Plaza Espanya, Barcelona
Plaza Espanya, also known as Plaza de España in Spanish is one of the most important squares in Barcelona. Josep Maria Puig i Cadafalch was commissioned to design the plaza.Consequently, it was built for the 1929 International Exhibition, which was held at the foot of Montjuïc, in the Sants-Montjuïc district. Certainly it is a lively plaza and it is located just out of the centre of town; where for instance many of the main roads in Barcelona are; such as Gran Via, Parallel, Avinguda Reina Maria Cristina, Carrer Tarragona and Carrer de la Creu Coberta intersect.
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History of Plaza Espanya
The square was built on a site that had been previously used for public hangings; further until the creation of the Ciutadella fortress in 1715, where the gallows were moved. Subsequently it was designed in 1915 and built in 1929 so that it could be ready to host the 1929 Universal Exposition. Moreover, the square has been in public use since then!
In the center of the square there is a monumental fountain designed by Josep Maria Jujol, with an ornate sculptural decoration by Miguel Blay and the brothers Miquel and Llucià Oslé. Classically inspired, the inspiration for the iconography of the work presents a poetic representation of Spain from various materials: symbolization of the main rivers, the fruits and gifts of the waters, religion, heroism and the arts.
The Plaza de Espanya in Barcelona is one of the most emblematic spaces in the Catalan capital. In addition the main draw to Plaza Espanya is the Palau Nacional which is the Museum of Catalan art, stands regally up on the side of Montjuïc. Here’s some of the most turistic places that you should stop by near the Plaza Espanya:
# 1 Magic Fountain of Montjüic
The most stunning view, there is never a better time to see it than when it is lit up at night: the Magic Fountain of Montjuic. The Magic Fountain is a free music and light show with the participation of the fountains. Moreover don’t miss the opportunity to watch one of these shows!
Address: Plaça de Carles Buïgas, 1, 08038 Barcelona
# 2 MNAC
In the proximities of the plaza you can find one of Catalonia’s finest museums: the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC) designed by Josep Amargós. However, this place has the best collection of Romanesque wall paintings in the world. Come enjoy an afternoon watching the works by the masters of Catalan Modernism, European Renaissance, Baroque masters, and the museum’s photography collection.
Address: Palau Nacional, Parc de Montjuïc, s/n, 08038 Barcelona
Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 10:00-20:00 & Sunday from 10:00-15:00
# 3 The Arenas de Barcelona
The plaza was also home to Barcelona’s old bull-fighting ring built in 1900 in the Moorish Revival style. Currently, this works as a shopping and leisure complex. Further inside, you can find international stores, cinemas and restaurants. Most importantly, do not forget to visit the terrace that offers beautiful views of Plaza Espanya!
Address: Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, 373-385, 08015 Barcelona
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday from 10:00-22:00
# 4 Venetian Towers
At the entrance of Avinguda Maria Cristina, are two tall towers which stand guard over the exhibition site and are certainly the replicas of Saint Mark’s campanile in Venice. It was conceived as the gateway to the 1929 International Exposition. However, the initial purpose was to tear down the towers as soon as the Exposition ended. Subsequently, the last minute decision to keep them led to the need for maintenance over the years; culminating in 2013 with the restoration of both towers.
Address: Avinguda de la Reina Maria Cristina, 08004 Barcelona
# 5 Olympic Stadium
Further from the square, you will find the Barcelona Olympic Stadium (Estadi Olimpic); which is a 20 minute walk from Plaza Espanya. The Olympic Stadium is a municipally own sports venue with it’s inaguration in 1929 by King Alfonso XIII; subsequently one day after the inauguration of the International Exhibition. In addition, on the 1992 Olympic Games, the stadium went through a rebuilt phase practically in its entirety and then open 60 years later as an “Olympic stadium”.
Address: Passeig Olímpic, 15-17, 08038 Barcelona
Opening hours: Every day from 08:00-20:00
Where to eat
There are plenty of amazing restaurants to tingle your tastebuds near Plaza Espanya. For instance, all of the top restaurants are located in The Arenas de Barcelona, which in addition is a former bullring turned commercial complex near the Plaza Espanya.
# 1 El Xalet
A breathtaking restaurant is El Xalet, with an idyllic setting on the top of the Montjuïc hill. Therefore, El Xalet is certainly a grand restaurant that further offers the best views over Barcelona from its dining rooms and wonderful panoramic terraces.
Address: Avinguda Miramar, 31, 08038 Barcelona
Opening hours: Every day from 13:00-16:00 & 20:00-23:00
# 2 Abrassame
There is Abrassame, a fantastic restaurant at the top of Las Arenas de Barcelona shopping centre. The wonderful terrace offers moreover the most spectacular views over the city; and they offer an amazing selection of seafoods.
Address: Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, 373, 385, 08015 Barcelona
Opening hours: Every day from 12:00-01:00
# 3 Watatsumi
Likewise, another restaurant on the rooftop of Las Arenas is Watatsumi led by renowned chef Ángel Camacho. You can dine in the warm interior, at the sushi bar or outside in terrace with wonderful views. Moreover exceptional signature Japanese cuisine with very personal creations.
Address: Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, 373, 385, 08015 Barcelona
Opening hours: Every day from 12:30-16:00 & 19:30-23:00
Where to live in Plaza Espanya
In terms of location, Plaza Espanya gives you excellent access to many of the city’s main attractions; hence being so close to La Rambla means that everything is within walking distance!
In terms of accommodation in Barcelona, for your stay there are numerous, remarkable apartments available to rent for family holidays. Certainly, there are endless advantages of living in this area, from the beautiful landmarks to the amazing restaurants. It’s the perfect holiday destination, for instance. You can further view and rent apartments near Plaza Espanya or if you want something smaller, rent rooms near Plaza Espanya for amazing prices.
This chic 3rd-floor studio has a large living room decorated in a modernist style with a vibrant red and white color palette is perfect for a couple. Moreover, the open American kitchen, leads to an alcove with a comfortable bed with large windows.
From 87 €/night | 35m2 | License : HUTB-003019 | Reference: BHM1-010
This fabulous Barcelona penthouse with terrace is great for a couple planning a romantic vacation to Barcelona, for instance. With a red-and-white color scheme. A set of red metallic stairs leads up to a spacious private terrace furnished with a table and chairs, the perfect place for sun tanning or sharing a dinner under the stars.
From 93 €/night | 49m2 | License : HUTB-001182 | Reference: BHM1-017
Bright and spacious apartment near city center of Barcelona, subsequently just minutes from some of the most attractions of Barcelona, perfect for a family or friends searching for a fully furnished accommodation. The living room, furnished with a comfortable couch, extends from a private balcony.
From 96 €/night | 65m2 | License : HUTB-001177 | Reference: BHM1-035