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Anything can happen in Barcelona! With its sizzling, sun drenched beaches w/hot oiled bodies, Spanish tapas, dining at 11, dancing until 5 – no one wants to sleep! Modernistic Antoi Gaudi architecture, the medieval quarter of the Barri Gotic, exotic fashion and incredible food combines to make Barcelona the hottest city to visit in Europe. Beware …that handsome stranger can be just around the corner.
The real reason to visit Barcelona!
Does being married or single influence Where2Stay? Do you want your hotel hip & modern (perfect for singles (S)) or quiet & elegant (perfect for married (M))? Sometimes you want to “marry” the two. (MS)
W Barcelona– Perched like a mirage rising up from the sea, the only hotel in Barcelona w/direct beach access to the boardwalk you can show off your hot body in your new Blue Man abstract printed swimsuit. Ideal for romantic couples, singles wanting to party & families. Get glamorous at their rooftop bar Eclipse and wake up to a stunning view of the Mediterranean. Spacious white modern rooms w/floor to ceiling, state of the art business center and WET infinity pool. (Check out the wet deck summer series on Sunday) Drink at The Exclusive Eclipse bar (separate elevator and reservations) and dine at Michelin star chef Carlos Alelian Bravo 24 Sadly you might never see the rest of Barcelona . (M/S/MS)
Tickets-What can you say about a restaurant impossible to get into? Owned by the best chef in the world, Ferran Adria you understand why. Reserve 3 months in advance only on line. No phone! Repeat next day (& the next) until you get in. This “wear girl” changed two flights and two hotel rooms in order to eat there. With a “circus like” theme Tickets is a blast. Casual, fun w/ blow away innovative tapas. Order the surprise tasting menu where nothing is what it seems (a Ferran signature) Liquid olives anyone? Note: Closed Sunday and Monday
41 Degrees – Ferran Adria does it again. 41 courses, molecular style…start emailing now.and the new Patak w/ Asian influences
“Cannelloni” “Liquid Olives” “Steak Tartar”
Bar Canete– locals and tourists alike flock here. Buzzy, crowded atmosphere, sit at the bar in a sexy Alexander Mc Queen crop top, to experience a true Barcelona vibe, also grab a seat at Cal Pep (a Thomas Keller favorite). El Quim in the bustling Bouqueria – have grilled calamari and eggs…trust us! Comerce 24– luxurious, high-end dining. Also owns Tapas 24. Note: Most restaurants closed Sundays and Mondays.
Passeig de Gracia– The Madison Avenue of Barcelona; major shops, restaurants & bars be sure to visit the Roberto Verino store. Parallel street is Rambla Catalunya with more local Spanish designer. El Born Area – imagine a medieval SOHO, narrow winding streets; fashionable local boutiques next to 13th Century Churchs
Barri Gothic Quarter, Miro and Picasso museums, Rambles, Bouqueria Market. anything Gaudi
Upcoming Events –
Sala Montjuic Outdoor Film Festival -Transforms the outdoor grassy moat of the castle into an outdoor cinema in July -August,
La Merce Festival Mid September – annual festival of the city w/ parades, feasts and dancing!
Shop: Men’s Travel Gear – For the man in your life
Samsung Galaxy Gear Smartwatch– A personal assistant on your wrist! Receive texts, calls & notifications- hands free. OontZ Angle Ultra Portable Speaker– bring the mood music wherever you go. Philips Norelco Beard Trimmer– Clean up quick, you know we like it smooth. JetBag Bottle Bag-Bring back a taste of your trip.
Co-Authored by: Fiona Tolley
WhyGoNow? Because Valencia, Spain’s third largest city, is the country’s rising star. Travel to this seaside city for its modern edgy culture mixed with Spanish tradition. A gastronomical adventure, amazing nightlife with the raw excitement of bullfighting added in. Home to the breathtaking City of Arts & Sciences (a dizzying blur of beauty), high spirited cafes, great wine & the birthplace of paella. It’s also less than two hours away from Madrid by Spain’s AVE high-speed rail!
Does being married or single influence Where2Stay? Do you want your hotel hip & modern (perfect for singles (S)) or quiet & elegant (perfect for married (M)). Sometimes you want to “marry” the two (MS).
SH Inglés Boutique Hotel – Located in Valencia’s financial and business district, staying here is like living in a mini, modern Spanish castle. (MS)
Palau de la Mar – Luxuriously chic w/ modern, elegant rooms housed in a refurbished palace. Perfect location, in the heart of the city. Fabulous interior & huge marble staircase lets you descend in style. Great spa and restaurant. (MS)
The Westin Valencia – Classic Westin style with a traditional Spanish twist. The front and lobby will make any architecture junkie swoon. This hotel is in walking distance of the Mercat Central Market and has all the classic luxury facilities. (M)
Hotel Neptuno – Fit for a king. King Neptune, that is. Directly connected to the beach and boardwalk, the outside looks like Miami Beach, inside pure Spanish. This hotel is perfect for a hot beach getaway with the girlfriends. (S)
Photos courtesy of I-Escape
Valencia is split into two completely different districts: City of Arts & Sciences (modern) and La Seu (traditional). Walk through the beautiful, modern district and check out the 45,000 aquatic creatures at L’Oceanografic, visit museums like L’Almoina or the Museu de Belles Arts. Don’t forget Spanish bullfighting at the Plaza de Toros (men look hot in tights)! Party all day and night when you celebrate the Summer Solstice in late June during the Fiesta de San Juan & Noche de San Juan – fireworks, concerts & beach bonfires. Go for a ride in Turia Park with Valencia’s public bike system (much like City CarShare).
Try paella at La Pepica or L’Estimat on Malvarrosa Beach. Valencia is also Horchata’s birthplace, so go to Horchatería El Siglo in the Carmen to sample the tiger nut drink (not those kinds of nuts) along with another of the city’s creations: the farton, a fluffier version of the ladyfinger. Try Carosel in the Carmen for a new take on traditional Spanish tapas. Alma del Temple is the perfect place for groups of 3+ for their set menu. Don’t worry, wine included! Ca Sento & La Sucural for the best seafood. Small energetic bars are more the norm than large venues, so just walk up and down the streets of the Carmen if you can’t decide!
Barrio del Carmen is the oldest, most diverse, cosmopolitan area in Valencia. Full of local boutiques, bars and bohemian nightlife. Graze in the Mercat Central Market which is one of the largest indoor food markets in Europe. Shop for art at My Name’s Lolita, Riff, Galería Rosa Santos & the Museu de Belle Arts. Calle Don Juan de Austria is home to boutiques and high-fashion brands like Gucci and Chanel. Calle Colon, on the other hand, is more focused on the works of local designers.
The Wear Girls Go Fishing!
Co-authored by: Tiffany Do & a special thanks to our foreign correspondent Marina Carbonell