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Heir of modernist buildings of Barcelona’s 19th Century Bourgeoisie, Passeig de Gràcia, or Paseo de Gracia in Spanish, unveils an amazing architecture promenade to anyone who visits Barcelona. The elegant avenue extends by more than 1km, and it is one of the most important business areas in the city. It is also the center of L’Example, the largest district in Barcelona.
Initially called Camí de Jesús, this majestic boulevard was a rural path that joined Barcelona with Gràcia. An urbanization project kickstarted in 1821 transformed the Passeig de Gràcia into the big, graceful avenue it is today. Another factor that contributed to its transformation was when the likes of Antoni Gaudi, Josep Puig I Cadafalch, Enric Sagner, and other art nouveau architects chose the avenue to design their buildings in the late 1800s to early 1900s. Most, if not all, of these buildings, still stand to date on the boulevard.
What to See in Passeig de Gràcia?
First of all, you need to visit Gràcia, where the Passeig de Gràcia begins. Gràcia is an amazing district in Barcelona that expresses the vibrant life of the city. Passeig de Gràcia is recognized for the history and the majestic appearance of its buildings. The white mosaic seats present a peculiar charm to the old expression depicted all over the city. An homage to Antoni Gaudi’s organic cobblestones cover the sidewalks and the Pere Falqués Style Lamps enlighten the beautiful nights.
Elegant and fascinating modernist constructions are Barcelona’s attractions of excellence for architecture lovers. On both sides of the sidewalk of Passeig de Gràcia, you could enjoy Antoni Gaudi, Puig I Cadafalch, and Domènech Montaner creations.
While you walk through this amazing concrete and art jungle, you might find yourself asking “what exactly am I looking at” when you come across some of the buildings on the avenue. And as your favorite Barcelona tourist blog, we have decided to answer this question for you. Here are the main attractions you’ll see during your visit along the memorable promenade:
This is the main square of Barcelona and it is situated at the end of the Passeig de Gràcia (or the beginning, depending on where you’re looking from). Around the plaza, you can enjoy the beautiful sights of important buildings such as the former Colon Hotel, now Apple Store, and the most important Department Store in Spain named El Corte Inglés. I personally recommend the Cafeteria on top of the building (it’s a must, at least for a drink…food not so much) – the view is wonderful!
The Casa Milà attracts large numbers of visitors for being considered one of the architectural icons of the city. Its authentic appearance, with a wavy stone façade and solid iron balconies, gives an aesthetically surprising view. It was the last private residence designed and finished by Antoni Gaudi in 1912.
Casa Batlló is one of Antoni Gaudi’s masterpieces and it sits at the center of Barcelona. Just like every other creation of Gaudi, this building is quite remarkable and surprisingly, there are no straight lines on the modernist façade. And oh, did I mention the building features a dragon at the very top? Yes…a dragon. Visit Casa Batlló with us and you’ll learn the whole story!
The Casa Amatller mixes the flamenco and gothic elements of Catalan architecture. The building was designed by Josep Puig I Cadafalch in the 19th century and it was the property of the Amatller family that manages an important chocolate business – Chocolates Amatller – in Spain today.
The Palau Robert was the residence of the Catalan politician and aristocrat Robert Robert I Surís. It is open to people today as a museum, gallery, and Concert Sala.
The above-mentioned are some of the iconic architectural masterpieces you will see in the Passeig de Gràcia. You could also visit boutiques of the most important brands in the fashion world such as Louis Vuitton, Cartier, Channel, Gucci, or Guess – all of which are available on the avenue. In addition, there are some coffee places, restaurants, and bars you can also enjoy.
In my opinion, Passeig de Gràcia is the ideal place to enjoy the amazing modernist architecture of Barcelona while you walk and feed your eyes with some colorful sights. I think as a tourist in Barcelona the experience is one you shouldn’t miss.
I hope you have enjoyed this article as much as I did with the research.
Good Bye for now,
…and see you in my next post!