The curious modernist building of El Capricho de Gaudí

The best way to know a genius is to admire his works. A good example of the wonderful mind of Gaudí is the modernist building of El Capricho, located in Comillas. A great place to spend the day with the family and contemplate the work of one of the most famous Spanish architects. Do you want to know what awaits you in this place?

How is the modernist building of El Capricho?

The first thing that strikes you about this building are its colors. Green, yellow and reddish tones, an unusual color for a 19th century building. And another highlight is the cylindrical tower that presides over it. The building seen from afar is already a beautiful postcard for which it is worth approaching it.

El Capricho is built with bricks in the upper part and stone in the lower part, highlighting the ceramic ornaments. Sunflowers adorn the building and they make it the most original in the area. And all this, despite being more than a century old, since it was built between 1883 and 1885.

Each facade is different. Therefore, depending on what position you look at it from, you will be able to capture a lot of different details. And it is that the different materials and the way of using them, adapting to the terrain and dispensing with the most typical forms, make this building very special.

‘Capricho’, in the musical world, means that the piece is freestyle. And this construction plays with that conception in some of its parts, such as the windows of the main façade, which have musical tubes that emit sounds when manipulated.

Within the artistic representations, they also stand out in this sense in the stained glass windows. In one of them you can see the representation of a bird playing the piano.

The visit to the building

El Capricho de Gaudí can be visited individually, letting the imagination fly in each of its corners. Some people prefer to discover for themselves the secrets of the museums and monuments they visit. Something possible in the modernist building of El Capricho.

But whoever wants to know first-hand what the building is like and what its history is, you can also enjoy the guided tours. Special visits are even organized for groups, schools or families.

The ticket price is 5 euros in the case of adults and 2.5 for children between 7 and 14 years old and the disabled. Children under 7 years enter free.

The story of El Capricho

El Capricho, whose original name is Villa Quijano, It was designed by Gaudí on behalf of Máximo Díaz de Quijano. Although it was one of the architect’s first works, he was not present during its construction, since he was simultaneously working on another project in Catalonia.

The person in charge was then Cristóbal Cascante. However, there is some theory that Gaudí made a covert visit during construction to verify that everything was going according to plan.

It shows characteristics that would later be seen in the rest of his works.. For example, the fact that the requirements of the original assignment are strictly met. Or the resemblance to cubism more than two decades before its appearance.

On the other hand, El Capricho is one of the few works that the architect carried out outside of Catalonia. In memory of him and as a tribute, on the outside of this magnificent building we can see a statue of Antoni Gaudí himself.

“Men can be divided into two groups: men of words and men of action. I’m one of the seconds. I would be unable to explain my artistic concepts to anyone.”

-Antoni Gaudí-

Take advantage of the visit to Comillas

The modernist building of El Capricho can be visited in the morning. A) Yes, you will have time in the afternoon to walk around Comillas, the Cantabrian town where it is located. In addition to its magnificent beaches, there are other places worth seeing there.

The Pontifical University, the Palacio de Sobrellano or the Pantheon are must-see places. Another well-known place that attracts the interest of many tourists is the cemetery. And it is also worth visiting the port, the Tres Caños fountain or the house of the Duke of Almodóvar del Río.

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