Like a fading Hollywood star, Sitges looks great in the evening light…

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Sitges. Home of the free pour. Can someone – please, anyone! – remind me of this for next time?

The summer retreat of Picasso, Sitges has dimensions beyond its beach and bars. An impossibly idyllic old town struts out onto a headland, a church romantically at its stern as if put there for the photographs, and a meander round it makes even the most hardened city folk embrace small town living. Plus, who could resist the lure of the deep blue sea?

It has its tack. I like this. You can’t have too much of a good thing and those places that do quickly become like museum pieces, impractical for modern-day living. A long strip of souped-up clubs line one small strip, pulsing with shrink-wrapped souls well into the early hours.

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Beautiful blue tiles in patterns heavily influenced by the Moors, courtyards are retreats and the givers of life: palms sprout green against the serenity, a blast like standing under the drum of a waterfall. Carved wooden doors and white washed walls – and a streak of blue along the pavement edge – harmonise the streets.

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The evening is best. That light can make Sophia Loren look young again – well that and a bit of ‘work’. It’s true of Sitges. You can forgive its brazen newness, those badly built apartments and half-finished houses. Sitges glows at the bewitching hour, a time when even the beach burnt bunnies look good.

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