FC BARCELONA VS REAL MADRID – EL CLASICO TONIGHT

FC BARCELONA VS REAL MADRID – EL CLASICO TONIGHT

 

UPDATE: SUPERCOPA DE ESPANA 2012

FC BARCELONA VS REAL MADRID - EL CLASICO TONIGHT

Finally, the day has arrived for FC Barcelona fans, tonight is the night of El Clasico at Nou Camp! The match is the first leg of the SUPERCUP OF SPAIN and is also important for the blaugrana fans as its their first El Clasico since Guardiola left.

The SUPERCUP is annually played by the last season winners of the La Liga and the Copa Del Rey. Real Madrid, as La Liga winners, are trying to convince the world that they can be better than the Catalan club. And FC Barcelona, as Copa del Rey winners, will start tonight, their struggle to win back the title of Spain and Europe’s best team.

 

FC BARCELONA VS REAL MADRID - EL CLASICO TONIGHT

This year the match is surrounded by great expectation because Tito Villanova, the former assistant of Guardiola, has his first chance to prove that can keep the quality of the football in EL CLASICO and beat Mourinho. The rivalry between the tw0 coaches already has some tension building up. In 2011′s Supercopa de Espana, Mourinho exposed his anger by poking Villanova in the eye in the middle of some melee after the match. After the situation, when asked about it, Mourinho ironically answered “Villanova who?”, meaning that the his second, by that time wasn’t important.

 

 

 

Obviously, El Clasico is always a very popular and highly attended match, between the very old rivals FC Barcelona and Real Madrid. Tons of people squeeze into all the bars in Barcelona to watch this very important game of La Liga. In my opinion, if I was a Real Madrid fan, I would not wear my football shirt among the FC Barcelona fans tonight!

By the way, where are you going to watch the match? Unfortunately, not everyone is lucky enough to enjoy the experience of watching the game at Nou Camp. But do not despair – there are literally thousands of amazing bars around Barcelona where you can watch El Classico with a bunch of crazy fans!
Basically ANY bar around Barcelona will run the game tonight so it all comes down to the kind of crowd you want to be surrounded by. As we said before, we bet many of you would like to find a place to watch El Classico in an environment slightly different than a normal sportsbar full of tourists. For the seekers of a truly Catalan experience, some good advice might be to check out the streets of the barrios out of the city center. We bet it won’t be long before you find a cozy bar full of passionate local supporters!

Our personal favourite local place is Can Eusebio in Poble Sec (Carrer de Vila i Vila 84 on the map below)  just a 10 minutes walk from Las Ramblas. They’ve got 2 screens and…amazing tapas! It’s usually full of locals and if you want to enjoy a true Catalan experience for El Clasico – don’t hesitate to go there. Just keep in mind that in order to get good seats you need to be there earlier.

Here are some of the famous sports bars in Barcelona. The downside of some of them is that very often you won’t find many local people if that’s what you are looking for.

The Pubs Map

 

So who do you think will win? Do you believe that Villanova will “poke” back Mourinho with a stunning victory or that the experienced coach will manage to stop Messi and friends?

We already wear our Blaugrana jerseys waiting for the moment to meet at some bar! Hope to see you there!

FC BARCELONA VS REAL MADRID - EL CLASICO TONIGHT

 

Jack and Ivo

BARCELONA EVENTS: FESTA MAJOR DE GRACIA 2012

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

BARCELONA EVENTS: FESTA MAJOR DE GRACIA 2012

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

One of the biggest Barcelona festas is always the Festa de Gracia and this year the festa celebrates its 196th edition. As always it has a whole host of activities to keep you entertained. This is my first time at the Festa de Gracia.

 

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

I actually live in Gracia and have been really looking forward to this event since I landed! I find Gracia to be a very friendly place, easy to talk to the locals, has a youthful feel to it despite being very traditionally Catalan. I have even been able to make new friends in the local charcuterie!

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

For a week the locals decorate the streets and plazas in preparation of the Gracia festival. Throughout the week there are loads of events during the day and night to keep you entertained. These are all put on for free and it is a great way to meet your neighbours and make new friends.

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

 

I met my friends for drinks in their apartment before we headed out into the streets. Everything starts later in Barcelona and we joined the party at midnight! There was already a buzz of excitement and energy as soon as you reach the Festa major de Gracia. The streets lined with people, music filling the air, dancing in the streets, wild decorations all over the place.

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

 

Balconies are decorated and everyone is keen to get into the party spirit, plazas are full with people sat in their groups eating, drinking and enjoying the atmosphere.

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

As a first experience of the Gracia Festival I found it a brilliant introduction to the Catalan way of life. It was really nice to meet new people in the streets!

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

 

We can across this live band and the atmosphere in the street was brilliant!! Everyone seemed to know the words to the song and were all singing out loud with the band!! I even had a go!!

 

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

While I was out I was enticed by crepes and had two crepes with “dulce de leche”, which were brialliant! It’s a throw back to my days living in Rome, where after dinner, the done thing is to go out for “la passeggiata” (the walk), have a drink and grab a crepe con banane e nutella! Yummy!!

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

 

Barcelona Events: Festa de Gracia

 

So that was my first experience of the Festa de Gracia! Do you have any photos that you would like to share? Send us your best Festa de Gracia photos and we will post them on our Facebook page!! Get in touch, we’d love to hear from you!

Adios,

Marie

BARCELONA EVENTS: WHAT’S ON IN SEPTEMBER 2012

BARCELONA EVENTS: WHAT’S ON IN SEPTEMBER 2012

Barcelona Events: What's on in September 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are so many Barcelona events in September 2012 that it can be a little overwhelming. That is why we have narrowed them down to the best of the best for you.

 

There are always lots of Barcelona events throughout the summer and September is no different. After the ferie d’agosto and the quiet of the last two weeks of August, September kicks off with a bang!  Here is a selection of what’s going on in Barcelona in September.

STOMP (5th – 16th)

Barcelona events what's on September 2012Renowned for their highly energetic performances, STOMP fuses a great combination of music, percussion and dance to bring you a unique musical experience. Fresh off the stage of the closing ceremony at London 2012, they will be showcasing their immense talents here in Barcelona as part of their 20th anniversary. With audiences of over 15 million people in 48 countries, this is a great show not to be missed!

 

 

 

 

Barcelona events what's on September 2012

L’HORA DEL JAZZ (THROUGHOUT SEPTEMBER)

 

Barcelona in September sees the 22nd edition of L’Hora del Jazz, which is a series of concerts around the city. Most of them are free, making this a great opportunity to listen to old and new contemporary jazz. Every Sunday throughout September, Placa de la Vila in Gracia plays host to some of these events, at 12pm and 1pm.

 

 

FESTA PER LA LLIBERTAT (11TH)

Barcelona events what's on September 2012

The Festa per la Llibertat is an annual festival to promote all things Catalan. Their language, culture and their fight for independence from Spain. In association with several pro-independence organisations, this festival falls on Catalonia’s National Day and includes a protest march from Placa Urquinaona to Passeig Lluis Companys. Know as “La Marxa de Torxes” they march with torches from 5pm, so be sure to be there to witness this!

 

 

 

Barcelona events what's on September 2012

L’ETAPE BARCELONA – ANDORRA (29TH)

 

Fancy yourself as Lance Armstrong? A fabulous opportunity for those who love to ride and would relish the chance to ride like the professionals. This gruelling ride was part of the Tour de France in 2009 and requires entrants to be fit in mind and body! The race is 224km leaving from Barcelona to the Arcalis mountains in Andorra.

 

FESTA MAJOR DE LA RIBERA (13TH – 15TH)

Barcelona events what's on September 2012

Another of the famous Barcelona festas that happen throughout the year. This time, this is in the Ribera area of Born in mid September. Showcasing lots of activities including concerts, a craft fair and a fireshow. It usually includes free entrance to the Barcelona Chocolate Museum.

 

 

 

Barcelona events what's on September 2012

CSIO BARCELONA (20TH – 23RD)

 

Barcelona will host the 101st Official International Showjumping Competition for four days during La Merce. It will be showcasing some of the best showjumpers from around the world. I have just recently experienced showjumping at London 2012 and I have to say I found it very exciting without even understanding it! So for those who are passionate about horses and this sport, this really is a Barcelona event not to miss!

 

 

LA MERCE (21ST – 24TH)

Barcelona events what's on September 2012

The best way to see out your summer with the largest street party in Barcelona! It’s an annual five day celebration of the patron saint of Barcelona, the Virgin Mary. It hosts a large selection of over 500 events, so whatever your tastes, you are guaranteed to find something of interest. Be it Arts, Culture or Theatre, this festival has it covered. Some of the key events are Barcelona Acció Musical, The Fire Festival, Festival of the Sky and a whole gallery of traditional events such as castellers (human castles) and Gigantes (Giant Parade). Often described as the “Festival to end all Festivals“, it is one of the largest Barcelona events of the summer. The festival marks the official end of summer.

 

 

 

 

 

MECAL AIR (8TH JUNE – 22ND SEPTEMBER)

Barcelona events what's on September 2012

Located in Barcelona’s Poble Espanyol, Mecal Air started in June and will be closing mid September. Organised by The International Short Film Festival, it promotes a wide selection of short films around certain topics such as countries, holidays and cinematic appeal. Located on Montjuic Hill in the jardín escultórico of Poble Espanyol, it offers spectacular views over Barcelona at dusk. What a great way to spend a summer evening with friends!

 

 

 

What events would you recommend to your friends? Let us know by dropping a comment below!
Salut,

Marie

 

 

Barcelona Sights: The Bunker

 

Barcelona sights

As most of you know, there are tons of sights in Barcelona. Luckily, there are still a few secret” places, not overtaken by tourists. I was taken to one of them by a Catalan friend of mine, born and raised here and therefore full of inside knowledge about the city.

 

Barcelona sights bunkerThe Bunker, located at the top of Rovira in the Carmel barrio is the perfect place to enjoy an afternoon with your friends or your couple. And yeah – the bunker is more than just a nickname – the place is a remains of an old air raid civil war bunker. It was built in 1937 and has been renovated in the past few years. Renovated in sense that it’s clean and safer than before, the sight still has its own unique vibe. Moreover, there are tons of graffiti improving the ambient atmosphere.

 

 

Sights in BarcelonaI must admit, the sunset view from the top of the mountain is very romantic. There’s a 360º sight of Barcelona, which in my opinion is much better than the one from Montjuic. You can see absolutely everything – the vastness of the sea, the narrow streets of Barcelona, the city lights and the high mountain peaks. If you are a photography lover, this is the place to take amazing pictures of Barcelona!

 

 

 

 

barcelona sights

So, the most important question – how to get there? You can see the location of the place on the map. The closest metro stop is Alfons X (L4, yellow) and from then on you can either walk or take a bus for two stops.

Barcelona bunker map

 

Interesting fbarcelona sightsact about the spot I chose to present to you – the Spanish rock band Nothink chose that particular sight in Barcelona for their music video of the song In a Row. Even if you are not the biggest rock fan you might like the video just for the astonishing location!

 

 

I hope my words inspire you enough to go and check out the place yourself. If you have any tips about other cool sights in Barcelona – drop a line in the comment section below!

Cheers,
Ivo

 

 

Raval Neighborhood: Barcelona’s Immigrant Community

Take a walk on the wild side and take a picture or two

while you’re at it

 

Barcelona history, Barcelona neighborhood's, Raval, Barcelona daily lifeThe Raval neighborhood of Barcelona has the esteemed notoriety of being the city’s seedy go to place for night life escapades of sex and drugs. During the last two centuries, the Raval neighborhood has been the famed location for several mystery and thriller books. This close quartered location by the sea is home to many of Barcelona’s immigrants and working class citizens. For this reason Raval has been given the distinguished name of Barri Xine, meaning Chinatown. This name came from the location’s vastly diverse immigrant population. Today Raval neighborhood is one of the most densely populated areas in Barcelona, primarily composing of Pakistani, Indonesian, Indian, and Eastern European immigrants.

 

Raval neighborhood first began as an area next to the ports outside of Barcelona’s city walls. The word Raval comes from Arabic, meaning “suburbs”. During the Middle Ages this is exactly what Raval was. El Raval is one of four “suburbs” making up the larger part of the Ciutat Vella neighborhood. Raval was originally a mesh of gardens, small markets, churches, hospitals, and  even a leper colony. It was home to what the city itself did not want.  These poor settlements would later be themselves gated off and separated from the residents of the city during the 14th Century.

 

When the Industrial Revolution finally hit Barcelona it was in the Raval neighborhood that the textile factories were built. The textile industry became a dominant sector between 1770 and 1840. During this amazing transition in manufacturing and production other industries such as brick production, slaughterhouses and leather manufacturing were also located in El Raval. As a result of the increase in industrialization, the first migration wave from within the other districts of Catalonia settled into Raval neighborhood, and changed Raval from an industrial area into a residential zone. To house these new working class many of Raval’s once open fields and orchards were mowed down and turned into sprawling concrete facades for the working class to call home.  Because of the over population and lack of proper hygiene Raval became a haven of disease and dirt. With disease such as malaria, cholera, small pox, shingles, and even the bubonic plague spreading through the over crowded streets of Raval the life span of the average resident was only in the 30’s. Such mass outbreaks lasted through the early 1900’s.Barcelona history, Barcelona neighborhood's, Raval, Barcelona daily life

 

Ever since the onslaught of industrialization Raval neighborhood became a popular haven for crime and prostitution. Due to the shadows coming from Raval’s housing complexes along with over crowding the area became rife with drugs and prostitution. To this day it is famed for drugs, bars, and cabarets. Due it it’s proximity to the sea ports many cheap taverns and nightly entertainment establishments popped up, along with a highly lucrative drug trade.  The urban transformation of Raval lasted well in the 1980’s and it continued to push tourism and middle class citizens away.

 

During the 1990’s localized planning initiatives were created to help revive the neighborhood. The localized planning project was completed in 2000 and has introduced tourism through cleaner streets and new tourist businesses. Today Raval is host to bars, restaurants, and small stores alike. The narrow streets are often filled with tourists and local shoppers alike. While the evenings still contain shady people from drug dealers to prostitutes, it is a far cry from the early days in Raval’s history. Just as every other barrio in Barcelona, Raval’s distinct culture, people, architecture, and design bring to the city a unique and vibrant atmosphere that cannot be copied.

Barcelona history, Barcelona neighborhood's, Raval, Barcelona daily life Let us know what your favorite barrio in the city is

 

Check out more information on Raval and other Barcelona neighborhoods