El Puerto (SOS)

I couldn't blog about Barcelona without mentioning the port; sea trade brought prosperity to many European cities and here the port has been central to city life for two millennia.  Origin stories suggest that the city was either founded by Hercules, or by Hamilcar, the father of the famous Carthaginian military leader Hannibal.  In either event … Continue reading El Puerto (SOS)

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La Moda (SOS)

Whenever I write about fashion I always feel like an imposter; any variance on my part from business suit or shirt and jeans is likely to result in some sort of faux pas. That's not to say that I'm not appreciative. It is after all another visual art form that can embody colour, structure and … Continue reading La Moda (SOS)

Tapas (SOS)

Sometime in the 1980's, I stayed at a hotel in the Swiss village of Morgins in the Porte du Soleil ski region.  I remember little about the skiing or location after so long, but one thing stuck with me.  One evening in the hotel, presumably so they could allow some staff a night off, they … Continue reading Tapas (SOS)

The Quarry (SOS)

There are a number of buildings within Barcelona that vie for the title of being the prime example of Antoni Gaudí's work as a designer and architect.  The Sagrada Familia is of course the biggest most popular with visitors, but it's vastness makes it impersonal, and harder to grasp the impact of his work.  Park Guell … Continue reading The Quarry (SOS)

Palau (SOS)

Making my way towards the Olympic Stadium at Montjuic, it was another altogether more impressive structure that first appeared through the greenery to demand my attention. For all the attempts at creating a classical feel at the stadium to my less than discerning eye it felt like moulded concrete, and given that it's a twentieth century … Continue reading Palau (SOS)

Sand and Sea (and a Little Spell of Sunshine) (SOS)

Beach holiday or city break? One of the decisions that any travel agent might require of a prospective client, but for the indecisive Barcelona is the obvious solution. Most great European cities have a connection to the sea, but few are as close as Barcelona.  London makes do with the mighty Thames. Historically Ancient Rome … Continue reading Sand and Sea (and a Little Spell of Sunshine) (SOS)

Sagrilege (SOS)

The Sagrada Familia, or to give it its full title, The Basílica i Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família, is the "must see" structure in Barcelona, and from many places around the city it's hard not to see it, or at least the cranes that are as much a feature of this building site as the 8 … Continue reading Sagrilege (SOS)