Casa Vicens was Gaudí’s first project of importance after his degree in architecture in 1878. It is located in the district of Gràcia which at that time was still an independent urban center of Barcelona, it was built between 1883 and 1888. The family wanted to use the building as a second summer residence.
It belongs to Gaudí’s orientalism, in which he chooses a style clearly influenced by the art of the Near and Far East (India, Persia, Japan), and also by Hispanic Islamic art.
The main elements used in the decoration of the inside as well as the facade and the roof, were tiles, brick, arches and dome-shaped finishes. From the outside the tiles give it a very colorful look, granting the desired oriental style, and give us a first indication of how shocking this building can be.
It is structured in four floors. The lower one is the basement that was designed to be used as a wine cellar. The first floor includes the kitchen, dining room and various rooms; in the third floor we can see the bedrooms; and finally the attic was intended for the house servants.
In its construction agarden was also designed, there was a beautiful brick fountain with a bow and columns, but it was demolished after part of the land was sold.
In 1899 the widow of Manuel Vicens, Dolors Giralt, sold the house to Antoni Jover i Puig; a century later, in 2005, the family Herrero Jover sold the house to the Andorran bank MoraBanc. The bank plans to convert it into a museum house and to open it to the public in autumn 2017 after remodeling it. That same year Casa Vicens was declared World Heritage Site by Unesco.
To get there you can choose between the bus and the subway. If you choose the first option the nearest lines are the 27 and 32 (Guillem Tell-Avinguda Príncep d’Astúries); 22, 24, 87, 114, V17 (Gran de Gràcia-Metro Fontana). If you prefer to take the subway the nearest station is L3 Fontana.
Read more about modernism here.