Any trip to Barcelona would not be complete without checking out the impressive Barcelona architecture. One of the world's most famous architects, Antoni Gaudí, created works throughout the city. You'll find that a signature of his buildings is colored tiles and mosaics. Architecture in Barcelona reveals his great use of color, combined, of course, with interesting design and unique stonework.
Who is Antoni Gaudí?
Antoni Gaudí was born in 1852 in the Catalonian region. He is considered the leader of Catalan Modernism. In addition to his interest in architecture, Gaudí was inspired by nature and religion. Due to his religious influence, you can see different religious iconic images in his work. Some call him "God's architect".
Another interesting feature you can see in Barcelona architecture through Gaudí's work is that he was inspired by the art of the East, and he studied that of India, Persia and Japan. Works such as the Güell Palace, the Güell Pavilions and Casa Vicens reflect this Eastern influence. At a later point in his life, Antoni Gaudí became inspired by the neo-Gothic movement and you can see that influence in some of his other architecture outside of Barcelona like the Episcopal Palace in Astorga and the Casa Botines.
UNESCO has made seven of Gaudí's works into World Heritage Sites. First in 1984, the Park Güell, the Palau Güell and the Casa Milà were bestowed with this special designation. Then later, the Nativity facade, Sagrada Família, the Casa Vicens and the Casa Batlló in Barcelona, along with the Colònia Güell in Santa Coloma de Cervelló all became World Heritage Sites as well. In fact, one of these creations, Sagrada Familia, is one of the most important monuments in all of Spain.
Visiting Sagrada Familia
Gaudí was commissioned to begin work on La Sagrada Família, or the Basilica and Expiatory Church of the Holy Family, in 1883. The work had been previously initiated by his former professor, Francisco de Paula del Villar. Antoni Gaudí focused diligently on this project for more than 40 years until his death in 1926.
This work still is incomplete and is scheduled to be done in 2026. Every tourist interested in Barcelona architecture should see La Sagrada Familia, and actually it is the most visited attraction the entire city! This building is truly breathtaking.
Barcelona Architecture by Lluis Domenech i Montaner
No discussion of Barcelona architecture could be complete without mentioning Lluis Domenech i Montaner who was the director of the School of Architecture of Barcelona. Montaner was responsible for works of extraordinary beauty including Hospital de Sant Pau, Palau de la Musica Catalana and Casa Lleó Morera.
Hospital de Sant Pau
The hospital was created as an innovative way to boost healthcare in the city. Huge interior spaces were created by means of underground passageways and pavilions. It is unlikely that you will ever see a hospital more beautiful than this one!