Review: AC Carlton Hotel by Marriott, Madrid, Spain

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Our brief stop over in Madrid was at the convenient AC Carlton Hotel by Marriott in Madrid, Spain. We have stayed at this property before during a trip to Spain. It served us well on our last trip so we saw no reason to adjust from past experience. We’d enjoy a suite upgrade on our stay, making a no nonsense experience into a more comfortable stay.


This post is one chapter on our trip to Iceland, the United Kingdom and Morocco. This trip was redeemed through Alaska Mileage Plan and enhanced through Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.

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Review: AC Carlton Hotel by Marriott, Madrid, Spain

We arrived to Madrid Puerta Atocha on Renfe AVE Preferente Seville – Madid at about 7 PM. We walked the one block from the train station down to the AC Hotel Madrid Carleton. We only had one night in Madrid and we were planning on leaving town early the next day.

The neighbourhood isn’t very charming as a train station neighbourhood but it sure is convenient, even when travelling with bags.

Booking and the Arrival Process:

We had last stayed at the AC Carleton Madrid on our first around the world trip in 2012. Given that it was walking distance from the train station, and we knew the way, it was the right choice for our brief stay. Our stay was a reasonable 118 € for the night.

I had checked in online via the Marriott App from the Renfe train and received a push notification that we had been proactively upgraded to a suite as an Starwood Preferred Guest Platinum at about 2 hours prior to arrival.

Walking to AC Hotel Carleton
The AC Carlton Madrid
Entry Way – AC Hotel Carleton

The lobby is small and compact. There isn’t much charm to it but it’s completely functional. There was also a small dining area in the lobby that was pretty institutional. As in my last trip, there always seem to be senior citizens staying here on tours. The lobby was packed with chatting senior groups when we arrived.

Front Reception – AC Hotel Carlton
AC Hotel Carleton Lobby Lounge

We checked in at the front desk where copies of the passport were taken. Surprisingly, the computer remembered our last stay here six years ago. Instead of the 10 euro for food and beverage within the hotel platinum amenity, I just opted for the bonus 500 Marriott Rewards welcome points.

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The Room: A Junior Suite

We were assigned room #712, a Junior Suite. The rooms here aren’t exactly large and spacious but it was more than enough for our brief stay.

A Junior Suite – AC Hotel Carlton
A Junior Suite
Easy Chairs for Seating
Entrance Way with Our Travelling Bags

There was a jacuzzi tub in the bathroom for those that are into that sort of thing. I think it’s a bit 1990’s.

Junior Suite Bathroom
Junior Suite Hotel Bathroom

There was also a complimentary mini bar that contained coca colas, sparking and still water.

Complimentary Mini Bar Sodas
Desk Area
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Around the Hotel:

Plaza Santa Ana

We dropped our stuff at the hotel and headed on a walk out for dinner. The AC Carleton is located within 10 minutes walk of the Plaza Santa Ana; an area that contains a lot of great outdoor restaurants. It was a beautiful evening as we strolled up the hill towards the Plaza.

Headed Towards Plaza Santa Ana
Dusk on a Walk Through Madrid
Plaza Santa Ana

We found ourselves a comfortable table immediately opposite the Theatro Espanol in the Plaza Santa Ana for our last night out in Spain.

Dining In Plaza Santa Ana

We had a nice evening out and a slow walk back to the hotel. There was no rowdy train tonight since we had an early departure the next day.

It was nice to have reasonable restaurants within a ten minute walk from the hotel.

The Bottom Line of AC Hotel Carleton Madrid

In summary, the AC Carleton Madrid was a reasonable, clean but slightly dated place to stay near the train station. While it wouldn’t be a first choice for us in Madrid, it was a welcome choice for a quick overnight near the train station. It was also conveniently located for sightseeing around Madrid. As a result, it was the right choice for us on this brief stopover.


If you have stayed in the Madrid Atocha Train Station Area, is there one hotel over another that you prefer?

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