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Featuring an air of striking regality that can be attributed to its historic dull rose facade, the Gran Teatre del Liceu is a longstanding symbol of Barcelona's prized culture. Perhaps the most important theater in Barcelona, the Gran Teatre del Liceu was built in 1847 as a venue for opera performances. The original building showcased a modern aesthetic designed by architects Miquel Garriga i Roca and Josep Oriol Mestres, and while the theater was rebuilt after a fire in 1994, a handful of cherished artifacts from the first structure remain. The main façade, the Hall of Mirrors, and staircase notably represent the historic Gran Teatre del Liceu as it was originally conceived. As important as ever, the new theater stays true to its roots by staging an exciting program of operas, concerts, and ballets performed by some of the most reputable companies in the world. It even houses a symphony orchestra and choir that perform throughout the year. With 2,292 seats, the Gran Teatre del Liceu is certainly grand, and it has one of the largest opera auditoriums in Europe.
There's a lot to recommend at Sidecar, a long-established dance club. It plays a great selection of music including funk, pop and rock which you can dance to and attracts a friendly crowd. With its central location and funky decor, you'll find a varied clientele made up of students, tourists and teenagers. The casual and laid back atmosphere sometimes gives the feel of a summer village fiesta. The bar is a cool zone to grab a drink and chat up with the other clubbers. Check the website for a list of daily line ups.
Barcelona's oldest residential district is a maze of narrow streets housing some fantastic examples of Gothic architecture. Lots of trendy young designers have opened up outlets here over the last few years, along with some classy but not too flashy restaurants, including tapas bars that fill up with the city's youth most nights. Alongside Gothic buildings like the imposing Cathedral of Barcelona, you can see the most concentrated remains of the Roman period here, between Plaça de la Catedral and Plaça Sant Jaume. The old Roman walls still demarcate the boundary between this and its adjacent districts. This spirited neighborhood, known locally as Barri Gòtic, is one of the city's most atmospheric and enchanting explorations serving up style in spades.
Barcelona's tribute to one of its adopted sons, the Picasso Museum displays a fabulous collection across three adjoining medieval palaces. Although the famous Cubist artist was actually born in Málaga, his long artistic career started in Barcelona. Visitors to this museum will see important early works in various mediums, including engraving, lithography, and pottery. The best-known pieces on display at the Picasso Museum are the Harlequin, a portrait of one of Picasso's wives, and the Las Meninas series. Regular temporary exhibits focus on different aspects of the artist's legacy like his research on landscapes and foray into theater design. Additionally, there are some works by other artists from the avant-garde movement on display, rounding out the experience.
The color red dominates the interior of Los Tarantos, paying a humble tribute to the attires of the Flamenco dancers who have graced the stage of this institution since 1963. One of the longest-established and most prestigious flamenco club in town, Los Tarantos has hosted performances by some of the country's most famous singers and bailaores (flamenco dancers), including Antonio Gades, Manzanita and Fosforito. This is a great place to experience the rich Spanish culture at its best with well crafted drinks keeping patrons in high spirits. The club, albeit intimate, can seat smaller groups with ease; it has impressive acoustics and one can enjoy the show without any hindrance from its every corner.
Four magnificent columns of the original Temple of Augustus remain intact, surviving more than 2,000 years and today representing the best preserved Roman relic in the city. This site was once a pagan temple located in what used to be the Roman center of the city, which is now known as the Gothic Quarter. The four original temple columns are housed within the Centre Excursionista de Catalunya, a cultural center that dates back to the late 1800s. Next time you're touring Barcelona, don't miss the chance to explore one of the last traces of the Roman town known as Barcino by visiting this historic site.