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Silvia Conde's Barcelona
Poblenou // Parallelo Gelato // Miró Museum
words – silvia conde
At boom saloon, we’re incredibly privileged to collaborate with a community of hundreds of talented creatives all around the world, stretching from Ecuador to Egypt, China to Canada, Austria to Angola. Our strong relations have afforded us a wealth of insider insights into the best places to visit, eat and stay, all around the world. Now, we want to share this information with you as we work with our community to map the world and share their best recommendations of how to enjoy destinations both near and far. Our version of a city guide, delivered interactively and in real time – curated for all to enjoy and presented as a savable Google Map for our members to save and bookmark a wealth of future adventures.
Having lived and studied in Berlin for nine years, Silvia Conde returned to Barcelona to hone her talents in photography and creative direction. Her practice throws sharp focus on the natural world and the “original beauty of Mother Earth: from its colours and textures to dreamy landscapes, all of them real.” Recently, Motherhood has become central to Conde’s work and provides ongoing provocation as her practice develops.
When curating personalised recommendations of her hometown for this feature, Conde explains: “I guess Barcelona has many options – different places to please several different groups of people. So, my selections are super personal and connected to what I’m doing at the moment.”
This is my favourite place at the moment for lunch. It’s run by a Japanese woman named Kei, who is the kindest and sweetest chef. Her place is tiny and couldn’t be more charming and cosy. Everything is organic and handmade, and almost everything she serves is vegan. In the past few months, her reputation has [understandably] grown and you must order very early or even make a reservation the day before to avoid disappointment.
After almost two years back in Barcelona, this has become a place for me to go to remember Berlin, the city where I used to live. Camping is a small chiringuito [beach bar] located in a green area with a few trees and shadows. It’s mostly filled with trendy parents who live in the hood, skaters who are training in the park right next to it, groups of friends, locals and also tourists.
I really recommend walking around the industrial part of Poblenou. The city council has invested a lot in this part of the neighbourhood in the past few years. Expect green areas, fancy cafés and – especially enjoyable if you have kids and love to walk around with them – big sidewalks with almost no cars in the way. Here began the car-free “super blocks” project [Superilla], where parks, plants, trees and areas to chill for walkers were prioritised instead of vehicles. I like to think that this represents the Barcelona of the future.
Back north, Parallelo Gelato serves the best ice cream in town. Try their vegan pistachio “de palo” [stick] covered with dark chocolate and tiny pistachio pieces – you won’t regret it. Their team is always friendly and they will let you try every taste before you make your decision.
One of my favourite coffee places. Owned and run by a Spanish and French family with children, they both roast and serve in their small café in Gràcia. They are always kind and serve baked goods by Masmeriendas and Origo Bakery.
One of the very few green areas you will find in Barcelona. After living in Berlin for such a long time, green areas are one of the main things I miss from living abroad. We are desperate to have more real parks with grass and trees. While there has been an increase in natural environments since our current mayor came to power, there is still so much to be done. Turó Park has a large green space where we sit in the afternoon and enjoy a breeze, especially in summer, when temperatures are over 30 degrees.
Located in Montjuïc, Miró Museum is one of my favourite cultural places in the city. Close by, you can also visit the German Pavilion of Mies van der Rohe. The whole area grew during the Olympic Games back in 1992; it feels quite tourist-y, but it’s totally worthwhile paying a visit.
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