I believe that most of us, foreigners, will agree that we’ve been drawn by local lifestyle, more than anything else. 300 sunny days a year – that says it all! Even if the bathing season is pretty limited (at least for my liking, it’s around 3 months only), but the mere fact of seeing people play beach volley in February makes my heart beat with joy!
Barcelona tends to make people open and explore new hobbies and passions. I have friends who have taken up Latin American dancing or handicrafts, for example. Well, my newly-found passion was interior design. When you move to a new place, most of the times you are faced with a task to set up a comfy living space for yourself, whether you decide to buy a house or just rent a room. In my case, the moment I dove into the world of home design blogs, Pinterest and furniture shops, there was no way back for me. I started a blog of my own, and one day, hopefully, will even make a living out of it.
Olga at Déjà Vu
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Plaça del Sol
“Me and Barcelona have a passionate relationship. It was love at first sight. Barcelona seduced me on its birthday, on the Mercè in September when everyone was invited to celebrate. We met on a dark street in Raval, where I was wined with sangría and dined with the cheapest and most heavenly tapas I had ever eaten. We looked at pictures of bullfighters on the wall and I was star struck. We went down to the port, bought a bottle of cava, laid down to watch the fireworks. “I never want to leave your side” I said quietly, so I didn’t. 5 years later we are still in love, a love equally as passionate as the first day we met.
…a swim in the ocean…
Barcelona is a master of all that is seduction. We meet in embraces on hot summer nights in dark narrow gothic streets, we steal kisses under the moonlight on the stairs of Santa Maria del Mar, and we get drunk on cheap wine in a restaurant in the Raval that has been there for a hundred years or more. We dance until the first rays of sun in the morning at the Port Olimpic, and end it all with a swim in the ocean when the city is just waking up. It’s the best date you’ve ever had, but it never ends. Read the rest of this article…
Playa de la Mar Bella
“Barcelona… the city that Anthony Bourdain of No Reservations described as “the most exciting place to eat in the Western world”.
The perfect day in Barcelona would fall in late September, when the stinging heat gives way to long barmy nights. Barcelona is the only global city with access to incredible beaches via public transport (Sydney and Rio de Janeiro also come to mind), so a morning swim at Playa de la Mar Bella is obligatory.
Breakfast in Spain does not hold the same status as it does in the UK (Full English) or Latin America (Calentado), but a slice of melon draped with jamon, some fresh mato cheese with honey and the caffeine kick of a cortado is a nice way to start the day.
Shops and galleries begin opening at 10am in Barcelona so a visit to the Picasso Museum, the Ferran Adrià & El Bulli exhibition and Roca Gallery will easily fill a few hours and have you thinking about lunch. Read the rest of this article…
“My perfect day in Barcelona is a walking and eating day.
It starts on a sunny summer day at about 7:30 am with a run down the center of Rambla Catalunya, through La Rambla, down to the pier and over to the W Hotel. This is a great time to be out, as there are not a lot of cars and almost no pedestrians on La Rambla, and it’s a great running route if you’re staying in Rambla Catalunya.
As I head back, I stop a ½ block from my apartment at Forn de Sant Jaume (Rambla de Catalunya, 50) bakery and pick up a post workout snack – the best chocolate croissant I’ve found in Barcelona. It has to be the one with the powered sugar on top, not the chocolate covering the outside. It is perfectly buttery, yet like and flakey. If you get them early enough after they come out of the oven, the chocolate is still oozy. Yummmm.
Rachel & Quim at El Quim de la Boqueria
After a shower, I head back down La Rambla to El Quim de la Boqueria for breakfast at around 9:30-10 am. Quim makes the best potato tortilla (Spanish omelette) in town, but I’m torn as my favorite is actually the huevos con setas (eggs with wild mushrooms). He uses olive oil for everything, so it’s 2 fried eggs in olive oil, topped with a mix of mushrooms sautéed in olive oil, all topped with a balsamic reduction. A glass of fresh squeezed o.j. and perhaps a plate of either razor clams or gambas con cava to round out breakfast and I’m set for at least 2 more hours. ;) Read the rest of this article…