05.07.19 — Journal

The Laus Awards

After a steady stream of visitors who’ve been keeping me company here in Madrid over the summer, it was eventually time for me to head off to a different city myself – this time to Barcelona!

I headed off to the northern city with my colleague Rocío, as we were off to pick up a series of Laus Awards that Erretres has won. For those wondering, the Laus Awards are Spain’s biggest design awards, similar to the D&AD Awards in the UK, and we’d be off to pick up two silver and one bronze! I had worked on one of these projects, and so the two of us hopped on the train from Madrid and headed up to Barcelona.

Me and Rocío on the train to Barcelona.

Upon arrival, we headed straight to a little beachside area of the city called la Barceloneta, where we took a stroll down the seafront and took in some of the sights. With the hour of the awards ceremony fast encroaching and our stomachs rumbling for some proper lunch, we made back towards the city centre, stopping for a snack on the way to our hotel.

With just over half an hour before the celebrations began, the two of us arrived at our hotel room, dumping our bags and quickly showering in preparation for the short walk to the Museu del Disseny (The Design Museum). We then, upon arrival, found our colleague Marco, who had also won an award for one of his student projects.

Before too long we were allowed to take a seat in the large auditorium space, which had a roof which sent my eyes momentarily spinning – I don’t think so many parallel lines was the best idea, especially for a design museum! Whilst my eyes had adjusted to the space, we chatted the time away whilst the other attendees filed in and then, as often expected in Spain, the presentation began late.

The interior of the Museu del Disseny, with the presentation screen showing sponsors. Taken before the event.

The preceding presentation was then mostly conducted in Catalan, which required an extra effort on my part to understand, as it can vary between being strikingly similar and then wildly different to what we’d call Spanish. It was lovely to see all the awarded projects, however, and listen to a few speeches along the way.

With the awards all handed out and the main event wrapped up, we then filed back out of the space, picking up the heavy acrylic awards as we went. We then all spilled out into a rear courtyard, where there was free beer and pizza up for grabs, so naturally we made the most of those!

With Rocío and I preferring a quiet night on the beach to a full night out, as well as the prospect of an early train back to Madrid the following morning, we passed on the invitation for a free club night, and headed instead back to La Barceloneta. Once there, we sat ourselves down on the terrace of a little bar on the sand, putting the world to rights over our last drink for the night.

The following morning involved a bright and early start, with the two of us heading out in search of a local café for some breakfast. Once we’d refuelled on some pastry and coffee, it was straight back to the train station for our 9am trip back to our home city – another super rapid visit to the city after I was there just a couple of months prior for a client meeting! This time, however, I did at least get a view of the Sagrada Familia from the taxi – reminding me of my first ever visit to the city!

The Sagrada Familia in its unfinished state, with a Barcelona boulevard in the foreground.
The view from our hotel room in Barcelona. The sun rises, illuminating buildings in a warm glow. A lone man walks through a courtyard below.
The Laus Silver award.

The train journey back was a three hour one, but that was to pale into insignificance, as later that same day I hopped on a six-hour train bound to Murcia to spend a weekend with my parents! More on that, though, in my next post…