I’ve wanted to go to Bilbao and visit the Guggenheim since I was at school and first came across the work of architect Frank Gehry. I’ve waited a long time to see it but it was utterly worth it, the building is stunning, glinting silver in the bright light and pale gold when it’s cloudy. We stayed just opposite the Guggenheim in the Miró Hotel, the first boutique hotel in Bilbao (more on the hotel later).
Bilbao is the perfect destination for a weekend break, it’s easy to get to, small enough to walk around and has lots of amazing places to eat. We headed to the Plaza Nueva in the east of Bilbao for dinner, the square has many pinxtos bars where you’re hard pressed to spend 10€ on two glasses of wine and a selection of pinxtos. I recommend taking cash as we found many of the bars frowned on using bank cards for anything less than 10€. Our favourite was Victor Montes in the south-east corner of the square, the food was very good and the service came with a smile.
Whilst in Bilbao I had to check out a few shops, of course. Trimmer is a small boutique in the centre of town which sells a lot of my favourite brands including Masscob, Spain’s answer to Isabel Marant. They sell both men’s and women’s brands, as well as a good selection of magazines, beauty products and flowers. Next door they have a café too. Another wonderful store to visit is Narata, a contemporary design showroom that works with local artists and designers, as well as well-known brands like SCP, Muuto and Hay. The owners Aristide and Ainara are very welcoming and clearly passionate about the people they work with. It’s worth popping in just to see they’re collaborative project, ‘NarataWorks’; the leaning lamps above are from this project.