About Us

We are Esther and Gemma, sisters and partners at Go Local Barcelona.

We have been transforming our grandma’s building into a unique, sustainable, mixed use and local-traveller community since 2006.

Along the way, we have combined our expertise in Architecture, sustainable design and local knowledge to offer local, unique and sustainable apartments in Barcelona city.

As a result of our unique stays, our customers have had an amazing experience that goes beyond accommodation:

Our work has been recognized by several organizations through the years, including the sustainable quality certification Biosphere and many media international recognition.

Building Timeline

Our grandma’s building was built in two stages.
First stage in 1929 included her father’s bakery on the ground floor and her home on the first floor. (However the first baker in the family was in 1889 two blocks from this location!)
At that time, the building was surrounded by fields, but also by two other important buildings for the city: Sagrada Familia (started in 1882) and Sant Pau modernistic hospital (1913). Also less known building for the original beer factory of the best known Spanish beer Estrella Damm (1905).

She was the older of 2 older children: Joan and Jaume.
Also at that time it was common to adopt an older teen to help with the house chores, so Pilar was also a crucial part of the family.

During the civil war (1936-1939) her parents and the 3 childs emigrated to the Cerdanya in the foothills of the pyrenees. While the young ones were learning to ski, Pilar (the eldest tough teen woman) was in charge of the house and the bakery which was run by the republicans at that time.
After the war, they came back to the City and poverty was extended in the city. There were no primary goods nor food. Despite that, our grandma’s family was lucky to keep their flour provider so they did not starve.

Later on, our grandma Eulalia was married and she had two sons: Jordi and Jaume (very Catalan names).
She inherited the house and bakery and transformed it into a 6 story building in 1960.
Her son Jaume took in to run the bakery while being a skiing instructor during the weekends.

With the late boom of tourism, Jaume’s daughters were encouraged to take action in order to create an experience accommodation model based on local economy, interior design and community.
They came up with an alternative interior design idea and a system of maps, geolocalized stores and tickets to exchange for traditional goods to cook Catalan typical dishes.
The agencies commercializing the apartments were always complaining about how ‘not commercial’ the interior design was. Neither the tickets were working..
Then in 2011 they joined Airbnb and their model was successful. Finally, they could connect to people that were searching for a design and local experience in the city of Barcelona.
Three years later, they were doing so well that Airbnb invited the sisters to their San Francisco headquarters!

Today Eulalia’s 4 nephews live in this same building (and most have had their own children here!).
One of them still runs the cafeteria next door from the bakery: La Granja.
The bakery has been trespassed to a young pastry cook which makes delicacies on the original name of the bakery.
And you can come stay with them to be part of this story too!

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