EAT in Barcelona:
Ca l'Isidre is considered to be one of the best restaurants in town and not only since, in 1986, HRH King Juan Carlos and his spouse HRH Queen Sophia celebrated their 23rd wedding anniversary here. This true Catalonian kitchen, which has very little French influence, will allow you an extraordinary gourmet experience. The menu changes every day, as owner Isidre Gironés pays a visit to the market and evaluates its offerings. He then decides what will be put on the menu that day. There is a huge selection of great wines which go along very well with your gazpacho, sea bass, scampi or turbot.
The small tapas bar pays homage to the traditional ancestral eatery where Catalonians meet to gossip while eating a snack. Tapas 24 is a modern variation that attracts young people from all over town. If you like lively and authentic places, you will enjoy spending time here. It does not matter if you show up for a coffee, a warm breakfast or a large portion of tapas. You can satisfy your hunger any time as the kitchen is open from 9 in the morning to midnight.
What makes this restaurant so great? The perfect photo collection featuring people, neighbourhood oldies and Ronaldinho. The wine flows easier than you realise, the staff does not speak a word English and that makes it all so enjoyable. Jai-Ca offer Tapas in typical style. You can recognise insiders by their colourful skin and lots of metals attached to their faces. If you do look regular, don't worry, you are still very welcome here. Expect a surprise at the end of the night- the bill is so small that you will be tempted to have another glass of wine or two.
SHOPPING in Barcelona:
Duduá is not a shop but a network for artists that haven't made it yet. If you are a creative person then don't hesitate to take your work to the Duduá. Here, you'll find like-minded people that will not only share their opinion, but will also organise interesting workshops. If you prefer to watch rather than create then you are also in the right place: small art pieces, limited music, shirts, magazines and a lot of this and that with artistic flair. Careful: time just flies in this shop!
If you are looking for young fashion at a good price, then you should pay a visit to Bingo Shop. Here, you'll find funny, cheeky, colourful and cool items. For example by Cecilia Sörensen, Club Volga, Ladies & Gentlemen, Pia Kahila, Wood Wood, A-Forest, Surface to Air and Cheap Monday. As a regular Barcelona shopper, you should know by now that the Spanish like to purchase magazines, books and small art items along with their outfit items while listening to great music - what else do you want? Tip: Excellent shoe selection for example by St. Vacant, Nokia, Karhu Originals and Gram.
Happy tall day. That is the philosophy of the designer team that a few years ago started to transform everyday items into exciting home accessories. In Zeta a strainer becomes a lamp shade and an iron chair turns into comfortable padded armchair. The old-turn-into-new-principle is so successful that Zeta now offers an entire furniture collection. The waiting times for your orders are not long.
SIGHTS in Barcelona:
Parc Güell is very untypical for a popular attractions point for tourist as there are no costs, no waiting time and endless room to enjoy nature and culture. You should be thankful to Eusebi Güell that you can enjoy a beautiful afternoon in this park. The son of a wealthy Barcelonan family wished for a large leisure oasis, where Antonio Gaudí actively contributed the art displayed in the park. Gaudi in fact was so enthusiastic about the idea that even when the city decided to stop the work in 1914, he continued to further develop the park on his own. The result is an amazing mix of nature and art. One can spend hours at the park in peace. The only spot where you could potentially find a crowd of people is in front Gaudí's most impressive building.
Barcelona is all about contemporary art, especially in November. At the BAC! festival everything goes as long as it looks good and is art. Examples include graphite, objects, sculptures, photography, painting and video art. The participating artists are international and their work is exhibited all over town in galleries and public spaces. The works are connected through a common theme that changes every year. The exact programme is constantly being updated and is published on their website.
If you are hanging out at the park of La Ciutadella, you will forget that you are actually in a city. A small lake ideal for canoeing, a grotesque fountain that Gaudi co-created and endless peace. Barcelonans love this green centre of tranquillity that is situated where once stood the citadel of Felipe V. The park was opened in 1870 and hosted the world exhibition in 1888. Today, the museum exhibits modern art and there is also a zoo. A bizarre piece of trivia is that they used to use parrots to keep away the pigeons. Today, no pigeon can be found in proximity of this park. However, the parrots with their green feathers are numerous and cheeky, flying from one palm tree to the next and back.
STAY in Barcelona:
If you have a balcony with such a great view, then you should not care about the simplicity of the rooms. The view to the Plaça del Pi is best enjoyed with a San Miguel. Even if there is not much happening, there is always something to see. Caution: if you like lie-ins, you may be woken up too early by street musicians. Take the opportunity and start your day with a coffee on the square. Regular customers appreciate the location on the square, which is why the guesthouse is almost always fully booked. Double rooms are available from Euro 60 per night
How does a palace dating from 1892 become an exclusive 5-star hotel? You add glass, concrete and steel to the old walls and turn this into an architectural highlight in the middle of El Born next to the old town. The theme is pure elegance in the rooms, the pool terrace and the gourmet restaurant East 47. The terrace hosts Djs from June to October while guests like to enjoy their cocktails. The private Egyptian art collection is an evidence of how classy this hotel is. Double rooms are available from 170 euros per night.
Altogether there are three of them. Two 987 Hotels are located in Prague, one in the historical centre and the other one is called Soho. The potential mix-up is intentional! The third 987 Hotel can be found in Barcelona, only a few minutes away from the Passeig de Grácia and the Sagrada Familia. From the outside, on the basis of the facade, the city's architectonic heritage cannot be missed. Several architects including the designer of the Barca stadium Camp Nou, Francesc Mitjans have jointly renovated the building in the course of the past century. Inside the 987 delivers what a stylish design hotel in Barcelona promises. Elegant wooden floors, pink light and eye-catchers like the mysterious glitter lamp and the plush chair in the entrance area. The 88 rooms in the Eixample hotel also play with contrasts: stuccoed ceilings and heavy upholstery give the suites a royal touch, colourful glass and matching accessories appeal to the design-oriented Barcelona visitor.