The Palau Güell, also known as the Güell Palace, is in Barcelona, Spain. This mansion was designed by Antoni Gaudí, a Catalan architect. It was built for Eusebi Güell, an industrial tycoon, and was completed in 1890. The structure has a medieval opulence that displays Gaudí’s distinct combinations of styles, such as Art Nouveau, Gothic, and Islamic. Today, the palace is a United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Oraganization World Heritage Site.
The entrance has iron gates where horse drawn carriages would bring guests through a parabolic arch that has intricate patterns on it. The designs resemble seaweed and horsewhip parts. Horses were kept in a basement stable and servants also lived in this area.
The receiving room’s ceilings and walls are very ornate. The walls have very small windows in which the home’s owners could watch the guests from an upper floor. The main room for entertaining has a high ceiling that has several small holes in it so lanterns could be hung in the evening which looked like a starlit sky from the outside.
There is a wonderful music room that has a rebuilt organ. The organ is played when the mansion is opened to the public. The hallway has parabolic pyramid styling and each wall is an arch that stretches up three floor levels. This comes together at the top to form a dome. The distinctive family rooms have beautiful stained-glass windows. The roof has many tiled mosaics and there are whimsical designs for the chimneys.
After Spain’s civil war in the 1930’s the police took over the Palau Güell and used the basement to interrogate political prisoners. The building was soon abandoned, leading to its disrepair. In 2004, the Palau Güell was closed to the public because of renovations. Some of the original stone construction was very weak and had many cracks in it. It was partially reopened in February of 2008. It completely reopened in May of 2010.