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Oriente Hostal 2.5

Opera, Madrid, Community of Madrid

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Review Summary

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  • Central location between the Royal Palace and Puerta del Sol
  • Opposite Opera Metro stop, and a short walk from regional trains
  • Clean, cute rooms with flat-screen TVs, air-conditioning, safes, and hairdryers
  • Superior Rooms have mini-fridges and wonderful views of the Royal Theater
  • Soundproofed windows minimize street noise
  • All rooms have en-suite bathrooms
  • Computer available for guest use
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout


  • Individual Rooms are tiny 
  • Thin walls between rooms
  • Hotel lacks any common features

Bottom Line

The 39-room, two-and-a-half-pearl Oriente Hostal is a nice step above your typical city budget hotel. Its rooms are individually decorated -- some with cheerful contemporary decor and others in a more classic style -- and have great amenities, including free Wi-Fi, small flat-screen TVs, safes, and air-conditioning. Most are small, and Individual Rooms are tiny, but all units are spotlessly clean and comfortable, and many have wonderful views of the Royal Theater. There are no amenities whatsoever here, but the location right in the heart of Madrid's historic center allows for easy access to restaurants, cafes, and all other services. Those looking for a clean and sleek dormitory-style youth hostel may want to consider U Hostels, also within walking distance of major attractions.

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Small hostel with cute, eclectic interiors, and a wonderful location

The Oriente occupies two floors of a traditional apartment building with a pale yellow facade and cute wrought-iron balconies with small flower pots. Double wooden doors with lovely carved designs and lion-shaped door knockers open onto a fresh hall with wooden wainscoting, large mirrors, arched glass-and-wood doors, and a large lantern-shaped lamp. This area is shared with the building’s non-guest neighbors, and has a strong local feel, with small mailboxes on one side, and a glass elevator that is a recent addition to the building. 

The lobby is located on the second floor, and is surprisingly modern and appealing. Prussian blue wallpaper and silver crushed velvet ottomans with yellow accents are a fist taste of the property's focus on design, while the classic crystal chandelier, arched doorways, and crown molding are nods at the building’s age. The hallways are the only other common spaces at Oriente Hostal, and they have the same eclectic style as the lobby. A funky, colorful patchwork armchair sits next to an old wooden piano pushed against a wall with cute blue wallpaper, and large prints of Madrid scenes and sights share the walls with classic paintings with ornate golden frames. Although this mix of styles may not appeal to everyone, it lends the hostel a unique character hard to find in more traditional properties.


Right in the heart of Madrid's historic center, five-minute walk to Puerta del Sol

The hotel is located on Arenal, a busy pedestrian street in the heart of the historic and tourist center of Madrid. Right across the street is the Royal Theater, while the Royal Palace, the Almudena Cathedral, and the gorgeous palace gardens are all a block away. Bustling Puerta del Sol is a five-minute walk down the street, as is Plaza Mayor. Madrid’s most famous museums, including the Prado, the Thyssen Bornemisza, and the Reina Sofia, are all within a 20-minute downhill walk of the hotel. Nightlife areas such as La Latina, Chueca, Alonso Martinez, and Malasana can be reached on foot in under 15 minutes. The Opera Metro stop is right opposite the hotel, which allows for easy access to other attractions a little farther afield, including Puerta de Alcala, Retiro Park, and shopping in the Salamanca neighborhood (trips to these destinations take about 15 minutes by metro). The airport is a 25-minute drive away, or 45 minutes by metro. 


Clean, individually decorated rooms with flat-screen TVs and free Wi-Fi

The hotel has 39 rooms, all different in style and size. Many have been given a modern overhaul, and feature cheerful contemporary decor with bright colors and floral designs, while others have a more traditional style, with classic wooden furniture and a soft neutral palette. Although less bold, the latter also have a few cute details, such as striped wallpaper, large headboards, laminate floors, or period-style furniture painted aged silver. Standard amenities include free Wi-Fi, small flat-screen TVs, and individually controlled air-conditioning; mini-fridges are provided in Superior Rooms, but can be requested in most other room types. Thick windows block street noise at night, but there have been complaints of paper-thin walls between rooms. Some units overlook a small inner courtyard, but many have great views of the street and the Royal Theater. Bathrooms are spotlessly clean, with showers, hairdryers, and a few basic toiletries; some have black-and-white tiles and sleek walk-in showers.


A lack of any common features

Other than offering free Wi-Fi and being able to print documents for guests, there are no common features at this hostel. The front desk is staffed around the clock, which isn't always a given at tiny, older hostels. A computer is available for guests without their own devices. Luggage storage can also be arranged. 

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1st Floor Calle Arenal 23, Madrid, Community of Madrid 28013, Spain