All posts tagged: Guggenheim Bilbao

A Wonderful Week

Travel for work often deserves the brickbats thrown its way. But then there are the sublime trips that more than make it all worthwhile. My travel last week falls in the latter category. As posted here, here, here, here, and here, Candice and I have been on the road, seeing a variety of special places with friends and supporters of the National Trust. But because internet connections were slow-to-nonexistent on the road, I kept the posts short and to the point. So this is my “bring it all home” post.  I’ll give a short update of each stop, and then will post several new photos from that portion of the trip that weren’t included in the original updates. Our first port was Porto, Portugal, a wonderful city with a historic center that has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  It was a great kick-off, with a strong mix of monumental buildings and streets full of markets like the one at the top of the post.  We saw the coffee shop where J.K. Rowling wrote …

Bilbao: The Cliff Notes Edition

  Wow! I had read the stories of how a gritty, shipbuilding city in Spain had reinvented itself as an arts and cultural center built around the signature Frank Gehry-designed Guggenheim Museum. I had seen the pictures. But I wasn’t ready for the reality. We spent Sunday in Bilbao, Spain — after a drive through the lovely heart of the Basque country — and Candice and I found the first city where we are set on finding a way to return as soon as possible. Bilbao in the 1980s saw the closing of an iconic shipyard and had the foresight to think creatively and boldly about a new future which blended new and old. It is the last part — the blending of new and old — that is often missed in the write-ups about Bilbao’s renaissance.  You get the impact of Gehry’s Guggenheim, along with the works of Calatrava, Norman Foster and other modern masters. But what is often missing is the context for these works: a walkable and vibrant historic city dating back …