A local’s guide to Barcelona, Spain

TWEE MIN WANG, now general manager for Singapore Airlines’ Bangladesh office, provides a guide to the historic streets and architectural beauties of the city where he once lived.

Architectural marvels

While I noticed many changes in the city on a recent trip to Barcelona, its beautiful balconies continue to impress those with a keen eye for architectural detail. Take a stroll along Avenida Diagonal to appreciate their ornate beauty.

Admire the Torre Agbar, a modern skyscraper designed by French architect Jean Nouvel. At night, its exterior is lit with thousands of LED lights in the bright colours of FC Barcelona.

The stunning Sagrada Familia, a Gothic Roman Catholic church designed by architect Antoni Gaudi, began construction in 1882, and is still under construction, but you can tour parts of it. Its detailed stained-glass windows are some of the most beautiful I’ve seen. Also by Gaudi is the Museum Casa Batllo (above) – with its surreal modernist facade that only a genius could have come up with – and Casa Mila, which houses a cultural centre. They are so amazing that words cannot adequately describe them.

Shopping haunts

The Mercat dels Encants (above), Barcelona’s largest and best-known flea market in Calle Castillejos, is where you can buy all sorts of stuff, from antiques to fashion. I am always on the lookout for different types of racks and hooks, which I think I will use as wall decorations someday.

From an architectural viewpoint, the roof canopy alone – which spans over 8,000 sq m and bends upwards with mirrored undersides – makes the market worth a visit.