The small neighbourhood of Sant Antoni is in L'Eixample Esquerra district, and has the same typical grid layout as other parts of L'Eixample. The neighbourhood has become very popular with locals and also foreigners due to the kind of shops and restaurants that recently opened.

All the new trends in Barcelona such as the gin and tonic culture, the diy hamburger, the brunch and the local tapas and vermouth are now the attractions that have gathered in Sant Antoni. As long as new designers and artisans that live with more local shops and the Sant Antoni market that is the centre of the area.

Atmosphere in Sant Antoni

The atmosphere in Sant Antoni is very bohemian. If you follow Catalan series you might even find some of your favorite actors as some of the places are very known. We would have said some time ago that it is a hipster kind of neighbourhood, but now the word hipster is out of date, there is a new trend coming into town: the yuccies. And it seems yuccies are taking Sant Antoni.

Yuccies are young urban creatives that are born in comfort and are educated intelligent millenials willing to work for themselves in this internet environment or create startups. They believe that we deserve to pursue our dreams and we should profit from them. With this definition who wouldn't want to be a yuccie? I am actually thinking that I might be one and I didn't know... There is a whole new trend that I think is very healthy, young people want to think about what they truly like and the success will come along once you focus all your effort and energies on that.

Where to eat

Brunch at la Federal

Brunch at la Federal

There are two local places that you have to try if you are in Sant Antoni, the first one is Sirvent, the city's best known "orxateria". Orxata is a drink very famous from valencia, that is made with tiger nuts and prepared the traditional valencian style. You will see where it is because there is always a queue of people waiting to get the best orxata in Barcelona. Another place nearby is the Bakery Mistral, a classic in Barcelona, you might think it is a bakery as any other from the outside but it is not. They have been opened for more than 40 years and they are well known for their mini croissants, they are very little and delicious, and they have different fillings: the salty ones with omelette, ham and cheeses, sobrasada and frankfurt and the sweet ones with chocolate and cream.

La Federal is one of my favorite places for brunch in Barcelona, they have an amazing terrace on top, but get up early on Sunday because it is a favorite for a lot of people in town. My recommendation is to try their pesto and the poché eggs, they also have sweet treats and cakes. Sortidors del Parlament is another favorite in the area, stools and round tables, perfect for a wine and some tapas, try their "secallona" -a dry sausage, similar to fuet, is cured meat-.

Bar Calders has become a trendy bar in the area too, they are located in a little alley and have a very nice terrace. The name of the bar comes from a famous writer Pere Calders that is known to be exiled in the Spanish Civil war to Mexico. The story of the writer mixes up with their gastronomical offerings, we have catalan classics with mexican flavors mixed up. Their Calders bravas are my pick, thin crunchy potatoes with guacamole and melted cheese with a spicy sauce. Their vermouth is home made so another thing to put on the top of my list, they have hummus, pizzas, sandwiches and a wide range of tapas.

Bar Calders

Bar Calders

Bar Ramon, is a traditional bar that has overcome all decades it opened in 1939, has amazing tapas from the most traditional ones to creative combinations. Do not expect a fancy bar, but is is definetely worth it and value for money, try their mini home made burgers, the all i oli potatoes and take a bet in any of their specialties. The quality of food and value for money is assured. They have a bar counter where they display all their cold tapas, so I recommend you to stand up and see what is there. The offer changes depending on the season and what is in the market that day.

M-store Moritz shop

M-store Moritz shop

The Moritz Factory has become a must go in the neighborhood recently, Moritz beer was born in Barcelona in Raval in the 19th century and then the factory moved to Sant Antoni.

They have a very cool shop called M-Store with a yellow hippie mini van on it, they sell different products made in Barcelona, from Munich trainers to Papabubble sweets and much more.

They have a wine bar with more than 400 references and of course you can taste Moritz beer, they different types and even limited editions, such as Barcelona 1714, a ginger beer. They have a unique way to sell wine in their Bar à vins -wine bar-you can have it by weight, by the glass or by the bottle.

What to do

Mercat de Sant Antoni

Is the center of the area, the marketplace is located in the neighborhood of the same name, and is one of the most popular in the city and it is the most ancient one. The Sant Antoni market was built in 1872 and was designed by Antoni Rovira i Trias, a local urban planner that is the author of other markets in the city. The designed of the main entrance includes a coat of arms crowned by a bat, a plaque that appeared on the year the market was built.

The market is closed now since it is being restored at this time, you can see the beautiful façade and the building but the food stalls on the inside moved to another location temporarily.

During the week, you can find in this market, different stalls outside selling all kinds of goods, from clothes and shoes to homeware. On the inside is like any local food market selling fruit and vegetables, fish and meat.

At the weekend though, the market changes completely since on sundays, the market holds a second-hand book market on the outside. Stamp collectors and book lovers (comics, magazines and booking of any kind) gather to browse along all the second hand offer displayed in Sant Antoni.

Address of Sant Antoni market: C/ Comte d'Urgell 1; Ronda de Sant Antoni 18, 08011 Barcelona

Opening hours: Mon-Thu 7-14h and 17:30-20:30h; Fri-Sat 7-20:30h

Street art in Sant Antoni

Balloon graffiti Sant Antoni

Balloon graffiti Sant Antoni

Street art in Sant Antoni is part of the culture and there is plenty of graffitis in Barcelona, there is a great blog if you want to discover street art in Barcelona. Barcelona is choosen for different street artists, my favorite is Bansky and since I lived in London I was so exited so see Bansky in Barcelona.

One of the most famous graffitis in Sant Antoni is the balloon that is painted in the façade of a squatter house called la Carboneria. The building between Urgell street and Floridablanca street will be demolished, so you want to go there quickly before it disappears.

This building is not only a squatter symbol with its beautiful graffiti on the façade, but it seems that Casa Tarragó is one of the first buildings to belong to the Eixample following the square shape made by Ildefons Cerdà that was built in 1864.

Another graffiti worth mentioning in the façade is the famous xupet negre (the black pacifier), you will see these black pacifiers everywhere in the city. The author is Chanoir a colombian street artist that started doing pacifiers in Barcelona in 1989, the pacifier is a symbol against racism and pro equality.

Tapantoni: tapas food festival held yearly in spring in Sant Antoni area

Tapa Antoni is a festival that has become very popular and a gathering for friends and family taking advantage of the offer of 2.50 euros for a beer and a tapa. It is held in spring and this year 2015 was held from 15th to 31st May.

Different bars and restaurants of the area offer a unique tapa to be included in the tapantoni route, there is even a contest on what is the best tapa yearly and people can vote. In 2015, the winner was grilled pork that has been in the oven for 9 hours with cheddar sauce and caramelised onion from La Terrassa de L'Aiguajoc.

From left to right, seitons and beer and the winner of 2015 tapantoni

From left to right, seitons and beer and the winner of 2015 tapantoni

Where to sleep

Hotel Market is where I would sleep if I stayed in the area, I spent a night in there and I loved it! It is boutique hotel with a great Bar Rosso and a Restaurant to enjoy local food at good prices and with style. The price of the rooms are mid range, around 70 euros a night for a double room, I always appreciate comfort, but value for money and this one has it all.

If you already have a place to sleep I would recommend you to go as well for a vermouth on Sunday or have some cocktails at night in the Bar Rosso in the same hotel.

Hotel Market

Hotel Market

How to get to Sant Antoni

Since Sant Antoni's market is in the middle of the neighbourhood is a good starting point and the best way to get there is walking or by metro. The closest stop is Sant Antoni (L2), the purple line.

Address of Sant Antoni market: C/ Comte d'Urgell 1; Ronda de Sant Antoni 18, 08011 Barcelona