Madrid's airport is well-connected to the city center by subway and frequent buses, and even taxi rides are relatively cheap, so I see little reason to spend the night outside of town near the airport. The only time it makes sense is if you've already been to Madrid, and have an early flight out the next morning. The area around the airport is something of an urban planning nightmare, but land must be cheap because there are a dozen or more business-style hotels nearby, all clean, modern and dirt cheap.
Apartamentos Suites Aeropuerto
c/ Campezo 8, 28022 Madrid
✆ 91-305-9055 fax: 91-312-1835
300 rooms. Singles: €55 Doubles: €80 All major credit cards accepted.
Location: F for Madrid, but C for airport access
Technically classified as a 'residence' and not as a hotel, the Kris Suites are short stay, serviced apartments. Each suite includes a bedroom with closet and safe, a bathroom, separate living area with couch, TV and desk, and a kitchenette with refrigerator, freezer, stove, microwave and plenty of cupboard space. While the hotel will never win any awards for charm and ambiance, it's hard to beat the price and space for a night before departure. There is secure parking under the hotel, free wifi in all the rooms, and a free shuttle to and from the airport.
Annecy is located just south of Geneva, on the edge of the French Alps in the Haute-Savoie. Historically this region belonged to the House of Savoy, the royal family that would eventually become kings of Italy, so a certain Italian charm wafts through the Alpine air. It's a pretty town, sitting on the edge of cold, clear Lake Annecy, the old town is laced with canals, and studded with window boxes bursting with geraniums.
Hotel Palais de l'Isle
13 rue Perrière, 74000 Annecy
✆ 04-50-45-86-87 fax: 04-50-51-87-15
33 rooms. Singles: €70 Doubles: €99 to €148 All major credit cards accepted.
Located right on the edge of a canal, in the heart of the old town, which can be very busy and a bit noisy. The historic building masks rooms that are completely modern and, unfortunately, a bit soulless. There’s nothing wrong with them: they’re bright, clean and everything works. They have, however, managed to remove just about every trace of the historic origins of the building.
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