Located on the former souk that stood there in the times of the Muslim conquest of Spain, whoever wonders into this corner of Almería will discover the city’s Plaza Vieja. Its Town Hall is also found there and, if you’re looking for a room, you will also come across the Hotel Lounge Plaza Vieja designed by the firm of architects Alonso Balaguer y Arquitectos Asociados. The firm was responsible for the hotel’s interior design, which was given a painstaking makeover, in one of the mansions that make up this characteristic porticoed square at the heart of the region’s capital.
The establishment only has 10 rooms arranged on the ground floor and two upper storeys of the building. The ground floor has been divided into two large open-plan spaces that give onto the square, designed to respond its interconnection with the city and seeking to create a number of harmonious seating areas.
The hotel’s restaurant is run by one of Andalusia’s emerging figures from the world of gastronomy, Alejandro Sánchez, a chef who has already earned one Michelin star. A long bar is the focal point of the space predominated by dark colours. Next to it, guests can enjoy views of a large wine cellar.
The building also has a basement, where the architects have restored the old Arab baths in keeping with the materials found there. This space features a number of rooms with water at different temperatures with subdued lighting, a hammam and a whirlpool bath, all in an atmosphere of relaxing silence. The facility’s pool shells have been designed in white, which sit in striking contrast to the original brick walls in a dusky, relaxing environment.
Tradition and modernity also come together in the rooms of this hotel. They all have privileged views and they each combine the building’s original features with contemporary finishes. They are all different and have a feature wall displaying a characteristic image of the city. The walls’ natural stone masonry stands out against the modern design scheme. The architects have also added wood, stucco and white marble to the design, all of which blends in with the original stone.
At the top of the building, the terrace enables guests to enjoy views of the square, the old Arab fort and the city walls.