After the madness of last night’s Nit de Sant Joan festivities (Summer solstice celebrations with bonfires and lots and lots of fire crackers into the wee hours) it’s a good thing today is a public holiday. So let’s take it easy and chillax for a bit on one of the best squares in Barcelona.
With plenty of shade under the acacia trees and chairs dotted around, it is a great place to sit and read, or watch your child while she or he is having fun at the playground.
There are cafés and shops under the arches, which makes it a great place to meet up with friends to enjoy a nibble or a drink (or two) while catching up on each others lives, or sit in companionable silence while reading the paper and enjoying a coffee.
The best vantage spot is found at Café D’Anunzio, it has a great view of the square’s lush greens and people coming and going. Although Kasparo (in the corner) generally has a trendier crowd. More often than not it’s just a matter of where you can find a free table that will determine where to sit down and rest your feet.
Plaça Vicenç Martorell isn’t only a pleasurable place to be, it is also rather beautiful, thanks to the lovely sculpture of an introverted boy in beige marble, a gorgeous terrace that divides this square from Plaça Bonsuccès (another favourite of mine)…
… as well as the grand Council Hall building (which makes me think of Italy) and all the other pretty details on the buildings surrounding the square.
The narrow houses that line the street (and which house a Filipino restaurant, a small supermarket, a t-shirt shop, a shop specialised in sun glasses and a skate shop) are quite colourful. The very large former orphanage now houses the local registry office and La Central, a great book shop, which is much much larger than meets the eye, and stocks excellent books on design, architecture, cuisine, art… you name it, they’ve got it. Their children’s section, right by this entrance, is really good, so check it out if you’re in the area.
The money slot and wooden turn remain in the wall of the former orphanage to remind us of times past, and so history is also an element not to miss, on this lovely square which truly has it all.
Have a great weekend!