High rise living could leave one yearning for the outdoors. In Barcelona, Spain, however, the outdoors is generally within easy reach. As we explored the urban canyons created by the six and seven story apartment buildings so common in this city, we were struck by the number of balconies jutting out above us. In fact, most windows were actually doors opening to essential outdoor space. Rising above us were countless floating patios upon which residents could sip coffee or wine as they watched a day dawn or diminish.
Our own balcony doors, seven flights up, were always open to the outdoors. We listened to anonymous guitars in the evening and engaged in quiet people watching as we listened to the sounds of the city. Reluctantly segregated from the outdoors as we stepped into the hotel elevator, the open balcony doors always received first glance upon entering the room. Hours of walking and exploring the city each day still left us wanting more, and our Barcelona balcony allowed us to linger in it and savor it even from seven stories above.