One benefit of having moved to Tel Aviv is being a hop, skip and a jump away from Europe. As I mentioned before, I took advantage a couple weekends back with a quick trip to Barcelona, a destination that's always been at the top of my must-see list for its bevy of surrealist buildings by Antoni Gaudi and its Catalonian tapas spots. With my expectations set high, the food was a disappointment, but the architecture—and the culture of great design that permeates the city—was not. Take a look...
Casa Batllo (above) is one of the most heavily touristed sites in Barcelona, and rightfully so, but what I wouldn't have given to tour the private residence without the crowds.
Of course, Gaudi's unfinished masterpiece, La Sagrada Familia (above), was even more of a zoo, but you'd be hard pressed to find another cathedral like it in Europe.
Our hotel was located in El Born, a district of narrow alleyways filled with charming boutiques that I spent hours exploring thanks to a very (very!) patient husband.
In a city known for its handmade leather goods, the pieces at Cuirum stood out for their originality. Check out that pink calf hair!
I spent a little too long in It Reminds Me of Something, the most gorgeous design shop, geeking out with the proprietor over his wares. Above is a table full of beautiful wood pieces by Ricardo Tena and triangular leather bags that zip closed from a single piece of leather by Loope Design.
Concret is another of many design shops in the neighborhood, one I fell in love with for its quirky decor of hanging hat lights.
And, finally, a gratuitous food shot, taken at La Boqueria, Barcelona's famed food market. It wasn't that the city's food was bad, per se, just incredibly mediocre compared to what I had expected. La Boqueria offered up the best culinary experience of the weekend, as we happily grazed our way though stalls selling Iberico ham, chorizo, manchego cheese, fresh seafood, cut fruit and sweets.
Excuse me. Now I need a snack.