The best hotels in the world are in emblematic buildings. A number of them have converted into mythical constructions precisely because they are the headquarters of a well known hotel, through which have passed dozens of personalities from the whole world. This is the case of the Chelsea Hotel or the Ritz Carlton in 5th Avenue in New York, and the Hotel Ritz in Paris, which offers a journey to the 19th century not only for the unique historic building but also for the well maintained interior decoration in accordance with the era.
Without leaving Spain we also have a good collection, some of which are more modest, and others which maintain a high level. For that reason we decided to produce a small series of articles where we propose a journey through the History of some of the hotels and most emblematic buildings in our country. Urban hotels with charm where you can relax and enjoy something special that converts a business trip into an unforgettable experience or allows you to surprise who ever you choose with a romantic getaway.
With the first chapter of the series we want to break a small tabu and show the most interesting side of a destination that has been and is criticised due to the atrocious urbanism that the coastline has witnessed: Benidorm. Or little Manhattan, as it is called by some people.
With over 100 skyscrapers, many of which can compete with those that exist in the principal European capitals, Benidorm is one of the places where you can find authentic jewels, infinite buildings, full of examples of history of the twentieth century. Many are those where in recent times, photographers have spent time filming the skyline of Benidorm with absolutely amazing results.
The major part of the highest buildings (more than 100 metres) are hotels that invite you to live an experience that is very different to the unpleasant image that during years was transmitted about this Levante coast. Some, like the Gran Hotel Bali, with four stars is situated in a building of 186 metres which makes it the highest hotel in Europe offering luxury suites with Jacuzzi, dressing room, many types of swimming pools, spa, gymnasium, gastronomic gourmet service and a club for late night drinks.
Others have complexes of apartments such as the classic Hotel Don Jorge, linked to the Hotel Palm Beach and situated in the tower that has the same name “Don Jorge”, with 36 floors and 750 metres from the famous beach of Levante. Also the aparthotel Benibeach, three stars in the Torre Benibeach, in front of the Poniente beach. Of the towers the most well known are the Torre Mirador del Mediterraneo, in the quiet area of Rincon de Loix, 123 metres and 35 floors, situated very near to the family hotel Sol Pelicanos Ocas and the exclusive Melia Benidorm Hotel.
Lonely, breathtaking and stunning, the great tower, Miragolf Playa II, houses a modest hotel which consists of apartments with additional services of interest such as tennis courts, golf course, swimming pool and also a training centre. One of the highest and newest building in the skyline of Benidorm are the Torres d’Oboe which are also called Maeva Benidorm and are situated in Kennedy Street, just a few metres from the Flamingo Benidorm, a building 83 metres high, 26 floors and Californian style, which is a family hotel interesting for medium and long stays.
Next door you can find the Flamingo Playa and Benidorm Suites (which will open for summer 2014 and promises to be a hotel with luxury suites and with a new high quality All Inclusive concept). The two Torres d’Oboe are the design of the architects, Juan C. Oliva and Jose A. Murcia,a rational modern sober style and highlighted principally because it is the tallest building in the surroundings. Further away, looking a little towards Poniente, you can see the Pencil Building (officially called Costa Blanca II), one of the narrowest and 90 metres high. Going down to the beach, very near to the exclusive Sandos Monaco – a building of 16 floors which houses one of the best luxury hotels for adults only in Benidorm, we find two emblematic towers, the Gemelos 20, the work of Campos Silla and Sanchis Lambies, with a style, that in the highest part, reminds one of some of the skyscrapers of New York and gives an air of Gotham to the whole complex.
Other symbolic examples of urbanism in this curious city is the tower of Sol Poniente, very near to the beach of the same name and with 33 floors. Also this building is the work of Pablo Canela and Raul S. Jose and shares classification with the Torre Benidorm that with its 89 metres and 26 floors reminds one of the mythical video games, Tetris. Neither of these two buildings are hotels, they are apartments and family homes but we wanted to mention them because they are considered to be among the most clear examples of brutal architecture that exist in this country. For many, too brutal.