Passeig de Gràcia: A Photographic Tour

Paseo de Gracia Barcelona

 

Passeig de Gràcia in Catalan or Paseo de Gracia, is one of the most famous and expensive streets in Barcelona. The Spanish “Champs Elysées” is an open-air museum of modern architecture, this is a unavoidable place to have a stroll during you stay in Barcelona! Luxurious shopping or just normal shopping, enjoy a break at a local coffee bar or restaurant, go to the cinema, etc. We can do a lot!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The street starts at Plaza Cataluña and finishes where Carrer Gran de Gracia stars, at Casa Fustler Hotel, over 1.5km.

 

Plaça de Catalunya

Plaça catalunya

 

 

tile passeig de gracia

The first kind of art that we can find in Paseo de Gracia is -lower your eyes- the ground! With this orignal type of tile which was created by Antoni Gaudi.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s discover Paseo de Gracia more and more with the # street number.

At the very beginning of Paseo de Gracia, #1, there is a beautiful Apple store and #4 Catalana Occidente, an insurance company.

Passeig de gracia barcelona

 

8# Then, on your right, there is Casa Antoni Rocamora designed in 1914 by two brothers, Joaquim and Bonaventura Bassegoda,  this building looks to renaissance gothic with lots of ornamentation.

Casa Antoni Rocamora paseo de gracia

 

#13 Comedia, a cinema with 5 auditoriums.

comedia paseo de gracia

 

#16 Zara home, a nice furnishing store where you can smell a pleasant interior fragrance which creates a family atmosphere and provides a feeling of well-being. It helps you transform your ideas into reality to decorate your dream home.

 

#19 Borsa de Barcelona, The Stock exchange of Barcelona has a privileged location but nowadays the street is more filled with tourists than with businessmen; times are changing.

Borsa de Barcelona paseo de gracia

 

#35 Casa Lleó Morera created by Lluis Domenech i Montaner.

Casa Lleó Morero paseo de gracia

 

#41-43 y #35 are  ”Illa de la Discòrdia”  (Block of Discord).
#35 La Casa Lleó Morera,  #41 La casa Amatller  designed by Josep Puig i Cadafalch and  #43 Casa Batlló designed by Antoni Gaudi, (part of the “World Heritage Site”) constitute the Block of the Discord. The name “Illa de la Discòrdia” was given because the buildings are very closely constructed, all at the beginning of the 20th Century and designed by three of the most important architects of the Catalan Modernism whose styles were very different.

Passeig de gracia barcelona block of discord

 

#66 Casa Vídua Marfà.

casa maria paseo de gracia

 

#68 Hotel Majestic 5 stars.

hotel majestic paseo de gracia

 

#96 Vinçon opened its doors to the public in 1941, founded by Enrique Leviand Hugo Vinçon. During this period the business’ main activity was the wholesale of porcelain, fine china and glassware. Between 1967 and 1990 they decided to venture and explore the emerging industry of the contemporary design of household objects. From this point onwards innovation happened at all levels and the foundation was laid for what eventually would become one of the most exclusive and representative stores in Barcelona. Today their brand enjoys international prestige.

vinçon paseo de gracia

 

#102 Hotel Paseo de Gracia 1 star.

Hotel passeig de gracia

 

Junction between Passeig de Gràcia and Avenida Diagonal.

Junction between Passeig de Gàcia and Avenida Diagonal

Junction between Passeig de Gàcia and Avenida Diagonal

 

Luxury shops, don’t go too hard on the credit card !

luxury shops paseo de gracia

 

#115 Cine Casablanca Kaplan with 3 auditoriums. The Cine Casablanca opened on 13th December 1980. The cinema was named Casablanca in homage to the 1942 Michael Curtiz film “Casablanca”. Unfortunately  it was closed in 2011.

Cine Casablanca Kaplan paseo de gracia

 

 

#132 Casa Fuster, a luxurious  5 star hotel classified as a monument hotel ends Passeig de Gràcia on a high note ! With 96 rooms and suites, gymnasium, panoramic terrace, etc., Casa Fuster proposes a distinguished service and is an excellent place for visitors or businessmen. It’s also where Woody Allen always stays when in BCN.

casa fuster passeig de gracia

 

 

Map:

 

Have you checked out all of these sites yet? What’s your favourite part of Passeig de Gracia? Let us know in the comments!

~ Lucie

Barcelona Street Profile: Carrer Joaquin Costa

Joaquin Costa: Barcelona Street Profile

El Raval is famous for being kind of an infamous neighborhood and we feel like that is total bullsh*t! This is an amazing, eccentric and eclectic neighborhood with many awesome things to do and today we take a look at one of its emblematic streets, Carrer Joaquin Costa.

Carrer Joaquin Costa Street Barcelona

History

The street name came from the Catalán politician, lawyer, historian and economist who was known to be the major representative of the “Regenerationism”, which was an intellectual movement that searched for the causes of Spain’s (as a State) decadence. The street is located in the Raval neighborhood, part of the old town. It starts from the metro station “Universitat” and goes down until reaching the center of Raval at equal distance from ”San Antoni” and “Liceu” metro stations.

As many other streets of this neighborhood, Joaquin Costa is a narrow, charming street full of shops, bars or restaurants, but also public buildings such as the Goya Theatre and the Centre Aragonés.

Shops on Joaquin Costa

 

- Fusta’m

 

Workshop Barcelona Fusta'm Joaquin Costa

Looking for a unique workshop? Then you’ll love Fusta’m! It all started almost 4 years ago with an idea of a couple, which was to restore old pieces of furniture from the 50′s, 60′s or even 70′s styles. You’ll find only authentic furniture, lighting and different decorative trinkets. Not only is it possible to buy these awesome pieces but you can also rent them for special occasions, events.

P.S : Entering the shop, if you’re curious enough, you’ll see behind the seller an old tapissery which is of origin.
Fore more info, check out Fusta Website


- A la Premsa d’Aquell Dia: The one-of-a-kind shop in Barcelona

A La Premsa d'Aquell Dia Barcelona Joaquin Costa

The story begins 20 years ago when, after a few trips around Europe (more precisely to Belgium, France and England) seeing a few shops selling unique old newspapers and magazines, a couple and their daughter decided to create their own shop back in Barcelona. They first settled in Carrer del Tigre in the Raval Neighborhood before moving to the next and current street Joaquin Costa 4 years ago because the shop was getting too small to stock all the newspapers and magazines they wanted. Even if one can think they also sell French magazines (because of the few “Paris Match” in the window display), they actually only sell Spanish newspapers. But if you’re interested in old newspapers in other languages they might help you find it by contacting some colleagues around Europe. The best example the couple told me was this time where a client wanted an english newspaper talking about the  titanic as it was not famous enough to talk about it in the Spanish newspapers. They finally found one that they bought for 12500 Pesetas (75€)!

A la premsa d'aquel Dia Barcelona Joaquin Costa

According to the couple, the two kinds of articles most wanted are the newspapers first step on the moon and the World Wars.

When going out of the shop, you can stop by the ”Lletraferit” Library Café just accross the street and grab a café con leche while reading a book! This place was actually funded by Diego Gary, son of famous French writer Romain Gary and American Actress of the 60′s Jean Seberg.

Fore more info check out A la Premsa D’aquell Dia Website

- Bubub

Bubub also caught our attention because of its old sign representing a cartoon dog, bringing back its past of Toy shop. Nowadays it is a small Greengrocer with great fresh products for a decent price! Vegetarians are gonna love it.

Bubub Greengrocer Barcelona in Joaquin Costa

 

Bars

 

Betty Fords Bar is a pretty famous bar located in this street, known for hosting hipsters but also for their good cocktails and burgers! Excellent place to start your parties!

Betty Ford's Bar Barcelona in Joaquin Costa

 

If you’re interested in a completely different kind of bar, we recommend you to go to Granja de Gava, a unique centenary bar which, as its name suggests, was a farm originally (Granja means Farm). It also saw the birth of a famous Catalán writer Terenci Moix in 1942. When you enter the bar, you can hear a soft jazz music and see an astonishing statue in papier-mâché of a giant fat lady decorated by a huge slice of pizza on her head. There are also art exhibitions, for example there is currently oil paintings of the local Marta Cino which are actually for sale.

Granja de Gava Bar Barcelona Joaquin Costa

 

Olimpic bar will be for people who don’t want to spend much money or beat about the bush: 1€20 a beer, 3€50 a Mojito, Caipirinha or Spritz, that’s right. And if you don’t believe me, check this out:

 

Olimpic Bar Barcelona Joaquin Costa

 

No wonder it is always packed…

Finally for the story, this awesome street once hosted one of the most famous Serial killer of the city, Enriqueta Marti who was called “La Vampira del carrer de Ponent” (Ponent street being the former name of Joaquin Costa street). So that you understand why she earned this name, she used to kidnapp dozens of children, make them prostitute and/or kill them. And with the rests (skin, blood, fat, hair, bones…), she’d make potions, balsams, etc. What a lovely person she was! :)

Enriqueta Marti Barcelona Joaquin Costa

 

Cheers,

 

Florian

Barcelona Circuit Party 2013

Circuit Festival 2013

Circuit Festival 2013There is another huge event taking place in Barcelona, Sitges, and Madrid this August, at least huge for the gay community. It is the Barcelona Circuit Festival 2013, a new international gay & lesbian event supported by famous party promoters Matinée Group Barcelona.

Of course everyone knows about the Barcelona Pride held in June but the Circuit Festival it’s said to be the mother of all gay events. Thousands of buffed up muscled men flee to the city for Matinee’s annual cashcow that offers up eleven days of hard-core parties.

There is a circuit festivals for gay men and one for gay women and both run from the 8th to the 18th of August.

Water Park Day

Circuit Festival 2013On Tuesday August 13th from 10AM – 2PM, thousands of men and women from all over the world come to Barcelona to enjoy the pools and aquatic rides of Europe’s biggest open air gay party. And if the sun becomes unbearable (which is quite likely) you can just sit on a lounge chair and relax while listening to music or watch the performances.

But try not to get so relaxed because from 2PM until 10PM an open air party starts on the main stage with the Matinée All Stars DJs, dancers and performers. The night ends with an incredible fireworks display.

If by this time you haven’t had enough of the party there is no reason why you should stop. From 10PM until 6AM the party moves to the Illa Fantasia’s club venue where the best DJs will spin their records while the sexiest dancers strut their stuff! Whatever you’re looking for, we’re sure this is the place to find it!

Exhibitions

Circuit Festival 2013The Barcelona Circuit Parties 2013 will be hosting several art exhibitions:

  • From Warhol to East Village (Art of Behaviour) Franco De Toledo Art Project (08/08/2013). A photo exhibiton which contrasts artistic and socio-cultural realities between East and West through performances produced during the late eighties and early nineties and showcases the complete picture collection of China’s most representative artistic action for the first time in Spain.
  • Become a ‘Golden Warrior’: Personalized and Unique Artworks (12/08/2013). This will give you a unique opportunity to meet the artist Frederik Garcia who will make two photo sessions at Artevistas Gallery where he will transform you into a golden warrior. The personalized portraits will be handed to you so you can take them home.
  • Frederik Garcia: SIFR (08/08/2013). This is, once again, an art exhibition of Frederik García but this time he will show his audience naked people with their faces covered with golden ornaments and exposed in all their individual fragility. The aim of this exhibition is to transport us into the other person’s place and help us in recognize our own essence.
  • It’s A Pre’ Sensory Event (15/08/2013 . At Mutuo Centro from 7 – 11 pm, an art exhibition will take place where the audience gets to experience distinct art forms through an elaborate itinerary. From cabaret desire (women in pornography) to glycerine (this is very interactive trust me) and if you don’t know what it is, perhaps a great example from my own experience would explain this better. A couple of months ago I was invited to an art exhibition showcasing glycerine pieces. They were in the shape of male and female genitals and the visitors as they entered the locale had to wet their hands in a basin and give it more form by…er…touching it. This was done to break the taboo we carry around about sex and genitals especially in public.  This exhibition also will be showing a shortfilm from 1998 by Ramon Ruaix and ‘Heroines’ by Ilene Sova (portraits that pay tribute to Spanish women activists that defended the idea of social justice and feminism).

 

Sports

Circuit Festival 2013Throughout the circuit festival, you’ll have the chance to join several sporting classes. It is another great way of meeting people who have the same interest while at the same time staying or getting in shape.

The Calderon Hotel will be hosting a workshop on Yoga. This is for men and women who are interested in philosophy, lifestyle, and discipline. It could be a way to relax and unwind from excessive partying or a simply a great introduction to those who wants to learn more about this ancient practice and its countless benefits.

The instructor Mr. Roger Escola will be holding this workshop on the 18th of August at 4PM on Passeig de Gracia.

If you are more of a hard-core kind of guy or girl, then perhaps you can try one of DIR grueling spinning sessions on the 12th of August on Aribau or one of their Boxing classes on their DIR Campus on the 14th from 12pm-13pm or 13pm -14pm.

These exercises will make you sweat, impoves cardio resistance, tone your muscles and burn hundreds of calories. The boxing classes, because it’s an introduction will contain no contact, just the exercise so there is no need to worry about getting a black eye but you’ll need to register quickly because the class is limited.

On the 15th the circuit festival will hold a volley tournament at Platja De La Marbella at 9am. So, if you came to Barcelona to enjoy the sun and the beaches but you still want to get your workout in without missing all the fun, you can register to participate in this tournament.

It costs 20€ per person to enter the tournament and there must be a minimum number of participants of two and a maximum of three. You also have the option to choose between amateur and advanced level.

On this day there will also be a training fitness session with Magali Dalix & DJ at Maria Cubi at 18:30 hours. This session is suitable for all levels and ages and you will only need training clothes, sneakers and a towel. And the sweat will be worth it because after the training, Magali will invite you for a cocktail.

Talks

Circuit Festival 2013Sometimes talking about STDs can be such a turn off especially when all you want to do is have some fun. But in the last couple of years a significant increase of CHV amongst men that have sex with men, especially in men HIV positive.  This is why There will be a talk about Hepatitis C at the Hotel Calderon on Passeig De Gracia the 9th of August at 5pm. It is always a good thing to keep wellness and safety in mind.

There will also be discussion about barriers faced by the seniors of the GLBT and how can one can achieve respectability with mature age (Lack of financial safety, isolation and unequal treatment, etc), about GLBT youngsters and transgender who faces challenges in many areas, about the daily struggles of Gay men and women in Africa and about the difficulty of having a long-lasting relationship in the gay community.

All of this is to eliminate ignorance and stereotypes and to open our eyes about how we can make a difference and how other ‘minorities within a minority’ do matter.

 

Circuit Cinema

Circuit Festival 2013The title is self-explanatory. The circuit festival will premiere a touching documentary about the delicate situation that the LGBT community faces in Uganda titled ‘Call me kuchu’ on the 14th of August at Boliche Cinemes on Avinguda Diagonal.

Circuit Shopping

Circuit Festival 2013Circuit Shopping is an initiative to show the rich supply of fashion, beauty and lifestyle associated with the LGBT world found in Barcelona. This event will take you to the best LGBT shops of the city and give you the opportunity to choose and try what you want. This all happens on Friday August 10th from 10am until 8pm.

Beach

Circuit Festival 2013Of course, the official meeting point for all major events such as the parties, music, dancing, etc. is none other than…El Chiringuito De La Marbella, a bar located at the eastern end of Barceloneta known before as Dulce Deseo de Lorenzo.

It caters for the city’s large gay community and, of course, gay visitors. In August for the Circuit Festival it won’t be any different. There are catwalk shows, movies, music and also masses of information on Barcelona’s lively gay scene.

Here clothing is optional and the music style is more laid-back than the traditional dance music of most beach bars. If easy listening is your thing then this is your place.

Walking Tour

Circuit Festival 2013If you’re here for a couple of days, perhaps a walking tour would be just the thing that you need to meet people and get to visit the city (especially if it’s your first trip to Barcelona). The Circuit Festival offers walking tours to the Gothic Quarters which contains the most charming streets, squares and historical buildings. A Picasso tour which takes you down the streets were the man himself walked for inspiration, which of course includes a trip to the museum.

There is also a Gourmet tour. This is very straight forward. It is a guided flavour-filled journey through the old town while discovering Barcelona’s cuisine. During this walk you will find out about the history of Barcelona’s cuisine as well as some of its flagship restaurants and food outlets. The best part is that you get to enjoy sampling some of their produce. This is the reason you should join one of the sporting classes mentioned earlier!

And lastly, a walking tour of Modernisme. This is a guided tour in the Eixample district focusing on Catalan modern art from the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. You’ll get to admire architecture by Antoni Gaudi, Domenech I Montaner and Puig I Cadafalch just to name a few.

Conclusion

In the past, the festival has been criticized for its poor organization with overcrowded venues, overpriced drinks and lack of transportation. But don’t let that stop you because as with wine, the older it gets the better it tastes.

Another thing worth knowing is that if you can’t make it to all of the events offered there is no need to panic. We would then suggest you attend their all-gay, all-day water park party and the La Leche party on the last day because these are the highlights of the whole festival and skip the opening and closing which are tame, big arena events.

Tickets can be bought online and range from 20 to 50 euros. If you’re looking forward to attend every event be ready to pay a whopping amount of 605 euros. Thankfully you can buy an all access pass for 320 euros. Don’t forget to print out your ticket and bring it along.

I know it’s not all about the day programming. Go out to the night parties, dance and have some fun! That’s what the circuit festival was made for.

Gay Fashion Stores in Barcelona

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

When it comes to gay men’s underwear and clothing there are only two requirements – they have to look great and they have to make you look great. Today’s fashion and undergarments come in more styles, colors and patterns than you can possibly imagine, and that’s exactly what you need to show off your stuff. There’s a lot of competition on the gay scene, and you can’t afford to let your goods fade into the background. That’s why we’ll continue our ‘From Behind the Rear’ Barcelona gay series with an article on Gay Fashion Stores in Barcelona where you can find the hottest trends to blow the competition away.

ES Collection

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

This is a favorite Gay Fashion Store in Barcelona among those men who have a fetish for or simply love to wear nice underwear. Here you will find one of the most or the biggest collections of underwear in the whole of Barcelona displaying sporty and trendy styles in dozens of beautiful color schemes in sexy and traditional cuts. They also sell swimwear that will attract everyone’s attention at the beach.

The store has several locations due to their popularity in Barcelona but check out their main store located in the heart of Gaixample [C/del Consell de Cent, 218] for the widest selection that will have you feeling sexy and confident in no time. www.escollections.es

Ovlas

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

Located right in front of the famous Axel Hotel, Ovlas is a small Gay Fashion Store in Barcelona specializing in clothes for men who are not afraid to show off their bodies. So if you are looking for the perfect apparel for a night in Barcelona, check out Ovlas for the latest and most revealing garments you could have never fathomed in your wildest imaginations. You can find them on d’Aribau 31 or visit their website www.ovlas.com for more details and information.

ES 4 U

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

If you are looking for a Gay Fashion Store in Barcelona that offers amazing discount prices on their apparel collection, then check out ES 4 U on Carrer de Casanova 56. Much smaller in size and selection than the previous two stores mentioned on this list but worth checking out and easy on the wallet. And if this has not been already mentioned: they have great deals on sexy ES underwear – making me wonder if Spaniards have some kind of fetish…ummm. www.escollection.es

Men By Men

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

Everyone dreams about wearing clothes straight from the fashion runways of Milan…oh wait, you can! You just have to visit Men by Men whose collections always contain the latest fashion straight out of Milan. It is a posh boutique for any men who wants to standout and make a great impression. This store doesn’t have a website but you stop by and look around in their store on Carrer Casanova 63.

Next Level

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

Another favorite Gay Fashion Stores in Barcelona, Next Level has unique fashion at affordable prices. Gentleman who are in the mood, strike a pose in this small, in vogue boutique. Just try one of their apparel found no where else in Barcelona – there is just nothing to it. So step into a city of fashion and glamour right here in Barcelon on Carrer Diputacion 189.

DGM

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

Great for any man who is committed to the gym. This store offers sporting apparel and sports bags. Show off your muscles in their tank tops and cut off shorts. www.dgm.es or give them a visit on Carrer de Casanova 74.

M69

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

This is one of the few Gay Fashion Stores in Barcelona that is 100% targetted to gay men. Found on Carrer de Muntaner 69. www.m69barcelona.com

Zona Eleven

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

If you are more of a fan of brands such as Diesel, Givency, Frankie Morello, Versace, Jean’s Gaultier, and/or D&G, then Zona Eleven located on Carrer Muntaner 75 is the right store for you. www.zonaeleven.com

Ritual

 

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

 

A classic store located in the Eixample with a wide array of classical brands such as Puma, Energie, G-Star, and Replay. Rituals has three locations in Barcelona, two of them are located on Diagonal; Avinguda Diagonal 3 and Diagonal, 557. The third one can be found on Edifici Maremagnum, Moll D’espanya, Local 34-35C.  www.rituals.com

Cool

Barcelona Gay Fashion Stores

If you want to look cool then this is the store to shop in. Cool specializes in youthful European fashion and has everything needed for fitting in at any Barcelona club. Found on Carrer Consell de Cent 233.

In conclusion, these stores are not exclusively targetted towards gay men but are for any man who loves to look and feel great in what they wear – unless of course specified in the text. The only reason these store made it on our list is because they are popular with the gay [men] community. If you think that one of these store should be erased from our list send us your reasons why or maybe you have discovered a fashion gem while staying in Barcelona that would be worth a mention. By all means send us an a message or leave a comment below and of course don’t forget to visit our other articles in in the ‘From Behind the Rear‘ Barcelona Gay Series.

~Argenis

A Taste of Home – A British Haven in Barcelona!

A Taste of Home – A British Haven in Barcelona!

Being an international city and having a huge expat community, Barcelona has no shortage of shops, restaurants and other amenities to serve the various nationalities living particularly those from the US, Latin American and various countries in Europe to name but a few. But what about us Brits? Is there a ‘British Barcelona?’

Thankfully, amongst the grid-like streets of the Eixample is a very special shop who specialise in all things British. Aptly named ‘A Taste of Home‘, this is a shop to visit for any Brit living here in Barcelona either for Erasmus or for those here living more long term. Intrigued to find out what treasures are inside? Read our exclusive interview with the owner below!

 

British supermarket in Barcelona

 

The Interview

A Taste of Home has been serving the people of Barcelona since 2008 and was started by Inge Barker, an expat from the UK. She also owns another branch of the shop in Sitges which has been open for 11 years. This shop is the real deal and that’s not just my opinion. In 2011, A Taste of Home was awarded the accolade of ‘Commended British Shop in the World’ as part of the ‘Best of British Awards’ which are sponsored by the Telegraph (newspaper) and John Lewis (one of the biggest retailers in the UK).  Upon walking in, your British blogger here found the staff busy showing some new customers around, but I managed to grab a couple of minutes to ask some questions……

Suitelife – Hi Inge. I really like your shop! Could you briefly tell me a bit about ‘A Taste of Home‘?

Inge – Of course! I started the shop mainly because there isn’t really anywhere else in Barcelona that serves the specifically British products. A lot of the small shops and supermarkets offer some basic stuff such as teabags, but nothing compared to what we offer here.

SuiteLife – Yes, I noticed that too. It’s quite nice to see something which is actually British for a change!

Inge – Thanks! We do lots of different things. Obviously, we sell specifically British products such as Marmite, Cadbury’s chocolate, different brands of English tea, jams, pies and loads more. We also sell books, greeting cards and do a lot of fundraising for charities particularly animal charities. The vast majority of things we sell are British but we also have food from other countries too notably ingredients for making Indian food as well as some American and Dutch products too. Naturally, we can’t provide everything, but we are happy to take requests. If you come in for something and we don’t have it, you can go on our Facebook page to request it and we’ll do our best to get it for you!

 

British food in Barcelona

SuiteLife - Wow! Sounds really good and I’m pretty sure I’ll be making use of that!

Inge – We’ve also recently started the IPTV service which lets people from the UK who live here in Spain access British channels legally. For years now, we’ve been using the Freesat channels. This has changed lately and could be really expensive for people who want to continue to access British TV this way which is why we’ve started offering the IPTV service which streams to your TV from the Internet. We are the sole distributor of this in Catalonia and it’s completely legal! You get all the main channels plus even more. It’s a great deal.

SuiteLife – One thing I definitely miss about the UK is British TV. How much does this service cost?

Inge – It costs about 30 Euros per month, but if you sign up for it via our Facebook page, then we will give you a discount on this.

 

British TV in Barcelona

SuiteLife – Excellent. What would you say are your most popular products here?

Inge – Our baking section is really popular and we sell a lot of British cookbooks too!

SuiteLife – Do you get a lot of British people coming to the shop?

Inge – Yes, we get a fair amount of people who have heard about us and like to come to see just how British we are. It’s fair to say, that people are left pleasantly surprised by the sheer variety we have. We also get a lot of Spanish people come into the shop too and they are pretty curious to see what we’re about.

SuiteLife – I can vouch for that! Before we round the interview up, is there any advice you’d have for any aspiring Brits reading this?

Inge – Check out our Facebook page. We have a lot going on such as competitions and offers. We also publish recipes too! Don’t forget that you can also get exclusive discounts and can request those home comforts too.

SuiteLife – Thanks a lot for your time!

 

This is amazing! Where is this gem of a shop!?

Intrigued? You can find A Taste of Home on Carrer Floridablanca 78 in Eixample. You can get there on L1 Rocafort near Plaça Espanya (I’d recommend taking the C/Calabria exit, it’s quicker!). The best way to get in touch with them is on their Facebook page or by calling 933 251 797.

They’re open from 10am – 9pm on Monday through to Saturday, so there’s plenty of time to rush and get a box of tea when the worse happens!

Looking for more shops for expats living in Barcelona? We’ve got a list of some of the best in the city for you to check out!

Thanks,

Chris

 

A Taste of Home

Gay Book Stores in Barcelona

Gay Book Stores in Barcelona

 

Barcelona Gay Bookstores

There aren’t many gay book stores in Barcelona but the few – two to be exact – are great locales where book lovers can immerse themselves in their glory.

You may have probably come to Barcelona for the nightlife, for the food or culture, for the sun and the beaches but if you’re anything like me, then you won’t – for the life of you – spend a thirty days holiday without some reading material.

When I moved to Barcelona in mid-February, my search for the best English book stores – especially Gay book Stores in Barcelona – began but the available information on and offline was very little to none, so I set out to find one.

So here are my findings for those of you who are visiting Barcelona and enjoy reading between outings.

Libreria Complice

Barcelona Gay Book Stores

The first of the two Gay Book Stores in Barcelona is a spacious library specializing in fiction and non-fiction literature for English, Spanish and Catalan speaking customers. Their services ranges from assisting gay and lesbian travelers to find their way around the city and by providing guides and maps to helping writers publish their work that are ignored by mainstream publishing houses.

So, this makes Complice both a book store and a publishing company.

As varied as their services are, their catalogue offering is even more so with a great selection of material in the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender genre for every age: books about general diversity and themes, comics, movies, magazines, and a lot more. If you want to see everything that they got to offer in their catalogues you can visit their websites…most of the information found there is in Spanish and Catalan.

CÓMPLICE is the Historical LGBT book store of Barcelona, this doesn’t mean that they specialize in historical literature, it just means that they are the oldest operating gay book store found in the city, going strong with 17 years diffusing the homosexual culture while intergrating the rights of gays and lesbians around the world.

When you subscribe to their blog and newsletter, you can be kept informed about their catalogue udates and the latest information about what goes on in the Barcelona gay scene such as parties, clubs, presentations, meet-ups and other news of interest.

Recently, Tevevision de Catalunya filmed a short segment on Complices. It’s in Catalan but even if you can’t follow the dialogue, the visual gives you a good sense of the store.

Antinous Library in Barcelona (Librería – café gay- lésbica)

Barcelona Gay Book Stores

If the bars and clubs scene gets old and a little exhausting, then a fantastic place to hang out, meet people and immerse yourself in the gay scene, is Antinous. Both a bookshop and a coffee shop for gay men and women, it is a perfect spot for browsing the latest in gay literature, enjoying a great cup of coffee and learning more about community events and organized gatherings. New clubs, shows and meeting groups are advertised, so if you’re fresh to the area and want to meet new people, this is definitely one to remember.

This is our second of the two Gay Book Stores in Barcelona but don’t think this is a ranking competition.

This shop has its own charms and it’s a very popular meeting point for gay and lesbians just off the southern end of La Rambla and very much like Complice, their catalogue varies tremendously from books to videos that caters to the GLTB community. They also provide a copy of “Nois Magazine,” a publication with all the information about the gay events taking place in Barcelona, hold book presentations and exhibitions.

Both stores are wonderful when looking to purchase a gay book, it all depends on how you want to invest your holiday time shopping for a book.

Do you know of any other Gay book stores in Barcelona that are great and that we haven’t mentioned? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

~ Argenis

Shop in Barcelona: The Shopping Night Barcelona

Shop in Barcelona: The Shopping Night Barcelona

Shop in Barcelona: The Shopping Night Barcelona

The Shopping Night Barcelona is back again this year! For the 3rd time, this magical night will dazzle you, and it’s easy to understand why – It brings to Barcelona the opportunity to shop in the middle of the night, and enjoy the city in a very different way and warm-up for Christmas!

Shop in Barcelona: The Shopping Night Barcelona

The concept of Shopping Night Barcelona you probably already got from the name: it’s a night when the shops of Passeig de Gracia will be open till late, making it possible to go shopping until the wee hours of the morning. But the event is much more than that! Most of Psg. de Gracia – from Plaza Catalunya till Calle Rosello – will be full of activities, open restaurants, lounges with music and even more following the theme of this year: Fairy Tales! There’s the magic I was talking about!

Barcelona‘s most famous shopping street, Passeig de Gracia, will be divided in 6 different areas and each one will be representing a fairy-tale: Ciderella, Snow White, Rapunzel, Goldilocks, A Christmas Carol and Sleepy Beauty. The many stores and restaurants of each area will be decorated and will offer discounts, deals, tastings, music, snacks and much more! For example, if you go to Massimo Dutti, you get a free drink, if you go to Lacoste you get 20% discount, if you go to McDonald’s you get a picture with Ronald McDonald. And that’s just three of them, there’re at least 50!

Some more info for you, shopping lover!

When? From 20h to 1h, on Thursday November 22

Where? Most of the stores and restaurants of Passeig de Gracia – From Plaza Catalunya till Calle Rosello

How much? That depends pretty much on your income or on your addiction to shopping. To be honest, I’ll try to make the most of all the free drinks and snacks I can!

Here we’ve selected a few of the places we believe you’ll get the best deals (and free meals):

 

  • Armand Bassi – 20% off. Cava and aperitif.
  • Caramelo – Cocktail, live music and special discounts.
  • Farggi – Taste of a glass of chocolate Farggi with one pastry.
  • Hotel Alexandra – Tasting Risotto Da Luca Terrace 20-21h + Special Dinner Menu Shopping Night 20-24.30h + Party with Dj sorpesa Peroni Peroni Session & photocall at the Hall of Hotel 23h-2am
  • Tezenis – You will be a celebrity for one night, you will be able to pose with you friends with your Tezenis looks, enjoying the music from several Djs.

and of course… much much more!

More details and info? Visit The Shopping Night Barcelona

Hope you like it, Barcelona! For more fun and shopping advice stay tuned to ur Blog!

See you!

Jack

 

 

 

Brandery Barcelona Fashion Show

THE BRANDERY – A FASHION SHOW IN THE HEART OF BARCELONA

 

The Brandery is the fashion event of the year in Barcelona bringing together people of all over the world, who have a passion for style! DO you have a passion for fashion, read on to learn more about this unique event.  Also, other events going on in July.

The family of curators, drivers, and stars have combined to bring the city of Barcelona entertainment of the highest quality.  The brandery is divided into 4 areas to give onlookers a well rounded experience.  These areas include:  Trade show, brandtown, fashion show, and the city.  The trade show in itself features several sections fashion, denim, sports & street.  The fashion features top brands, innovative ideas, and the latest trends.  The denim is associated with accessories, exhibitions, eco-friendly fabrics, customizations, new concepts and fresh ideas.  The sports & street section features the latest collections in action sports and street style.  The brandtown is an area specifically designed to feature fashion firms in a interactive environment.

Do you have a passion for fashion? Come learn from some of the best in the industry.  The interactive workshops allow the general public to learn the art of design from creating small accessories, fabrics, toys, and jewelry.  Most of the products constructed from recyclable material that can be made at home.

Last but not least no show is complete without the amazing sounds of fashion.  The line-up consist of The Human League, La Casa Azul, Mala Rodriguez, and Stand Up Against Heart Crime.  A luxury line up sure to be soothing to the ears of visitors.  In addition, local DJ’s Shelby Grey, Amable, Gato TV, who play a major part in Spain being recognized all over the world for its amazing nightlife. You can find more information on their website.

Check out Barcelona fashion friday here


 

 

Souvenirs from Barcelona: No More Mexican Sombreros!

Souvenirs from Barcelona: Where to find something authentic

Let us help you to decide, what to bring from Barcelona, when you are going home and want to bring the best Barcelona souvenirs for your family and friends! This way you can stay away from all the typical tourist JUNK!

Barcelona souvenirs
Barcelona, much like all the other capitals and touristic places have plenty of those famously tacky souvenir stores and stands that offer you mostly cheap variations of popular magnets, pencils, ashtrays and miniatures of the Sagrada Familia.

You can buy those if you want… just something small and easy for your weird uncle Bob or your cousins. If you want something actually Spanish or special, you should avoid the stores on La Rambla and instead explore a bit deeper into the Gótico or the Raval. Here we have some tips for you, what souvenirs from Barcelona will your friends and relatives love.

Food and drink

Starting with the easiest part – you can’t take a wrong step if you bring some nice Spanish wine or food, because, well, it´s delicious.

Sweets

If you decide for chocolate, you should visit the chocolate museum at c/ Comerç 36.  You will learn about turning the cocoa bean into a chocolate bar or a rabbit with a funny face and you can buy some pralines there as well. Another place that we love is the café and store Demasié at c/Princessa 28. They specialize in chocolate and cookies and their gift boxes are really beautiful and make the perfect present.
Something sweet and traditional in Spain is turrón. Turrón is a Christmas sweet, but you can get it normally any time of the year in special turron stores (there are plenty of them in Gótico) and sometimes in supermarkets too.
There are more types of turrón that differ in texture and flavor. One from Alicante is a hard, white sugar-like base with whole almonds in it; The one from Xixona is the most famous, it’s soft, beige and made mostly from almond paste.

Barcelona sweet souvenir

The pig´s leg and more

For Barcelona souvenirs for men, maybe you’ll prefer something less sweet such as “Fuet”, the Spanish white-skin salami, red-coloured sausage “chorizo”, sausage-meat “sobrasada” or the very typical ham “pernil”. All of these meats are very strong in flavor and for someone, who is not used to them could be difficult to like them. For a meat lover though, they are quite the delicacy.

Another food souvenir with a great reputation is the “queso de cabra” – goat´s cheese.
It is very nice to bring a piece of the traditions and flavors as a souvenir from Barcelona, so what about buying some “brava” sauce. “Patatas bravas” are the easiest and most authentic tapas you can make for your friends.

FashionBarcelona souvenir

Desigual is a fashion brand that is very easy to recognize, because it is known for its colorful designs and patchwork style fashion. The brand has its quarters all over the world, but it´s originally from Barcelona.
You will find less mainstream and more underground clothes in the streets of Raval, for example at c/Tallers and its surroundings. There are little fashion stores of young designers, funky hipster stores with second hand clothes or the black and metal gothic-style stores with clothes and accessories.
Awesome design fashion is sold in the library and gallery Mutt at c/Comerç 15 where you will love the shopping and browsing.
If you’re looking for something old, original and on budget maybe go to the flea markets. Read about antique and second hand paradise in Barcelona.

A more traditional type of souvenirs from Barcelona might be a belt, handbag or handmade leather shoes, because leather is one of Spain´s most highly valued products. Have a look in Acosta, at Avingun Diagonal 262. It´s a family-run chain that offers a well-priced selection of leather goods. And if you can´t wait to stroll around at home in a genuine Catalan “barretina”  or a traditional low-key “campesino’s beret”, the place to look is Sombrería Obach in the old Jewish quarter of El Call.

Traditional items

Barcelona souvenir Porron

Remember one thing when buying a Barcelona souvenir such as fridge magnet and such things. The bulls are a spanish symbol, but the animal of Catalonia is a donkey, because it has a long tradition of helping on the farms.

One very famous and a traditional item is the “Porrón”, the special glass wine pitcher.

Visiting Barcelona during Christmas? You won´t miss this weird Catalan Christmas character “Caganer” an Caga Tío. Read about them in Ben´s blog about The strangest Catalan Christmas traditions

Design Barcelona Souvenirs

If you decide that Flamenco dress, Gaudí style ashtray and the salamander magnet is not what you are looking for, you can find curious Barcelona souvenirs in the bookshops of the MACBA and CCCB museums and the art libraries such La Central at Muhba – that one is of our favourites as they have a lot of books, many cool design things and toys. You will find great Barcelona souvenirs in the store Wawas at c/ Carders 14, or Art Montfalcon at c/Boters 4 and Barceloning at c/ Mallorca 332.

Design Barcelona souvenirs

Do not, we reapeat, do not buy a Mexican Sombrero!

This has to be one of our biggest pet peeves. Many drunk, or just unaware, tourists parade around Las Ramblas wearing very expensive Mexican sombreros to bring home as a souvenir.  News flash people!! There is nothing SPANISH about a Mexican hat! Just as we don’t use the Peso here, you might wanna wait to make your next Mexican sombrero purchase when you’re on that vacation in Cancún.

Have you already found something really cool to bring home? Did we help you to decide? Leave us a note on the fridge, or better underneath the blog :)

Sharka

Design Barcelona: Studiostore

Design Barcelona: Studiostore has got it all!

One of the hottest spots for design Barcelona that promotes culture, art and creativity is Studiostore, the lively multi-purpose open space in the heart of the Born area.

Design Barcelona STUDIOSTORE

Calle Comerc was always one of my favorite streets. There is the Chocolate museum with the best chocolate pralines and probably the best hot chocolate in town and when you enter you feel as if you’re taking a tour of Charlie’s chocolate factory (only without Oumpaloompas, unfortunately). Then you cross the street and you have the Mutt Gallery and Iguapop (a cool clothing store) and the new and original concept store Studiostore.

We visited a few days ago and were lucky to be able to talk to its owner and idea maker Lafede, who told us some “behind the scenes” information about her interesting concept.
The Studiostore was born recently, but it has already won high praise in design Barcelona. Lafede and her team opened the doors of this store in January 2012 and by doing this she also opened the curtains of a cool space, which hadn’t been used in over 20 years. She told us it was all a lucky coincidence how she found the place; I would say the street called her, because Studiostore totally fits into the neighborhood. Studiostore is 300 m2 divided into studio space and the store, which has two floors. Big neon lightning saying TOGETHER all over one wall of the store represents one of the Studiostore mottos – being together and Back to basics.

Design Barcelona bazzar at Studiostore

Lafede is primarily dedicated to furniture design, lightning and retail spaces but as she said, she didn’ t want to be closed in her studio without the opportunity to meet her possible clients. By mixing her studio space with a 2 floor showroom she creates just that, the ability to meet with existing clients and the opportunity to turn window shoppers into new clients.

Studiostore collaborates with some well-known designers such as Woouf!, Sheriff & Cherry and Paco Rueda and together they release a collection of items that are sold in the front store. Besides all of this there are many events, conferences or pop-up stores happening in Studiostore as well. The lastest event that has recently finished was called The Gran Bazzar, where one can find original pieces from about 50 Barcelona artists including clothes, accessories, furniture, or design gadgets.
The next event will start in May and studiostore will open its walls to talented Barcelona photographers, so don’t miss it.

Studiostore

Lafede (Federica Sandretti), Italian designer and architect, specialized in retail design, came to Barcelona 12 years ago. She worked with Custo Barcelona, but had an idea of connecting her own studio with an open space that would bring and connect people interested in design and art. That´s how the idea of Studiostore was born and after 3 months of running this concept store we can already tell that it worked out well.

See you in Studiostore!

Sarka

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