Girl in Florence

A Tuscan Texan immersed in Florentine life

Why you should visit Barcelona – hipster vs. gafapastas


36 hours in Barcelona – originally I thought what masochistic person would hop on over to Spain for only a weekend with only one full day to spend in the city? Well this girl decided to jump on the opportunity this last weekend to go with a friend and see just how it feels to spend such a short amount of time in the city,  thanks Ryanair!

While not my first foray into the magical chaos that is Barcelona – I have been there three times since my first visit in 2005 and slowly fallen in love with this city more and more with each visit. My original devious plan was to kidnap my friend Adeline, who left Italy over a year ago to start a new life in her beloved Spain. Her positive presence is much missed but after this visit, I grudgingly have to admit that life there is pretty awesome if you live like a local or well, like her!

Typical street in El Ravel

She told me that in Barcelona there was quite the population of hipsters or as they call them ‘i moderni’ ‘modernos’ or gafapastas {sorry if I spelled that wrong!}. This phenomenenon of skinny jeans, plaid shirts and bushy beards is not foreign to me. Living in Los Angeles opened this Texana’s mind to a world of no-name bands and irony for ironies sake. While certainly not one myself, I am much to boring in the fashion department and enjoy a shitty pop song from time to time,  it was really awesome to see what the nightlife in Barcelona had to offer and in our 36 hours of chaos, I would dare say I saw my share of gafapastas. 

An example of ' i moderni' and my own attempt at being one ;-)
An example of ‘ i moderni’ and my own attempt at being one 😉

We started off our first night {after arriving at the 2am – long story} at a bar close to my friends house called Gypsy Lou, a hipster paradise full of suggestive red-lighting, naturally fake tv’s and of course — your standard projection screen. Perfect place to catch up with a good friend.

What do the Barcelonians drink?

Gin & Tonics in huge bowl-like glasses. Unlike Italy where you rarely get asked what sort of liquor you want in your drink, here they always ask. Also, for those who have been to Spain, starting the night off at 2:30am comes at no surprise –  this is a city hosting a noctornal populace and we were more willing to join their ranks for one weekend.

gypsy lou barcelonaAfter a drink, we headed over to a non-hipster venue to dance called Les Enfants ClubC/Guardia 3 with a very student-like atmosphere but the music was fun. Lots of variety {think contemporary or anti-gafapastas} but considering it was late at night/early in the morning, I didn’t mind dancing the night away.

The next day – we somehow managed to actually spend the day enjoying the city before heading back to my friend’s house to rest before yet another night out in Barcelona {to be pronounced with a lisp}. I suppose knowing you only have limited time in a place, gives you a second, third and a fourth wind of energy.

We decided to crack open a bottle of white wine and stinky French cheese  – camembert, before heading off to explore the city’s nightlife once again. Warning: Camembert is not a cheese to be trifled with, it means business and its smell will aggressively overpower anything in your fridge which makes eating it in one day a pretty good idea.

It was a good idea to stock up on cheese since one needs energy if they plan on staying up until 6am. Our first stop of the night was a really cool wine bar called En Aparté, a French wine bar in the Sant Pere neighborhood with a great selection of cheeses, wines and of course the iconic huge bowl/glasses of Gin & Tonics. I really liked this place, there was a great cozy vibe about it.

en aparte barcelona The last hotspot we checked was the Apolo Club on Calle Nou de la Rambla – two adjacent venues, Apolo 1 and Apolo 2 with two completely different musical styles. This particular night there was a famous DJ spinning electronic music in one room while the other venue was more of an indie/gafapastas heaven. This place is cool and I could see why locals flock to a club like this, we don’t have anything like it in Florence and I truly wish we did. A place with enough room and musical styles for everyone and we ended up spending most of the night in the Indie area. The amount of plaid shirts and male facial hair was overwhelming but the music was great!

In a totally unrelated to anything hipster story but I suppose you could say this does have something to do with ‘style.’ If you have been to Barcelona you probably have seen the guys selling beer along Las Ramblas or well anywhere. Guys with bright green grocery bags and six-packs of beer looking to make an extra euro or two. On our way to Apolo, we passed by one such transaction and this beer seller happened to be wearing  the brightest pink sweatshirt I have ever seen. Matched with the green bag he carried, I wonder if he consulted Ralph Lauren’s 2013 spring collection before heading out for the night. Nice.

Who wore it best?
Who wore it best?

To further enhance your ‘hispter’ itinerary, my friend Alexandra from ArtTrav sent me this cool link to ‘6 Cool Things to do in Barcelona’, which is well worth a read.

Look out for my next post about Barcelona in 36 hours – where I promise no hipsters will be mentioned.

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0 Responses

  1. ah haha… your barcelona experience is so totally different from mine… all clubs and drinks and fewer museums!!

    1. This was my fourth time ;-). Been there, done that but await post part two where you actually get to see daylight & architecture!

Georgette Jupe

Welcome to my personal blog by a curious American girl living and working between Zug, Switzerland and Florence, Italy with my husband Nico, our newborn Annabelle and Ginger the beagle. This space is primarily to share about my love for Italy (currently on a 13 year romance) with a fair amount of real talk, practical advice, travel suggestions and adjusting to a new culture (Switzerland). Find me on IG @girlinflorence @girlinzug

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