On June 16th, we packed up our hotel in Sant Antoni and rolled our suitcases down Av de Paral.el to the Eurostars Grand Marina, where my conference was held. It’s right below the cable car that goes from Montjuic to Barceloneta. Of course, our hotel room was not ready yet, so we dropped off our bags and walked around the marina.
We walked along the beach, got sunburns (completely by accident) and saw lots of topless sunbathers. We found Vaso de Oro at my high school friend’s suggestion. As promised, it was the best beer in Barcelona and there were amazing piementos del pardon, croquetas with tuna inside and pepitos (beef sandwiches)! The wait staff and the chef were so jolly and hilarious. They broke out in song several times and cracked jokes in Catalan. After a much needed siesta, we went to Tapa Tapa across the marina from our hotel for a snack of patatas bravas and Bitburger (not a Barcelona beer, but a favorite nonetheless!)
We met a cute, older couple from New Zealand and another couple from London and Amsterdam. The couple on the right, the Sweets, spend ten weeks in Europe every summer leading day trips! They frequently tour France’s Loire Valley with their business, http://touringfrance.biz/. Mr. F and I are definitely hoping to go to France soon!
We hightailed it back to the hotel a little after 7pm to meet up for my conference dinner. We fortunately made it and we were so happy that we did! We had drinks on the patio of the National Art museum of Catalonia overlooking the city and the Magic Fountain! We were amazed by the sunset, the fountain, the verdejo (Spanish white wine), and the entertainment by Charlie Lustman. He’s a cancer survivor singing comical, bittersweet and inspirational songs about his experiences. I was fascinated.
We had dinner inside the museum and it was phenomenal. We had risotto, mushroom steak on potato cakes, cheese stacks and more. We had dessert on the patio outside again, just in time for the Font de Magica to light up! It was as impressive as the Bellagio in Las Vegas! Too bad none of my pictures at night, from a distance, came out. Here’s the view again from the patio!