Tió de Nadal

In our last post we talked about “la castanyada”, a Catalan tradition which we celebrate for Halloween. This time we would like to talk about the “Caga tió”, a Christmas log that poops (yes, poops!) presents for everyone who sing to him on the 24th of December night. The Christmas “Tió de Nadal” is a log or tree stump standing on stick legs with a very happy painted face at one end and wearing a red Catalan barretina hat. The Caga Tió even has a blanket to keep it warm at night.

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The amount and quality of presents that he poops depends on how good you have been during the year and how much food (normally fruit) you feed him during the time he is cared at your home, normally by the children, from the 8th December until Christmas Eve on 24th December.

Then, when the 24th December arrives, it is time to put him close to the fireplace (in case you have one), and the children sing the “Caga Tió” song at the same time that they hit the log with a stick. After singing for him they leave the room to pray for presents at the same time that the family have a look to the “Caga Tió” to keep him there.

The presents are normally candies, sweets and some gifts. The big presents are reserved for the 6th of January, under the Tree and brought for the Three kings. When the log has nothing left to “poo”, it finishes the deed with a poop.

Here you have a video with Kate McKinnon, who explains us a little bit more about our “Caga Tió”:

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

La castanyera, les castanyes i els panellets

1st of November it is a bank holiday in Spain. Although nowadays there are some celebrations based on Halloween -or at least what we know about Halloween from TV and movies, like dressing up as zombies, or kids asking for trick or treat from home to home- instead, in Catalonia, it is more common to eat sweet potatoes and roasted chestnuts from street kiosks dispersed around the city and panellets, a very traditional sweet pastry with a marzipan base sold in patisseries and bakeries.

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Photo: Chestnuts and panellets.

La Castanyada (The day of the Chestnut if we want to translated it) it’s a tradition celebrated between the 31st of October and the 1st of November, a period that covers the Castanyada day and the All Saints’ Day.

But, what is “la Castanyera”?

The legend says that she is an old lady who lives on the mountain, who wears a small shirt, ruffled skirt and a shoe that sounds like a “clock-clock” –according to the song with her name-. During the Castanyada day this old woman comes down from the mountain and goes to the city centre, where she sells all the castanyes that she has picked accompanied by her cat called marramiau.

And what is the name of that thing that she sells?

chestnut2The castanyes. As some people say, the tradition of eating castanyes comes from when bell ringers used to ring the church’s bells in order to remind people to pray for their ancestors. Because of the hard work that they had to do during the night, they took with them castanyes –the most abundant fruit at that time- and a bottle of sweet wine called muscatel as a digestive to swallow them better. At the end of the XVIII century, this habit was really common for everyone, and that is why, in this time of the year, you can see lots of people eating, buying and selling castanyes on the street.

Els Panellets. (Traditional autumn pastries dessert)

panellets2But let’s move to serious things. You know that in Ca la Maria we are fans of the best meals and desserts, and that’s why our breakfasts are how they are. The panellets are a traditional sweet from Catalonia. It is made of equal parts ground almonds and sugar, shaped into balls and decorated with pine nuts, cocoa powder, candied cherries, coconut flakes or anything the ‘home chef’ likes. Nevertheless, the most popular one is still the pine nut one.

PHOTOSHOOTING DE ENSUEÑO A CA LA MARIA BARCELONA

Ca la Maria hotel boutique es un lugar de ensueño para celebrar una boda en el centro de Barcelona.

Este verano Ca la Maria ha participado en un photoshooting muy especial con un tema que nos emociona: ¡LAS BODAS!

Junto con wedding planners, modelos, fotógrafos, portales de bodas, tiendas de vestidos y lencería, etc hemos colaborado en una jornada muy intensa e inspiradora para captar aquellos momentos y complementos más mágicos para todas las novias.

A continuación encontraran una pizca del resultado del duro trabajo. Se utilizó la terraza, la sala de estar y la habitación Montjuic, los rincones más románticos de Ca la Maria. Y tu, ¿Dónde hacer tu photoshooting? ¿Dónde quieres celebrar tu boda?

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Terraza Invisible en Ca la Maria Barcelona Hotel Boutique

 

Photoshooting bodas Ca la Maria

Terraza invisible en Ca la Maria Barcelona Bed and Breakfast

Photoshooting bodas Ca la MariaSuite de dos dormitorios, Montjuïc, en Ca la Maria Barcelona Hotel Boutique

 

Photoshooting bodas Ca la Maria

Suite con terraza, Liceu, en Ca la Maria Barcelona Boutique Hotel

 

Honest Bar / Food Bank

From Ca la Maria boutique hotel, and with the help of all our guests, we collaborate with the Barcelona Food Bank.

When we decided to put a Honest Bar in our bed and breakfast we knew we wanted it to be an easy, quick and kind of being able to take a few snacks while you are in the terrace or in the middle of the afternoon resting after a long walk through Barcelona or relaxing before going to sleep or if you have come to see us after a day’s work in one of the offices nearby.2015-03-04 11.47.31

We wanted that our guests and visitors could get anything, whenever they wanted it and that it woulb be as honest as possible. They donate what they want or what think they take is worth and we give this donation to the Food Bank of Barcelona. This donation is made in a clay piggy bank, which must be broken to see its contents! It is exciting not knowing what is inside and just being able to discover the content at the end, when it is already full!

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We think this is a nice way to help those people in our city and surroundings who needs it the most. The Food Bank aims to fight hunger here, it prevents that unmarketable but still good food supplies are destroyed and finally, make them reach those people most in need of our immediate surroundings.

If you want to know more about what does and how it does it The Food Bank Foundation, visit their website: https://www.bancdelsaliments.org/es/que_hacemos/

The honest bar of our Boutique hotel has already filled the first piggy bank (called Guardiola) and we have broken it to make the first donation. During this year that the piggy bank it has been filling up we have raised a bit over 1000 € with the help of all our guests!

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Truth is that all this bills and coind together look very very good!

Now for the second one. This one is called Hucha!

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Thanks a lot from the Ca la Maria team!

Have you heard about the benefits of mediterranean breakfast?

Boutique hotel in Barcelona Ca la María know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and there’s nothing more healthy and natural than a Mediterranean breakfast, and that is why guests are offered an especially lovely breakfast to entice them out of bed and to invigorate them for the day ahead.

Come down to Ca la Maria, our boutique hotel in Barcelona,  to have a mediterranean breakfast with the best quality products: coffee, tea, fresh juices, eggs pastes, delicious crepes, cold meat, tomato bread, homemade jams and all types of fruits.

If you still haven’t heard about the benefits of Mediterranean breakfast, boutique hotel in Barcelona Ca la María provides you the answer.

  • Increments energy and mental acuteness. from early in the morning.
  • Improves one’s sense of well-being and good moods and helps to keep the heart healthy
  • Mediterranean breakfast can help you to control hunger and give a sense of fullness whilecontrolling calorie intake.
  • Also, this kind of breakfast can help you to control hunger and give a sense of fullness while controlling calorie intake.
  • Mediterranean breakfast helps to improve attention and concentration; memory;perception; reasoning.

Moreover in our Boutique Hotel in Barcelona Ca la María you will be able to enjoy breakfast time in a silent and sunny terrace or in a charming room.

We are sure that all these spaces will make you enjoy your breakfast time.

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The most primitive hotel in Sweden: Kolarbyn Eco Lodge.

Hotel boutique in Barcelona Ca la maría would like to present the Kolarbyn Ecolodge hotel, which is called Sweden’s most primitive hotel. This place is situated in this unique place near Skinnskatteberg in Sweden, just 2 hours from Stockholm.

If you have ever imagined living in a place where you can back to nature and do everything by yourself, at the same time as you try minimize the environmental impact by becoming part of nature. then this is the place for you. Here you can do:

  • Chopping your own wood
  • Fetching water from the spring
  • Cooking your own meals
  • Doing your own dishes in the stream
  • Recycling your waste
  • Swimg and fish in the river

This hotel boutique consists of twelve little forest cabins equipped with simple but comfortable furniture, located near by the beautiful lake Skärsjön. Many guests choose to come here for lodging in one of the huts, just like a normal hotel, just more primitive and much more adventurous.

The small ecolodges are camouflaged forest huts covered in mud, with tiny wild bilberries and mushrooms growing on the roof. Inside are two wooden beds with no mattresses

Another peculiarity of this place is that there is no electricity but live candles and a crackling fire place that will guide you asleep

There is no electricity but live candles and a crackling fire place that will guide you asleep

One night in an ecolodge hut with breakfast starts at around £45. Sleeping bags are available to rent for around £15. Packages including a safari start at around £165 for one night.

Hotel boutique in Barcelona  Ca la María reminds you  that If you need to visit the toilet, you are welcome to pee behind any tree.

 

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 (Fuente de las fotografías: http://www.wildsweden.com)

Enjoy the best breakfast in a hotel boutique

One of the greatest pleasures of travelling and to be accommodated in a hotel is starting the day with an amazing breakfast. This feeling can be much better if we have elected a hotel boutique because these are child-friendly spaces and are often situated in symbolic areas where every detail is considered in order to give you the best possible service.

Thus, in these places, as in the case of hotel boutique in Barcelona Ca la Maria,  breakfast time turn into the optimal moment of the day. This is achieved through preparing breakfast with as many details as possible, picking up high-quality fresh and value-added food products. To this, should be added that hotel boutique in Barcelona Ca la Maria cooks its own confectionery: pastries, soft drinks, homemade cakes….

To Hotel Boutique in Barcelona Ca la Maria, the main goal and desire is provide to their customers with a wide variety of products in order to have a healthy breakfast without give up the delicate and amazing tastes of Mediterranean food.

To all this must be added the fact that the hotel boutique in Barcelona Ca la María is characterized for a family, friendly and cordial environment,  especially in the place where we have our breakfast: a sunny and silence terrace where relax and wellbeing are the best way to start the day with energy and good vibes.

As you can see, the gastronomical supply for breakfast in a hotel boutique, is one of the primary reasons to opt for these places in your holidays.

So, If you are not yet familiar with Barcelona city or you would like to repeat the experience… what are you waiting for?

Get in touch with us and you will enjoy the finest in accommodation and service in our hotel boutique in Barcelona Ca la Maria while enjoying the best city in the world.

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The best destinations in the world for a holiday (first part)

 

Hotel Boutique in Barcelona has created this list for people who are looking for a unforgettables holidays this summer.

To do this, Hotel boutique in Barcelona has selected some of the best holidays destinations from around the world, focusing on a particular aspect of each place. So, here you have the 3 of the best holiday destinations to have a dreamy holiday.

The Maldives for relaxation

The Maldives is an island nation in the Indian Ocean, about 435 miles South West of Sri Lanka. It is a popular tourist destination because of the beautiful resorts and scenery. So, if you want to go somewhere to relax, this is the place to do it. Regarding the language you will have no problems speaking English in the tourist spots. Enjoy the true paradise in a place where you just have to sipping margaritas on your private villa on the ocean.

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The Maldives-Piece of heaven tourism destinations

 

Queenstown in New Zealand for excitement

In Winter or Summer, Queenstown is a fantastic place to holiday. In the Winter it is full of people there for the skiing, and in summer it is full of people there to take the white water trips down the river also recommend this place because   the food in Queenstown in really great

Moreover, there are a large number of hotels right on the waterfront of Lake Wakitipu (New Zealand’s longest lake and third largest). The water is very cold but it is beautiful to look at from your hotel window .

Hotel Boutique in Barcelona Ca la Maria loves this place because in New Zealander’s are the friendliest people in the world.

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Paris in France for food

Everyone knows that Paris is the City of romance and food. So, hotel Boutique in Barcelona Ca la Maria, as food lover is very sensitive to this side of things. The food in France is simply outstanding.

No matter what type of hotel have you chosen, what really matters is to make you sure you leave enough money for the food and wine

Hotel boutique in Barcelona would like recommend you 3 dishes you will have to try:

1) Macaroons at La Duree, the Champs

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2) Ice-cream at Berthillon

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3) Pastries at Pierre Hermé

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Hotel Boutique in Barcelona Ca la Maria hope helping you makes the right choice

 

The amazing and unusual hotel boutique Museumotel in France

As you know, hotel boutique in Barcelona Ca la Maria likes recommends some of the hotel boutique most amazing and unusual in the world, and today the winner is Museumotel in France.

Today this is my intention to introduce you into a dreamy place where fantasy, art and originality define this place, characterised  by a series of areas form  where a single artistic object in each element is an inextricable part of the whole.

Hotel boutique in Barcelona is a lover of the most beautiful capitals around the world and, as the holiday season begins, what could be better than a vacation in France, Well, if you were dreaming of something like that, all that you would need to do is take a look at the cool bubbly Museumotel which is plopped down in the wooded landscape of northeastern in France, called Raon-l’Etape.

The museumotel was designed in 1966 by architect Pascal Hausermann for hotelier M.Thierry and after opening in 1967 as a succession of buildings, the Museumotel complex fell into disuse and went bankrupt in 1995. Renovated in 2007, the 60s hotel was re-opened as a destination for visitors with an appreciation for retro design. In 2006 this hotel boutique was converted into a museumotel, and since there enjoyed the popularity and success it always deserved.

The architecture of this place consists of pod like structures that are straight out of a science fiction movie. The structures are made of concrete veils and use layers of thermal insulation. So,  the insides of the pod would be pleasant and warm even if it is freezing cold outside, and rooms are really cool and reflect a circular shape that is common in France.

The interiors of the bubble houses reflect their frontage and consist of large circular rooms with curved doorways and arching staircases and its interiors have a pop-art atmosphere and each bubble has a different theme. This amazing place is situated on an island within a river and is only accessible by bridge and is surrounded by 41 acres of woods and a small artificial brook.

The rent of Museumotel goes between € 55 and € 100, depending on the number of people, size of bubble, and type of service

So, book your tickets to France, go ahead, and enjoy!

 

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(Images caption: http://museumotel.com/photos.)

hotel’s website: http://museumotel.com/

The features that a boutique hotel must have

In hotel industry, change is a constant, If a couple of years ago international hotels captured the traveler’s preferences, nowadays guests are looking for a personalized experience which takes care of details and offers a quality service.This way appeared boutique hotels, places that mixes a first level hotel management with a private and intimate ambient by fitting clients needs.

Hotel Boutique in Barcelona has gathered  the  main characteristic features that Hotel boutique should include:

Limited number of rooms. The number of rooms ranges between 20 and 150.

Limited space for events. Events should not exceed 10 or 15% of the weekly demand. If this percentage rises, the hotel begins to lose its personality.

A small lobby. Lobbies are smaller than those of conventional hotels. Thus, the guest experience will be much more intimate.

Personalized service. It’s impossible to provide a boutique service without being careful of details and attention to passengers.

Cultural heritage conservation. Boutique hotels are often placed in old houses that have been remodeled to give them a new use while maintaining architectural harmony with their environment.

Sense of aesthetics and technological leadership. Most of these hotels are known for its eclectic design and, also, for providing technological services to its customers as free wi-fi, videoconference rooms, etc.