Dear Hotel is a trendy boutique hotel that book ends Gran Via, Madrid's main boulevard and the heart of the city.
I recently stayed at Dear Hotel to rest after a brutal overnight layover in Dubai, and turns out it was all I needed.
The rooms were clean, spacious and appointed with Nordic design details and furniture.
One of the biggest reasons why I chose Dear Hotel is for it's rooftop pool overlooking the Madrid skyline.
The pool is located on the 14th floor, where the rooftop terrace is, though I would've liked some loungers and a bigger pool. But even in July, the pool was never busy so it was easy to relax.
You can also enjoy beautiful views from the restaurant and lounge named "Nice to Meet You", where if you get breakfast included in your room rate, is where you'll enjoy your meal to start the day.
Here's also where you can get some breathtaking views of the sunset as the sun goes down on the city and Madrid lights up.
Madrid is a city of rooftop pools, and there are many others around as well, including Hotel Emperador, which features a pool on the 10th floor, also situated along Gran Via. The best news is that some hotels are open for non-guests to use for either half-days and/or full days. Hotel Emperador is one of them, as well as Room Mate Oscar, situated in the neighbourhood of Chueca, which is just north of Gran Via.
Personally, I love rooftop pools for the fantastic views over cities they give and the respite they give from the hot summer afternoons, and I was pretty glad I got to one in Madrid.
Disclaimer: This was not a sponsored stay and all photographs and views are my own
From my trip to Spain this summer, I've turned some of my photography into my brand of everyday products which you can check out below. Worldwide shipping is available so if you're looking for a tote bag or postcard to take home to remember your travels if you too have been to these parts of Spain, and if you'd like to support this passion project of mine, look no further!
View the full product catalogue at the shop here.
When in Seville, we went on a walking tour to get ourselves familiarised with the city.
I've fallen hard for walking tours after this summer, and I'm so glad I went on 2 in Spain alone.
Across the Guadalquivir River lies the neighbourhood of Triana, so called the neighbourhood of gypsies and outcasts, where inhabitants used to identify as being from Triana before Seville.
The draw of Triana though, apart from the flamenco flair, is Calle Betis, the riverfront promenade lined with restaurants and bars which turns into a hotspot in the evenings.
In the sleepy late afternoon though, the buildings shine in the sun as workers of each restaurant start slowly setting up for a busy evening ahead.
View the rest of the collection here.
Barcelona wasn't on the itinerary this summer, but as you can imagine I have plenty photos from my stint 2 years ago.
One of my favourite neighbourhoods in Barcelona is El Born, which is basically the Gothic Quarter except lined with local boutiques instead of kitsch tourist souvenir shops, which lends itself to a really nice bohemian atmosphere.
Not to mention some of the best tapas bars in the city can be found here, which is a major plus.
El Born's also where you get all the beauty of the Gothic Quarter, and I particularly like the doors and façade of shops and houses here.
So here's a photograph of a coffeehouse in El Born, and I think this is quintessential Barcelona in a photograph.
View the rest of the collection here.
When I lived in Barcelona, there were quite a few vintage clothing stores around, and this in particular was a chain of them— Flamingos Vintage Kilo. I would always walk into these stores even if I wasn't looking for anything in particular for the vibe of them. Everything about them just felt so damn cool. In this shop, I stumbled onto an area where there was a collection of vinyls, and there really is something about vinyls for me and the way they are packaged. There was no way I was leaving this store without at least a snap on the camera.
Andalucia in Spain may be famous for its whitewashed hilltop towns, but I got a slice of that in Sitges in Northeastern Spain, Catalonia. The streets in winter were almost completely empty save the odd resident or two going about their daily business, meaning we got to explore the entire town almost to ourselves that day.
Street art wasn't hard to find during the time I lived in Barcelona, Spain. But this by the side of a building in the town of Tarragona an hour away from Barcelona was by far the most elaborate I saw. The mural represents a celebration of Spanish culture.
In a city surrounded by hills and mountains, we took a bus up to Tibidabo, one overlooking Barcelona which featured a theme park and church at the top. I took this of the ferris wheel at the Parc d'Attracions Tibidabo.
We stumbled onto this vantage point over the town of Tarragona just south of Barcelona when we found ourselves exploring the Roman ruins downtown. The best part of travelling around in winter is that for the most part, we had all these incredible sights to ourselves.
During my very first trip to Barcelona, Spain, we headed to the beaches of the city in the district of Barceloneta. On a clear day, the sun brought the crowds in droves; friends playing beach football or volleyball, joggers taking in their morning ritual, groups of families and friends strolled along the promenade, and beachgoers getting out their towels and getting their best tan on. Whilst making my way down the boulevard, I managed to get this clear shot of these two palm trees right next to each other, and made me think of partners— two peas in a pod.