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  • Thursday, November 28

    Artistic Postcards or Reproductions of Dali Paintings Near Dali Museum, Figueres, Girona.

    Artistic Postcards Dali Museum [enlarge]

    It is not strange to find stands outside museums with people selling their 'artwork', on many occasions, artwork, directly related to what is displayed inside the museum. In this case, we are talking about the Dali Museum in Figueres, Girona. Just next to the main entrance, there was this nice fellow selling these small postcards or painting reproductions featuring Salvador Dali and his works. I am not sure about some of them, I am not a Dali expert but you can see Portrait of Picasso, the Meditative Rose and Young Virgin Autosodomized by Her Own Chastity. Yes, strange name indeed. I like the way the reproductions compose a single collage. Do you find any other work of Dali here that you know of?

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    Tuesday, November 26

    Collections at Frederic Mares Museum, Barcelona: Hispanic Sculpture and Polychrome Carvings

    Sculptures at Frederic Mares Museum, Barcelona [enlarge]

    There is an important collection of religious art at Frederic Mares museum in Barri Gotic, Barcelona. Impressive sculptures such as the ones in the picture can be admired in the premises as part of a rich sample of Hispanic sculpture in which polychrome carvings deserve special emphasis. Frederic Marès (1893-1991), sculptor and founder donated his private collection in 1944 to the city of Barcelona. Worth mentioning too are the courtyard, a very idyllic and peaceful garden with a beautiful fountain, and what is known as the Collectors Cabinet, a vast collection of antiques that go from all sorts of pipes, to match boxes, cameras, fans, jewelery, watches, scissors, reliquary bottles and much more, each of them a reminiscence of 19th century scenes, people, fashion and brands. There is also the library that specialises in Hispanic sculpture, the world of collecting and decorative arts.

    Address

    Museu Frederic Marès (MFM)
    Plaça de Sant Iu, 5

    How to get there

    Metro: Line 4 (Jaume I)/ Line 3 (Liceu)
    Bus: 17, 19, 40 and 45
    Tourist Bus: Red Route. Barri Gòtic stop

    Opening hours

    Tuesday to Saturday: 10 am to 7 pm
    Sunday and Holidays: 11 am to 8 pm
    Monday, except Holidays: closed

    Monday, November 18

    Barcelona Cruises, Port of Barcelona and The Future of Catalan Tourism

    Port of Barcelona [enlarge]

    Barcelona is consolidating as the first port for Mediterranean cruises and this position has been strengthened after Carnival Corporation & plc reached an agreement last September with the Port of Barcelona to build and operate a new terminal known as Terminal E. Over 20 million EUR will be invested in what is going to be the eighth International Cruise terminal in the port (see image below). Everything is supposed to be finished by 2016. Also check this info graph about the evolution of the Port of Barcelona from 1956 to 2011 to have an idea of how big the transformations have been.



    Almost 2.6 million cruise-goers are expected in 2013 according to Barcelona's Tourist Office. They estimate that last year's figures had an economic impact of nearly 300 million EUR on the city's economy. The increase in the number of passengers adds up to the growth of tourism in Barcelona. Seven million tourists come each year and spend more than 20 million EUR a day in the city.

    Cruiser sector investments be it by external companies or by the port, are contributing not only to the economic bliss of Catalan tourism but also to Spanish economy in general. According to a study from the European Cruise Council the cruise industry provided Spain with 1.190 billion euros in 2010.
    To better understand about who runs what and where in the cruise terminals at Barcelona's port, I think you should check this official brochure entitled Barcelona Cruise Facilities 2013.

    Regarding Barcelona cruises, I must say that there are many to choose from and it all depends on your budget, the cities you want to visit and of course the quality of the service. I would pick up of course a Barcelona to Barcelona cruise with the best quality-price relationship and a fantastic itinerary. I reckon it is not an easy task. Have you ever been on board of a cruise ship in the Mediterranean? Which cruise would you recommend?

    Friday, November 1

    Pumpkins or Chestnuts? Halloween or Castanyada?

    Pumpkin Detail [enlarge]

    Although Halloween celebrations permeate Catalan reality each year and it is not strange to see carved pumpkins and people wearing fearsome costumes here and there, the eve of All Hallows' Day or All Saints is definitely about chestnuts, baked sweet potatoes with Moscatell (Muscat wine) and panellets in what is known as the Castanyada (Chesnut day). In general terms it is a supper, a very heavy one, considering the ingredients mentioned and that they are an extra on top of whatever you chose to have for supper that day. It is more probable that you see little girls dressing as castanyeras (ladies selling chestnuts), wearing peasant's clothing and a headscarf than kids knocking on doors playing Trick or Treat. I leave you with this detail of a pumpkin that helped me bring the topic up.
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