Can you recommend a place to have lunch with friends?
–If you love meat, you must go to Club Paris. It has been on Anchorage's dining scene since 1957, before Alaska had even gained its statehood, and is the city's oldest steakhouse. The restaurant frequently garners many local awards, including “best steak”. The menu offers as many as eight different cuts of steak. Club Paris also specializes in fresh seafood like prawns, scallops, lobster and crab. For lunch, you can order lighter fare, including quiche and sandwiches.
Where would you have a special dinner for two?
–As I mentioned before, it may be difficult to get away from the typical steaks-and-seafood restaurants in Alaska, but one place to try is Sacks Cafe. Sure, there's king crab legs and fresh halibut, but these are paired with Asian vegetable slaw and coconut curry, respectively.
When is the best time of year to plan a visit?
–Summer, definitely. With a range between 10 and 26 degrees, the weather is just perfect.
Jordi Vera arrived in Anchorage following his heart. He's married to an Alaskan who he met in Barcelona a few years ago and now he is in the construction business.
Why did you leave Catalonia?
–I must admit that I never thought about leaving Catalonia. I had a good job there and my family and friends. Then I met this lovely girl from Alaska, and you can imagine the rest of the story!
Are you happy with the job opportunities in Anchorage?
–Well, Anchorage is Alaska's biggest city, with more than 300,000 inhabitants. Economic activity is really thriving nowadays, so you can find a nice job if you are willing to work hard.
What do you think is the best thing about living there?
–I know my answer might sound unusual, but I love the weather here. Warm in the summer, cold in the winter. It's the right place to be if you hate hot weather, like me.
What would you most like to change?
–Distances. Here you have to drive or fly for hours every time you go anywhere. I miss the short distances we have in Catalonia and in Europe in general. On the other hand, it's a small price to pay in order to enjoy some of the most beautiful spots in the world. Alaska is a paradise.
What do you miss most from home?
–Probably my mum's meals! It could be a little boring here in Alaska if you don't like meat, because they eat it a lot. They love barbecues and they're not into the Mediterranean diet very much.
What do you consider the highlights for any brief visit for the first time?
–I would suggest starting with a visit to the Anchorage Museum, which features permanent exhibits of Alaska art, history, science and Alaska native culture. It also features a rotating schedule of exhibitions from its permanent collection, and travelling exhibits from other museums in the Lower 48. The museum also houses a planetarium and a restaurant.
Are there any places to avoid at all costs?
–I'd say you should avoid Mountain View and Fair View. While the city is actively trying to clean these areas up by putting in parks and trees, it still has a ways to go.