‘Easily the best hotel breakfast I’ve ever had’ - we stay at a boutique hotel with a Spanish flavour

It’s opposite the Principality Stadium and a short walk from the shops in the Welsh capital
A suite at Parador 44 in CardiffA suite at Parador 44 in Cardiff
A suite at Parador 44 in Cardiff

It might be in the heart of Cardiff and a drop kick from the Principality Stadium but boutique hotel Parador 44 is Spanish to its core.

Located on Quay Street, which once lead from High Street to the now built-over quay, Parador 44 offers visitors a genuine taste of Iberia in the Welsh capital.

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It was opened in the summer of 2022 by Grupo 44, the South Wales-based family-run restaurant and hospitality group. 

Owner-managed by siblings Tom Morgan, Owen Morgan (himself a certified Spanish food expert and sherry educator who is a familiar face on TV cookery shows) and Natalie Isaac, the group opened its first tapas bar, Bar 44, 20 years ago in the Vale of Glamorgan. 

Since then, there have been a further three Bar 44 sites (Penarth, Cardiff and Clifton Village in Bristol) and Mercado 44, an artisan Spanish online market.

The family also run the acclaimed Northern Spain-inspired, Asador 44, which is beneath Parador 44, and it's via the restaurant entrance that you also check in for the hotel.

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There are nine individually designed en-suite rooms. The ‘Sherry’ bedrooms are deluxe double bedrooms and inspired by the owners’ trips to the principle sherry towns of Jerez, Sanlucar and El Puerto. 

And then there are the ‘Parador’ suites, which are larger, light-filled rooms with bigger beds and additional seating. They really are sumptuous rooms and the double glazing means you can’t hear a thing from the street below.

The honesty bar and terrace at Parador 44The honesty bar and terrace at Parador 44
The honesty bar and terrace at Parador 44

There are plenty of authentic Spanish touches throughout the hotel, with a light and natural feel. There are reclaimed wooden floorboards and original beams, as well as headboards made from upcycled Spanish doors and shutters.

Bathrooms are spacious and feature decorative Spanish tiles and walk-in showers with rainfall shower heads the size of dustbin lids.

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To add a local touch, the names and illustrations of each room are etched into Welsh slate next to each door.

But the highlight for me was the guest lounge and secret outdoor roof terrace. Here, guests can help themselves to an honesty bar of Spanish drinks and snacks and simply log anything they consume in a book.

Apart from the guest lounge and the incredibly comfortable bed, the other highlight was the breakfast, served downstairs in the Asador 44 restaurant.

Options range from a Spanish continental breakfast with sherried Welsh cakes and charcuterie to smoked salmon with scrambled free-range eggs on sourdough toast.

The Full Parador Spanish breakfast at Parador 44The Full Parador Spanish breakfast at Parador 44
The Full Parador Spanish breakfast at Parador 44
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I went for the ‘Full Parador’ - a belt-straining plate of overnight bacon, Welsh Black pig pork sausage, smoked morcilla black pudding, roast tomato, free-range egg, olive oil hash brown and roast mushrooms. It was easily the best hotel breakfast I’ve ever had.

Parador 44 offers plenty of Spanish-style luxury a short walk from Cardiff’s main shopping area, central railway station and castle.

And yet despite its central location, it feels tucked away and a genuine find, especially for people attending concerts or rugby matches at the stadium directly opposite.

This is one hotel offering the warmest of Welsh welcomes albeit with a pronounced Spanish flavour. Overnight stays in Cardiff simply won’t be the same again now I've discovered Parador 44.

Parador 44, at 14–15 Quay St, Cardiff CF10 1DD. Double rooms from £127 per night here.

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