The cosmopolitan city of Barcelona is situated in the Catalonia part of the country. Apart from the superb food and vibrant nightlife, the city is famous the world over for its unique art and Catalan architecture. The works of Antoni Gaudi, are admired by designers and architects from all corners of the globe because of its distinctive style. The stunning examples of this master architect, have greatly influenced the face of the city and can be seen almost everywhere in Barcelona. I teamed up with Expedia.com to give you an idea of his creativity and other architectural masterpieces of Barcelona, you should take a look at some of the important delights this city has to offer. Such is the unmistakable style displayed,that even a person who knows nothing about architecture, will be instantly able to recognize the unusual characteristics of the building that cannot be found elsewhere.
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Top Architectural Delights in Barcelona, Spain
Erected between the years 1883 and 1888,this is the initial important creation of Gaudi. This modern style building is located in the Gracia on Calle de las Carolinas neighborhood. The building has white and green tiles on it which give it a spectacular facade and give off its unique style. Beyond the decorations, one can notice the corners of the building have ridges in order to avoid giving it the classical architecture look. Since Casa Vicens is a private building, it is closed to visitors. However, there are no restrictions in viewing it from outside, and admiring the splendid cast iron railings which go around it.
Considered these days to be the most imaginative residential building built in the history of architecture, this is Gaudi’s sculptural masterpiece. Recognized as a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1984, this perfect blend of fantasy infused in an architectural landmark, is a must see attraction for every visitor. Built between 1906 and 1912, the La Pedrera is located in Barcelona’s Eixample. The facade looks like a sea, with the waves perfectly interacting with the motifs on the balcony railings.
Another UNESCO heritage built between 1900 and 1914, this is a complex inside a garden. Some of the buildings designed so dynamically here, include the house of Antoni Gaudi. The true characteristics of his work covered with irregular ceramic tiles, is displayed in this Art Nouveau movement. An ideal place for a stroll as well as admiring Gaudi’s artwork, Park Guell has an imposing colonnaded hall and a serpentine shaped terrace. It is undoubtedly one of the best places to see in Barcelona.
This garden city project was actually initiated by Eusebi Guell, but remained incomplete. The City council, ultimately laid claim on the property, resulting in an imaginative and colorful public park expressing each minute detail of Antoni Gaudi’s special blend of mixing architecture with the natural surroundings.
This is one project which is different from any other project of Gaudi. Serving as the residence of the Guell family, this palatial house consists of an unusual parabolic dome in the central room. There are circles on the ceiling of the lounge, giving it a look of a planetarium. Chimneys and conical vents on the roofs give a resemblance of fir trees. This ideal blend of Gaudi’s exuberant style and medieval opulence was completed in 1890 and is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Calvets were a family of leading textile industrialists and Casa Calvet was specially built for them in a distinct conventional style by Gaudi. The facade was made of stone along with the windows and other interiors. Inspired by nature, as was his wont, Gaudi gave a shape to the balconies like a curve as depicted in some fairy tales.
Pere Calvet set up his business on the ground floor (which typically houses a restaurant these days), and used the upper floors for his private residence. Awarded as the best building of the year in 1900 by the city council, the Casa Calvet is a tribute to the baroque style of Catalan architecture.
La Sagrada Familia
This church, which is considered to be the most famous work of Gaudi, is actually undergoing construction since 1892. Slated to be completed by 2030, the design and architecture of the church displays effectively the close relationship between man,religion and nature. This undisputed symbol of Barcelona offers breathtaking views of the city from any of the towers on the church. Declared a World Heritage Site, the building work continues on through private donations. The Sagrada family church of Atonement, has three important facades, each of them relating to three pivotal moments in Jesus Christ’s life- his birth, his passion, death, resurrection and his future glory. Each facade has four towers representing the 12 apostles. A dome shaped tower, under construction, will eventually crown the apse, symbolizing Virgin Mary.
The architectural marvels of Barcelona are unparalleled anywhere else in the city, let alone any other corner of the world. Such is the unusual mastery of Gaudi’s architecture that Barcelona has become a premier sightseeing destination, for tourists and art lovers alike.
Have you been to Barcelona and enjoyed these stunningly beautiful buildings? Tell me in comments below.