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Spain has one bar for every 132 inhabitants

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30% of Spanish people would trust their local barman enough to give him their house keys. Photo: Mysealia/Flickr
17:14 CEST+02:00
A study by Coca-Cola has lifted the lid on bar and tapas culture in Spain, revealing that it remains an important part of daily life despite falling sales.

Spain's 350,000 bars and restaurants were the focus of a new study by Coca-Cola, according to online daily teinteresa.es.

Titled "The connection between the people and the bar", the study revealed that Spain has one bar for every 132 of its 47.2 million inhabitants.

Over 2,000 people participated in the study which looked at the relationship that the Spanish have with their local bars.

The autonomous communities with the most bars are La Rioja and Extremadura, with 142 and 124 per person respectively.

Two thirds of Spaniards claim to know the name of the waiter in their favourite bar and some 30% say that they would trust them enough to give them their house keys.

84% of those surveyed associate bars with fun, enjoyment or happiness while 74% agree that bars are a good place to "unwind" and meet loved ones.

64% see bars as a "symbol" of Spanish culture, citing as an example the world's oldest, Madrid's 'Botín' which first opened its doors in 1725.

More than half of Spaniards surveyed said that they regularly visit bars despite the crisis, with 36% visiting "several times a week" and a hardcore 5% who go more than once a day.

Among the attractions of bars, clients listed the quality of food and drink (22%), friendly staff (21%) and price (14%).

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Topping the tapas table were Andalucía and the Basque Country, rated as having the best quality bar snacks by 37% of people surveyed, while the most generous portions were said to be found in Madrid and Galicia.

Despite the enthusiasm expressed, bars are feeling the effects of the economic crisis: over 50,000 have closed down since 2008 according to the Spanish Hotel and Restaurant Federation.

Sales have also plunged by 22% since 2008, leading to the unemployment of over 76,000 staff.

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