In Gaudi’s home town, among many others buildings that he designed, there is a building that is his first work of art where it all began. That building is Casa Vicens. It belonged to Manuel Vicens, an industrialist, who lived there with his family during summer. The building was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This building constructed in 1885 is said to represent a work of art of the 19th century Modernism. As all other Gaudi’s buildings, this one is also geometrically unusual. It is decorated with rich details and it is hard to miss it. The house has a large garden in the backyard that resembles a private botanical garden that can be a place of escape from daily city noise.
In 1925, the architect Juan Siera de Martinez made some changes to the house by remodeling the entrance and the garden’s size. Gaudi, who worked on Sagrada Familia at the time, approved Martinez’s remodeling with little deviation from his own style. Stones, bricks and ceramic tiles in all colours were used during the construction works. The owner of the house was also the owner of the factory that made and distributed bricks and tiles, so the materials used in the construction work were made in his own factory.
Nowadays, Casa Vicens is a museum, but it was under private ownership until 2017. It is divided in 3 parts, each of which represents a different architectural style. One part represents Gaudi and initial works, one represents Martinez’s style, and the final part is the garden. There is a library with rare and uncommon books in the basement, and there is a pretty café in the garden.
Besides beautiful façade that makes it stand out, the house is also known for permanent and temporary exhibitions. Temporary exhibitions display Gaudi’s work, documents and photographs, which tell the history of this building. It is located in the Gracia area of the city. You can get there both on foot and by public transportation. You can visit the house as a part of the Hop On Hop Off tour, and you can join it on Hop On Hop Off (bus/metro) stop “Park Guell”.
The house is opened throughout whole year, except for 25 December and 6 January.
Ticket price may vary, from 10 Euros to 13 Euros for a single ticket.
Author of the text:
Maja Glavaš, Bachelor with Honours in Communicology. Works in Tourism.
Contact: [email protected]; instagram: travel_europe1
Photo by Kristijan Arsov on Unsplash