Gaudi was definitely one of our biggest reasons to visit Barcelona. We’d been reading up on him for a while, and couldn’t wait to see this unfathomable genius’ work in person. So after the Sagrada Familia and Park Guell, both of which were pretty far off, we were glad Gaudi’s modernista trifecta were all within walking distance of El Palauet, our luxurious address on Passeig de Gracia.
Casa Mila or La Pedrera as it is otherwise known was the last civil work done by madman and genius architect extraordinaire, Antoni Gaudi before he plunged into his swan song- Sagrada Familia. We had seen the forest of chimneys on the rooftop from our verandah and couldn’t wait to stroll around there in person. Built as a home to trump all residences in Barcelona in the early 1900s, this stunning building with its wrought iron balconies was a scandal back in the day and houses several residents in the off limits part even today. A good idea to skip the long summer lines, we booked our tickets and slot online in advance.
We entered a large atrium, one that showcases Gaudi’s mastery on the play of light. It was colourful, whimsical and fantastic! Housing several untouched rooms with original furniture, the apartment gave us excellent insight into the lives of the Bourgeoise Barcelonians from the Modernista times. Walking through the corridors really did seem like a walk back in time, passing rooms that looked like time had just frozen and that the family was due to walk in any moment. From the childrens’ playrooms, to the master bedrooms, dining rooms, study, kitchen, Oh I felt like I could live here.
The top floor of most homes back in those days was usually reserved for staff. The domestic help resided here and usually the laundry and other tasks that were to be kept out of sight were relegated to this floor. The attic at Casa Mila features a small museum, showcasing Gaudi’s models, notes and plans that he used to create this overwhelming structure. You’ll find the secrets to several of his physics- defying concepts which he confidently (now understandably) employed.
Climbing up to the roof made us feel like we were in wonderland. The strange shapes of the chimneys, the odd mosaic tiles splattered across them, it was really really curious.
We can’t begin to understand Gaudi, but we do understand why he was easily the most popular, most expensive and most coveted architect Barcelona had seen. Have you been to any of Gaudi’s sights?