The Casa Vicens is the first significant order that the architect Antoni Gaudí received. It is the cornerstone for all of his further architectural work.
Discover the Casa Vicens, the previously unknown work of Gaudí. For decades it lay hidden in the narrow streets of the Grácia district. Now it opens its doors to visitors for the first time. The house is regarded as a pioneer of "modernisme". It was designed as a colorful summer residence for the Vicens family between 1883-1885.
Casa Vicens has been open to the public as a museum since November 2017. It is Gaudí's first large independent commissioned work and was built in the years 1883 - 1885 for Manuel Vicens i Montaner. At Casa Vicens you can see basic elements of his style with influences of Spanish and Moorish elements. It is a masterpiece of the era and shows the development and importance of modernism. The style used here can also be seen in his later works.
Casa Vicens - Gaudí's first important commission
The current garden is the result of a study of the original surroundings of Casa Vicens. The question of how Gaudí imagined the garden could only be partially answered. In his first work, he was inspired by the flora and fauna of the Mediterranean region, which is also reflected in the interior of the house.
Casa Vicens is the first building designed by Barcelona's most famous modernist architect, Antoni Gaudí. It has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2005.
Over the decades, the garden has continued to shrink. Plants are growing in the garden today that were also the dominant garden plants at the time Casa Vicens was built: palm trees, climbing plants, magnolias, roses and other types of plants.
The coal cellar was originally housed in the basement, as was customary at the turn of the century. Today you will find the museum shop/bookstore La Capell there.
Above the entrance is the ground floor where the rooms used during the day are located: the central dining room. Furniture designed by Gaudí himself, a collection of paintings, plant motifs on the walls, ceiling and fireplace create a true work of art. From the dining room you enter the covered porch with a marble fountain to cool the space.
Adjacent to the dining room is the smoking room, a relaxation area decorated with Moorish-inspired stucco, and a foyer.
Here are the more private spaces: two bedrooms, a bathroom and the living room. The sgraffito (several differently colored layers of plaster. The motifs are then created by scratching out the respective upper layer of plaster. The respective lower color then comes to light) with plant motifs penetrates all rooms. An indication of what will be seen in Gaudí's later works.
In order to be able to calmly contemplate the nearby garden, Gaudí placed a wooden bench with metal structures on the terrace above the covered porch. The terrace is next to the bedroom of the master and lady of the house and provides light and good ventilation.
Above the ground floor smoking room is a living room with a false dome with a spectacular trompe-l'oeil (perspective paintings that simulate a three-dimensional image) depicting flying birds and climbing plants, as if the room were connected to the outside world.
The permanent exhibition of Casa Vicens is housed on the second floor. Before the restoration work, there were two apartments here. The floor underwent profound changes: the interior walls, floors and false ceilings were removed. The result is a large, open space with exposed wooden beams, which is the closest to the original structure.
Gaudí created the first accessible roof in the Casa Vicens. A walkway runs around all four sides of the pitched roof. The roof is covered with curved terracotta tiles to collect rainwater.
On the western facade there is a small tower crowned by a dome. Three identical brick structures serve as caps for the chimneys. These are clad in green and white ceramic tiles, as is the facade.
In March 2017, extensive renovations began at Casa Vicens, revealing the original polychrome elements that had disappeared under several layers of paint.
Damage from use, water damage and natural discolouration have been eliminated. A fountain on the main facade, which has disappeared over time due to various construction works, has been reconstructed using old photos. Polychrome stucco walls in the stairwell were also stripped of white paint that had been applied several times.
The house was not in particularly good condition before the restoration, but today it is a real jewel of modernisme.
The great works of the master Antoni Gaudí are omnipresent in Barcelona. In Casa Vicens, his first building, one can already sense the handwriting of the later Gaudí, even if a clear development can be seen. Until the renovation, Casa Vicens was privately owned and not open to the public. It has been lovingly restored. The original has been largely preserved, while the modern - such as the stairwell - has been harmoniously integrated into the building. The building has been open to visitors since 2017.
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Carrer de les Carolines, 18
Metro: Fontana (L3)
April - Oct.:
Daily 10.00 - 20.00
Nov. - March:
Mondays 10.00 - 15.00
Tue. - Sun. 10.00 - 19.00
Special opening: 31 Dec. 10.00 - 17.00
Closed on 25 Dec. and 06 Jan.
09 - 18 Jan. due to restoration works
Information on Visiting Casa Vicens
For visiting Casa Vicens you should plan about one hour. The district Gràcias is worth a stroll, as there are many nice bars, cafes and restaurants.