Let this Stress-Free Accessible Accommodation Enrich Your Barcelona Experience
MICs Sant Jordi is a fully accessible hotel comprised of 32 comfortable well-designed apartments. It is also the key component that can make all the difference in whether or not an individual with a disability can enjoy the many other accessible aspects of Barcelona.
Simon, Otto and I were invited to stay at MICs Sant Jordi in order to be able to report on its features and amenities for visitors with a variety of disabilities. The short version is that we were impressed beyond all expectations with the facility, its staff and the comfort and peace of mind it offered its guests. Little did I know that less than two weeks later I would be dragging my broken leg up two flights of stairs in a hotel in Lucca, Italy, and pining for MICs Sant Jordi.
MICs Sant Jordi is the first and only hotel of its kind in Barcelona. It is the result of renovations made to a former cardiology hospital. Owned by British-based Cheshire Homes, MICs Sant Jordi was an assistive living facility for people with disabilities similar to the company’s other facilities.
Five years ago, the apartments became available for nightly, weekly and monthly occupation, making it ideal for individual, family and group travelers. The hotel also can accommodate students working on post-graduate degrees.
MICs offers single, double and triple apartments consisting of one or two bedrooms and bathrooms, a fully equipped kitchen, and living area. Most units also have a small balcony. Included in the room rate are breakfast, 24-hour care and support service, an adapted gym, a hydrotherapy pool and equipment such as hoists and wheelchairs on loan.
Located in the residential Sarria neighborhood of Barcelona, MICs Sant Jordi is steps away from the Tres Toros subway station. Plaza Catalunya, one of the hubs for transportation in Barcelona, is only a few stops away. A tantalizing bakery, small supermarket, pharmacy, accessible restaurants, and shops are also a short distance from the hotel.
We arrived at MICs Sant Jordi late in the evening following our train trip from Madrid. The welcome was warm, and despite our fatigue, it was hard not to be enthusiastic about what we saw. The door to our apartment could be opened from the inside with the push of a button, and automatically closed after a few seconds. The electric beds were comfortable, and there were electrical outlets within easy reach. The kitchen/living area was spacious, modern efficient and a wheelchair could easily maneuver around the entire apartment. A washer and dryer on the floor made it possible for us to clean our clothes without having to search for a laundromat. And that was just the beginning.
The bathroom was large. It had a roll-in shower with a folding shower chair, grab bars, an emergency pull cord and a towel rail within easy reach. There was no curtain, and the first time I took a shower, I managed to flood the bathroom and soak the towels and toilet paper. That was when I learned how to correctly position the shower-head.
The restaurant was attached to MICs Sant Jordi but is not part of the hotel. Nevertheless, this is where breakfast is served. The hotel works with the restaurant on behalf of its guests and can make arrangements to accommodate special dietary requirements. Besides the breakfast included in the room rate, the restaurant also offers light meals and snacks throughout the day.
We found the restaurant to be welcoming with a friendly and attentive staff. The breakfast choices were Continental and Mediterranean. We opted for the latter and received a ham and cheese sandwich on crusty bread, juice, a croissant, yogurt and coffee. Although not spectacular, it was tasty and kept us going well into the day.
Although many modern Barcelona hotels have wheelchair accessible rooms, MICs Sant Jordi has staff and equipment to meet the needs of guests with the most complex disability. Although not included in MICs Sant Jordi’s room rate, the staff can arrange for such items as scooters and oxygen.
Considering the services and amenities included in the room rate, MICs Sant Jordi’s rates are reasonable and provide good value. Also, with the kitchen facilities in every apartment, the ability to prepare some or all of your meals can save you a good deal of money. You can find more information on the hotel’s website.
Impressive as MICs Sant Jordi was, we were blown away by the genuine interest in how the facility could be made more blind-friendly. When asked what improvements would be helpful, we suggested tactile marking on the appliances, Braille floor numbers on elevator door frames – the buttons inside already have raised numbers and Braille – and an alternate placement for the tactile numbers on the apartment doors.
Since I broke my left leg in Pals, Spain, we have stayed in a number of hotels. Some were adequate, others not so much. But there was nothing that even came close to MICs Sant Jordi for total accessibility and inclusion. For anyone who requires more than just a hotel room, this facility takes much of the stress out of planning a vacation or business trip in one of the most fascinating and accessible cities in Europe.
If You Go
MICs Sant Jordi
Via Augusta 269-273,
Barcelona – 93 252 32 00 –
- Alarm systems in bathroom and bedroom
- 24 hr on-call assistance
- Adjustable beds
- Therapeutic swimming pool
- Physiotherapist (at an additional charge)
- Telephone with alternative amplification
- Onsite restaurant
- Free WiFi
- Fully equipped kitchen
- Central heating and air conditioning
- Laundry service
Disclaimer: We are grateful to MICs Saint Jordi and Barcelona Turisme for our delightful and informative Barcelona experience. However, all opinions, as always are entirely my own.