Authentic cocktail bars: a Barcelona friend’s top tips
If you are looking for an authentic Barcelona bar where you can enjoy a drink in a unique atmosphere, then follow the advice of my good friend Susana!
What better way to find authenticity than to ask the advice of one of your friends from Barcelona, who happens to know the city like the back of their hand?
Here are some tips written in Spanish by my friend Susana, followed by my translation. Enjoy!
Boadas: an authentic and emblematic bar
Opened in 1933 at the corner of the Ramblas and Tallers street, Boadas is one of the oldest cocktail bars in the city and a veritable Barcelona institution.
What Susana thinks: El bar Boadas es uno de mis bares favoritos por ser una coctelería auténtica, con los mismos camareros de siempre y regentada por la misma familia. Nada más entrar tienes la sensación de pisar la Barcelona de antes y la de siempre. Yo no perdono una navidad sin pasar por el Boadas. Parada obligada!
- Boadas is one of my favourite bars as it’s an authentic cocktail bar that’s always been owned by the same family, and with the same servers. You’re barely inside when you have the impression of taking a nostalgic leap back in time to discover an older but constant side of Barcelona. I can’t get through Christmas without heading to Boadas. It’s obligatory!
Tallers, 1; Raval
When? Monday to Thursday from 12pm to 2am, Saturday and Sunday from 12pm to 3am.
Why? For its vintage charm
London Bar: an authentic and artistic bar
Great artists such as Dali, Picasso, Hemingway have taken a sip on the counter of this illustrious bar. It opened more than a century ago in Barcelona. The art nouveau decor distinguishes this place from other bars in the city, it has a special charm.
What Susana thinks:
Este bar siempre ha tenido algo canalla que me ha gustado. Sigue casi igual, como cuando tenía 20 años y recorría las Ramblas y alrededores en busca de emociones. Antes programaban conciertos que sabían a gloria en ese local modernista lleno de humo. Ahora sin humo pero con wifi! No dejes de ir.
- I have always been charmed by this bar. It has hardly changed since I was twenty, when I used to walk around the Ramblas and its surroundings looking for new adventures. At that time, glorious bands used to play in this smoky modernist place. Nowadays, the smoke has given its way to wifi connection.
Nou de la Rambla, 34
When? Monday to Thursday from 10am to 2:30am, Fridays and Saturdays from 12am to 3am and Sundays from 6pm to 2:30am
Why? For its bohemian atmosphere
Merbeyé: an authentic and romantic bar
Merbeyé es uno de mis bares favoritos por ser un local íntimo, arriba de la montaña del Tibidabo, que respira un aire romántico sin caer en lo cursi, música electrónica chill out mediante. Además, está ubicado en una zona desde donde puedes tener una vistas fantásticas de la ciudad. En época de buen tiempo hay a veces la posibilidad de ir a una terraza en el piso superior desde donde tener una vista panorámica. Sube al Merbeyé y acuérdate de besar!
- Merbeyé’s intimate charm makes it one of my favourite bars. Perched at the top of mount Tibidabo, this bar is romantic without being mawkish, thanks to its electronic chill out soundtrack.
It also has a very special location, which provides a fantastic view of the city. On nice days it is sometimes possible to go on the first floor terrace and have Barcelona at your feet. Don’t miss going up to Merbeyé, a dream place for a romantic interlude!
Plaça Dr. Andreu, 2; Sant Gervasi
When? 1st of April to 1st of October, every day from 10am to 3am and from 1st of October to 1st of May from 10am to 3am Wednesday to Sunday.
Why? For its unique location in the Barcelona hills
A huge thank you to my great friend Susana, who didn’t hesitate to take the time to write this article with me. Cheers Susanita!
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About the author
Valérie, the creator of Barcelona Top Travel Tips, loves discovering new places, finding the words to describe them, and coming up with little illustrations for the website. Her favourite thing in Barcelona is the unusual, curvy architectural features of some of the city’s buildings. Some say she’s a dreamer… in any case, a city full of works by Gaudí is a great place for her!