Located in the very center of Barcelona, the Casa Batlló building is another work which helped Antonio Gaudi go down in the history of architecture.
Casa Batlló is a tenement house at Passeig de Gràcia 43, which was built in the second half of the 19th century. The well-known Spanish architect, however, did not start rebuilding it until 1904-1906. This happened thanks to Josep Batlló i Casanovas, a Barcelona textile manufacturer. As the owner of the building, he wanted to give it a new shape, and Antonio Gaudi seemed to him the perfect person to complete this task. Initially, it was planned to completely demolish the house, but in the end the owner decided only to rebuild it.
The architecture of the tenement house
The changes the artist made in the original building were enormous. You can see it even before entering it. The colorful, undulating facade is made of stone and glass. The building is covered from the outside with a mosaic typical of Gaudí, made of multi-colored pieces of glass and ceramics. Interestingly, depending on the light and the time of day, the mosaic can take on slightly different shades. It is worth paying attention to this when strolling around Barcelona during the daytime and in the evenings.
The Spanish architect was known to prefer naturalistic forms of art. This is also evident in the Casa Batlló design. The complete minimization of right angles is a reference to the shapes that we know from nature. The tiles covering the walls of the building resemble scales. Balconies are often compared to bones and skulls – this is why Casa Batlló is often referred to by Catalans as “Casa dels Ossos” (cat. “House of Bones”).
The roof of the Casa Batlló building
What is most controversial about the building is its roof. It resembles the shape of an animal, and due to the reptilian scale-shaped tiles covering it, it is often said that it is a dragon. This view of Casa Batlló is quite justified. Antonio Gaudi was attached to both his religion and his Catalan nationality. And since he was given a lot of freedom by both the client and city officials when designing this building, the artist might have treated it very personally. Connoisseurs of his works believe that Casa Batlló is an artistic representation of the struggle of the patron saint of Catalonia (St. George) with the dragon. The symbol of the saint’s victory over the beast would be a sword stuck in it, which is represented by a white turret on the roof.
In addition to the building and its interior, Antonio Gaudi also designed many details and furniture, which, when combined, were to make his work complementary.
Inhabitants of Casa Batlló
After the renovation works were completed, Josep Batlló i Casanovas and his family moved to the building, renting some of the rooms to other interested parties. In 1940, the tenement house became the property of the entrepreneur’s daughters, Carmen and Mercedes Batlló- Godó. A dozen or so years later, in 1954, the women sold the building to the insurance company Seguros Iberia, and the interior of Casa Batlló was transformed into commercial offices.
Almost half a century later (1993), the tenement house was bought by the Bernat family (founders of the Chupa-Chups brand). At that time, the building was thoroughly renovated and became available for public use. Thanks to this, today it is one of the most visited places in Barcelona and an undisputed tourist attraction for every enthusiast of Gaudi’s art.
Practical information about Casa Batlló
- It’s best to buy tickets to Casa Batlló in advance. Buying a ticket on the Internet guarantees no queue at the cash desk and no risk that all tickets have been sold out.
- Opening hours: from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM
- Address: Passeig de Gràcia 43, 08007 Barcelona
- Buy Tickets on GetYourGuide
- Buy Tickets on Tiqets
- Buy Tickets on Musement
Hotels in Barcelona
Discover CataloniaEach region of Spain is divided into provinces. Their names often coincide with the names of their main cities. Catalonia is divided into four provinces, each of which has different tourist attractions and interesting places to offer:
|Province||Tourist attractions and interesting places|
|Barcelona||Gothic Quarter Barri Gòtic, La Rambla, Montjuïc, cable railway Telefèric de Montjuïc, Magic Fountains (Font Màgica), La Boqueria, Laberint d’Horta Park, Poble Espanyol, Camp Nou, Torre Agbar, oceanarium in Barcelona, Barcelona Zoo, Tibidabo Amusement Park, Palace of Catalan Music, National Art Museum of Catalonia, Picasso Museum, Catalan Museum of Archaeology, Miniature Park - Catalunya en Miniatura, MACBA Museum of Contemporary Art of Barcelona, Generalitat Palace, Basilica of Our Lady of Mercy (La Mercé), Cathedral of Barcelona, remains of the temple of Augustus, Els Quatre Gats Cafe, Erotic Museum, Santa María del Mar Church, Port Vell, Plaça de Catalunya, Parc de la Ciutadella, Parc de Collserola, Casa Amatller, Palau Güell, Passeig de Gràcia - luxury street in Barcelona, Montserrat Monastery. Barcelona's neighborhoods and districts (El Raval, El Born, Sant Pere, Les Corts). Gaudi's Monuments: Sagrada Familia, Park Güell, Casa Milà, Casa Batlló, Pabellones Güell, Bellesguard, Casa Vicens, Casa Calvet. Popular cities: Barcelona, Torrelles de Llobregat, Hospitalet de Llobregat, Tarrasa, Badalona, Sabadell, Mataró, Santa Coloma de Gramanet, San Cugat del Vallés, Cornellá de Llobregat, San Baudilio de Llobregat, Rubí, Manresa, Villanueva y Geltrú, Viladecans, Casteldefels, El Prat de Llobregat, Granollers, Sardañola del Vallés, Mollet del Vallès, Gavá, Sant Antoni de Vilamajor|
|Girona||Salvador Dali Museum, Museum of Miniatures and Microminiatures Micro Mundi, Sausage Museum. Popular cities: Girona, Figueres, Besalú, Blanes, Lloret de Mar, Tossa de Mar, Olot, Salt, Palafrugell, San Felíu de Guixols, Rosas, Bañolas, Palamós, Santa Coloma de Farnés, Castellón de Ampurias Torroella de Montgrí, La Bisbal del Ampurdán, Ripoll, Castillo de Aro, Calonge, La Escala, Cassá de la Selva, Castellfollit de la Roca|
|Lleida||Popular cities: Lleida, Tárrega, Balaguer, Mollerusa, La Seo de Urgel, Cervera, Solsona, Alcarrás, Guisona, Almacellas|
|Tarragona||Amusement and theme parks: PortAventura. Popular cities: Tarragona, Reus, Vendrell, Tortosa, Cambrils, Salou, Valls, Calafell, Amposta, Vilaseca|