There is nothing luite like the holidays in a European city. Barcelona, the Catalan capital, offers much more Christmas romance than many would imagine--and blue skies to boot…
From the festive lights to the awe-inspiring churches to the Christmas Markets, Barcelona offers so much during the holidays. We spent four nights and covered so much ground--literally! Barcelona is a walking city and it's very easy to see it all on foot.
we love a great hotel and Barcelona has lots of beautiful hotels to chose from. The first two nights we stayed at The Cotton House.
Cotton House is in the former headquarters of the Association of Cotton House Manufacturers. The iconic building is in every way representative of the XIX century, a period which has marked the spirit and culture of Barcelona.
The hotel has 83 elegant and comfortable rooms, of which five are spacious suites. The entrance of the emblematic building is a beautiful vestibule covered in mirrors, followed by a hall which then gives access to two stairways: one, a grand marble staircase, and the other, a spiral staircase built in the 50's that received much acclamation among experts in architecture.
The old noble areas of the building contain an elegant library, several great rooms and lounges where the bar and restaurant are located, a luminous glass conservatory and a 300 sqm terrace with lush vegetation. On the sixth floor there is a serene exterior pool, a small gym and a massage room.
One of our fist stops was La Sagrada Familia.
Upon entering this wonderful venue, the first thing that will leave you speechless is the combination of light, relief, color and spirituality.
The architect Antonio Gaudí knew how to perfectly and harmoniously complement all the details, both the sculptures and the shape and height, adorning the cathedral with incredible precision.
From the moment you set foot inside the cathedral, you will notice that every detail has meaning, a personal brand of Gaudí.
The central nave and the apse surprise all tourists with 36 perfectly placed columns in the shape of a tree, apart from other vegetative elements that combine in a unique way with the stained glass windows that flood the space with colors and nuances.
Our two favorite museums were The Picasso Museum Barcalona and MOCO.
The Picasso museum Barcelona is a key reference for understanding the formative years of Pablo Picasso. The genius of the young artist is revealed through the 4,251 works that make up the permanent collection. Furthermore, the Picasso museum, opened in 1963, also reveals his deep relationship with Barcelona: an intimate, solid relationship that was shaped in his adolescence and youth, and continued until his death.
Following its success in Amsterdam, Moco Museum Barcelona echoes its commitment to exhibiting iconic works by celebrated modern and contemporary artists and rising stars.
As far as food, we loved it all--the traditional Catalonian cuisine consists of interesting tapas and delicious wines. You almost can't go wrong anywhere!
You will find jamon of many types on almost every menu as well as meats and vegetables.
One restaurant that served typical Catalonia cuisine was Casa Rafols. It was a great location and the food was delish. We also loved El Boliche del Gordo. I would recommend having reservations for both of these places--even at lunch.
Crusty tomato bread is also on almost every menu and we will bring this idea home with us!
Barcelona--we will be back! You are a special city at the holidays!