The stress of work have been taking over our lives lately, for the past few months, it seems like that the husband and I hardly have time to do anything together. I guess one of the best things about living in Spain is that we do have a social life and during weekends our kids get to play with other children while we catch up with what our friends have been doing over the week.  But, the last time we have spent time as a couple was about three years ago.  With work and kids being an excuse it’s easy to overlook that we STILL need to spend some time alone, even if it’s just for the weekend.

Finally, after our good friend willingly volunteered as a babysitter on Friday, my husband and I decided to spend an unplanned weekend getaway in Valencia. Our friend recommended the Ayre Hotel Astoria Palace because of its location, and even though we have lived in Valencia for a couple of years, we are still quite unfamiliar with places in the city. This hotel seems like a good choice when it came to the location and positive reviews.

After reassuring us a number of times that the kids WILL BE OK, we booked our room at the hotel on Saturday, hoping to only stay a night.  The hotel is situated very close to the old town of Valencia, only a walking distance from the main attractions.  I’m a great lover of old architecture so this is the perfect location, easily accessible with a large choice of bars and restaurants around the area to try. No matter what your taste is, you will certainly find something to do! I particularly loved the surroundings including cafe Nederland 1814 which is situated on a square across the road from the hotel. A great place to chill, eat and watch the world go by.

The hotel staff were friendly and willing to help. Our room was stylish and spacious, I especially loved the sliding mirrored wardrobes, writing desk and the enormous bed! The walk in the bathroom was also large and came with the usual complimentary towels, robes and soap. The complimentary chocolates on the bed was a nice touch too, but I made sure I brought those back for the kids.

The view from our room was also impressive, we checked in at about 8 pm (I told you this was a last minute plan).  We had room 314 and was just in time to watch the sunset, which was breathtaking. It almost felt like a scene from Assassins Creed! At that time we realised, we should do this more often!

The only fault I can think of is the shortage of drinks from the mini-bar and coffee/tea making facilities. We would have liked to have had a drink once we checked in, but was disappointed to find that the mini-bar was only filled with bottled water. But, that didn’t ruin our weekend and to be fair there are a lot better bars and restaurants nearby to have a drink and tapas.

After spending a few hours bar hopping and enjoying the atmosphere, I realised how important it is to have this little time together and finally spending the time to get to know Valencia at night. Feeling lucky that we have this right outside our doorstep and we should take advantage of it more.  A great weekend, nice hotel beautiful city, but one night is definitely not enough!

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British/Filipina now living in Valencia, Spain. Mum, wife, designer and illustrator. I am also the author of Ohla Living where I share my lifestyle, travel, recipes and creative ideas.

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