If you’re visiting the capital, or even if you live here and fancy discovering new places, you will be interested to learn that Palma has a total of 114 emblematic businesses which have stoically resisted the passing of time. Along the streets and in squares, among all the profitable franchises, the city often surprises those browsing with shop windows that offer something different, authentic, and with plenty of history.
Cafés, chocolate shops, wickerwork, bakeries, haberdasheries, jewellers, milliners… there are so many businesses that have been weaving the character of the local neighbourhoods through the decades, across generations that now form part of our collective memories of the city. Join us on a wander to visit some of these unique, irreplaceable places that encourage us to shop locally in a more responsible, conscious way.
Can Joan de s’Aigo
Founded in 1700, this chocolate maker and ice cream shop, which started off selling ice and cold water, has three shops in Calle Baró de Santa Maria del Sepulcre, Calle Can Sanç, and in Via Sindicato, where they serve traditional ‘ensaïmades’, ‘quartos’, hot chocolate, and other delicacies from the island.
Bar Bosch, with 87 years of history and located in the Plaza Joan Carles, just a few metres from Nivia, is famous for its irresistible ‘llonguets’, also known as ‘llagostes’, and has played host over the years to celebrities like the artists Joan Miró and Miquel Barceló or the singer-songwriter Joaquín Sabina. The renowned ‘variats’ and almond slush drinks are stand-out favourites.
Fornet de la Soca (previously Forn es Teatre)
In Plaza Weyler, there is a listed 19th-century building with a modernist façade that not only captures our attention for its beauty but also because it contains a bakery that continues to use traditional island recipes. Coca de ‘quarto’, ‘gató’, ‘formatjada’, ‘ensaïmades’, ‘panades’, ‘cocarrois’, ‘espinagades’… all the specialities from the island are sold here.
For those with a sweet tooth, La Pajarita, in Calle Sant Nicolau, is an unmissable stop on our walk. Its furnishings and décor are a legacy from another era and are the inspiration for its handmade sweets: turrones, ‘panellets’, Easter eggs, and over 80 varieties of chocolates. As well as sweetening the most demanding palates, La Pajarita has a ‘gourmet’ grocer’s shop next door that sells Iberian cured meats, cheeses, wine, liqueurs, and a range of preserves and jams.
Thanks to the skill of four generations of jewellers, Joyas Forteza, located in Calle Colom, presents us with an extensive collection of high-quality jewellery that includes traditional designs like the silver Mallorcan bracelets, or the Calatrava crucifixes.
This business is dedicated to wickerwork and it still repairs the traditional ‘encordades’ (stringed) chairs, you can find authentic wicker wear such as the ‘senalles’, ‘covos’ and ‘covonets’.
Would you like to visit some more of Palma’s emblematic businesses? Check out the map here.