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Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau Recinte modernista
Avinguda Gaudí leads to the HOSPITAL DE LA SANTA CREU I SANT PAU (82) (HOSPITAL OF THE HOLY CROSS AND OF SAINT PAUL) wich stands at the opposite end of the avenue. Construction of the current premises began in 1902, following a design by Lluís Domènech i Montaner, who was sensitive to the new hygienist theories of public health applied to town planning promoted by the doctor Pere Felip Monlau and engineers Ildefons Cerdà and Pere García Faria (designer of the Barcelona underground sewage network in the 19th century). The new hospital was raised on one of the ends of the Eixample district, on land bought by the Hospital de la Santa Creu thanks to a donation by the banker Pau Gil. Gil provided in his will for the construction of a health centre bearing his Christian name, and thus “Sant Pau” was added to the “Santa Creu”. Work started in 1902 and finished around 1926, when the Hospital was finally moved from its old Gothic location in the Raval to the new building. Domènech i Montaner’s work is considered to be one of the best Art Nouveau complexes in the world. The hospital is like a self-contained town, with streets, buildings and gardens. The access pavilion, crowned by a slender clock tower, has the exposed brickwork that predominates in the whole ensemble, with mosaics depicting historical subjects and stone capitals and corbels in the form of angels, sculpted by a young Pau Gargallo. Inside, the main features are the stained glass by Mario Maragliano, the large staircase and the ceilings, which are reminiscent of Islamic architecture. Two dates (1905 with the Greek letter alpha and 1910 with the Greek letter omega) indicate the start and finish of the work on this main building of the complex. The entrance pavilion and the 10 pavilions located around it were built under the personal direction of Domènech i Montaner and show the highly intelligent use of stone, iron and ceramics which is characteristic of the architect. Most of the remaining pavilions, including the huge Casa de Convalescència (Convalescence House), are a later work of Pere Domènech i Roura, the architect’s son. Some pavilions were given the names of male or female saints and others the names of Virgins. The pavilions are set among gardens and connected through a network of underground service passages more than one kilometre long. Thus Domènech designed a totally innovative hospital, breaking the building up into a series of cells surrounded by gardens, with a great deal of sunlight and fresh air, in which the patients and doctors enjoyed a far more pleasant natural environment than that of the old medieval hospital. One of the pavilions, currently used as a café, has an unusual Baroque façade, the original front of the old church of Santa Marta designed by Carles Grau in 1735, salvaged and moved to this location when the church was torn down to build the Via Laietana in 1909. The hospital occupies 14.5 hectares, the equivalent of nine blocks of the Eixample, and has been restored several times. In 1978 the Modernista pavilions of the hospital were declared a historic artistic monument, and in 1997 the ensemble was listed as UNESCO World Heritage. In the twentieth Century, the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau has begun to build a new, larger and more modern building on an adjacent site. Regarding the Modernista pavilions, they have been earmarked for new uses related to teaching, research and outreach activities, such as the Sant Manuel Pavilion, which now houses Casa Asia, (tel. 933 680 836, www.casaasia.es), a public institution set up in 2001 with the aim of promoting actions and projects to foster development with Asia in the institutional, cultural, academic and economic spheres.
Mondays to Fridays:
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (from November to April)
10 a.m. to 6.30 p.m. (from April to November)
The box office closes half an hour before closing time
Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays, from 10 am to 5 pm.
Visits in other languages are available (arranged in advance).
The itinerary may be modified depending on the availability of the spaces.
Closing days: 25th December.
Free entrance: 23rd April, Night of Museums, and 24th September.
Guided tours are not available on free days.
Prices and discounts
Self-guided visit: €15
Guided visit: €20
aged 16 to 29, over 65, disabled
Self-guided visit: €11.20
Guided visit: €14; Under 12 years old: €5
children (under 12), unemployed, Targeta Rosa Gratuïta cardholders.
Discounts 50% off
Barcelona Modernisme Route (Ruta del Modernisme) discount 50% off the two general ticket prices (visit and guided tour).
Discounts 20% off
Carnet BCN Cultural
Carnet d’Usuaris de la Xarxa de Biblioteques
Òmnium Cultural members
Groups (maximum 30 people per group)
Concession ticket (retired and special groups): €180
School visits: €125
Must be reserved by calling: 935 537 801
Tel.: (+34) 935 537 801.
Entrance: corner Sant Antoni Maria Claret / Cartagena.
Get the Guidebook of Barcelona Modernisme Route
The Barcelona Modernisme Route is an itinerary that takes you through the Barcelona of Gaudí, Domènech i Montaner and Puig i Cadafalch, the architects who, together with others, made Barcelona the world capital of Modernisme. This Route enables you to get to know thoroughly impressive palatial residences, amazing houses, the temple that has become a symbol of the city and a huge hospital, but it also includes humbler and more everyday buildings and items such as chemists’, shops, lampposts and benches - modernist works which show that Art Nouveau put down strong roots in Barcelona and today Modernisme is still an art that is alive and part of life in the city.
The Guidebook of Barcelona Modernisme Route can be acquired in our centers of Modernisme.