Staff are unfailingly helpful. They greet you on arrival, and carry bags up to your room. Later, they pore over maps and point you in the direction of San Sebastián’s world-class restaurants. You’ll find complimentary bicycles and beach towels for your stay, so spin over to La Concha or Zurriola, both fabulous beaches in the middle of the city. Bedrooms - some in the main house, others in the stables behind - have sparkly white bathrooms and extremely comfy beds. You’ll also find a small gym, an elegant salon, and rather handy off-street parking that’s included in the price. This classy hotel sure delivers where you need it to. A great haven in a cool city.
- Arzak, one of the best restaurants in the world, is just up the road
- San Sebastián is a bike-friendly city and the hotel offers complimentary bicycles - a neat touch and a great way to get around
- Plenty of stately style in the grounds and communal areas
- Elegant bar and sitting room for pre- or post-dinner drinks, with a sunny terrace in summer and a fire in winter
- Helpful staff make all the difference
- There’s no restaurant, but this actually makes sense: San Sebastián is Spain’s gastronomic capital and the competition in town is hot. Staff can book tables and taxis
- It's a 10-minute walk into town and for the first 5 minutes you're on a fairly busy road
- Some feel that the stable rooms lack character compared to those in the main house
- You may hear noise from the road, though rooms are double-glazed and manicured grounds separate the hotel from the worst of the traffic
Best time to go
Our top tips
Pack up a picnic and take a boat across to Santa Clara, the island in the middle of the bay. Or hire kayaks in the old port and paddle across instead
- Boutique Hotel
- 26 rooms
- Breakfast (+ restaurants nearby)
- All ages welcome
- Open all year
- Spa Treatments
- Beach Nearby
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Car not necessary
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Concierge Service
- Bicycles Available
The 26 rooms are split between the main villa and the stables which stand behind. All are very comfortable, and a good size (from 21 to 36 sq.m. depending on category). Decor is traditional country house hotel style, with some busy floral fabrics in the main house, and a cleaner, lighter look in the stables. Most can be set up with kingsize double or twin beds; some can take an extra bed, and there's one Family Room whose separate sitting room has a double sofabed.
The entry-level Nest is on the top floor of the main villa, a cosy attic hideaway to suit a single traveller or a couple on a budget. Next come the popular Superior Rooms, on the lower ground floor of the main villa; these come with private terraces (lovely) and chess-board tiling in the bathrooms. Over in the stables, the Contemporary and Deluxe rooms are bright and spacious, with full height windows and (in the Contemporaries) room for an extra bed if needed. Or you can pay a bit more for a private garden with sunloungers and a table for al fresco coffees. Top of the range are the Privilege rooms in the main villa, with high ceilings, distinctive curved windows and Art Deco lamps; these were the original living quarters of the Londaiz family.
All rooms have air conditioning, coffee machines, minibar, safe and free drinking water.
- Air conditioning
- Central heating
- Cots Available
- In room treatments available
- Safe box
Breakfast is served in the dining room or the bar, or out on the terrace, with the day’s weather forecast waiting on your table. You’ll find jugs of freshly squeezed orange juice, yoghurts and fruit, cooked hams and cheeses, croissants and baguettes. When we visited, a bowl of seriously tasty cherries was the star attraction. Hot dishes are cooked to order if you want them, perhaps an omelette or fried eggs with bacon.
In the evening the bar offers a selection of delicatessen such as anchovies and ham, served alongside an excellent choice of Spanish and international wines. A small room service menu is available throughout the day, with simple dishes like vegetable soup, smoked salmon, veal meatballs, and plates of cheese.
At night you eat out. You have quite some choice - San Sebastián is heaven for food lovers, with one of the highest densities of Michelin stars in the world. Arzak, considered one of the best restaurants in the world, is less than 1km from the hotel’s front door. Juan Mari Arzak has been in charge of his long-running family restaurant since 1966 and won his third star in 1989.
If you want something less formal, try one of the city’s pintxos bars. Pintxos is fantastic food served in single portions, usually on a piece of baguette. Some dishes are laid out on the bar, others are cooked to order. The tradition is to stop at each bar, drink a small beer, eat a dish, and move on to the next place.
- Restaurants nearby
- Room service
- Spend the day on La Concha, one of the most beautiful beaches you will find in the middle of a city. You can potter round to the small port for lunch. The blue and white sun shades can be hired by the day, the week, the month, or the season
- Want to ride some waves? Then wander on to Zurriola beach around the corner. You can hire all the kit you need at the surf school. It’s always busy with locals
- Climb Monte Urgull up to the statue of Christ for big views of the city and coast. Then roll back down into the Old Town for a cooling drink in Plaza de la Constitución
- San Sebastián is a cultural hub. Highlights are the film festival in September, the classical music festival in August and the legendary jazz festival in July
- Wander round the western flank of La Concha and find famous Basque artist Eduardo Chillida’s Comb of the Winds sculpture on the rocks. Then take the funicular up to the top of Monte Igueldo. As well as great views, you’ll find a carousel and some bumper cars
- Check out the cathedral in all its neo-Gothic glory. It’s in the centre of town, surrounded by cool shops
- Like your football? Real Sociedad play at Anoeta, a 30-minute walk along the river from the Old Town. Games against Athletic Bilbao, their Basque rivals, are really something
- Head west on the motorway and drop in to see the Guggenheim in Bilbao. It’s about an hour by car. While you’re there, head up to Getxo and check out the oldest transport bridge in the world. You can cross it in gondolas, quite some journey
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Boat trips
- Historical sites
- Museums / galleries
- Shopping / markets
Children are welcome, but this is quite a formal hotel and there is little here for children to do. Most rooms can take baby cots (free) and some rooms can fit an extra bed (extra cost).
Family friendly accommodation:
The Superior Family Suite is ideal for small families as it features an separate lounge with sofa bed.
Cots Available, Extra Beds Available
Baby cots are available on request.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
Hotel Villa Soro is located in the city of San Sebastián, in the Basque Country, northern Spain. It's a 10-minute walk from the Old Town and beaches.
The closest airports are Bilbao (99km away, and 80 minutes by car) and Biarritz (45km away in France, and 45 minutes by car). Click on the links below for a list of airlines serving these airports.
From the Airport
The hotel can arrange transfers from either airport (see Rates), and there are hourly buses between Bilbao airport and San Sebastián. If you want to tour the area around the city, consider hiring a car and driving (see below).
San Sebastián has overnight rail connections from Paris and Lisbon, as well as regular services from Barcelona and Madrid. The station is 1.2km (less than 10 minutes by taxi) from the hotel. See the excellent Seat 61 for more information on getting here by train, including travelling overland from the UK.
For car hire we see our car rental recommendations. If you fly into France and hire a car, make sure you are allowed to drive in Spain. The hotel has free off-street parking, but San Sebastián’s one-way system makes it difficult to find, so make sure you have directions to hand.
Detailed directions will be sent when you book through i-escape.com.
More on [getthere:thebasquecountry:getting to the Basque Country]
- Bilbao Sondica 99.0 km BIO
- Biarritz 45.0 km BIQ
- Beach 0.5 km
- Shops 0.5 km
- Restaurant 0.5 km