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European romance round-up: Barcelona

European romance round-up: Barcelona


Written by Ciara Elliott


Think incredible skylines, stunning beaches, glorious weather - and so much more...

 

Renowned for its incredible skyline, stunning beaches and glorious weather, Barcelona is the perfect honeymoon destination for couples looking for a little more depth than the usual sunshine getaway.

A bustling city of over 1.6 million, it's a great mix of the cosmopolitan and cultural; so you can do the museums and galleries thing, along with sunbathing and shopping, and still make it back for dinner in a Michelin-starred restaurant by twilight. And all within a two hour flight from home!

STAY: The art-deco style Miramar hotel is situated in a hilltop in the Montjuic area of the city, where you will also find the Miro museum and the Botanic Gardens. Built in 1929 as a palace to hold elegant banquets and balls, the building became the city's first TV centre in the 60s before being redone as the elegant upscale boutique hotel that it now is.

 

With 75 spacious rooms, each with private terrace, Philippe Starck-designed bathrooms and Gilchrist and Soames toiletry products, the hotel has a cool modern feel, but still retains much of its original avant-garde feel; think cream marble floors, dim lighting and low leather couches.

As the hotel is a taxi ride from the city – or an uphill walk from the nearest train stop – it really suits couples who want to get away from it all and have some proper time out. One of the most outstanding features of the hotel is their rooftop indoors and outdoors heated pools, which also has a seasonal massage booth, hydromassage shower cabins and turkish bath.

DO: Home to world-class museums, stunning architecture, breathtaking cityscapes, mountains and ports, when you do finally leave your hotel, it’s difficult to know just where to start when visiting Barcelona. Take time to explore the nooks and crannies of the city where you will discover enchanting alleyways, hidden wineries and cafes.

A visit to the ‘Barri Gotic’ - Barcelona’s Gothic quarter – is a must. The cobbled streets are home to an impressive 13th century cathedral and many charming coffee shops where you can stop and soak up the atmosphere. Those seeking a spot of retail therapy need look no further than the shops lining the wide and spacious boulevards of the newer section of city, most notably, the bustling Las Ramblas.

While those with more artistic bohemian tastes, would be mad to miss Gaudi’s unfinished masterpiece, The Sagrada Familia; The Museu Picasso, home to Pablo Picassos earliest works; and an afternoon spent wandering through the city’s traditional Catalan markets.

EAT: In the evening, Barcelona comes alive, with numerous tapas bars and restaurants offering amazing food. Whether you are eating around Las Ramblas, by the port or in the Gothic quarter, you will be sure to find something to suit your tastes. For an intimate after-dinner drink, seek out the city's oldest cocktail bar, Boadas. Open since the 1930’s, it is one of the smallest and most atmospheric bars around.

If you do not want to venture into the city at night, stay put over cocktails at the hotel's poolside bar or eat at the in-house Forestier restaurant which is renowned for its Catalan and Mediterranean dishes and Mies Van der Rohe designed, well-stocked wine cellar.

BOOK: Stays at Hotel Miramar, Barcelona from €150 per room per night, based on two sharing a double room www.hotelmiramarbarcelona.com


honeymoon ideashoneymoon guidebarcelonaspanish honeymoons




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