been ripped off as the shop owner had to calculate the total so many times. The croissants are plastic wrapped and kind of inedible, and the soy milk has brown sludge in the bottom, the rest is ok.
We venture in there again in the afternoon to get orange juice for the homemade sangria and Chris gets ripped off by paying €1.50 for a banana, but we get free cherries.
Pros & Cons
Would I Go Back?
Yes I think so just not in the height of summer. This accommodation ticked most of our boxes and we loved the spacious room and having our own semi-private balcony. In hindsight, next time I’d source a nearby supermarket for food shopping rather than use the shop next door.