Tuesday, February 24, 2009

What Happened to New Orleans?

I have been waiting so, so long for the photos from the New Orleans event and my poor blog has gone delinquent! While I remain patient (since it is my client's photographer!), I'd like to keep my loyal fans entertained and practice my uploading skills by posting some other photos.

While some may say this is just a shameless way of sharing about my vacation, I must tell you that I'm often called upon to advise on topics that are related, but not vital, to my event planning services. I am a development specialist, restaurant critic and travel advisor, among other roles. I tell people where to entertain clients and hold conferences, so I think telling you about my experiences in Barcelona is relevant!

A professor during a study abroad semester in Rome once said that the best way to approach a new city is to find a high point and get a feel for the lay of the land. I always thought that was a great piece of advice.

We'll be sure to contract with a hotel that fits the meeting's needs and is in a great location. Balconies help too.

Next, I must figure out where guests will eat. Perhaps one day, we'll leave them on their own and they can experience the amazing Boqueria Mercato.

A tapas-hopping dinearound is absolutely necessary in the Born district at places like El Born and La Taverna del Born.

And for a high-quality, yet reasonably-priced dinner, perhaps we can take over a floor at Senyor Parellada:

Meetings are so often jam-packed but I do like to provide a list of local or must-see sites for guests. Since we're staying near La Ramblas, all one needs is a few moments to walk outside and see the Bruno Quadras Building which used to be an umbrella factory.

Just a few more blocks away is a statue that Americans, in particular, will enjoy: a monument to Christopher Columbus built on the location where he landed upon his return from America. This sight was particularly important for me to see since my father has a similar photo of himself with the statue, taken when he was in the Navy.
In case you're wondering (as I was), he's pointing east towards his home in Genoa.

There, of course, will be some "must-sees" on the itinerary such as La Sagrada Familia, Antoni Gaudi's unfinished masterpiece:

as well as his lesser-known, yet still remarkable Casa Batllo:

And in the case that spouse programs are needed, I do like to include fun options for those who may have been to the city already:

Of course, no trip is complete without branching out on your own for some people-watching, so I would suggest the Gotico neighborhood's Harlem Jazz Club or Sincopa.

Like most of my site visits, this vacation was brief so one more stroll through the neighborhood before catching a flight out!