Concept

Where: San Sebastian, Spain

Dialogue – Donostia

This custom-made trip is focused on encounter with local Basque culture, as mediated by the visual and culinary arts. Engaged dialogue with the people of San Sebastian is sought, as our guests encounters different people along the way. This connection with San Sebastian ( or, in Basque, “Donostia”) delves into an intersection of natural and manmade environments, revealing elements of Basque history that have nourished the present-day cultural climate of the region.

The experiences on this varied journey are both visual and haptic, rooted in the sculptural elements that are found in nature, food, art and architecture. We are particularly privileged to be spending time with Luis Chillida, the son of the celebrated sculptor Eduardo Chillida, at their exquisite estate. Further personal insights follow when we see the artist Jorge Oteiza’s rural home, which doubles as a museum.

We also delve into the local food scene, for which San Sebastian is renowned. A workshop with local chefs gives a detailed introduction to Basque historical gastronomic societies. Beach walks and river strolls frame the visits to multiple public art venues defined by their architecture, and unique perspectives on contemporary art in San Sebastian’s lively scene are enabled through interactive tours with students and experts.

San Sebastian is a city of many faces and moods: of warm sunshine and torrential showers. A mix of lifestyles greets visitors at our beachside resort, which offers both luxury and laid-back barefoot surfers. Visitors gain an insight into to a society that proudly blends sophistication with hospitality, as well as theoretical and practical knowledge of historical regional food and high-end cooking. This trip gives visitors a chance to delve into Basque culture via the regional perspective of local people. They experience inner and outer contentment, as they eat food, see art and walk amidst the unique architecture.

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