Jardins de Pedralbes Festival
Music and festivals fill Barcelona when the summer comes. The action usually takes place outdoors and at night, when the heat and humidity are not that high and you feel like going out and enjoying an artist “al fresco”. One of the most popular festivals, which has become an important reference in a short time, is the Festival Jardins de Pedralbes. It focuses on music and its eclectic universe, ranging from opera and classical music to rock. With only five years of life and a clear international vocation, this festival already attracted artists such as Lana del Rey, Josep Carreras, Earth Wind & Fire, Tom Jones, Zubin Mehta, Russian Red, Simple Minds, Anastacia, Mika, Bob Dylan, Pet Shop Boys, Patti Smith, Joan Bez and Juan Diego Flores to the city.
A great location
The festival takes place in the Gardens of the Royal Palace of Pedralbes (in the area of Les Corts). This palace has its origins in a farmhouse of the XVII century and it was declared well of cultural interest. It is home of the Museum of the Ceramics, Decorative Arts and Textile and Clothing; all of them are part of the Disseny Hub of the Catalan capital. The palace was renovated at the time by Antoni Gaudí. They commissioned the gardens to Gaudí as well, where he built fountains and pergolas, and you can still find some of his work there The current design was made by Nicolau Maria Rubio in 1927. Amongst pines, palms, cypresses and magnolias you can find statues, precious benches and various decorative elements. They all create an exceptional space to enjoy an outdoor performance.
A grand program
This edition’s line-up covers different musical genres. Indie music comes by the hand of groups as consecrated as Air or Belle & Sebastian. Pop – folk with touches of flamenco will be there thanks to India Martinez, Noa and Pasión Vega or Andres Reyes, from the Gipsy Kings. Tony Bennett, Sting and Rufus Wainwright, amongst others, will perform as international solo artists. The Beach Boys are one of the main attractions this year. The national pop is also well represented by Rosana and Jarabe de Palo. Other genres represented will be jazz, classical, funk, soul, etc. There will be always a performance for every musical taste.
The festival also has what they call a Village Zone by Catering Sauleda, that will provide salads, cakes, rolls, hamburgers, fruits… all of these with seasonal products to enjoy the local gastronomy in the park. There are vegetarian, vegan and celiac options as well.
More than music
In addition to all the musical performances, the Festival organizes parallel activities, such as the Day of Music with your Family (June 11). This year, this event does a collaboration with the Food Bank, through the popular violinist Ara Malikian. During this day, children will be encouraged to donate food as “hunger does not go on vacation”, just like the slogan of this campaign says.
On the other hand, Soundeat! (July 1) will bring together gastronomic proposals and DJ sessions at affordable prices to enjoy it in groups or within the family.
How to get there and where to stay
The venue has a parking area at the UPC Campus Nord (Girona 29), with 30 minutes of free parking by showing the festival ticket. The parking lot at the UB Campus (Martí i Franquès) is free of charge. There is a metro stop at Palau Real (Line 3, green color) and there are numerous buses, trams and biking services that have stops in that area. The Grand Hotel Central is the perfect accommodation in order to explore the city during the festival days (about 25 minutes by public transport or taxi or an hour’s walk up Diagonal). There is nothing like cooling off in its infinity pool, overlooking the city, while enjoying a gin & tonic before chanting the songs of your fauvorite artists in Pedralbes.
Photo by Carles Paredes