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Mobile World Congress 2018

Mobile World Congress 2018 will once again take place at Fira Gran Via with selected events, including 4YFN, taking place at Fira Montjuïc. View Map

Mobile World Congress is the world’s largest gathering for the mobile industry, organised by the GSMA and held in the Mobile World Capital, Barcelona, 26 February – 1 March 2018.

Mobile World Congress (MWC) returns once again to Barcelona with the aim of overtaking the figures reached at the last edition in which more than 108,000 people attended the event and the program of presentations. In this year’s edition, 2,300 companies from all over the world will showcase the latest in technology.

Under the motto “Creating a better future” this edition will show how mobile technology and connectivity has been empowered as one of the engines of digitalization of cities, companies and, of course, users. With more than 5 billion subscribers, the mobile connects more than two thirds of the world’s population and has become the driving force behind innovation.

Industry leaders will gather, network, showcase, and exchange ideas – and you don’t want to miss it. Make your plans now to see how Mobile is Creating a Better Future.

Valentine’s Day in Barcelona 2018

Barcelona is definitely well known for its astonishing architecture, beautiful Mediterranean beaches and delectable dining, so what better place to spend your Valentine’s Day this year than in Gaudí’s city? Whether you seek a romantic escape in a quiet and cozy area of Barcelona, or you are just looking for somewhere different to spend your Valentine’s weekend, the Catalan capital has something sure to cater to every couple.

 

  • Picturesque Park Güell: This colorful Gaudí park is the ultimate backdrop for the perfect Valentine’s experience! From here you can enjoy astonishing views of Barcelona as you soak in the greatness of this revered Catalan architect. With plenty of places to have a picnic around the park, why not surprise your other half with a romantic lunch for two overlooking the city?
  • Breathtaking Barceloneta Beach: However cliché it may seem to some, sometimes a simple walk along the beach with your partner can be equally as romantic as an intimate dinner. Amble along the famous Passeig de Colom, then take a stroll through the picturesque port and finally end with a walk along Barceloneta beach. You could even stop for a drink at one of the fantastic seaside bars along the promenade.
  • Time-Old Tibidabo: Get transported into a whole other world atop this magical mountain, which is home to the oldest amusement park in Spain. Mount Tibidabo also offers numerous hiking trails, as well as some great bars with amazing views of the city, like Mirabé at Manuel Arnús, 2!
  • A Romanesque Romance: Looking to do something truly memorable? Surprise your loved one with a magical day trip to Tarragona, and lose yourself amidst Roman ruins, ancient aqueducts and medieval buildings, all just an hour outside Barcelona. Don’t miss your chance to stroll down the winding streets lined with brightly colored orange trees, and be sure to top off this romantic outing by watching the sunset from the ‘Mediterranean Balcony’ lookout point.
  • The Cherry on Top of a Lovely EveningWhy not complete your evening with some of the finest wine around? Become a wine connoisseur for the evening at one of Barcelona’s top wine bars – truly an unforgettable experience. If sampling wine isn’t really your thing, why not take your partner to a traditional Spanish Flamenco show at Tablao Cordobes? Sure to get your heart racing…

     

     

 

Gaudí’s Pedrera: The Origins

If Gaudí brought you to Barcelona, you can’t miss this amazing experience

“Gaudí’s Pedrera: The Origins” is an spectacular night-time experience that will amaze everyone. Live an absolutely unique immersive experience, full of surprises, set in one of Barcelona’s most emblematic buildings.

Gaudí believed that nature is like a large open book; one we should make the effort to read and interpret. Accompanied by a guide, you will experience an unforgettable journey through different areas of the building: Passeig de Gràcia and Provença Courtyards, Espai Gaudí (the attic) and the Roof-Terrace (The Apartment not included), in which the highlight will be a videomapping at the Roof-Terrace of La Pedrera. We use the unique architecture of this space to present a magnificient audiovisual show which allows to make an unforgettable journey to the origins of life, the essence of Gaudí’s architecture, with multiple projections in the “badalots” (stairwells), special lighting and a soundtrack that will accompany it all.

The visit includes:

  • Projections in the Passeig de Gràcia Courtyard
  • Discovering the building’s most remarkable treasures (Passeig de Gràcia and Provença Courtyards, Espai Gaudí and the Roof-Terrace)
  • An extraordinary audiovisual show on the Barcelona’s most remarkable Roof-Terrace
  • Guide of La Pedrera, which will discover the building.
  • A glass of cava to finish off the evening

Don’t miss this highly sensory tour at night to discover the nooks and crannies of La Pedrera, that culminates with an audiovisual show beyond the imagination.

Museum of Illusions

Take a trip on the Titanic, play amongst gigantic toys or have your photo taken with Antonio Banderas. Who is big and who is small? Others like to stand amongst the football fans in the Camp Nou stadium and sing along with all the fans. A visitor to the Museum of Illusions isn’t just an observer, but a full part of the artwork being shown. Buy your tickets for the museum here.

Taking photographs is expressly permitted here and is a direct part of the exhibition. The Museum of optical Illusions fills photo albums with the most expressive and unusual photos taken by visitors. Everyone will find a motif here which they can personally relate to.
All this and much, much more are waiting for you at the Galería de las Ilusiones Ópticas, Europe’s first photographic project devoted to optical illusions. As you walk along its corridors, you’ll be able to delve into your imagination like you did as a child and encounter the settings of masterpieces by Dalí, Goya and Picasso, the landscapes of Catalonia and even fictional characters, famous singers and footballers from around the world.

Let yourself be carried away by the art, colour and fiction of this parallel universe and don’t forget to take part in the Barcelonarium, a theatrical adventure where the characters from famous paintings will step out of the frames. At the end, you’ll be able to take away an amazing photo as a souvenir of this unforgettable, fun experience

10 Insider Tips on What to Do in Barcelona

1. Walk down Passeig de Gracia and admire the many architectural works of art of Antoni Gaudi. Don’t forget to visit the “House of Bones”, officially known as Casa Batlló. The house is open to visitors 365 days a year from 9am to 9pm.

2.See a free exhibition in Palau Robert (on Passeig de Gracia) or one of the many galleries in the city.

3.Eat fresh tapas in a bar near the Barceloneta beach (Jai-Ca or Can Mano) and follow it up with a delicious paella at Can Ros.

4.Go to a live flamenco show, dance and drink a glass of vermouth on a Saturday afternoon at Bar Leo (Barceloneta)

5.Hunt for antiques and trinkets at the Mercat dels Encants (Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays).

6.Get a bird’s eye view of the city from the Montjuic Cable Cars, Teleferic de Montjuic. To get there, take the funicular from the Parallel metro stop (line 2 & 3).

7.Observe the vibrant cultural melting-pot that is the Rambla del Raval.

8.Get lost in the labyrinth of the park “Laberint d’Horta”.

9.Go to a concert at the Palau de la Musica, enjoy the fantastic acoustics and architecture.

10. Unleash the Catalan rhythm and see a concert by the Barceloneta beach.

 

Estos 5 nuevos restaurantes causan furor en Barcelona, ¿los conoces?

Barcelona es una ciudad bonita: por su gente, sus calles y sus enclaves únicos. Por más que conozcas la ciudad, siempre terminas por encontrar un nuevo rincón que rezuma mucho encanto. Y hoy te mostramos 5 locales a tener en cuenta si lo que quieres es probar cosas nuevas y diferentes vistas hasta ahora. ¿A qué esperas?

1. Bao Bar
El chef Paco Pérez se adentra al mundo asiático de la mano de los baos -unos panecillos asiáticos rellenos de todos los ingrendientes imaginables- con Bao Bar. Entre sus originales propuestas destacan el bao de chipirón frito con huevo poché, bacon y salsa tartara, o el de buey de Mar, corales, mayonesa y rábano.

2. Sopa Provenza
La moda macrobiótica cada vez está más presente e nuestras ciudades, pero los restaurantes Sopa hace más de 12 años que se instalaron en nuestro país (el primero que abrió fue en Madrid). Ahora estrenan nuevo local en la calle Provença 330 esquina con Bruc, y como no podía ser de otra manera, las sopas son la especialidad de la casa. Entre sus propuestas culinarias destacan los alimentos saludables 100% vegetarianos con influencia macrobiótica, así como las opciones veganas.

3.Els Pinxus
A todo el mundo le apetece ir de pinchos de vez en cuando y este renovado local en Barcelona llamado Els Pinxus parece ser la respuesta perfecta. Una gran variedad de pinchos y tapas donde la calidad está presente en todo momento. Perfecta opción para ir con amigos.

4.Koku Kitchen
Con la llegada del otoño nuestro estómago se prepara para manjares más elaborados y contundentes. Si eres fanático de la comida Ramen Koku Kitchen es el place to be. Regentado por irlandeses, las raciones son grandes y el precio más que razonable. Su selección de gyozas es digna de ser probada y sus postres quitan el sentido (sobre todo su helado de Taro y el banoffee pie).

5.The Pan’s Club
He aquí un pedazo de Francia en un pequeño local situado en pleno Born de Barcelona. The Pan’s Club es un sitio take away donde las quiches, las ensaladas y los bagels son deliciosas propuestas vegetarianas que te conquistarán desde su primera toma de contacto. Eso sí, deberás dejar espacio para los postres, pues sus pasteles son dignos de ser probados.

Cabalgata de los Reyes Magos

Descripción

La noche del 5 de enero, la ciudad organiza un gran recibimiento a los Reyes de Oriente, con un gran desfile por las calles de la ciudad, acompañados de un gran séquito de pajes, de carrozas y de comparsas de compañías artísticas, de danzantes, carteros y otros grupos provenientes de entidades y organizaciones que quieran participar.

Desde los años sesenta del siglo XX, los Reyes llegan a Barcelona por mar y son recibidos a pie del barco por el alcalde, quien les entrega las llaves de la ciudad para que puedan abrir, solo durante una noche, las puertas de todas las casas de Barcelona.

Esa noche los niños y niñas de todo el país esperan con ilusión las cabalgatas, que se organizan en todas las poblaciones, y desean que sus majestades no se olviden de pasar por su casa y dejar el regalo que les han pedido.

Motivo

La fiesta de Reyes se celebra el día 6 de enero, fecha en la que se cree que unos sabios astrólogos venidos de Oriente llegaron a Belén para adorar al niño Jesús y le hicieron las ofrendas de oro, incienso y mirra. Es por eso por lo que todavía hoy el componente principal de la celebración es el regalo.

No fue hasta el siglo VII cuando los Reyes empezaron a ser tres -Melchor, Gaspar y Baltasar- y con una procedencia definida: Europa, Asia y África, los tres continentes conocidos. Algunas interpretaciones medievales también los dibujaban como los tres estados del hombre: sabiduría, madurez y juventud.

Orígenes

Las primeras representaciones de los tres Reyes en Barcelona las encontramos en las procesiones de Corpus del siglo XIV, formando parte de las representaciones que hacían referencia a la epifanía. Ahora bien, las primeras cabalgatas son de finales del siglo XVIII y se hicieron de manera intermitente hasta principios del XX.

Durante el primer tercio del siglo pasado la cabalgata se organizaba con finalidades benéficas y tuvo épocas mejores y peores hasta la guerra de 1936-1939, cuando se interrumpió. En 1942 se retomó por iniciativa del Ayuntamiento de Barcelona y desde entonces no se ha dejado de organizar. Año tras año, se fue perfilando la Cabalgata que tenemos hoy, con unas características y unos personajes que la hacen única.

El evento empieza a las 16.30 horas, en el Moll de la Fusta. Sus Majestades llegarán con el pailebot Santa Eulàlia en compañía de todos sus ayudantes.
Después de la tradicional ceremonia de recibimiento de Sus Ilustres Majestades de Oriente, a partir de las 18h recorrerán varias calles de la ciudad; avenida Marqués de la Argentera, Pla de Palau, paseo Isabel II, Via Laietana, plaza Urquinaona, Fontanella, plaza Catalunya, Pelai, plaza Universitat, ronda Sant Antoni, Sepúlveda, avenida Paral·lel, plaza España hasta llegar aproximadamente hacia las 21 horas en la avenida Reina María Cristina.

The 12 Lucky Grapes: A New Year’s Eve Tradition in Spain

Those of you who have been lucky enough to celebrate New Year’s Eve here in Spain will be familiar with the tradition of eating 12 ‘lucky’grapes as the clock strikes midnight. If you haven’t the faintest idea what we are talking about, be sure to read on as we explain where this bizarre tradition originated and what it actually entails.

Although many believe the tradition of eating the 12 lucky grapes at midnight on New Year’s Eve originated in 1909 due to a bumper crop of white grapes in the Almeria, Murcia and Alicante regions, it appears that this might not be entirely correct.

Yes, wine growers in these regions did have a surplus of stock that particular year and were certainly instrumental in popularising the tradition of eating grapes at New Year, however, there are reports that date the tradition way back to the late 1800’s.

During those times, families who were well off would often eat grapes and drink champagne to celebrate the New Year. In an effort to ridicule this ‘snobby’ tradition, a group of working class ‘madrileños’ gathered at the Spanish capital’s Puerta del Sol square to eat their grapes and sip their champagne; this is what led to the celebrations we now witness every year.

Thousands of people meet at the Puerta del Sol (equivalent of Times Square in New York or Trafalgar Square in London) to see in the New Year, singing, dancing and, of course, stuffing their 12 grapes in their mouths whilst downing their glasses (or bottles) of bubbly!

For those not living in Madrid, you’ll find that most towns and cities have similar celebrations in their main squares. If you’re in Benalmádena over the holidays, you can head up to Plaza de la Mezquita in Arroyo de la Miel and see in the New Year with thousands of other visitors and locals.

If you’re not into celebrating with the masses and prefer to avoid the madness of these celebrations, another popular option is to just stay at home with friends and loved ones and watch the live broadcast of the event on TV. But make sure you don’t forget your lucky grapes!

According to tradition, it is believed that whoever eats their 12 grapes as the bells chime (one for each of the twelve chimes) will have a lucky and prosperous year 🙂 A quick word of advice: Although it may seem an easy task – after all it is only twelve grapes – getting them all in your mouth before the bells stop chiming is actually quite hard. To improve your chances of success, make sure you choose small grapes!

Another quick bit of advice: Make sure you start to eat the grapes when the official chimes start. Many people get confused as there are four other double chimes just before the clock strikes twelve.

Here’s the whole sequence so that there are no mix ups:

1) 35 seconds before midnight a ball at the top of the Puerto del Sol clock tower starts to fall towards the main bell.

2) Once it gets to the bottom you will hear four double chimes (Many make the mistake of starting to eat the grapes at this point but you have to wait…)

3) As the clock strikes twelve you will start to hear the 12 chimes – one approximately every 3 seconds – now is the time to start eating your grapes!

Remember the idea is to eat one grape with each chime… good luck!

Things to do in Barcelona for Christmas

Christmas is special everywhere because each place on earth has its special traditions. Barcelona is not an exception. Shopping and delicious warm meals can wait but these things to do in Barcelona for Christmas only happen once a year!
El Pessebre
Many Mediterranean countries have lovely alternatives for the Christmas tree: el pessebre, a model of the nativity with all kinds of figures. So one of the things to do in Barcelona for Christmas is visit local pessebres or make one of your own.
The most iconic one is the one the city council places at Plaça Sant Jaume, in the Gothic Neighbourhood. Obviously it’s bigger than the average one you can see in many Spanish homes, but for Barcelonians, Christmas wouldn’t be the same without it.
Not far away from Plaça Sant Jaume, in front of the Cathedral, there’s the Fira de Santa Llúcia where you can buy everything you need to build your own pessebre, from moss to figures to amazing decoration. Kids would love something from here as a souvenir. It starts on Santa Llúcia day, on the 13th of December.

The Poo Log
People always get surprised about this but Christmas in Barcelona and Catalonia can get very scatological. Brace yourself and have fun, because this was the tradition I enjoyed the most as a child. One of the things to do in Barcelona for Christmas is… cagar el tió (or “to shit the log”). Let me explain. Every home owns a Tió or el Tronc, that has the facility of giving (by expulsing through the back door) your presents and sweet things if you kick it strong enough with a stick on Christmas Eve. During this ritual you must sing a certain song and the tradition says you’ve got to feed it during the previous days so it can “poo” better presents. Some foreigners see this as a tradition that teaches children to be violent, we see a lesson for a very tough life… And the funniest way possible to get presents!

El Caganer
The Tió is not the only scatological tradition we have for Christmas. Among the things to do in Barcelona for Christmas, there’s buying a caganer (a poo man), which I’m sure is one of our most surprising and funny souvenirs. You can get one easily at Fira de Santa Llúcia because in every pessebre there must be a caganer. The legend says that this man was a shepherd that went to adore Jesus at Bethlehem but… had a little urgency on the road.

For us it’s a way to keep Christmas fun and the idea has grown until the point that caganers are for Catalans what The Simpsons are for pop culture… you are not famous if you don’t appear as one!

As you see, there are lots of things to do in Barcelona for Christmas. If you visit us, you’ll be amazed because the city will offer you a really different face: more traditions, fun stories and well, yes, obviously, a shopping paradise.

5 reasons to book directly with hotels/hostels by email or on their website :)

1.Exclusive discounts: Most hotels actually want you to book with them directly because third-party booking sites take a cut of their profit. If a hotel can book you directly, it can still give you a discount and make more in the end than if you booked through a third-party site. The less hotels pay for third-parties as commission, the more they are willing to offer customers with extra benefits.

2.Room preferences: If you need a room with two beds, your chances of getting that room type are better when booking directly with the hotel as the OTAs do not guarantee room type for guests.

3.Customer service: If something goes wrong with your trip or your stay, you’ll get better customer service if you book directly through the hotel. That’s because hotels give priority to reservations made directly with them since they didn’t have to pay a commission fee. Otherwise, you’ll have to go through an OTA’s customer service agent, who will then have to liaise between you and the hotel.

4.Accountability :When the reservation relationship is between the guest and the hotel only, it’s clean and easy because there are only two parties involved: the customer and the business. When a third party (booking site) gets involved is when things can get messy. For example, sometimes reservations are not actually processed and the site and the hotel can pass the blame back and forth. This can potentially leave you with the wrong room or without a room at all, and there’s little hope for recourse.

5.Flexibility: When you book directly, hotels will often be more willing and able to help should you need to change your dates or even cancel, because they’re not bound by some third-party deal. Reserving a hotel room through a third-party site can essentially create and lock in a contract for a stay, which can limit wiggle room for the guest and hotel staff. If you need to change your room dates or cancel, and you booked through a third party, a hotel can’t work with you because it has a locked-in contract with the third party. You have to deal with the third party to change the deal, and that often doesn’t work out well.