palau güell

Palau Güell

Everyone who comes to Barcelona has on their list at least one of the monuments designed by Antoni Gaudi. It’s not particularly difficult, as no less than eight of them are on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Its neighborhood

This is one of Gaudi’s earliest projects, the construction of which began in 1885. The commissioner was a good friend and patron of the architect Eusebi Güell. The building is located on the Raval, which also gives it a unique atmosphere. The Raval is an old city, a neighborhood that has always been famous for its nightlife, cabarets but also for crime and prostitution. Today, due to the development of tourism in the area, the situation is different. Why did the industrialist choose this place for his palace? Well, there could be two reasons. Nearby, in Rambla de Caputxins street, was the house of Eusebius’ parents, perhaps he just wanted to be close to his family. There is also another theory. To the west of the Ramblas, a few minutes walk from the plot where the construction of the mansion began, was the luxurious Palau Moja, the residence of Guell’s brother-in-law, Claudio Lopez and Bru. It could have been a pure rivalry between the rich aristocracy. The fact is that Gaudi had a virtually unlimited budget here.

The interior

The palace is recognized today as one of the most outstanding works of Catalan Art Nouveau. Gaudi was not only its architect, but he also designed the interior, furniture and decorations. Amazing steel, wood and glass structures form a unique whole, and what is most interesting is that each of them has its own purpose.

All the decorations are obviously created in the form and resemblance of what we can find in nature. Gaudi very often emphasized in his design philosophy that a man is not able to invent something that nature has not already created. Tiles resembling fish scales or chimneys resembling trees and bushes are common motifs in this architect’s work. For example, the central living room and its ceiling, with its many openings specially placed to let in light, give the effect of a starry sky.


The museum

It is worth mentioning that the house was the first building in Barcelona to use gas lighting. Several years after its construction, it was transformed into the Museum of Catalan Theater. Today it is a true museum of Gaudi’s art. You can then imagine exactly what the creator had in mind when building his masterpiece. The best time to visit is on a sunny day, then you can be sure that the roof will also be open with a beautiful forest of chimneys.

To enter the palace, you will have to pay 5 EUR for a ticket. Set aside about 1.5 hours for the tour, because sometimes after buying the tickets you have to wait for a while (only a certain number of visitors are allowed to enter at the same time).

How to get there and schedule

Summer (April 1 to October 31): 10:00 am to 2:00 pm and 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm (ticket offices close at 7:00 pm).
Winter (November 1 to March 31): 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. (ticket offices close at 5:00 p.m.).

The nearest metro station is the green line L3, Liceu stop.

Carrer Nou de la Rambla, 3-5, 08001 Barcelona, Spain