I’ve been in Barcelona for ten days now and wanted to share my observations and learnings on Barcelona style. Observations, based on walking the streets and meeting with a local interior designer and architect. I love Spain so I’ve been to a few different cities such as Seville and Valencia and each city in Spain has its own identity. Barcelona is no different. A design forward city here’s how to get the Barcelona look in your own home.
Like most places that are by the sea, Barcelona residential interiors have coastal vibes. Around the world Coastal aesthetic has similarities because they reflect the sea and the surrounding environment and colours.
In Barcelona the surrounding environment includes islands such as Ibiza. Therefore, the city interiors interpret the island coastal aesthetic in a unique way.
We see typical coastal elements such as neutral colours and natural materials. But unlike other Coastal style such as Hamptons which is heavy in décor, Barcelona coastal style in minimal.
Key elements of Barcelona style
As mentioned above Barcelona coastal style is rooted in neutral colours. Such as white, taupes, and greys. There is some blue but not as much as you’d expect.
Natural materials feature, primarily wood. But the key here is that timbers are mixed and patterned. Think of gorgeous chevron timber flooring with a blonde wood timber dining table.
Due to the architectural style and age of most residential apartment buildings, Barcelona residential interiors have a mix of new with old. The old is also highly ornamental.
Think moulded cornices, decorative tiles with colour and geometrics shapes and patterns both on the floor and walls. Timber beams and terracotta.
I also noticed that Barcelona interior style is minimal, and I think that’s because the fittings, fixtures and finishes of the apartments are highly ornamental and decorative. So a high level of ornamental furniture and furnishings isn’t necessary.
Once the key focal pieces of each space are selected such as dining table and sofa, pops of culture are added in the chairs and cushions.
Typical colours are brighter than you’d expect in other Coastal styles. In Barcelona residential style the pops of colour are bright such as yellow, red and orange. Art also features heavily in Barcelona homes. As well as unique sculptural pieces such as ceramic vases and pots.
The other thing I noticed about Barcelona style, while Coastal, is that there are what we consider Industrial elements such as red brick walls and industrial lighting.
Barcelona style also has some Contemporary features owing to the unusual shapes of certain pieces of furniture. Finally, another element in Barcelona’s coastal style is foliage. Some kind of plant life from branches to flowers.
Cities and their own style
Being from Melbourne, it’s true that cities can have an identity that is reflected of local interior design preferences. For Melburnians I think it’s Industrial, mixed with Mid-Century. But there’s also Palm Springs, French Provincial style and so on
The determining factors for a city’s style are multiple and varied. It’s a combination of history, people, materials, weather, food, local creativity, politics and so on. All these have contributed to Barcelona interior style.