This was Gaudí’s second commission and it already looks almost as if it were grown rather than built. Constructed between 1886 and 1890 for aristocrat and industrialist Eusebi Güell, the home shows the architect’s budding originality. The family quarters are conventional—“a normal Venetian palace,” a guide once sniffed on one of our tours—but the architect’s imagination ran wild above and below. The underground forest of brick columns and vaults in 10 musty cellars creates a honeycomb of stables and servants’ quarters, and functions as much as the building’s root system as its foundation. The rooftop is even more startling. Gaudí wrapped the chimneys with swirling abstract sculptures. Not only are they embedded with mosaics of broken pottery, they also employ artistic symbols from ancient Catalan tradition. After the restraint of the main residence, the rooftop is an exultation of the spirit.
Carrer Nou de la Rambla, 3–5
Our Rating Hours Apr–Oct Tues–Sun 10am–7pm, Nov–Mar Tues–Sun 10am–5:30pm Transportation Metro: Liceu Phone 93-472-57-75 Prices Admission 12€ adults, 8€ students and seniors Web site Palau Güell
MapCarrer Nou de la Rambla, 3–5 Barcelona
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.