Hotel Survival Guide for Spanish-Speaking Locations

Spanish for Travelers

Pillows on bed in luxury bedroom
Here are some Spanish vocabulary words related to your hotel stay. Caiaimage/Martin Barraud / Getty Images

Hotel reserved? Flights booked? Bags packed? What's next is learning a few essential words to make your hotel stay a little easier.

If you're headed to a Spanish-speaking country, your hotel is as good a place as any to practice Spanish. Your concierge or host will appreciate the effort and can help you with tricky pronunciations along the way.

Different Hotel Types

When in a country where Spanish is the primary language, travelers spend more time in their lodgings, called hospedajes, than any other place.

If you have arrived in a Spanish-speaking ubicación, which means location, nail down the type of hotel that you would prefer, also called a hotel in Spanish, too. 

Looking for a spa or resort? Then ask for the nearest balneario. Want something deluxe, then you want something de lugo! Or looking more for a motel or inn, ask for el motel or la posada. There are unique types of accommodations, or alojamientos, such as a bed-and-breakfast, which is called a pensión, or bungalows, called a bungalow in Spanish, too.

Reservation Desk

You have decided on the type of lodging, now you need to make reservations, called ​reservaciones. You will negotiate the costs, or tarifa, with the hotelero, or hotelkeeper.

It is appropriate to ask what the standard tip or propina should be for your bellhop, also called the botones. Upon checkout, you handle the bill, or la cuenta, with the hotelero.

All About Your Room

What kind of room, or habitación, do you want? Want a suite, ask for a ​suite in Spanish, too. Do you need a single room, or habitación sencilla? Do you want a double, a habitación doble, or a triple, also called a triple. Want to make sure you have a bathroom in your room, ask if it has a baño. 

How about your bed, called a cama? Do you want a single bed, a cama de monja, or do you want a double bed, called a cama de matriomonio?

Does it matter which floor, or piso, you are on? If you want to make sure you are on the ground floor ask for el piso bajo. Need directions to the ice machine? Ask for el hielo.

How about a view, or vista, out your window? If you are in a beach locale, then perhaps la vista al mar, or a sea or ocean view, is important to you.

Nice amenities to know about your room would be: Is there room service, or el servicio en cuarto? How about an in-room safe, called la caja de seguridad?

Hotel Features

The room is booked. You are officially a guest, or huesped. You are ready to explore the hotel amenities. Does it have a bar, also called bar, or a restaurant, called a restaurante? How about coffee in the morning? Where is el café? The person who can guide you would be the concierge, or el conserje

Are you in town for a convention, called la convención? Need to ask how to get to the convention hall? That would be called el salón de convenciones. How about going out dancing after the convention? Ask about where to find a discoteca.

Other hotel amenities that can boost your vacation experience include free parking, called estacionamiento, a swimming pool, called a piscina, and a workout room, or gimnasio.

English Guidance

Due to the widespread adoption of English, particularly at upper-end hotels, it may be more common to find signage for English words used to describe certain facilities or services. Do not be surprised if words like "spa,""concierge," and "room service" are used instead of the Spanish equivalent.