“An admirable city, a city full of life, intense, a port open to the past and future”.
Le Corbusier’s impression of Barcelona continues to define Catalonia's cosmopolitan capital. Regularly ranking in the top tens of European league tables for everything from tourism and business to science and energy efficiency, this cultural hub has much to offer – especially for investors. Here are just some of the reasons prospective home buyers should consider purchasing in the city.
The unfinished Sagrada Familia, thrusting its twisted towers towards the sky, is Barcelona’s most iconic landmark. The cathedral’s interior, with its multi-hued stained-glass windows, is equally as awe-inspiring. Its architect, Antoni Gaudi, left Barcelona with several modernist buildings, infusing the entire city with his artistic flair. When dusk falls and the evening show begins, the Magic Fountain of Montjuïc, built for the World Fair in 1929, is a captivating spectacle of water, light and sound. Its jets surge and change hues to a musical backdrop every Thursday to Sunday night in summertime.
2. Its myriad other attractions
Strolling the characterful streets of the Gothic Quarter, La Rambla and Raval are highlights of a sojourn to Barcelona. These older districts are home to numerous independent tapas bars and galleries, and are ripe for exploring. Head to the Museu Picasso in the Gothic Quarter, where you can educate yourself on the Cubist master’s legacy. Stop off to dine at Els Quatre Gats on the way home, a cafe formerly frequented by the artist and Salvador Dali.
Football fans can visit a museum attached to the legendary FC Barcelona's Nou Camp stadium, while climbers and skiers can enjoy their activities at the nearby Pyrenees. Sun-worshippers, meanwhile, can head to the man-made beachfront for swimming and sailing.
3. Its inimitable infrastructure
Barcelona’s transportation system is excellent, with a bus and metro system that’s easy to navigate. The public cycle loan system, Bicing, is also in place for those who prefer travelling on two wheels.
4. Its stellar cuisine
Barcelona’s culinary scene rivals its world-class counterparts, with everything from Michelin-starred restaurants to simple street fare on offer. The healthy Mediterranean diet features fresh seafood, salads, vegetables and fruit, and a jug of sangria is a popular choice to accompany a long lunch or plate of patatas fritas. La Boqueria food market, a chaotic and colourful cornucopia of fresh produce, is well worth visiting.
5. Its growing popularity
Barcelona is thriving, with El Prat airport transporting around 35 million people a year. Many flock to the city for its numerous annual festivals, concerts and cultural events. The Mobile World Congress alone, a gathering of esteemed technology companies from across the globe, attracts 90,000 attendees. The city also has a strong academic culture, with several international schools and two renowned business colleges, the IESE and the ESADE. With a striking architectural heritage and identity, properties range from renovated Gothic apartments to modern masterpieces in Barcelona. There is solid potential to profit from renting out a second home in the Catalan capital.
At Engel & Völkers, our Spanish offices are growing as quickly as the local real-estate market is prospering. We offer specialist advice on all aspects of acquisition and have a magnificent portfolio of homes in Barcelona, from exclusive apartments and luxurious houses to commercial buildings and hotels.