The Studio by Jamie Luke + Bistrot Levante
BECOME A LOCAL IN THE KNOW AND MEET A COOL NEW FITNESS CROWD.
START: The Studio by Jamie Luke Health and Fitness, Passatge de la Pau, 10, 08002 Barcelona.
FINISH: Bistrot Levante, Placeta de Manuel Ribé, 1, 08002 Barcelona.
THE WORKOUT: Saturday 12.30pm TRX Freestyle with Daniela. Set-up by Brit and fitness pro Jamie, The Studio Barcelona is a welcome addition to Barcelona’s fitness scene. The challenging classes are usually packed (always a sure sign!) and the handy additional option of an open plan co-working space within the airy studio is an added bonus. This means that the feel of the studio has nailed the balance of being slick and professional with a friendly community vibe. Classes are done in both English and Spanish (and even at times Italian) and range from TRX, Yoga flow to clinical Pilates (perfect for sorting out any lower back pain niggles), alongside an option for Personal Training sessions. This class with Daniela is perfectly times to ensure you actually get a workout in after Friday night but leaves you enough time to fully indulge in brunch. Daniela switches up the class each time, using a mix of dynamic cardio fitness and strength moves all rolled in to one fifty five minute session for a full body workout. Essentially you’ll see your heart-rate climb and climb throughout class but you will also work on conditioning and building muscle. Using the TRX means its perfect for any level of fitness; using just your own body-weight, exercises can be adapted to make them as easy or as challenging as needed. This is a small class (limited to eight people) so Daniela can give complete attention to everyone. These guys have got personalised group training nailed.
FYI: The co-working space is limited to six people per day, but the group classes are included in the co-working price so it’s a really good deal.
THE FOOD: Weekend brunch at Bistrot Levante to soothe tired muscles. This hidden gem can be found a short walk away from the studio in Barcelona’s winding backstreets. Owned by architect Emiliano Armani, Levante is sweet relief from all the tourist traps that are so common to this neck of the woods (La Rambla is right on your doorstep). Serving up plates of Eastern Mediterranean cuisine (think a beautiful mix of Syrian, Israeli and Lebanese) in a small yet perfectly formed modern interior complete with round marble top tables, green plants, low hanging lights and lovely airy windows. Brunch is in the ideal lay-out for lazy weekend feasting; small and large plates where you get to try a bit of everything. Start with Lebanese bread with Za’tar and warm pitta to dip into creamy Hummus Masabeha (chickpeas with lemon-spiked tahini and a pinch of paprika). Larger plates include a pulled lamb plate, where the meat is so tender it falls apart. A spicy Shakshuka, perfectly cooked with a nice chili kick is always a brunch winner. Roasted grape and tomato toast with tahini, basil and honey makes a nice change from usual brunch menus and really works! The fresh basil cuts through the rich tahini and gentle sweetness of the toast and honey bring it all together. Rye topped with herring, celeriac, spicy horseradish and crème fraiche is a nice light bite for sharing too. Drinks here are not to be missed. A mimosa goes down a treat after all that heavy TRX lifting. And the spiced Turkish coffee is the perfect companion for a couple of scoops of pistachio-almond chocolate ice cream to finish off the meal. It’s very busy spot for locals in-the-know, which should be sign enough that its worth visiting.
FYI: Franki Gallo Cha Cha Cha round the corner is also around the corner if you're craving a serious carb-fix (pizza basically).
THE PRICE: A drop-in class is €12, pack of five classes is €50. Co-working pass €20 per day. Bistrot Levante: Hummus Masabeha €12, Labneh with za’atar €6, warm pitta €2, spicy Shakshuka €12, roasted grape toast €11, pulled lamb €14, Herring toast €12. Desserts: ice-cream €8, toast. Tasting menu €30. Drinks: spiced coffee €4, mimosa €8.
BEST FOR: Meeting a friendly fitness crowd and finding some peace away from the crowds in the heart of the city.
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