Our Camper experience in Barcelona
Earlier this year, we held a Camper Lifelovers prize draw open to anyone who registered their Camper purchases. Our winner, Paul, chose a trip to Barcelona and he sent us this lovely letter about his experiences.
Of course we are really proud to share the great time he had staying with us, but we wanted to share what he wrote because he gives some really great advice for anyone wanting to visit the city for a weekend break (especially with a small child).
“My name is Paul, I have a wife Paula and a daughter Imogen (aged nearly 2). We live on the south coast of England in the buzzing city of Brighton. For Christmas 2012 I wanted to get my wife some great looking but still comfortable shoes as one of her Christmas presents. She suggested that I take a look at Camper.
I bought some shoes, signed up for a chance to win the Camper Lifelovers Experience, and then promptly forgot all about it as work and the approach of Christmas took over. When the email arrived saying that I was a winner, I didn’t believe it at first. You always wonder who wins these kinds of competitions, but this time it was us.
casa camper is centrally located but still feels very quiet and calming inside
The prize included return flights, two nights’ accommodation in one of the two casa camper boutique hotels (Berlin or Barcelona), a complimentary dinner at the hotel’s restaurant, a new Polaroid digital instant camera and a mystery prize to be received on arrival at the hotel. We chose to go to Barcelona for its sunny weather, amazing architecture and boho vibe.
casa camper is centrally located but still feels very quiet and calming inside. It’s a modern boutique hotel with clean lines, great style and lots of beautifully thought-out but surprising touches that you just grow to love. For example, all the bathroom areas look out upon a sheer vertical wall, perhaps thirty meters high, that holds row after row of huge aspidistra plants. It’s an amazing sight to look at when you’re brushing your teeth in the morning.
On our first evening we had a good old explore of the hotel on arrival. Imogen loved playing with the hanging chain decorations in the foyer, squealing and dancing with joy and whenever she kicked them. We thought the 24/7 food area (where guests could pick from the already prepared food, such as sandwiches, salads, drinks and teas/coffees, etc) was an inspired idea. We made use of that quite a lot during our stay!
The next day we walked to Parc de la Ciutadella and Barcelona zoo, sauntering through the shady, picturesque medieval streets of the Barri Gotic.
On the way, we found ourselves at Barcelona Cathedral and happily explored its impressive interior and the attached cloister, Patio de los patos and Claustro garden with its St. Jordi spring and the famous resident geese. The geese were a big hit with Imogen – she thought they were ducks, and she really, really likes ducks.
The Barcelona streets hold such eclectic architecture and so many surprises
That evening the hotel had kindly arranged a babysitting service that we felt really comfortable about, so we could enjoy our complimentary dinner at the hotel’s Dos Pallilos restaurant. The food at Dos Pallilos was completely exceptional – which you’d expect from a Michelin-starred restaurant. The atmosphere was inclusive, casual and relaxed, which you wouldn’t necessarily expect.
Our final morning was spent walking to the Camper store on Passeig de Gracia to choose our amazing free gifts: a pair of Camper shoes of our choice for each of us. We all came away looking very smart on the foot and with Imy sporting some gorgeous red shoes that have since been the talk of the playgrounds of Brighton. Imy loved the bags the shoes came in so much we had to take them home with us. She still carries them around today.
We did all of our exploring on foot. The Barcelona streets hold such eclectic architecture and so many surprises. Every corner we turned revealed something beautiful or unexpected: a building decorated with chopsticks and Chinese symbols on La Rambla; sunny squares bordered by flower-filled balconies and ancient church facades; roman walls built into the walls of a more modern building; a rock bar called “Bollocks”… and the Gaudi buildings, of course.
Each area had its own distinct personality. The wide, tree-lined boulevards of L’Eixample were such a contrast from the narrow, winding streets of the Barri Gotic. El Raval, where casa camper is located, had more of an edgy but still a neighbourhood feel. We were delighted to find a couple of small play parks in the area, where Imy could let off steam.
And what of our taste of all things Camper? If we had to sum up our experience of casa camper, Dos Pallilos and the Camper shop we’d say they all have a quirky, stylish, relaxed, welcoming and friendly feel, and delivered top-notch service to very high standards. All the staff at the hotel, store and restaurant could not have been more friendly or helpful.
Overall we had a full-on but life-enhancing few days. We feel very privileged and lucky to have won such an amazing prize and we’re all loving our beautiful new shoes.”
Paul, Paula and Imogen Nash