From Gracious to Rambling
If you’re sightseeing or shopping in the upper part of Passeig de Gràcia or Rambla de Catalunya, towards the Diagonal, and want to take a break from the hustle-bustle and traffic and catch a bite to eat, turn off into the Passatge de la Concepció.
Lined by town houses in a mix of classic Eixample and modern styles, this bright traffic-free leafy lane is a peaceful retreat from its busier neighbours and also provides a surprisingly varied offering of tapas and Mediterranean and international cuisine. As well as a Barcelona old favourite, the Tragaluz, which celebrates over 20 years with gastronomic innovations including an oyster bar around its classical formula, you will also find the sumptuous Boca Grande and Boca Chica, specialising in seafood and a cocktail bar. Nearby is a Sushi Shop, where you can order a Japanese take-out and on the ground floor of the Omm Hotel, another Mediterranean cuisine offering at Tragaluz’s sister restaurant, the Mordisco (which means the bite).
So, to take a break and slow your pace when you’re sightseeing or shopping in the area, take a wander down Passatge de la Concepció, breathe in the peace and enjoy some more of Barcelona’s varied gastronomy.
A street that’s short but sweet
Tucked away behind the Diagonal between Vía Augusta and the Jardinets at the top of Passeig de Grácia is this small
unassuming street with a charm all of its own. Named after the Roman orator, who people here will remind you is their favourite Spanish celebrity from antiquity, hailing as he did from Córdoba, carrer Séneca derives its charm, not from any significant architectural gem along its short stretch, but from a mix of design shops and galleries and a small theatre, as well as the nobodinoz kid art design shop and a small cosy restaurant offering tapas and light home-made dishes.
So, if you’re heading from the left Eixample towards Gràcia, you could do worse than to cut across from the bottom end of Vía Augusta along Séneca and stroll, away from the traffic, experiencing these visual offerings of contemporary Barcelona design, or even a bite to eat or a coffee, before coming out at its other end at the Jardinets in front of the modernista Casa Fuster.
A little street with lots of life
Passatge Lluís Pellicer Street Party
Nestled away behind the Diagonal in the left Eixample this unassuming passage will often go unremarked by the casual passer-by, except, perhaps, for the popular Velódromo café-restaurant on its corner with Muntaner.
If you venture a bit further down the lane, you will find it has plenty to offer in the way of hang-outs and diverse food experiences to enjoy both day and night. But what strikes me most about this small street is its sense of community with ambitions above its station among its grander neighbours, evident at last weekend’s annual Festa del Passatge.
Of course, you won’t find it teeming with so much activity every day, but you will be able enjoy the bon rotllo of the locals at one of its cocktail bars at night or sample the all-day variety of cosmopolitan restaurants located there, including a Breton creperie, a Catalan restaurant offering cuina casolana and Blau, one of Barcelona’s finer international gastronomic experiences offered by chef Marc Roca, with his own touch of Catalan flair.
So, if you’re in the area and fancy exploring one of the hideaways in the Eixample, you could do worse than taking a stroll down this lane.