The Bellesguard Tower (Antoni Gaudí): the Catalan art nouveau and the Gothic styles

The Bellesguard Tower (Torre Bellesguard), also known as Casa Figueres, was built by Antoni Gaudí between 1900 and 1909, using rectilinear forms rarely seen in his other work. His inspiration was the medieval castle of Martin I, also known as Martin the Humane, the last king of the Catalan dynasty of the House of Barcelona, who resided at Bellesguard until his death in 1410.

Bellesguard is a corner of Barcelona which has, thanks to the abundance of underground waters and the purity of the air, been inhabited for more than two thousand years, as evidenced by the Iberian ceramics from the 2nd century BC and roman ceramics from AD 50 which have been found on the site.

Gaudí built a castle that was a blend of Art Nouveau and Gothic style and restored the ruins of the medieval palace, which are now part of the estate’s grounds.

Casa Figueres is constructed mainly of stone and brick. The general structure measures a square base of 15 × 15 m and is 19.5 m high, with an area of 900 m.

Torre Bellesguard is perhaps what the building is most recognized for, displaying Gaudí’s typical cross of four arms decorated with red and yellow mosaics to mimic the Catalan flag.

At the base of the cross one can also see what appears to be a crown wrapped around the circumference, likely Gaudi’s symbolic acknowledgment of the site’s significance to the crown of Aragon. At the entrance of the house, one can find an inscription that reads, “Maria Purrisima sens pecat fou concebuda,” meaning “Purest Maria, conceived without sin.” Above the entrance door is a stunning stained glass window in the form of the 8-pointed star of Venus.

The history of Bellesguard is inextricably bound up with the history of Catalonia. The many historic events that unfolded and the renowned figures that passed through Bellesguard over the centuries influenced and inspired Antoni Gaudí to create one of his most personal, symbolic and fascinating works.

Opening hours

From Tuesday to Sunday, from 10 a.m to 3 p.m (last entry at 2:30 p.m)

Closed: Every Monday, except holidays 1st & 6th of January as well as 25th & 26th of December

Guided tours

Adults – 10 euros

Children under 18 and pensioners – 8 euros

Children under 8 years – free

Duration of the visit: 40 minutes.

Available languages: Catalan, Spanish, English.

Possibility of other languages ​​and times on request and with prior reservation.

Limited places.

Spaces are available for weddings, team buildings, footages, presentations and other events.

Address: Carrer de Bellesguard, 20, 08022 Barcelona, Spain

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