When it comes to places like Hong Kong, LA or New York I can find all things cool with my eyes closed. The coolest vintage stores, the best places to eat, get coffee or where to find the latest super food trend. On my overseas layovers I have more time to spend than on the European destinations. So that kind of makes sense. But even though I have a minute to minute planned scheduled I always seem to walk around like a crazy person trying to find my way around. Just like the other day in Barcelona. I finally had a long layover in this beautiful city. I had done my research, made a ‘to visit’ list, texted a colleague for some more tips and (of course) had an Insta-pic goal. And still I felt like Scarlett in Lost in Translation. After it became clear that my Insta goal wasn’t going to be realized I decided to change the energy and go look for a cool neighborhood instead. Take a look at my mini Barcelona diary!
I’ve been following the artist TOSHY for a while on Instagram. When I saw a few pictures in his feed of this very cool graffiti he made in Barcelona I just knew I needed his art as a backdrop. The theme was: LOVE NOW (basically what this world needs to do right now) and contained a lot of red, pink and hearts (three of my fave things ever). But when I got to the skater hang out, Parc les Tres Xemeneies someone already painted over his ‘Share love to connect’ project. mêh..
…so I picked another backdrop to do some ‘gramming’. Also a lot of pink, so it totally worked out.
On with my list. My plan was to visit the up and coming neighborhood El Raval. You know there is a hotspot in the making when you run into a trendy hotel. Hotel Mimic has minimalistic but fashionable rooms. But if you’re in the need of something more flashy, ask about their ‘Grease, the musical’ themed room. To get cocktails and a nice view, go to the amazing rooftop terrace. Carrer Arc Del Teatre 58.
In the early days El Raval was a neighborhood that you needed to avoid. Now there are more and more coffee places and restaurants popping up every day. This area is also the home of Barcelona’s most famous cat, El Gato de Botero (by Fernando Botero). After being moved around the city for about 15 years he finally found his home here. You’ll find the cubby ‘little’ cat at the end of the Avenida. Spanish avenindas always make me think of street catwalks.
Not a cat person..but he is cute though.
Stop! Tapas time! Basically what I always pick from the menu whenever I’m in Spain. Pan con tomate, bread with tomato and and plenty of garlic (sorry passengers). Tortilla and manchego cheese (but I already ate that).
Get me a terrace (heat optional) good food and I am a happy girl. Having a break at tapas bar Barraval, Carrer de l’Hospital 104.
I have this thing against high streets, I usually avoid them like the plague. So I just crossed the famous Las Ramblas really quickly to go to Barrio Gotico. Obviously, when you’re close to a landmark you’ll run into some tourists but just not as many. These narrow streets are home to a lot of cute shops and I also found many kelim and leather specialized shops.
The advantage of wandering around is, you always find something you’ve been looking for. I’ve been obsessing about these sliver stars for a while now. I needed them for yet another DIY project and I even requested a flight to Shanghai to try and find them (and I didn’t by the way). Found some online but the shipping would take forever and I always want things yesterday. But I found them in Barça, of all places. The DIY project will be on the blog, soon.
Barcelona is just like an open air museum. Don’t feel the need to go to Zara, Bershka or Pull and Bear (cheaper because they are Spanish brands). Just walk around and enjoy the pretty buildings.
‘Vogue is cool in all languages’. I always pick up a copy of Vogue España whenever I’m in town. It’s super cheap and Spanish fashion magazines often contain little gifts, (the packaging is always huge!). And I’m just loving this cover #teamnaturalhair.
¡Hasta la proxima!