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Casa Amatller

Casa Amatller (74)

Finding the Casa Amatller is really easy. You’re bound to see a group of people outside it on Passeig de Gràcia at number 41. Because that is the site of two of the best jewels of Barcelona modernism: the Casa Amatller and the Casa Batlló.- Just in front of the door of the Casa Batlló is a tile on the floor which indicates kilometre zero on the European Modernism Route.

The Casa Amatller is the project that Josep Puig i Cadafalch carried out in 1898 to transform what was until that date just a dull mansion. He was commissioned by chocolate industrialist: Antoni Amatller. In fact, on the ground floor a prestigious jeweller and an original chocolate shop maintain the spirit of craftsmanship and luxury of that time.

As you can see, if you look closely, the architect used his imagination down to the last detail, combining architectural and decorative elements from Catalan culture and that of other European countries. Like for example the curious stepped façade which brings to mind the canal-side houses in Amsterdam. Although there are also plenty of medieval, gothic, baroque and even Wagnerian details such as the exterior gallery or row of balconies.

Narrow windows with floral ornamentation, a pediment with incredible glazed tiles, sgraffiti designs, relief work and wrought iron...some people say that this is like an apotheosis of the decorative arts. Many consider the masterpiece to be the pink marble column situated in the middle of the gallery, which can be seen from the street. It has no functional value, but is purely aesthetic. 

The entrance doors are decorated with sculptures, capitals and stucco, like the figure of Saint George killing the dragon by Eusebi Arnau.

Being a private property the house is not open to visitors. However, the front door is always open and temporary exhibitions are held on the ground floor. You can also go into the chocolate shop and imagine the golden, opulent splendour of the house which is conserved throughout. Look and admire the luxury of another time. You can also see various original pieces of furniture from the house in the National Art Museum of Catalonia.

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