“To make the most of a day exploring the design scene,” says Kimberley, “begin midmorning with a café con leche and canya (pastry with cream). There’s still plenty of time for lingering at famous sights and still more hours for shopping, since stores typically stay open until 8:00 pm.“
Shop attendants are not always immediately friendly upon your entry, but a smile and a Buenos Tardes usually wins them over.
ABOVE: An impressive selection of industrial and rustic furnishings is stock in trade at Azul Tierra.
1. Just off Passeig de Gràcia is Kimberley’s favourite design shop, Azul Tierra. To be fair, Azul Tierra might be anywhere in the world—the large-scale industrial vibe is currently all the rage. She cautions, “The stunning jewelry and accessories may cause your wallet to leap from your bag.”
2. Be prepared to peruse the store’s crowded inventory at least twice to take in the variety at Little House and Cottage. It’s a jumble of goodies from vintage to modern.
3. Foosball games, cardboard stools, Pantone chairs and kitchen accessories are part of the eclectic selection of contemporary goods at Galerias Vinçon S.L. Look for a cooking class or gelato making session in the zona de demostracionas.
ABOVE: The famous, Barcelona Chair, designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
4. Catchy graphics adorn every kitchen accessory imaginable at Avet—from glasses to aprons to lunch boxes.
5. Enthusiastic antique shoppers will flock to the 73 shops inside Bulevard Rosa. Fine period furnishings, turn of the century collectibles and original artwork are abundant. Negotiating is allowed. It’s always a good policy to make friends with the owner by complimenting the selection before attempting a purchase. Save time to visit Mary’s Market, the gourmet food store on the main floor.