A Shopper’s Delight in Barcelona

Barcelona beckons fashionistas and shopping connoisseurs to its upscale boutiques, chic shoe shops and designer stationers.

The hardest part of living in downtown Barcelona is temptation. Shops with colorful displays, chic shoe boutiques, cellars selling bubbly cava, sparkling windows of jewelry and artisan creations wait for me around every corner winking and saying, “Come on, you deserve these €75 (about US$94) purple boots made of exquisite tooled leather. Go ahead; splurge!” And sometimes, I do.

El Born

Shopping is fun and varied in Barcelona, which has an emerging fashion scene providing lots in the way of unique frocks. For a shop-til-you-drop day, start off in the El Born neighborhood. Pop into Custo, which caters to men and women, for some of the city’s most colorful clothing. Custo was created by a Spanish team of brothers, whose signature style of vibrant color combinations is hard to miss. You’ll need a bag to go with your new plum and tangerine Custo dress, so make sure to visit Beatriz Furest Barcelona. From small party purses to large sacks, this simple shop offers an elegant and unique line.

Farther into El Born is Como Agua de Mayo (Calle Argenteria, 43-Barcelona; tel. +34-933-106-441), which is one of my favorite shops in Barcelona. Offering a select sampling of clothing, shoes and accessories, there is nothing in this boutique that I would not love to own. From silk socks to pearl and ribbon necklaces to embroidered gloves, Como Agua de Mayo has great gift ideas or specialty souvenirs.

An outfit from Custo, a bag or wallet from Beatriz Furest and accessories from Como Agua de Mayo and you’ve got the perfect party attire; all you’re missing now is the wine (and the party)! Never fear, head one block down from Como Agua de Mayo to Bodega La Tinaja (Calle Esparteria, 9-Barcelona, tel. +93-310-22-50) for the best in specialty wines and cavas from Spain. If you’re planning to take wine home with you, make sure to ask about the airline wine restrictions before buying out the Bodega.

Ciutat Vella

Leaving El Born and crossing over to Ciutat Vella—Barcelona’s Old City—more shopping waits. Women will love the original clothing creations at Tomate and Naifa, both of which are run by local designers and feature reasonably priced handmade clothes. Nearby is the slick stationery store, Raima, which takes a staple like paper and turns it into art. Here you’ll find fancy pens, artisan papers and the best journals in town for recording your Barcelona experiences.


At this point on your shopping expedition, you may need an espresso pick-me-up. Grab a shot and a pastry to boost your buying energy, and then hop on the metro up to the Gracia neighborhood at the Fontana metro stop, for arty boutiques.

Take a peek at Nagore, which sells shoes from the Spanish island Menorca. If you buy a pair of kicks at Nagore, you’ll surely be the only one back home with these fashionable finds. Also in Gracia, try Ninas (Calle Verdi, 39-Barcelona; tel. +34-932-186-066) for one-of-a-kind women’s clothing. You know you’re buying from the source at Ninas because the sewing machine is in the back.

After hitting all these fantastic shops, you’ll be beat! Treat yourself to a glass of cava in one of Gracia’s plazas and pat yourself on the back for a shopping day well done.

Destinations: Spain, Barcelona

Themes: Shopping, Urban Endeavors

Activities: Shopping

User Comments

there are a lot of shops if you walk on la rambla de catalunya street and the passeig de gracia, i did most of my shopping around this area, if you are looking for more places, suggest this useful page written by a local guy