Pedralbes, like parts of Sant Gervasi, used to be an area where wealthy families had large out-of-town homes. However, as demand for housing grew in the 60’s and 70’s, it was developed into a residential area offering upmarket apartments with communal gardens, pools and parking.
Pedralbes is a comfortable area to live in, but much of the recent architecture in Pedralbes is boring. Apartments may be big and the lifestyle convenient, but the architectural language of the area is dull, unlike other parts of Barcelona. In many places you need a car to get to anything resembling a shop, restaurant or bar.
That said, the good schools, large apartments, communal gardens, pools, parking and safe streets obviously appeal to families looking for a suburban lifestyle close to the city centre, which is what Pedralbes offers.
Pedralbes is also home to much of the prime property for sale in Barcelona, especially as you follow Avenida Pearson up the hill. Many of the buyers in this area today are foreigners, whilst the vendors are wealthy locals of a certain age whose children have left home, and who no longer need such a big house. They tend to now want to move to an apartment closer to the centre of town.
Many of the big houses in Pedralbes need several domestic staff to run. Another problem with Pedralbes is that it is not easy to get to by public transport, which can be a problem for staff.