Where to stay
Wherever you take a room, ask for one on the courtyard or one that is quiet; the streets of Barcelona can get loud.
Hotel La Florida
Vallvidrera a Tibidabo 83-89
All Barcelona is at your feet at this upscale splurge on Mount Tibidabo. Doubles from $230, the ''design suite" $1,200.
Hotel San Augustin
Plaça de Sant Agustí 3
Perfect for those who like to be in the center of the action, only a short walk from La Rambla and on the edge of what's (arguably) becoming the city's hippest neighborhood. Doubles $170.
Poeta Cabanyes 5-7
A nice and less-expensive option that's only a stone's throw from Quimet & Quimet. Rooms $83-$95, plus tax.
Where to eat and drink
Quimet & Quimet
Poeta Cabanyes 25
Creative tapas served with cava by the glass. Dishes around $3; order several.
Inside La Boqueria market
Some of Barca's best food, cooked before your eyes in the market. A foodie paradise where top chefs stop in for a bite before doing their own shopping. A meal's worth of little dishes and drinks will run around $25. Closest thing they have to a business card is their house label bottle of cava. Good sign.
Plaça Subirats, 5
08739 Sant Pau d'Ordal
Here in a village above Sant Sadurní d'Anoia enjoy simple food done perfectly, much of it in a fireplace. The lamb comes from a farmer a short distance away. Roasted artichokes (in season) are wonderful. Main dishes run around $15. Let the entertaining sommelier who got tired of the Barcelona glitz guide you through their excellent wine choices. Worth renting a car just to go.
Hard to say how long these two trendy-looking places will be around, but the local foodie crowd that frequents them is a good sign. Put on your snazziest duds, be ready to spend $50 to $100 per person, and make sure you start off with a bottle of bubbly.
Ideal Cocktail Bar
This is one of the oldest and classiest bars in the city and one of the first to serve cava by the glass, $7.
Barcelona Tourism Bureau
Several locations across the city
Catalonia Tourism Bureau
Pg de Gràcia, 105