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Passeig de Gràcia in Barcelona

Passeig de Gràcia is one of the main streets of Barcelona and one of the most famous streets in Spain. This is due to its importance for tourism, shopping, business, and remarkable modernist architecture that adorns the promenade, such as the buildings by architects Antoni Gaudí and Lluís Domènech i Montaner, both declared World Heritage Sites.

With its wide range of luxury shops and chic restaurants, Passeig de Gràcia can be described as the Catalan version of the Champs-Élysées. It is one of the most expensive streets in Spain and the place where all luxury brands want to have a store.

What to See and Do at Passeig de Gràcia

Apart from all the architectural gems, Passeig de Gràcia is a wonderful promenade for strolling, shopping, and dining. Although the promenade has many luxury stores and establishments, there are also plenty of affordable alternatives, such as the shops of Zara, Mango, and Bershka or the restaurant chains of Pans & Company, La Baguetina Catalana, McDonald’s, and Starbucks.

Modernist Architecture

While walking along Passeig de Gràcia, you can quickly familiarize yourself with Catalan modernism, an artistic movement that was very popular at the end of the 19th century. From the benches to the lamps that decorate the street, there are good examples of Catalan modernism everywhere.

An important area for Modernism in Barcelona is located on Passeig de Gràcia, between Consell de Cent and Aragó streets. Here lies the ‘Illa de la Discòrdia‘ or ‘Manzana de la Discordia‘, named for the differences between the three buildings of the three best architects from the Modernist era: Puig i Cadafalch (Casa Amatller), Domènech i Montaner (Casa Lleó i Morera), and Gaudí (Casa Batlló). Other buildings that deserve your attention during a walk through Passeig de Gràcia are:

Casa Milà (La Pedrera)

Casa Milà, also known as La Pedrera (The Quarry), is undoubtedly one of the most spectacular buildings in Barcelona. Located at number 92 on Passeig de Gràcia, this groundbreaking apartment building by architect Antoni Gaudí was built between 1906 and 1910. The financial institution Caixa Catalunya decided to buy Casa Milà in 1986 to restore it and convert it into a cultural center.

The ‘Pis de La Pedrera’ (the residence of La Pedrera) opened in 1999 as a permanent exhibition space and recreates the life of a bourgeois family in Barcelona in the early 20th century. In the residence, the original purpose of the rooms on this floor is restored (think of the dining room, kitchen, bedrooms, or office space). Another highlight of this visit is the rooftop of La Pedrera and the attic room where an interesting exhibition about Gaudí’s work is now seen.

👉 Read more about Casa Milà here.

Casa Batlló

Casa Batlló is located at number 43 of Passeig de Gràcia and was brought to its current form by Antoni Gaudí (1904-1906). A simple renovation of the facade, redistribution of spaces, and expanding the open courtyard of the building gave Gaudí the chance to perform one of his most poetic and inspired artistic compositions. The decoration and embellishment of the house were carried out by the best professionals in the city at the time, such as Josep Maria Jujol, Joan Rubió i Bellver, Sebastià Ribó, and the Badia brothers. The highlight of the house is its roof with its almost psychedelic colors and shapes.

Casa Batlló, a leading example of Catalan modernism, captivates visitors with its extreme design, visual solutions, and small details. The tour through this house includes the Planta noble (the former home of the Batlló family), the courtyard, the attic (former storage space and laundries), and the rooftop, where the chimneys and roof of the house are beautifully visible.

👉 Read more about Casa Batlló here.

Casa Lleó i Morera

The Casa Lleó i Morera was originally built in 1864 as Casa Rocamora and was renovated by Lluís Domènech i Montaner in 1902-1906. He collaborated with sculptors Eusebi Arnau and Antoni Serra i Fiter. The interior of the house is one of the finest examples of Modernism and can now be visited through a guided tour. The building promises a fascinating visit. Its magnificent facade, adorned with medieval arches, mythical fairies, busts, and depictions of the female form, is beautiful to see from the outside. Decorative elements such as lions and mulberry trees are direct references to the owners’ names (‘lleó’ means lion and ‘morera’ mulberry trees). Inside, you visit the first floor and the patio of the house, which are as beautifully decorated as the exterior!

Casa Amatller

Casa Amatller, designed by the exceptional artist Josep Puig i Cadafalch, is the building next to Gaudí’s Casa Batlló, located at number 41 in Passeig de Gràcia. Therefore, it’s not unusual for this part of the boulevard to be constantly filled with visitors and admirers. The Casa Amatller was commissioned by the industrial chocolatier Antoni Amatller to Puig i Cadafalch, who reformed the house into its current status between 1898 and 1900. He used a style that was a mix between Catalan Gothic and Flemish architecture (characterized by the flat triangular shape of the top of the facade). Since 1941, Casa Amatller has housed the headquarters of the Institut de l’Art Amatller Hispanic: a private foundation responsible for the collection and storage of photographs and the bibliography of the visual arts of Spanish-speaking countries. A tour of Casa Amatller is also possible and highly recommended for fans of Modernism.

👉 Read more about Casa Amatller here.

Casa Fuster

One of the most luxurious examples of Modernism in Barcelona, Casa Fuster, shines elegantly at the top of Passeig de Gràcia, at number 132. It is considered one of the most valuable buildings ever built in the city. The house was a gift from Mr. Fuster to his wife, and also aimed to beautify the city. It was built between 1908 and 1911 and was the posthumous work of the architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner. The architecture of the building is a mixture of two distinct styles: Venetian and Gothic. In the tower of Casa Fuster, the famous poet Salvador Espriu had his office. Café Vienés, at the bottom of Casa Fuster, was for many years a famous meeting place for intellectuals. The building is currently a luxury hotel and has a rooftop terrace where you can enjoy a drink.

Modernist Benches, Lampposts, and Pavement Tiles

During a walk on Passeig de Gràcia, don’t forget to notice the modernist cast iron lampposts. They date back to 1906 and were designed by Pere Falqués. Each of these 32 lampposts is integrated into a bench built in the classic “trencadís” style of Catalan Modernism. Also, pay close attention to the pavement tiles, designed by Gaudí and unique to this location!

More Interesting Buildings and Places

Casa Pascual i Pons

Casa Pascual i Pons is located at the beginning of Passeig de Gràcia at number 2-4 on the corner of Ronda de Sant Pere. It is the work of the famous architect Enric Sagnier i Villavecchia in 1891 and one of the first neo-Gothic buildings in the Eixample.

Edificio Suites Avenue

More recent buildings can also be seen on Passeig de Gràcia, such as the striking Edificio Suites Avenue by the Japanese architect Toyo Ito. He designed the Edificio Suites Avenue as a tribute to Antoni Gaudí’s front of La Pedrera. As a young man, Ito studied Casa Batlló and Park Güell, which deeply inspired him. For this old office building, converted into an apartment hotel, he has created a new facade inspired by the waves of La Pedrera. The new facade is formed by panels of metal plates that emphasize the rippling effect of the waves. This innovative building, with 42 luxury (vacation) apartments ranging in size from 70 to 120 square meters, is also equipped with all the facilities of a five-star hotel.

Jardins del Palau Robert

The Jardins del Palau Robert, located next to Palau Robert palace, are an oasis of tranquility, with lush vegetation and elegance. Palau Robert is a beautiful example of the gardens of the bourgeoisie in late 19th century Barcelona. It was the residence of the wealthy, Catalan industrialist Robert Suris. The palace is now open to the public, offers space for exhibitions, and is the address of the Tourism Information Office. The building and the surrounding gardens are more than worth a visit: they are often quieter than their famous neighbors, but just as beautiful to see (and free!).

Shopping at Passeig de Gràcia

Shopping is often the number one reason for locals to go to Passeig de Gràcia. With more than 160 stores, there is always something for everyone at Passeig de Gràcia. Some of the oldest and most luxurious stores in the city, such as Furest (1917), Gonzalo Comella (1940), and Santa Eulalia (1843), can be found here.

But international luxury brands such as Chanel, Dior, Armani, Carolina Herrera, and Jimmy Choo have also recently opened a store on Passeig de Gràcia. Together with other more budget-friendly brands like Replay, Miss Sixty, Tommy Hilfiger, Levi’s, and Desigual, and the well-known fashion chains H&M, Mango, Zara, and Berhska, they make Passeig de Gràcia a true shopping paradise.

In addition to all the clothing stores, there are also many jewelers on Passeig de Gràcia, but they often come with a hefty price tag. Famous names like Cartier, Rolex, and Swarovski have a store here.

The chic shopping center Bulevard Rosa is also located here. Perfect for those who love exclusive boutiques or if it’s raining during your shopping trip.

Extra fun: once a year, the super fun Shopping Night is organized on Passeig de Gràcia, an event where all stores are open extra long and have fun surprises for customers.

Shopping at Passeig de Gràcia
Shopping at Passeig de Gràcia

Dining at Passeig de Gràcia

At Passeig de Gràcia, you can find excellent dining options for every budget. Some of my recommendations:

  • Il Caffe di Francesco (Passeig de Gràcia, 66): for a delicious cup of coffee in the morning.
  • Restaurante Qu Qu (Passeig de Gràcia, 24): for an affordable breakfast or quick lunch.
  • Pans & Company (Passeig de Gràcia, 39): for a sandwich. Recommended if you’re with children.
  • Faborit café (Passeig de Gràcia, 41): for a snack or coffee with something sweet (including healthy options).
  • El Nacional (Passeig de Gràcia, 24): for a delightful dining experience in a great ambiance. A must-see for foodies!

History of Passeig de Gràcia

On the road that formerly connected Barcelona with the nearby village of Gràcia, the first gas street lighting was installed in 1852, and later in 1860, the first stone was laid, marking the beginning of urbanization in the area. Until then, Barcelonans had lived within the city walls, but thanks to engineer Ildefons Cerdà’s plan, it was now permissible to build outside the city. Thus, all the wealthy people (aristocrats and bourgeoisie) began buying plots around the brand-new Passeig de Gràcia and constructing the most luxurious and modern houses ever seen. In the late 19th century, to stand out, one had to not only wear the best clothes and hats but also have the best house; a task given to the most daring architects.

Luxury stores that were previously located on Carrer Ferran and Las Ramblas gradually moved to Passeig de Gràcia to be closer to their customers. Large banks and businesses followed the stores, and with the international recognition of the street as a modernist gem, international stores and boutiques also came.

Thus, this promenade was created, which remains to this day one of the most luxurious spots in the city, where people go to see and be seen.

How to Get to Passeig de Gràcia

Passeig de Gràcia is very easy to reach by metro: Diagonal (L3 and L5) for the northern part, Passeig de Gràcia (L2, L3, and L4) in the middle, and Plaça Catalunya (L1, L3, L6, and L7) to the south.

This grand boulevard connects Plaça Catalunya with the Gràcia district. Passeig de Gràcia is very central and an excellent starting point for a city trip to Barcelona.

Useful information

Price: Free.

Address: Passeig de Gràcia
08007 Barcelona

Public transport:

Metro: Diagonal (L3, L5), Passeig de Gràcia (L2, L3, L4), Catalunya (L1, L3, L6, L7)

Bus: 7, 22, 24, 59, N4, N5, N6,  N7, N9, N12, N15, V13, V15

Train: Passeig de Gràcia (R2, R2N, R2S, Media Distancia, Regional Expres) of Catalunya (R1, R4, S1, S2, S6)