Barcelona has been attracting young people from all over the world for as many years as most people remember. Out of the wonder why because it’s such an attractive city, a blend of the traditional and the modern with something to offer for everybody, including one of the world’s best soccer clubs.
Someone who is drawn to Barcelona more than ten years ago and has remained ever since is Siuxel Sue. Siuxel Sue recalls that she arrived in Barcelona fluent in Italian and English with the intention of practicing her Spanish, before returning to the UK. However, like so many others, she fell in love with the city, and has remained in Barcelona ever since.
After finding her feet in the city, Siuxel Sue decided that the best way to pass on her improve Spanish language skills to fellow expatriates was to form a proper social and language community.
Known as Barcelona Languages and Friends, the community has been running since November 2010 and traditionally meets at the Philharmonic Pub, situated on C/.Mallorca 204 BCN 08036, between Aribau and E.Granados. The Philharmonic Pub is a popular watering hole and meeting place for expatriates living in Barcelona from all over the world.
We took the opportunity to meet and chat with Sue about how her social and language community was faring as the third anniversary of its founding approaches
Question: How often do the Barcelona Language and Friends meet?
Answer: We meet every week on a Monday night and always at the Philharmonic Pub.
Question: How many people, on average, attend these meetings?
Answer: Most meetings attract around a hundred people.
Question: How does an average meeting go?
Answer: The main purpose of Barcelona Language and Friends is to allow exchange of English and Spanish between native speakers of both languages.
Question: Are these meetings not the same as having to go back to school?
Answer: On the contrary, this is a community class that bridges the gap between traditional lesson and communicating in the real world. Meetings are held in a friendly and relaxed manner and the community is attracting new members all the time the same time.
Question: Apart from the language exchange, do the Barcelona Language and Friends organize other activities?
Answer: For sure -there are a number of other related events such as ‘Cine y Chat’ in o.v., English Dinners, Karaoke nights among a number of others all of them related towards allowing people to interact in these two languages.
Question: Now that the Language and Friends concept seems to have caught on so well in Barcelona are there plans to expand it to other parts of the world?
Answer: We already have begun to expand with one group already established in Santiago de Chile and plan to open another in London next month and in Ibiza, on the beautiful Mediterranean coast of Spain. In the long term, we can see our concept spread throughout the world operating meetings where newcomers to a strange city can come along and chat with locals in their own language, and get a feeling for the culture and history of the city they are living in.
Question: How do I find out more about Barcelona Language and Friends?
Answer: Easy- just come up to a regular Monday night meetings at the Philharmonic Bar or log onto our Meetup page or our Facebook Page for more information. Plans are well advanced for producing our own full website, with details soon to be released.
There is little doubt that someone who wants to get the best out of living in Barcelona will enjoy the experience much more by being able to speak the language. However, before the Barcelona experience can properly get underway the first step will need to be finding them a place to live. There are plenty of good apartments to rent in Barcelona and the best place to find them is at ShBarcelona. There you will find a friendly staff that speaks your language and know exactly what’s available in the city, even if you’re thinking long-term or just looking for a temporary rent apartment. Whatever your needs you can be sure that ShBarcelona will be there for you.