“One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” – Henry Miller
It is common knowledge that travel widens your horizons and broadens the mind but it can also be a great source of inspiration to bring back home. Anything from bold colours, pungent smells and prolific architecture to different terrains and every day routines; they can all inspire the senses and get your creative juices flowing.
This summer we are exploring key travel destinations in Europe that will inspire styles to emulate in your home. And a great place to start is Barcelona, focusing on the newer parts of the city with influences from the urbanism of Spain to the magnificent displays of early Modernism.
Although Modernism is known to have begun in France in the latter half of the 19th century, Barcelona is one of the better cities to see this artistic movement in its fully glory. From the glorious architecture to the museums, the city demonstrates the key fundamentals of Modernism and its counterparts Cubism, Futurism, Surrealism and Bauhaus.
The most famous influences of Barcelona is undoubtedly Gaudí, his stunning architecture can be seen across the city from the most famous Sagrada Familia to the lesser known Casa Vicens. Each site is worth a visit to see how he progressed with his ideals; from the typical cast-iron grate with vegetable motifs to explosions of coloured tiles, his designs are truly unique. On a hot day it's a treat to get a breath of fresh air in the Parc de la Ciutadella, another of Gaudí's earliest works can be seen here, a majestic waterfall in the Northern corner of the park.
Of course Barcelona is home to another well-known artist, Pablo Picasso. Born in the city, there are several heritage sites marking Picasso's youth but for some real interior inspiration lunch at Els 4 Gats is essential, known as a common meeting place for artists like Picasso and Salvidor Dali, the restaurant still embodies the original aesthetic favoured in their day.
It's worth getting up early to visit the Mercat de la Concepcio, built in 1888 it embodies the urbanisation of the city following the industrial revolution. The main iron structure was inspired by London's Crystal Palace and one of the first metal structures in the city. It's always been a market but now it's a famous haunt for Andalucian olive oil and La Floreta tomatoes, a riot of colour and fragrance.
The Eixample neighbourhood of Barcelona is most famous for its scattered Gaudi designs however it also has a contemporary pull. Newer hotels like Casa Bonay and Mathilda forge typical modernism with Scandi and American influences to create a more present-day space within the city. The restaurant Solomillo is the perfect example of when classic meets modern with its slick marble bar, stripped wood flooring and white washed walls not to mention great food.
Celebrate the bright and bold colours of the Mediterranean with our new Metro colours in deep blue, jade and berry. To add touches of luxury opt for a white marble or marble-effect tile like Legato. For more travel inspiration and how to use colour follow us on Pinterest.