2016 cruise – The last thing we did on the first day of our trip in Barcelona was find a place to have dinner. We came upon an Enrique Tomas Smoked Ham Bar that was very near our hotel. We were not at all familiar with it then, but investigating it as I prepared to write this article, I found that it is a popular and large chain throughout Spain.
Sadly, I did not get a picture of the restaurant, but it was similar to the one above.
We started out with an appetizer tray of cheeses. I tried a local (and very good beer) Estrella Damm. This was an excellent start to our dinner.
Our main course was a very tasty Tapas. Needless to say after our long day of travel, we ate every bite!
There were also displays of various kinds of meats available. Several legs of meat were out and you could pick one to select your purchase from. A very different kind of store to American eyes, but one I would go back to in a heart beat.
If you are in Spain, or elsewhere, and you see one of these shops, I encourage you to give it a try. The food was excellent. I finished up the day with 8,192 steps according to my Apple Watch.
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2016 cruise – The first night of our recent trip was spend in Barcelona, Spain. My wife had booked us at the Hotel Redding Croma located at C/Gravina, 5-7 08001 Barcelona. This is a boutique hotel in the center of Barcelona. The hotel had a small, but very pleasing breakfast room that we took advantage of each morning. It offered free Wi-Fi which worked well for us during our stay.
One of the reasons that we chose this hotel was the proximity to the subway. Within a block was an entrance and we used it to explore Barcelona during our brief stay. It is also near Las Ramblas, a tree lined pedestrian mall that runs from near the hotel south (just over a kilometer) to the port. There are many restaurants and shops along Las Ramblas.
The room was on the fifth floor and was small, but served us well as we spent most of our time seeing the sights. There was a small, slow elevator, though I did take the stairs a couple of times. While we were not there long enough to take advantage, our room had a nice little private patio. The only problem we had, and this was minor, was that the central air conditioning had already been turned off for the season. We were able to open the window onto our patio and this cooled the room well enough. The front desk staff spoke English and were very helpful.
If I stay in Barcelona again, I will certainly consider the Hotel Redding.
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Product Review – My wife and I just returned from a Mediterranean cruise. One of the Apps, or I should say a collection of Apps, we used were the travel guides from Ulmon. These are all free, provide a searchable database of locations, can be used off-line, and allow you to drop tags for those locations that you want to visit.
Off-line operation was important to me as I did not have a SIM to enable network access. I was able to turn off Cellular Data and put my iPhone into ‘Airplane Mode’ to avoid charges while still navigating through the cities we visited using the Ulmon App.
The maps I used were: Barcelona, Spain; French Rivera (for Marseille and Cannes, France); Florence, Italy; Rome, Italy; and Venice, Italy. These were really helpful as we made our way around these cities.
We did find that some of the locations we had selected to visit – coffee shop and book stores – were no longer at the location reported in the App, but for the most part they were accurate.
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