Painting and sipping wine with locals in Arte Bar, Barcelona

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If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you probably have noticed that I spent one evening during my time in Barcelona attending a painting class.

Yes, really! A REAL painting class where we had to paint on REAL canvas with REAL painting supplies. I’ve never done anything like this before while travelling, so it was quite a fun and interesting experience. Spoiler alert: I LOVED it.

I came across this class on Triple. Initially, it’s a marketplace where people from all around the world can host an experience for travellers coming to their city or country. You can find various activities and tours there from walking tours, food tours to cooking, painting classes and much more. I was amazed to see how much you can do in each city!

Currently, Triple experiences are only hosted in all main European capitals and New York City but hopefully, they will expand soon enough. I would love to host something similar in my own home country one day.

When I booked my trip to Barcelona, I knew I needed to do something unique and less touristy-like to really get the feel of the place. So, I went on Triple and searched for activities that I could do while there. I found a class called ‘Paint and enjoy wine with local painters’ and I was SOLD. I am not kidding, the moment I saw that there was wine involved, I knew this was it.

So, I contacted Triple team and asked if they wanted to collaborate with me and they said yes (all thanks to you! Yes, you!). I should say now that the experience was kindly gifted to me and two of my good friends by Triple, but all opinions remain my own. I truly value transparency and honesty, so no BS on this blog.

Anyway. Back to the painting class!

After booking the experience, I contacted the host and he informed me about the time of the class and how to reach it which was very kind of him. Speaking about location, it wasn’t hard to find.

The class is held by Arte Bar, an art studio right in the middle of the city centre. They host painting workshops almost every single day and we were surprised to see that the majority of people who attended were, in fact, locals. Plus, they appeared to be regulars which we found quite interesting. To be honest, I would definitely attend a class like this in my hometown if we had something similar, so I can see why there were so many regulars from Barcelona.

The painting nights are open to everyone and you definitely don’t need to have any experience whatsoever which was very relieving. I can’t paint at all but I love how relaxing it is.

Upon entering the studio, we were greeted by the host who gave us aprons and asked if we would like to have a glass of wine. YES, PLEASE!

Their drinks policy is quite simple. 1,50 EUR for a glass of wine (white or red) or 5 EUR for the whole bottle. You can even bring your own wine if you prefer, they will kindly give you glasses. We opted for a glass of white wine each.

After that, we got comfortable in our seats and waited for the class to start. There were around 15 people, I’d say, including us. We were seated in the front which I was super happy about during the painting class because I could see everything perfectly.

The whole class was led by a British guy, who studies in Barcelona. I can’t remember his name but I think he did a great job at keeping a light and easygoing atmosphere by making jokes here and there and trying to be inclusive by speaking both English and Catalan. I’m proud to say I understood almost everything he said in Catalan (my Spanish lessons paid off after all, haha).

The length of the class is 3 hours but they flew by so fast. We were guided step-by-step by our instructor on what to do, how to do it and what to use. Super helpful if you don’t know a thing about painting and colour mixing. Like I don’t.

The painting of the evening was this gorgeous scenery of the mountains. When I saw what we are going to paint for the first time, I honestly was very sceptical about my abilities. I thought ‘man, I’m going to fail this one so bad’. But it turned out surprisingly well. I mean, it looks nothing like instructor’s painting, let’s be real. I don’t know how he does it. But you can see the main idea and some kind of mountains in my painting. Hey! I’m not a painter after all!

While everything was easy to follow, my mind went blank once the host said ‘let’s improvise now’. Turns out I can’t improvise while painting, so that’s why we have an awkward looking blossom tree and mini houses/flowers in front of our mighty mountains.

My wonderful masterpiece. I tried. I really did.

But enough about my lack of painting skills. Another fun thing about this painting class is that you get a tapas break!

After one and a half hours of painting, our host called a 15-minute break during which we could enjoy delicious Spanish tapas and converse with people. You could enjoy Spanish sausage, bread (the most delicious bread I had in a while), cherry tomatoes, cheese and olives. It was a great way to step back from the painting and just enjoy the atmosphere.

After the break, we still had around an hour or so left, so we got back to painting our masterpieces and enjoying our wine in between. I almost dapped my brush into my wine glass instead of my water glass… in my defence, the host warned us that it might happen if we won’t be attentive enough.

Just as we were adding finishing touches to our paintings, they brought us all chocolate! I mean, does it get any better?

The best part of all this class is that after finishing your painting and drying it with a hairdryer, you get to bring it home with you and show off to your friends and relatives. The canvas is included in the price, so you don’t need to pay extra to do so.

Just casually drying our canvases with a hairdryer

Just a quick warning, it might not fit in your hand luggage. It happened to us, so we very much creatively decided to take the canvas off the frame in our hostel room and bring it home this way. Not ideal but I just couldn’t leave it behind!

IMPORTANT UPDATE: The owner of the art studio informed us that almost all major airlines let you take canvas on board with the bag that studio provides, so you don’t have to fit it in your hand luggage. I wish we knew it! Do I feel like a moron now for taking the painting off the canvas? Yes. But you live, you learn, am I right?

All in all, I had a wonderful time and I couldn’t have spent that evening better than we did. Delicious food, wine, good atmosphere and relaxing activity with locals was just what we needed after a hike to Montserrat (about that in my next blog post!). If you’re interested to give this class a go, it costs around 30 EUR which includes all painting supplies, canvas and tapas. The only thing you have to pay for is wine (or bring your own, if you prefer!). Quite a good deal, if I say so.

Also, if you’re travelling around Europe, don’t forget to check out Triple. You might just make your trip even more fun and authentic.

Have you done something similar before? Would you do it if you haven’t already?

Pin for future reference or share with your friends who plan on going to Barcelona!

Disclaimer: This blog post is brought to you by Triple. All opinions are my own. As usual.

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