Ahora que ya está "vendido" voy a publicar mi mini-guía de shopping por Barcelona. Los clientes me pidieron que hiciera 4 rutas, cada una de ellas con una duración aproximada de unas 3 horas (para visitas rápidas) y que contemplase en su mayoría productos especialmente españoles/catalanes (para turistas). Los locales la encontrareis quizás demasiado "comercial", pero that's the point ^-^
Aquí está. La primera ruta es la que transcurre por el Barrio del Born. En la última entrega adjuntaré el mapa en google maps para que nadie se pierda.
Barcelona shopping guide Vol.1 by Dumbo!!!
(allow 1-2 hours)
Starting Point: Passeig del Born
El Born is within walking distance from the W hotel (allow 20 mins) but you may want to take a taxi and save your feet for the shopping tour around El Born. This is part of the old Barcelona (with Raval and Gòtic areas, which we are going to explore later). It is organized around Santa Maria del Mar church (fisherman’s patron saint) and Born Market, now in a long process of reconstruction due to roman archaeological remains found under the market floor, and has its backbone on the Passeig del Born, where you can sit a minute and watch locals and foreigners passing by. At night, this is a crowded area where everybody goes for a drink. The charm of El Born is enjoying the pleasure of wandering around its narrow streets and discovering the best hidden secret shops and ateliers in the city.
IVO & CO. (Rec, 20 and Plaça Comercial, 3)
The sparkling success of this venue amongst Barcelona’s residents and visitors made them open a second store, just in front of the first one (now dedicated to the little ones of the house). They sell retro-vintage, old and new, stylish home essentials for the kitchen, the bathroom, the garden... You will definitely have the urge to own everything in there and make this place your home. So cozy.
DUDUÁ (Rossic, 6)
You’ll almost have to get lost in order to find this handcrafted contemporary goods shop. But it is worth it! If you want to buy a special and unique gift this is the coolest place in town. Alicia, the owner (and good crafter herself), also organizes events, concerts and commissions exhibitions on the first floor of the shop.
VIALIS (Vidrieria, 15)
You cannot leave the city without a pair (minimum!) of the best Barcelonese shoes brand. Vialis was born in 1996 and has achieved amazing international success by their well constructed, stylish and comfy shoes, using the finest quality leather and materials. They have recently launched Aro, a second line for equally fashionable retro-looking sneakers. When you’ll see a Vialis, you’ll know it is a Vialis. They have the best style.
Visit their first original store in Vidrieria, 15 and the Aro store on Rec, 42.
CUSTO BARCELONA (Plaça de les Olles, 7)
If Spanish fashion has a name outside our borders, this is Custo Dalmau, or the same, Custo Barcelona. He became famous, especially in the U.S.A., thanks to well known celebrities wearing his graphic and coloured t-shirts. Now, this has grown into a huge brand with a place on the New York Fashion Week calendar.
And for a bit of contrast, three textile artisans and designers:
MIRIAM PONSA (Princesa, 14)
One of the Catalan young designers who has pushed hard to make herself a place in the fashion panorama. Habitual face on the 080 Barcelona Fashion Week, she loves experimentation with fabrics and knits, and she creates her own personal view of fashion, totally independent and different from traditional fashion shows. Her shop in Barcelona proves that.
MINHU MADHU (Santa Maria, 18)
Inside this nice atelier specialized in artisan textiles (they make their own fabrics!) you can find pashminas, foulards, textile accessories and of course some pieces of clothing. They are well known for their original designs with a strong personality.
NATALIE CAPELL (Carassa, 2)
A half Catalan-half Israeli dressmaker working in a melancholy, ‘20s like, ‘Tim Burton’’ style atelier, hidden in a narrow shadowy street. Her long dresses, delicate and simple, combine tulle, vintage lace and petticoats reminiscent of Parisian old style cabaret. Natalie also makes made to order gowns including wedding dresses.
Best spots for eating, drinking and delicatessen hunting:
CASA GISPERT (Sombrerers, 23)
Master Roasters since 1851, they use the same old original oven from those times, still toasting today the best tasting nuts, coffee and cocoa one would ever have the pleasure to try. They also have wines, basket gifts, torrons (classic sweet for all traditional Spanish Christmas), organic products, herbs and spices, juices, pasta...
DEMASIÉ (Princesa, 28)
This is what happens when you mix gourmet handmade cookies and design. Escursell brothers (owners of the famous Xocoa brand, for anything chocolate-design-related) decided cookies deserved a better destiny than the regular supermarket shelves. You would find a lot of flavours, salted or sweet, from traditional to contemporary recipes. Taste the Parmesan Salted Cookies and buy a Demasié Mix to take home with you.
OLIVE (Plaça de les Olles, 2)
Can you think of anything more Mediterranean than olive oil? In Olive you’ll find a wide range of products a hundred per cent Mediterranean: Spanish oils (as well as some Italian or French), soaps, shaving products, mandarin oils, conserves, Provence salt and vinegars.
VILA VINITECA (Agullers, 7)
If you are in the mood for good wine (who’s not?), this is the place to be. One of the best stocked wine cellars in the city, with the best bottles from around the world and offering, of course, the perfect selection of Catalan and Spanish D.O. wines, as well as a little delicatessen shop with a few tables (in Agullers, 9) for accompanying your drink: cold meats, oils, and superb cheeses: more than 500 different kinds. The founders are experienced sommeliers and have created also a Wine Club and a Wine Tasting Contest.
GIMLET (Rec, 24)
Here we have the classic cocktail venue with years of experience and loyal local customers (intellectuals living in the area, mostly). The serious and renowned barman, dressed in rigorous black, can make any cocktail you like or guide you through your choice. If you are still in doubt, ask for the Gimlet (just gin & lime)! It is an austere, simple, little place. A gem on the rocks.
EL XAMPANYET (Montcada 22)
Hungry? Oh, dear. This is one of the top places in the city to eat good (not the ones just for tourists) real Spanish-Catalan tapas. The best-known plate in here is the combo of Mediterranean anchovies and a glass of xampanyet, bubbly white wine. The place is reminiscent of a Catalan masia (country house), half-covered in blue typical Catalan glazed tiles. Make yourself at home.
And one last special place as a bonus:
EL REY DE LA MAGIA (Princesa 18)
If you have kids around, or wanna take out the magician inside you, you need to visit El rey de la magia, founded in 1881 (is one of the oldest magic shops in the whole world!). This shop is part of the cultural heritage of our city. Come on, you’ve always wanted to be Hermione!! :)