Thursday, 5 May 2016

Barcelona Hen Weekend

For the May bank holiday fifteen of my closest friends descended on Barcelona to celebrate the latest marriage! I flew with British Airways for just over £200 return but others flew Easyjet and Norwegian Air for cheaper fares. We stayed at an incredible apartment, which had four twin bedrooms, one bunk bed room and one double as well as a double sofa bed, two bathrooms and a separate toilet. There was a huge roof terrace and large living / dining area, which worked perfectly for a large group of girls.

On the Friday evening the bridesmaids did a massive shop at the local supermarket and we made large meat and cheese boards as well as salads and pizza. We drank copious amounts of cava and Aperol Spritz. All of the hens bought a few photos of the bride to be so we created a massive photo wall of memories for her and decorated the apartment with bunting, pom poms and pineapples (our theme was tropical). The bride was dressed in a hula skirt and the rest of us wore bright colours with flower necklaces. We played some traditional hen do games such as make a wedding dress out of toilet roll and foil, Mr & Mrs and guess the grooms body part!

On Saturday after a healthy breakfast of avocado on bagels and strawberries with granola and yoghurt (all bought cheaply from the local supermarket) we headed down to the beach for a Flamenco lesson. The hour long lesson included a glass of cava, which was needed for the Dutch courage! After a tapas lunch we had a two hour wine tasting session. We tried a glass of cava, two white wines and three red wines in a private cellar. The tasting included a cheese board, meat board and some delicious warm cheese and tomato pastries. We had a private sommelier to talk us through all of the wines.

With a quick couple of hours to shower and change we met again for dinner at Los Caracoles, which was a huge, traditional Spanish restaurant. As we were a large group we had pre-ordered. We had some delicious crusty bread with oils, calamari and garlic mushrooms to start. It was then a choice of seafood paella or spit roast chicken and then lemon sorbet (which was delicious) or Catalan cream. After copious amounts of wine and some giant g&t's we all grabbed a quick espresso before heading onto the club.

Our club of choice for the evening was Opium, which is right on the beachfront. We paid 900 EUR for three tables to accommodate all fifteen of us. This included three bottles of vodka and mixers as well as two bottles of cava. As an FYI cava was 100 EUR a bottle and jaeger bombs were 10 EUR a go so this definitely is not a cheap club but the music was great and everyone had a good time. Most girls didn't leave until 6am!

Everyone was up late on Sunday and the weather was glorious so we spent the day sunbathing, napping and chatting on our roof terrace with cava, white wine and some salads. In the evening we opted for a low key and relaxing dinner at the gorgeous beachfront restaurant Agua. We had a huge long table so we could thoroughly spread out and enjoy the food. The menu had lots of delicious looking options but in the end I chose a salmon tartar followed by paella and a warm chocolate cake with ice cream. Other options were steak, lamb, monkfish, stuffed octopus, squid. For dessert they had crumble, toffee with hot chocolate, sorbets and mousse. The menu definitely had something for everyone.

By Monday everyone was pretty zoned out so we went to the famous market in Barcelona for a wander and some lunch. We found a cute little place and had copious amounts of tapas and a glass of white wine for 20 EUR each (including chipping in for the bride). This was a perfect way to end the trip before heading back to London.

In all aside from flights we handed over £280 to the bridesmaids. This covered our club entry and drinks, Spanish dinner, Flamenco lesson, wine tasting, food and drinks in the apartment and our accommodation. Dinner at Agua was an extra 56 EUR per head (including chipping in for the bride). On top of this everyone spent about 80-100 EUR on taxi's and two lunches.

Going abroad is definitely not a cheap hen weekend option, however, we all had a wicked girls holiday and Barcelona was pretty reasonably priced for food, drinks and taxi's once you were there. I would thoroughly recommend this sunny, Spanish city for a hen party. We genuinely had an incredible time and are all suffering from major holiday blues.