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Little Black Book: Cortana’s Rosa Esteva’s guide to Barcelona
Anyone who has been to Spain knows that it’s not only a fab place to vacation, unwind and relax, but it’s also a mecca for style, fashion and shopping. Design carries through the entire country, but especially in Barcelona where hot, hot summers and beach time dictate chic clothes and hotels that embrace all that sunshine. We caught up with Rosa Esteva, head designer for the Spanish line
Cortana (Eva Longoria, the Queen of Spain and Helena Christensen are fans), for her guide to maneuvering the tiny streets and corners of Barcelona. "I love Barcelona because it’s full of the magic of the Mediterranean. The sea, the sense of aesthetics, the gastronomy, the old town with its narrow paved streets and small shops," she says. She’s even merging her designs with her love for the city with a special collection (read on below to find out more).
Can’t miss sights in Barcelona:
1. "Visit the Miro foundation (Avenida de Miramar, s/n, 08038, Barcelona)."
2. "Enjoy a paella on the sea front (Escriba restaurant, Ronda del Litoral, 08004 Barcelona)."
3. "Get lost in the narrow streets of The Gothic quarter."
4. "Visit the Santa Maria del Mar church."
5. "Taste Spanish wines at the bar "la Vinya del Senyor" (Plaça Santa Maria 5, 08003 Barcelona)."
Escape the heat and shop at Esteva’s fave places:
Cortana (Carrer dels Flassaders, 41, 08003 Barcelona)"
2. "Cortana forever."
Le Swing, a vintage boutique in the Born area with a selection of vintage clothes from different brands."
Magnolia Antic, a new concept store where you can find anything items such as a piece of art, a vintage hat or some pieces of furniture. Located on Provenza, on the heart of Paseo de Gracia."
Muna Kids, for kids clothes. It’s located in the Born area too. Muna sells different brands such as Caramel, Imps & Elpfs, Tuss, Lily&the Funky Boys…. as well the Muna Kids brand itself."
Squeeze in a little spa time: "The Six Senses Spa at
Hotel Arts Barcelona is my favourite, with splendid views on the Mediterranean"
Top spots for inspiration:
1. "The Montjuich hill with fabulous views on the city."
2. "My home’s backyard in the Horta district."
3. "The Boqueria market off the Rambla, with fresh products from all around Catalunya and Spain."
If you can’t swing Barcelona, Esteva also loves these fashion hotspots:
1. "Antwerpen, Belgium"
2. "Liberty, London UK. Iconic British Shop."
3. "Fab, New Delhi India. Traditional sustainable Indian clothes."
5. "Beams (a department store), Tokyo Japan."
Merging style and travel To merge her love of the city, her designs and love of travel, Esteva designed a collection for
Hotel Arts Barcelona‘s staff so they look just a chic as their fashionable guests. This is a sketch of one of our favourite looks she created for the hotel. The new collection will make an appearance in September with bright bold colours and relaxed fitting that take the idea of the hotel "uniform" to a different, more fashionable level — such forward thinking, no?
OVER TO YOU! TELL US: What do you think is the top fashion city in the world? Where is your favourite hotel?