The best hotels in Cardiff

Wales is a proud nation and with good reason – the Welsh capital has plenty of fine qualities. From its Victorian arcades filled with independent stores, to attractions like Cardiff Castle and St Fagans, Cardiff makes a cracking city break with heaps on offer. Cross over the Severn Bridge (no more tolls, it’s free!) to the right side of the river where the grass is greener and the locals are friendlier.

Here are the best hotels to book.

Best for Victorian elegance: Cathedral 73

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Neighbourhood: Riverside

This beautifully restored Victorian townhouse sits on the tree-lined Cathedral Road opposite the scenic Sophia Gardens, offering peace and quiet within easy reach of the city centre. Inside, its rooms and self-catering apartments are sleek, with flashes of original Victorian features shining through. Modern amenities in each room include a smart TV, fridge, tea and coffee making facilities, walk-in shower and Conran toiletries. If you want to elevate your stay, there’s an option for butler service, including a personal chef or a chauffeured Rolls-Royce Cardiff tour. 

Rooms from £71 per night including breakfast 
cathedral73.com

Best for location: Angel Hotel 

Neighbourhood: City centre

Only a rugby ball’s throw away from all the major sporting action and music events happening at Millennium Stadium, the Grade II-listed Angel Hotel is smack bang in the centre of town and has previously hosted the likes of Greta Garbo and The Beatles. It might not be as grand as when it first opened in the 18th century, but its historic Victorian elegance still has real appeal. With 102 traditional en-suite bedrooms and nine meeting and function rooms, the hotel now feels a little dated, but its friendly customer service and unrivalled central location more than make up for it. 

Rooms from £70 per night including breakfast
thecairncollection.co.uk/hotels/cardiff/the-angel/

Best for film buffs: The Royal Hotel Cardiff

Neighbourhood: City centre

Rest your head at Cardiff’s oldest hotel. The Royal is a Grade II-listed hotel that shows slight signs of wear and tear, but it’s still an attractive central stay with heaps of charm. Sixty newly revamped rooms feature modern decor and great city views, but the real draw is its unique cinema-themed room, which features Star Wars wallpaper, a 75-inch TV with surround sound, Netflix, Playstation 4, popcorn, chocolates and drinks. If you’re visiting on the weekend, arrive equipped with earplugs: The Royal Hotel’s location on the rowdy St Mary Street can sometimes mean a noisy night.

Rooms from £65 per night
royalhotelcardiff.com

Best for spa: Mercure Holland House Hotel & Spa 

Neighbourhood:City centre/Plasnewydd

Located on the border between Cardiff city centre and Plasnewydd, Mercure Holland House is an easy go-to central base that’s within walking distance to the high street on Queen Street and a short walk away from restaurants in the buzzy student area of City Road. What it lacks in charm and character in the rooms is redeemed in the form of friendly hospitality and the hotel’s on-site leisure facilities. Whether you fancy chilling out in the 18-metre swimming pool, steam room and Jacuzzi, or tucking into traditional British fare such as Welsh lamb and fish and chips at the in-house Urban Bar & Kitchen, the Mercure Holland House is a reliable choice.

Rooms from £99 per night, room only
mercure.accorhotels.com/gb/city/hotels-cardiff-v0706.shtml 

Best for party vibes: Hotel Indigo Cardiff  

Neighbourhood: City centre

Hotel Indigo combines a Welsh aesthetic with modern colourful quirks. With 122 rooms, a fully equipped fitness suite, a Marco Pierre White steakhouse restaurant serving a classic British menu, and a rooftop terrace with killer views, it’s the ideal spot to get the party started or wind the evening down with a nightcap. Each boutique bedroom pays homage to Cardiff by using local art, natural materials and themes to illustrate Wales’ industry, craftsmanship and musical heritage. It’s also in a prime location for a night out on the tiles in Cardiff’s lively nightlife area; it’d be rude not to sing your heart out to The Killers’ “Mr Brightside” at the infamous Live Lounge nearby, which is open every night until 4am. 

Rooms from £71 per night
indigo.cardiff-hotels.co.uk/en/

Best for families: Park Plaza Cardiff 

Neighbourhood: City centre

The Park Plaza is a guaranteed crowd pleaser of a hotel with everything you need under one roof. Home to 129 guest rooms and conference rooms, the Park Plaza has a 20-metre indoor swimming pool, spa, sauna and fitness facilities. In 2012, its Laguna Restaurant & Bar, which highlights local produce like Welsh goat’s cheese and Welsh beef carpaccio, scooped the South Wales Echo Food and Drink Restaurant of the Year award. Leave room for its selection of afternoon teas ranging from traditional jam and clotted cream scones. Bedrooms are decked out in an earthy colour scheme with dark throws and cushions, which can be a little bland (some may even call vanilla), but it does the job. 

Rooms from £86 per night including breakfast
parkplazacardiff.com

Best for business travellers: Cardiff Marriott

Neighbourhood: City centre

Staying at a Marriott hotel can be a little predictable, which makes it ideal for business travellers. Its interiors have a corporate vibe with some areas in need of a facelift, but it delivers on friendly service and good amenities, including a spa, pool and its all-day restaurant Market Kitchen that dishes up an eclectic variety of British classics. The location is what makes this place really sing, sitting pretty between Cardiff Central train station and the lively St Mary Street and Mill Lane, meaning guests are also close to the city’s nightlife. 

Rooms from £54 per night, room only
marriott.co.uk

Best for a history lesson: The Exchange Hotel 

Neighbourhood: Cardiff Bay

What was once the early 19th-century Grade II-listed building that housed the city’s old coal exchange is now Cardiff’s Bay newest shining jewel. Steeped in Welsh heritage, the hotel retains its original features, which combine elegant design and custom detailing. Each room features beautiful views of the bay and giant windows to let plenty of natural light in. The hotel’s bar and restaurant Culley’s, a nod to the building’s history, is named after RP Culley, a local philanthropist, who secured the catering contract for the lavish Exchange Restaurant back in 1884. Today, the hotel serves up a mighty fine menu of Cefn Mawr rarebit burgers and smoked Glamorgan sausage bites.

Rooms from £99 per night, room only
exchangehotelcardiff.co.uk

Best for waterfront views: Voco St. David’s Hotel and Spa

Neighbourhood: Cardiff Bay

Get your slice of uninterrupted bay views from the comfort of your contemporary room (with the option to upgrade to your own private balcony or two if you wish). St David’s resides in the regenerated Cardiff Bay area right next door to the Cardiff Bay Wetlands Reserve, the Wales Millennium Centre and the Welsh Assembly building. The in-house Admiral Restaurant and Bar offers a wide variety of flavours from around the world, but uses the best of seasonal Welsh produce. Book yourself in for some quality me time at the spa, where you can unwind in the hot tub, let off steam in the sauna or book a treatment using deluxe Ishga Organic Skincare products are used throughout.

Rooms from £95 per night, room only
stdavids.vocohotels.com

Best for Welsh family fun: Old Post House 

Neighbourhood: St Fagans​

For those wanting to learn more about Wales’ rich history or fancy a change of scenery, St Fagans is the place to be – it’s just a short drive from the centre of Cardiff, but feels a world apart. The newly crowned Art Fund Museum of the Year has been awarded to St Fagans National Museum of History, which recently underwent a massive £30m renovation and expansion. In the hotel, each generously sized room is themed on different locations in Wales and features king sized double beds, flat screen TVs and toiletries with en-suite shower rooms. Selected rooms even have direct access to a shared courtyard area, which gives guests private outdoor space to escape the noise.

Rooms from £90 per night including breakfast
oldposthousecardiff.co.uk

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