A frankly overdue renovation in 2012 restored this 1857 grande dame to its former glory while reconfiguring the spaces to create fewer, larger rooms. As the name suggests, the hotel emulates el corte inglés, the English style that inspired the name of the department store chain. Nowhere is it more evident than in the lounges and bars on the ground level, where the polished wood and the bottles of Scotch make you think that Winston Churchill and his bulldog will come wandering out at any minute. Service here is gracious and old-fashioned. Rooms are fresh and simply decorated with brocaded floral fabrics in subdued gold tones and wooden chairs and headboards; the tile and marble baths all have contemporary fixtures. The Plaza Nueva location could not be more central.