They say if you enjoy your job, you’ll never have to work a day in your life. But no matter how rosy things may seem, the nitty gritty of getting stuff done escapes no one. When the going gets tough, have a break (and a Kit Kat), or in this case, the stopover of a lifetime.

Enter the Shell Rimula Ultimate Stopover, an annual getaway event for Shell Rimula customers. For 2019, the stopover destination was Barcelona, Spain, a sprawling metropolis on the northeast coast of the Iberian Peninsula, facing the Mediterranean Sea.

Barcelona (not Barca, which is a nickname for the Barcelona football club) is exceptionally rich in culture, particularly in the areas of architecture, performing arts, and sports. Fittingly, the theme for the Shell Rimula USO this year was “Art,” broken down into four unique experiences that were sure to excite the senses.

Before going into the specifics, allow us to expand on the Rimula Ultimate Stopover. Previously known as the Rimula Global Promotion, the event offers Shell Rimula’s customers the opportunity to win an all-expense paid trip with Shell. Prior destinations include Dubai, South Africa, Hungary, London, and the Netherlands.

This year, Shell Malaysia selected 13 of its top-performing Rimula customers from across the country and flew them to Barcelona, where they met 176 other guests (for a total of 189 individual winners) from 18 other markets. Those include India, Egypt, Germany, United States of America, Indonesia, Philippines, and China.

If you’re unfamiliar with the Shell Rimula brand (also known as Rotella in the US), well, it’s simply a range of engine oils formulated for commercial vehicles, from light duty pick-up trucks to heavy-duty, mileage-racking lorries used by freight management companies.

Much like the Helix and Advance range that we are more familiar with, Rimula-branded engine oils are exceedingly complex to formulate. Some of the heavy-duty engine oils are even designed to last up to 150,000 km before needing to be drained, which makes sense because lorries cover hundreds, if not thousands of kilometres daily. If you’re in the business, you’ll appreciate the longer oil drain interval.

Back to the Ultimate Stopover. Now, the five-day, four-night event included four experiential programmes, namely the Art of Science, Art of Touring, Art of Driving, and everyone’s favourite, the Art of Dining.

Day one (Art of Science) was purely educational, offering valuable technical insights into Shell’s latest endeavours, as well as understanding the brand, its vision, and products on a deeper level. Field experts were also present to give talks at some of the city’s most iconic landmarks, such as the famous Sagrada Familia cathedral. This was followed by a guided tour of the attraction, of course.

For dinner, guests were transported to the majestic Spanish village of Poble Espanyol, featuring cobblestoned walkways and rustic storefronts, most of which sold souvenirs, local gelato, paella (traditional Spanish rice dish), and coffee. Also, when in Spain, have cortado.

Following a restful night, guests travelled out of town to the Parcmotor Castelloli circuit for the Art of Driving. This was the most exhaustive, adventure-fuelled day featuring precision driving activity, high-octane dirt driving piloted by competitive professionals, as well as some creative, art-based challenges.

You must be thinking by now, where’s the sightseeing part of the trip? Well, that would be the final day, and what better way to kick things off than to visit the one place all tourists flock to in droves?

That’s right, Camp Nou was first on the list, complete with a full guided tour of the always-crowded facility. A major renovation to revamp the stadium is scheduled to begin soon, and it will expand seating capacity from 99,350 seats to 105,000 seats. Camp Nou is the largest stadium in Europe, but whether it is the most popular is open for debate ;).

Other notable sightseeing destinations include the resplendent Park Güell that was solely designed by famous architect Antoni Gaudí. The centenary attraction was built at the turn of the 20th century, and much of what remains today stand proud and tower over the concrete landscape that is Barcelona.

What about the Art of Dining, then? This was practically a daily special, but the gastronomic adventure culminated in a gala dinner held at a dignified winery called Cavas Cordinou. It’s known as one of the world’s oldest and largest producers of Cava, which is fermented Spanish sparkling wine.

If you’re a firm believer in the age old adage that is “work hard, play harder,” then the Shell Rimula Ultimate Stopover is clearly an embodiment and manifestation of that saying. Shell has already announced the next Ultimate Stopover destination, and we bet this one will set your hearts racing. In 2021, for the first time, the contingent heads to Tokyo!