Totem Hotel

Salamanca district Madrid, Spain Book from Book from £134 per night

A sleek, sophisticated hotel in the chic Salamanca district, with 19th-century features and a hip cocktail bar
When a new boutique hotel is celebrated locally, and not just in the pages of the latest travel magazine, you know you’re onto a winner. Since opening in June 2016, TOTEM Hotel has fast become a fashionable hotspot in the swanky Salamanca neighbourhood of central Madrid. Its refurbished façade harks back to the 1800s, while the decadent bar evokes the glitz and glamour of the roaring 20s, complete with potted palms, blue velvet sofas, and a good-looking, cocktail-sipping crowd.

Spread across the 5 floors above, the 64 rooms are funky without being loud. Designer Paco Llonch played with a palette of greys and whites, combined with bright pops of colour; all rooms have smart sitting areas, and many have balconies with views of the tranquil, tree-lined street below. Best of all, the location is ideal for sightseeing, museums and shopping, with boutiques all around and metro stops nearby. There’s no doubt about it: TOTEM Hotel lives up to the hype.
Covid-19 update: some services and facilities may be changed as a result of Coronavirus measures.


  • Only minutes from independent boutiques, designer shops and top restaurants, and a short walk from museums and the Retiro park
  • We loved the bar’s decadent 1920s vibe and outstanding cocktails
  • Well-equipped rooms, with beautiful design throughout
  • Attractive original features, including a 19th-century façade and perfectly preserved wooden staircase


  • Unusually, extra bed rates will not be included on your online quote. Instead, they will be payable upon arrival at the hotel
  • Standard double rooms are small - it’s worth upgrading if you can
  • The restaurant has changed since we last visited so we're yet to sample the traditional Spanish fare on offer
  • Only the higher-grade rooms have coffee-making kits (Nespresso machines)

Best time to go

Given the hotel’s location in the heart of Madrid’s exclusive shopping district, you might want to visit during the sales season in July. April and May are very pleasant, when the trees are in full bloom, as are the autumn months. Avoid August - it’s too hot, even for the Madrileños!

Our top tips

Head to the Chamberí district for an experimental meal at compact restaurant Sala de Despiece. Here, young and talented academy chefs fire out gourmet dishes from the open-plan kitchen – it’s a spectacle as much as an unforgettably good meal. Get there as the doors open at 8pm or be prepared to queue.

Great for...

City Style
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 64
  • Restaurant & bar (open daily)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
Room: Deluxe Attic


All 64 rooms and suites have wooden floors, grey corner sofas and tall double-glazed windows that let in plenty of natural light. Pops of colour stand out against white walls, creating an air of modern, understated luxury.

Standard Double TOTEM rooms are on the small side, so it's worth upgrading to a Deluxe Exterior or higher. We had a bright and spacious Junior Suite with 3 balconies and lime green curtains that drew back to reveal the tree-lined Calle Hermosilla below. Deluxe Attic rooms are large but have slightly lower, sloping ceilings; top-of-the-range Suites come with separate sitting rooms.

Black marble ensuites have tiled floors and powerful rainfall showers; some also feature tubs. The hotel likes to support local businesses and so the organic toiletries are supplied by small Madrid-based company Handmade Beauty. The same applies to the minibars, which are stocked with Matías López chocolates and La Azucena crisps, both made nearby.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Bathrobes
  • Central heating
  • Hairdryer
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Phone
  • Safe box
  • Satellite TV
  • Toiletries
  • WiFi


The hotel restaurant La Parrilla del Pimiento Verde buzzes with activity every day of the week. Tall windows, wall-climbing plants and an iron partition give off a peaceful garden vibe.

The well-thought-through lunch and dinner menu focuses on classic Spanish cuisine - opt for one of the stews if you want to try something truly traditional. Pre- and post-meal cocktails are also a big deal here, with an adjoining 20s-inspired bar offering inventive drinks such as vodka with strawberry and balsamic vinegar, or a spicy Thai red daiquiri.

For breakfast, the hotel breaks away from the standard buffet and instead offers a pick 'n’ mix menu split into 3 sections: pastries, toasts (with a choice of mashed avocado, tomato and olive oil, or butter and homemade jams), and cheese and meat platters. Eggs with salmon, ham, sausage or bacon are available, too.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Restaurant
  • Restaurants nearby
  • Room service


  • Hit Salamanca’s boutiques. This is Madrid’s most exclusive shopping area, and you’ll find all the top designers, as well as popular high street brands such as Zara, on nearby Calle Serrano
  • Or browse 2 of the city's best food markets, the contemporary San Antón and the historic San Miguel, which are both within easy reach
  • Admire the world-famous masterpieces on display in Madrid’s top galleries. The Prado, the Reina Sofia and the Thyssen-Bornemisza, known collectively as the 'Golden Triangle', are all a 20-minute stroll from the hotel
  • Explore the city's historic centre, where you'll find the cathedral, the royal palace and the grand Plaza Mayor, built by the Hapsburgs in the 17th century
  • The hotel concierge can arrange a number of interesting private tours, including 'Madrid from the rooftops', helicopter rides over the city, and an afternoon with a professional photographer who'll share photography tips and take pictures of you on holiday (beats a selfie stick any day!)
  • Head to the leafy Retiro park for a lazy stroll or a row on the boating lake. Hotel staff can advise on running routes if you fancy working off some of the tapas

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Boat trips
  • Helicopter tours
  • Historical sites
  • Museums / galleries
  • Nightlife
  • Photography
  • Plantlife / flora
  • Private guided tours
  • Shopping / markets
  • Theatre and music
  • Wine tasting


The hotel is a smart, sophisticated kind of place, but children of all ages are welcome.

Best for:

All ages

Family friendly accommodation:

Deluxe Attic rooms, Junior Suites and Suites can all accommodate a baby cot (free) or rollaway bed (extra charge). For families of 4 or more, there are a few connecting rooms: a Deluxe Exterior with a Double TOTEM, a Deluxe Exterior with a Suite, and a Deluxe Attic with a Suite.

Baby equipment:

  • Baby cots
  • High chairs

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Kid Friendly: Junior Suite


The hotel is set on a quiet street in the upmarket Salamanca area of central Madrid. It's a short walk from the Retiro park and the city's major museums. The nearest metro stations are Serrano and Velázquez.

By Air:
Madrid Barajas airport (13km away) is a major international hub with flights from all over the world - click on the links below for a list of airlines.

There are several options for getting to the hotel from the airport - a 20-minute taxi ride or car transfer, a metro journey, or a train to the city's main Atocha station followed by a walk/taxi.

By Car:
We don't recommend bringing a car into Madrid, as the city is easy to explore by public transport and the traffic can be heavy. That said, if you want to hire one then see our car rental recommendations. Valet parking is available at the hotel for a daily charge.

Detailed directions and arrival information will be provided when you confirm a booking through

More on getting to Madrid and getting around


  • Madrid Barajas 13.0 km MAD


  • Beach 300.0 km
  • Shops 0.1 km
  • Restaurant 0.1 km

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 2 independent reviews from i-escape guests


I would give everything top marks. I may be returning to Madrid next April and am considering booking Totem Hotel again. The location of the hotel is fantastic the rooms although smaller than I would expect are very well equipped and in fact plenty of space in the bathroom and I like the fact that they are using large format toiletries rather than disposable travel sized toiletries as I am concerned about excess packaging and recycling.
The staff was very nice and their recommendations are great. In fact I have already recommended the hotel to my family. I also want to add that every time I log onto i-escape I always found the accommodation listed which I end up booking, fantastic and have a wonderful stay.
Many thanks to the team in i-escape for all the recommendations.


Service throughout was excellent but the bar was a little overpriced


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