Seville has been called Spain’s romantic city; Certainly Seville has inspired writers, poets, and musicians.
Aside from looking for romance, basic survival in Seville requires eating and sleeping. Here are some suggestions:
Dining in Seville
Probably the best and certainly among the most expensive restaurants in Seville is Egaña Oriza on Calle San Fernando 41, where you will find exquisite service, an elegant setting, and recipes from throughout southern Spain. An evening here is almost always excellent.
Less expensive, but sporting a well-deserved reputation for fried fish, is the Rio Grande, which is on Calle Betis, on the west side of the Guadalquiver River.
Another excellent option across the river is Los Golondrinas at Antillano Campos 26, smack in the middle of Granada’s ceramic artisans’ district. Sitting in the colourfully tiled upstairs dining area, you will feast on local specialties.
For a wider selection of Spanish and European dishes, try DuPlex on Calle Don Remondo 1. It is nestled among the narrow winding streets in the heart of the Santa Cruz barrio of town, just behind the Cathedral. DuPlex, in addition to serving excellent food, has extended opening hours, which means they start serving earlier than other restaurants; around 7pm, which is early for the area, as most locals don’t dine before 9pm.
Eating Tapas in Seville
If sitting down at the dinner table so early is not on the schedule, no problem; Residents of Seville, like most of Spain, have a long tradition of standing at a small round table while munching on a series of snacks; tapas; while knocking back a beer, sangria, or glass of wine. This is a practice any visitor should engage with caution, as it is extremely habit forming.
Once tried, though, why not eat local specialties? Parias (battered and fried strips of codfish), pringas (baked rolls stuffed with veggies), espinacas con garbanzos (a sautee of spinach and chickpeas), and Andalucian Gazpacho; the traditional cold tomato, cucumber and pepper soup that is so marvelously refreshing on a hot summer evening.
For the best tapas, if not the best atmosphere, look no further than Bar Estrella on Calle Estralla 3. For the most entertaining (and probably crowded) atmosphere rather than the tastiest tapas, check out El Patio San Eloy on Calle San Eloy.
Hotels in Seville
As Seville demands at least two nights to see it all, you will need a clean and comfortable hotel: Look for air conditioning during the summer as temperatures really do reach uncomfortable levels.
If budget is a consideration, try Hostal Sierpes. It’s clean, comfortable, and about five minutes on foot to the cathedral. (A Hostal in Spain is not like the backpackers’ dossing spots in other parts of the world; here it is a 1 or 2 star hotel, with basic room and bathroom). Don’t bother with the additional 7 euros for breakfast, though, as plenty of nearby bars or restaurants offer a good breakfast at a lower price. Two large and very old dogs lie about the lobby, pretending to protect the place, but instead gathering affectionate scratches from guests.
A classier option is Hotel Simon: More expensive but also more luxurious than Sierpes, sleeping here will have you starting every morning refreshed, albeit lighter in the wallet.