Bar 44 Group to open new Parador 44 boutique hotel in May 2022
As you wander from room to room, floor to floor, ducking under barriers and happening across nooks and cubby holes as you go, it’s quite a challenge to picture what this space will soon be.
Because starting next week, this labyrinth of rooms stretching above Asador 44 will begin its transformation to parador. Hotel.
Proposed Plans for Parador 44
It’s a bold move. There are close to 100 paradores in Spain. They are often former manor houses, palaces and castles, monasteries and convents, ancestral homes, even fortresses: a state-run network of older buildings repurposed as luxury hotels. A grand project, founded under Alfonso XIII as a means to promote tourism in Spain, with the first opening in 1928: effectively, a showcase to promote appreciation of the country.
Cardiff isn’t Cadiz or Cáceres, Valencia or Valladolid. But the spirit is the same. The aim? Well, parar means to stop, so this will be a place of rest and calm in a busy capital. Indulgence. It’s easier, perhaps, to picture yourself relaxing in the residents’ lounge and then walking out onto the terrace with its tiles and trellises. While you’re at it you may as well picture yourself, wine in hand, stepping into that unmistakable perfume of fire cooking. It might be quarters of milk-fed Castilian lamb. It might be vegetables roasting in the embers of the parilla. It might even be Segovian suckling pig, the ferocious heat of a wood-fired oven renders that fat both parchment-thin and as fragile as annealed glass.
Mood Boards – Parador 44 Communal Areas
Luxury will be key. There will be nine double rooms, each with their own individual décor. This will no mere lip service paid to Spain, with building materials- doors, screens, headboards, tiles and more, both reclaimed and bespoke- already en route. Key to the parador spirit is using the character of the original building and here, in typical 44 Group style, it’s that marrying of the old and new, the Spanish and the Welsh, into something timeless.
Mood Boards – Parador 44 Rooms
This is an evolution of Asador 44 then, a more comprehensive version of that wonderful word hospitality. Spanish breakfasts will be offered daily for guests and the public alike, along with a seven-day opening from one of South Wales’ most acclaimed restaurants, one which led Tom Parker-Bowles to write what amounted to a love letter:
“…Asador 44 is scented with woodsmoke and happiness, a magnificent place where coals glow … a lunch drenched in love, lust and unfiltered Spanish succour. It could be my restaurant of the year.”
Parador 44 is an idea years in the making, inspired by the Spanish travels which underpin everything the Morgans do. It’s an obsession we discussed with them and borne out in their recent book ‘Tapas y Copas: Our Spain’. This splicing of Spain and Wales in a form that is distinctively and unmistakably ’44’ is due to be completed in May, and it’s another significant step forward for hospitality in the city.
Parador 44, Quay Street, Cardiff, CF10 1EA