Last year, I visited Spain for the first time and I spent my trip sleeping in a bed festooned with twinkling fairy lights.
B&Bs, man. ♡
I decided against staying in a hotel mainly because 1) money! and 2) I remember staying at a few B&Bs when I was younger and I knew some of the Benefits to them. For example! B&Bs can be owned by locals of the place you’re visiting, so they know insider things. Every morning while I had breakfast with my excellent host, I’d outline my plan for the day and he’d either give some thumbs up or a suggestion of something I might like more.
One morning I told him I wanted to try some paella and told him the name of a place I’d found online. He nixed the idea immediately – “Tourist trap. It used to be great, but it was in a bunch of tourist books and after that, the food and management changed. They use cheaper ingredients now and the food isn’t as good, but they have the reputation, so they don’t have to try as hard as they used to.” He sat back and thought for a minute, then gave me the names of a few restaurants I hadn’t seen in any of my online searches.
While he tried to think of more, his girlfriend walked into the room with a pot of jam that she put down on the wide, round breakfast table and made a short tsk. “She doesn’t want places in the city,” she said. “She wants a place on the beach, to see the ocean while she eats. Right?”
I imagined that scene and nodded enthusiastically. “That sounds really nice.”
She smiled, satisfied, and poked my host’s arm playfully. “See?”
They were a really, really sweet couple, and they had invaluable information about Barcelona and the surrounding area. My host was actually originally from France, but he’d lived in Spain for a number of years, and his girlfriend was born and raised in Barcelona. One night, since I was visiting during the tourist off-season and I was the only one in the B&B for a few days, they invited me to their community center one night for dancing.
The B&B in question was Chéz Papa, and I highly recommend it to anyone traveling to Barcelona. I imagine during peak season, it’s full of fascinating travelers to talk to, and it has such a cozy, home-y atmosphere that just embraces you the moment you walk through the door after a long day exploring Barcelona. And the rooms are gorgeous.
TWINKLING FAIRY LIGHTS!
But yes, I really, really loved my time in Barcelona, and a large part of it was owed to that B&B experience. ♡
And now it’s bedtime, so! Good night, citizens of life!