Around the Block in Barcelona (Our new home!)

Window on the Dawn. Parc del Forum, Barcelona, 2015
Window on the Dawn. Parc del Forum, Barcelona, 2015


‘Tis true–we will be moving to Barcelona sometime this summer/fall! Our new apartment awaits us on Carrer Provença in the L’Esquerra de l’Eixample area of downtown Barcelona!


I am certainly more of an outdoor, smaller town, guy than a city guy, so this transition will be interesting. Thankfully, there is plenty to do and see within a few hours (and often much closer) of Barcelona: rock climbing, hiking, white water, via ferratas, snorkeling and scuba, sunning on the beach, quaint villages, interesting landscapes of all kinds for the photographer, and so on.

Out of curiosity, though, I thought I would take a very close gander at our new neighborhood in l’Eixample. To that end, I took a little exploratory stroll, starting at the entrance to our apartment building, at Calle Provenza 162, and walked around the block, noting in my little book the different businesses that were to be found. Normally, going around the block would take you about 5-7 minutes, but I took about 30 minutes with all the note-scribbling and such.

The quantity and variety of businesses turned out to be waaay more extensive than I expected. If you have never lived in a cosmopolitan city, it will likely surprise you as well.

Moving clockwise around the block, here is everything I encountered…:

Pollastres a l’ast (roasted chicken place)

Equivalenza (perfume shop)

Cottet Centre Auditiu (hearing aid shop)

100 i Mes (an everything place–sort of like a five and dime store)

–A lighting store with lamps and so on

Branche (women’s clothing)

Disfrutar (restaurant with a Michelin star and numerous other prestigious awards)

Teixits (a fabric store, since 1936)

Herboristeria (herbs, other healthy stuff)

Dra. Gisela Hausmann (dermatologist)

Buc Bar (bar/café)

Daniel (women’s clothing)

Porvenir (bar/restaurant)

Tabacs (cheapo gifts, cigars, cigarettes)

Pere Arguer Joiers (jewelry)

Xeviot (clothing)

Casa d’moviles (cell phones and accessories)

Kutxabank (bank)

Farmacia (pharmacy/drug store)

Parking (parking garage)

La Dietetica (health food, vitamin stuff)

Meraki (beauty salon)

Terra Salavito (Italian bar and restaurant)

Colorlab (photo prints and services)

La Vanguardia (news stand, newspapers, magazines)

Promo Look (haircuts and styling)

Bus Stop #0139 (Lines H10 and H20)

Arte Café (salon café)

Calbet (appliances)

O Retorno (seafood restaurant)

Repassos (language courses)

Lycamobile (cell phones and accessories)

Super One (mini-market)

Central Ceràmic (tile and bath shop)

Restaurant Dau (seafood)

Parroquia de Sant Isidor (church, also a food distribution point to the needy)

Motoscoot Official Store (motorcycles and scooters)

Coyote D7 (bar/café)

MediaActive (digital printing, graphic design, posters)

Ganiveteria i Paraigüeria (knives and umbrellas, oh my!)

Asen (IT solutions, computers)

La Balear (perfumes and cosmetics)

Institut d’Estudis Aplicats (animal and environmental studies/courses)

Audiotek (hearing aids)

Eriser (fruit and vegetable market)

De Lux Centre (spa)

Palatsi (boutique and personal shopper)

Mr Tronic (PC service and accessories)

Abodal Matalasseria (mattress and bedding shop)

Farmacia (pharmacy/drug store)

Strata Pastisseria Artesana (pastry shop)

La Bio Pelu (organic hair salon)

San Remo (perfumes)

Rapid Multiservi Zarate (keys, shoe and clothing repair, knife sharpening)

Now, as if that weren’t sufficient, if you include the shops that are just across the street as go around the very same block, you could add:

Mercat del Ninot (This is a Major League plus for us…a very new and huge indoor market with a few bars and restaurants, a huge supermarket underneath in the basement, and many kiosks with fresh local foods–meats, hams, chicken, fish, fruits, vegetables, baked goods, even some second-hand clothing booths outside)

Del mar a su casa (fresh fish and seafood)

Plaza Cafe (café)

Unidental (dental services)

Condis (supermarket)

Academias Te-Sis (languages)

La casa de su perro (pet supplies)

Promoven (apartment rentals, property manager)

Marcelino (bar, restaurant, beer hall)

Dona Pilates & Ioga (pilates and yoga)

Parking (parking garage)

BBVA (bank)

CatalunyaCaixa (bank)

VW (car dealership)

Sanitaris Urgell (plumbing and bath shop)

Pretty (women’s clothing)

Clarel (makeup, cosmetics)


Institut de trastorns alimentaris (Eating Disorder Institute)

Centre Cultural Teresa Pàmies (includes library and civic center)

CaixaBank (our bank)

Farmacia (pharmacy/drugstore)

Salut Natural (health food stuff)

La Parada (bar/restaurant since 1929)

Herbolaria (herbs)

Bar Restaurante Damaia (bar/restaurant)

Perruqueria Unisex Mónica (haircuts and styling)

Panaria (bakery, breakfast and lunch)

Electric shop (lighting, bulbs, cords, etc.)

Vidres Balaguer (windows, glass, siding, blinds, etc.)

De Ritzzzo (haircuts and styling)

Elyca (house cleaning and home help service)

Temprado (purses and accessories)

Loterías del estado (lotto tickets)

Guillermina Plaza (hair salon)

Sirvent (a top-notch ice cream and horchata shop, since 1926)

Casas Bonitas (baskets and gifts)

Sblanchs (shoes)

Habana (bar/café)

Centro Óptico Barcelona (glasses, sunglasses)

Nordeste (women’s clothing)

Paula Abril (jewelry)

Pastisseria Serra (pastries)

Hospital Clinic (giant hospital)

Hospital Clinic (Metro stop)

Phew…that is impressive! Within a 5-7 minute walk we can find just about every important service or product we might need for normal daily living. No need for a car, obviously–which leads me to this…

As noted in the last item above, we are less than a block from the Metro (that’s Barcelona’s subway) Line 5 stop, Hospital Clinic. Once on the Metro you can get anywhere in Barcelona with ease–all the typical tourist sites, the beach, the port, the airport, the doctor’s office, other shopping areas, museums, the gym, urban climbing spots and climbing gyms…And the Metro also connects with the regional/national/international trains that can eventually take you all over Spain and Europe. In short, having a Metro stop around the corner is like having your own personal gateway to a whole world of amazing sites, sights, and experiences.

So, in the future, expect more blog entries related to expat life in Barcelona as this adventure unfolds!















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