3 Houses of Gaudí

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3 Houses of Gaudí

“Buildings of the typical Catalan Modernism style”
Post estimated read time : 8 minutes
barcelona gaudi 3 houses catalan modernism
“3 Different houses, but all in contact with the nature”

Maybe the most famous architect of Barcelona is Antoni Gaudí. His style is known as the Catalan Modernism Architecture. Barcelona has 3 houses of Gaudí, where this typical style comes alive. Although, the most famous buildings are The Sagrada Família and Park Güell. Nature is the main factor that appears in all Gaudí’s buildings. This post tells you more about Gaudí’s 3 most wonderful houses.

“Use the nature to make it alive”

For Gaudí, the people is part of the nature. Nature and natural aspects were the basics of his buildings. In the house, he wanted to use the natural elements to bring color, atmosphere, light, ventilation and so on. Also, curved lines are typical for him. Nothing is straight. You will never find straight corners in his buildings, but always rounded. This way, it stays alive and it doesn’t feel as collisions.

“Art must be functional to be beautiful”

Gaudí didn’t designed artistic things without any goal. Everything had to be functional. But of course, it also had to be nicely designed and finished.


“Gràcia is the key”

If you wanna visit the houses, than it is important to know where these are located. The first house in located in Gràcia. While the other 2 houses are on the Passeig de Gràcia in Eixample.

Visit the 3 houses

barcelona gaudi 3 houses catalan modernism

Wanna visit the 3 houses? Book your bundle on

This is the place to be to buy your entrance tickets in advance. So, you don’t have to wait in the long row at the monument itself. You just can go to the entrance and visit the house. Press the image below.

Casa Vicens

“First house of Gaudí”
casa vicens terace first house gaudi
“A summer house for a tile manufacturer”

Casa Vicens is the first house built by Antoni Gaudí. The location of this building is in Gràcia. It was a summer house for Manuel Vicens, a tile manufacturer and owner of a brick factory.

Gaudi casa vicens house catalan modernism 3 houses
“Refraction of light for another feeling”

As told above, nature and natural elements were the key elements of Gaudí’s buildings. When you visit this house, you get immediately a good impression of this idea. By entering the house, you come in a nice entrance hall full of natural elements. Further in the house, each room has his specific aspects of color, natural aspects. It learns you how simple elements like a fountain with a metal raster above, together with the sunlight, can give a room a whole different dimension. Because, this is based on the principle of the refraction of light through a prisma. As a result, you get other colors in the rooms of the house. Of course, this gives you another feeling and dimension.

“A practical rooftop”
gaudi house casa vicens rooftop
casa vicens rooftop chimney catalan modernism

Also the rooftop is not flat, but built with oblique surfaces. The meaning of this was to collect the water of the rooftop to reuse it. Also here, a lot of artistic elements can be found. They look like colorful artistic decorative elements placed on the rooftop. But, as I already told above this is not the way how Gaudí designed his buildings. Everything had to be functional, remember? Well, these are the chimneys from the rooms and the kitchen.

Visit Tip

“Buy tickets in advance and use audio guide”

Do you wanna visit this house? Fine! This is a good idea!

It may be a good idea to buy your ticket in advance. Also, it can be needed if you wanna enter. A second reason is that it also can be cheaper. Buying your ticket in advance, is possible in an easy way through their own website. Or you can use a site specialized in entrance tickets like:

Finally, it is also a good idea to use the free audio guide with your mobile device. So, you learn more about the Casa Vicens during your visit.

Casa Battló

“UNESCO classified Gaudí’s Catalan Modernism masterpiece”
casa battlo gadui 3 houses catalan modernism unesco

The second house in Barcelona designed by Antoni Gaudí, was for the family Battló. Battló was an industrialist in the textile sector. The house was built at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century. This is one of the masterpieces of Gaudí. You find this UNESCO World Heritage classified house on the Passeig de Gràcia in Eixample. In the street, it immediately stands out through his typical and wonderful facade.

“Live like you are in the water”

The whole house has skeletal organic designs of a fish. Anywhere you find these elements with green to blue colors. You discover this starting from the facade and the main floor, over the 4 other floors to finally reach the rooftop.

casa battlo gaudi full facade view catalan modernism barcelona
“A facade in 3 parts”

The facade has 3 different parts. The bottom part of sandstone from the Monjuïc mountain. Secondly, the middle part with the remarkable balconies, looks like a lake of water lilies. Finally, their is the top part. This is a facade as a crown which connects with the rooftop. In the past, this covered the water tanks of the house. Now it is an empty room.

casa battlo gaudi 3 houses catalan modernism facade
“The central hall of natural light and ventilation”

The central hall is maybe one of the most impressive places in the house. From bottom to top it is built with blue tiles. All in different color tint. The light comes from above and brings the natural light into the whole building. Through the different color tints, it brings a nice view on each floor. The windows and ventilation grids are also curved. All these aspects together, make it a wonderful appearance when you walk in this building.

“A rooftop with dragon and towers”
casa battlo rooftop dragon cross catalan modernism unesco

The roof has a design like the back of a dragon. There is a theory that the roof symbolizes the symbol of Saint George, the patorn of Catalonia. Because Gaudí was a very Catholic person, this is a very plausible theory. The dragon also appears in Park Güell.

Visit Tip

“Experience the house with the Golden Ticket”

For this house, you need to buy your tickets in advance. Their also are 3 types of visit: basic “BLUE”, “SILVER” and the full experience entrance with “GOLD”.

With all the tickets you get and audio guide, so you learn everything about this masterpiece of Gaudí. But when you buy the full experience ticket, you also have a tablet. On this tablet are reality video’s too. In this way, the house comes alive. I promise you, this is an amazing experience. It is not cheap, but you get a nice experience for your money.

Don’t wait any longer and buy already your tickets over here:

Casa Milà

“The Catalan Modernism piece of art La Pedrera”
caa mila la pedrera barcelona gaudi 3 houses

On the same Passeig de Gràcia, it is time to discover Casa Milà. Finally, we reach the third house of Gaudí. This UNESCO World Heritage classified house was built for Roger Segimon de Milà. Milà was a rich family in Barcelona. Also here, the facade and inside of the building is curved. These waves combined with the white look of the sandstone make it a superb view. Some love it some not. Many people find this house more some piece of art without any usability presence. Most of the locals didn’t liked this house, after it was built. So, they came with the nickname “La Pedrera”. “Pedrera”, or the Catalan word “a Pedreira” means “stone quarry”. The nickname “La Pedrera” comes from the typical sand stone look and the waves of the building together with the 2 impressive pateos. For the locals, this house of apartments had something like a stone quarry. This nickname still stays alive by the locals.

gaudi house pedrera casa mila pateo light
“2 Pateos for natural light and ventilation”

Antoni Gaudí designed Casa Milá around 2 impressive pateos. These are rounded and bring natural light and ventilation into the building. All the apartments are situated around one of these pateos. On the upper floors there are large inner terraces at the back side. La Padrera is one of the first buildings in his time in the city that had a lift and a garage.

“An impressive rooftop”

On the rooftop you find the same aspects as by the other 2 houses. A nicely roof where the chimneys look like a sort of heads and of course the catholic cross. Also you get a nice view over the city and of his other masterpiece, the Sagrada Família.

“Catalan Modernism still in use”

At this moment, there still live people in some apartements of Casa Milà. Or you can go to the restaurant “El Café de la Pedrera” and get a gastronomic experience under the roof of Gaudí.

Visit Tip

“A guided light show tour at the nocturne”

It is the same for Casa Milà as for the other 2 houses. The best way is to buy your tickets in advance. Also here, in most cases, you maybe still can reserve your tickets on the same day as you want to visit the house.

By going for the nocturne, you get maybe the best experience. This is a guided tour with a amazing light show on the rooftop. Take in mind, also here, nature is the main idea.

To buy your tickets, click the link below:

3 Houses of Gaudí Bundle

barcelona gaudi 3 houses catalan modernism

It is easy to book your tickets for all these 3 houses of Gaudí together. Take a look on the online ticket store below to book your bundle. In that way, you get the complete Gaudí experience.

All the 3 houses of Gaudí are located near to each other. This makes it possible to visit them all together on 1 day.

#gaudi #3houses #catalanmodernism #gràcia #unesco

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Grote Markt Aalst

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Grote Markt Aalst

“Welcome in the heart of the city”
Post estimated read time : 7 minutes
Aalst grote markt charming city center belgium flanders
“A main square full of important monuments”

The main square, de Grote Markt, is situated in the center of this charming city. The main shopping streets connect to this square. Here, we find a lot of important monuments. Below in this post you learn more of it.


“Monuments on the Grote Markt of Aalst”

Important monuments on this square are the “Borse van Amsterdam”, the UNESCO classified belfry with in front the statue of Dirk Martens and at the right side the city hall. A lot of good bars and eat houses surround these monuments on the Grote Markt.

Borse of Amsterdam

“A late renaissance style historical building”
Aalst grote markt borse amsterdam renaisance city center
“The house of the Guild”

This is a historical building in a renaissance style. But the original building on this place had his origin already in the 14th century. Originally it was the house of the Guilds of the Butchers. In that time, it was very common in Flanders that artisans and merchants of the same craft or trade associated themselves in a guild. To profilate themself, they founded their own guild house.

“History of the current building”

In the 17th century the building over there had to make place to enlarge the main square, de Grote Markt. So the building, as you see it now, dates from around 1630. The name “Borse van Amsterdam”, or “Bourse of Amsterdam”, should come from the striking similarities of the front gallery together with the tower with the old Bourse of Amsterdam.

The building changed many times from owners and use. A chamber of rhetoric, a police office and a waiting house were some of the many exploitations of this building. Afterwards, in the 19th century, the conservative Catholic Party, with the main figure Charles Woeste, bought the building. This was in the time of Adolf Daens, the priest who rebelled against the dire conditions of the workers in the factories of Aalst. Now these days, the Borse of Amsterdam houses a restaurant.

Since 1945, the “Borse van Amsterdam”, or also called Bourse of Amsterdam, is classified as monument and Flanders Immovable Heritage.


“UNESCO classified and one of the oldest Belfries”

A Belfry is a typical building in the old region of Flanders. These buildings had a lot of important social functions for the people and the city where it belongs to. Of course, it also was important for the prestige, the image, of the city. In the whole building a lot of important city tasks where done and goods saved over there.

Aalst grote markt belfry belfort city center
“A unique building in 3 different parts”

The building which includes the Belfry of Aalst is known as the oldest Aldermen’s House of his sort of the old Netherlands (The Netherlands + Flanders). It has 3 different parts:

  • The Area Cottage: Formerly it was an open area, now it has a late Gothic rooftop. In the past, this was used to inform the people with news or new laws.

  • The Belfry: Last but not least the large tower at the left side is the Belfry, which holds the carillon. This part had many social functions. Read further below about these functions. The carillon of Aalst is one of the oldest. Playing music on the carillon is an invention of a person of Aalst around 1480. Some sources tell that it should be Bertel Coecke, but there is nothing sure about this. In that time, the carillon of Aalst was not yet payable. So, the first played carillon was the one of Oudenaarde.
“De Tettentoeren”

By the people of Aalst, the Belfry of Aalst, is also known as “De Tettentoeren” or “The Tower of Breasts”. Because around 1960, the numbers of the clock were replaced by half spheres. From then on, the people used this nickname referring to the similarities of the clock and breasts.

“The social functions of a belfry”

As told above, a belfry had many social functions. First of all, it was to inform the citizens with news or events. To do this, the area cottage in the front was used. Secondly, because a belfry dates from the late middle ages, it was to inform the people about the hour and inform what to do. So, for each day task or reason there was another music on the carillon or another sound of the bells. Finally, it was used for safety reasons. Because on the tower you overlook the whole city and region. This means, that in case of fire, problems, danger, etc … they could stand above at the side of the danger. In this way, the people knew where the problems were and were they had to go for help.

“More as only a Belfry”

Most belfries also had a part to rack convicted persons. The Belfry of Aalst have a lot of cellars where this took place. The gang of Jan de Lichte was convicted over here.

The building of the Belfry was connected with the city hall over the street. In this way, the prominents of the city don’t had to be in contact with the plebs, the normal citizens, when they had to go from the city hall to the Aldermen’s house or visa-versa.

“UNESCO World Heritage”

Due this building is one of the oldest in his style, the Belfry of Aalst is classified as UNESCO World Heritage. Sometimes there are expositions in the building. A few times a year it is open for the public. On these moments, you can go to the top and admire the whole city overview.

Statue of Dirk Martens

“The first modern printing principle”
aalst Dirk Martens statue printer presser city center

In the middle of the Grote Markt, you find the statue of Dirk Martens. He was the first printer of The Netherlands of his time, now with location in Belgium. Dirk Martens was a man of Aalst, born in 1446 and lived till 1534. He was the first who used the modern printing principle of loose leaded letters to print the text.

“Published Utopia, Latin, Greek and Hebrew”

Dirk Martens published mostly in Latin, Greek and Hebrew. For these 2 latest languages, he was the first in the old Netherlands who printed in these characters. Martens published a lot of works of Erasmus and the first edition of Utopia from Thomas More.

“Dirk Martens and Bertel Coecke”

According the legend, Dirk Martens married a sister of Bertel Coecke, a famous bell founder. Oh yes, this is the same Bertel Coecke who we talked about previously in the topic about the inventor of playing the carillon.

City Hall

“The Land of Aelst”

The last monument on the Grote Markt of Aalst, is the City Hall. At the back side, the old Country Hall connects with this building. The front side near the Grote Markt, dates from 1830. The part of the former Country Hall is older and in a Rococo style. They were used as service buildings for The Main College of the Land of Aelst and as a residence. On the courtyard, at the entrance of this Country Hall, you find at the left side a memorial monument of the fallen people of 1830. At the right side stands the statue of “Ondineke”.

In the past, the whole city hall and Country Hall came to the Kattestraat. This is the small street near, and further behind, the Belfry. Over there it was connected to the Belfry building. Now, the buildings near the City Hall are a shop and a restaurant.

#aalst #grotemarkt #belfry #dirkmartens #unesco

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