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Mr & Mrs Smith’s Guide To The Coolest Places In Spain

When it comes to European cities, Spain is somewhere that likes to be looked at. From the catwalk heights of Blahnik and Balenciaga to the mould-busting high street couture of Zara and Desigual, Spanish fashion has long-known how to turn heads and raise eyebrows.

But what’s the point of dressing up to the nueves if there’s no one to admire your Iberia-inflected ensemble? If you’re planning a trip to España, here are our fashionista-approved selection of see-and-be-seen hotels and hotspots… 


Marbella Club

Marbella has been the famously chic playground of old-school, look-at-me Mediterranean glamour for decades, and Marbella Club is one of the biggest reasons behind its rep. Opened by playboy Prince Alfonso von Hohenlohe in 1951, the shore-side resort (which includes a spa, beach club, golf course, botanical gardens and champagne room, naturally) still attracts the glitz-garbed international jet set and those who like to watch them at play. Although these days, a lot of the younger guests slope off to barefoot-luxe, coast club Nikki Beach down the road when they’re tired of lounging on the pool terrace… 


Spain’s luxury leather-goods maker Loewe has been accessorising the elite for just shy of 150 years. Its mothership store on Madrid’s Gran Via is more than a mere boutique; it’s a suave and spangly brand museum, with eye-opening exhibits that showcase the materials and craftsmanship that go into its statement bags. From the moment you step past its enormous steel sculpture of the Amazona bag to meet the enormous tree of Loewe leather, you know that, as far as bags go, you’re not in canvas anymore…

El Palauet

Sooner or later, everyone serious about style that comes to Barcelona heads to Passeig de Gracia with space in their suitcase and a credit card that can take a beating. The smartest shoppers minimise their bag-lugging distance by checking into the Catalan capital’s most elegant address – the designer apartments of El Palauet. The art nouveau exterior gives way to a collection of modern, minimalist suites – each equipped with classic 20th-century designed furniture and staffed by a personal PA, to book your restaurants, bag you tickets and, if need be, help carry your shopping…


Bars blow in and out of fashion like carrier bags in a carpark, but every so often, somewhere with both style and staying power opens up to wow the world. That’s Mutis all over, which has been ranked Europe’s best bar in 2012 and 16th in the world in recent times. This cocktail-supping Barcelona speakeasy is hidden (and we mean hidden) in a residential apartment building on Avenida Diagonal in Eixample, next to the also-enchanting Bar Mut. The bar itself is soundproofed (it’s possible its neighbours don’t even know it’s there), which is handy as the shakers keep on shaking late into the night and the pianist doesn’t even get his ivory-ticklers out until 12.30am. The question is can you get your name on the list?

Cap Rocat, Mallorca

If you have new-season swimwear to show off that is best accessorised by a 19th-century Mallorcan port (every good bikini needs battlements for a backdrop), Cap Rocat is the place to do it. High in drama, blessed with sweeping sea views and radiating exclusivity from drawbridge to turret, it’s a secluded, adults-only hideaway, where supermodels and super yachters go for superlative service and one of the sexiest poolsides on the Med.


Spanish Margarita 43

Whatever happens in the fashion world, the margarita never goes out of style. The Licor 43 version gives the classic tequila cocktail an extra splash of sophistication. Just combine 40ml tequila with 35ml Licor 43, the juice of half a lime and a dash of orange bitters in a shaker of ice cubes; shake vigorously, then strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a slice of lime, a sprig of mint and a sun-kissed backdrop.