There is no one complaining about yet another museum. No one who needs to go to a restaurant where there is plain pasta with butter. No reason whatsoever to go to the children’s museum. My husband and I are in Barcelona without the kids.
After a mercifully quick flight On Delta which featured a broken A/C on the ground (which – mercifully again- worked once we got airborne), 100% inedible food (come on, Delta Airlines, for $1400 (RT) a ticket, you can do better than moldy chicken for dinner and rubber eggs on a untoasted English Muffin for breakfast.), we arrived in Barcelona yesterday morning.
Spectacular Gaudi spires, covered in mosaic tiles or shards of glass seem to grow out of the rooftops and sparkle in the sun; wide avenues are sun filled and lined with trees. Dinner begins at 9 – 10 if you’re chic – and goes until 2am.
Everyone, seemingly, is thin, young, and beautiful. Despite the fact that this country is on the verge of financial collapse, the unemployment amongst the young nearing a staggering 25%, the people of Barcelona seem unhurried, unstressed, impossibly, effortlessly chic.
The streets are so clean they quite literally shine, the architecture is varied – with the standard, charming late 19th century apartments lining the avenues with their big windows and beautiful wrought iron balconies, fanciful Gaudi buildings, and truly innovative, modern buildings that seem to undulate in the sun, all seamlessly co-existing amongst the Palm trees.
NY is seeming decidedly less fabulous.
For us, Day One was all about Gaudi – after a quick nap, we started at Casa Mila, (La Perdreira) which is across the street from our well located hotel, the non-descript but clean, possessing of pool and a chic rooftop bar with views, Condes de Barcelona. (Note to the Condes de Barcelona: they call it the hospitality industry for a reason. You might want to instruct the staff to say hello once in a while. Or even – heaven forbid – smile.)
Casa Mila was Gaudi’s most fabulous residential building, and aside from the apartment they’ve retrofitted with period furniture, people still live there. Lucky them. The building has no straight lines. It is fluid and light. And, as we learned from the very useful audio tour, the apartments have no load-bearing walls. So they really are fluid.
From there, we took a stroll to the iconic Sagrada Familia – a light-filled wonder of a cathedral, 128 years in the making and still in progress.
PS. I feel the need to add two things: 1. This trip is in no way sponsored. 2. Cathy, our travel agent at Tzell.com deserves a lot of credit for putting it all together.