Art, architecture, and parks are among the must-see attractions of the Annual Meeting’s host city. Naomi Jeffreys provides a rundown of the highlights, brought to you in association with Zivko Mijatovic & Partners.
The first stone of the Sagrada Família was laid on March 19, 1882. The church’s first architect, Francisco de Paula del Villar y Lozano, who drew the neo-Gothic design, left due to disagreements later that year. His position was taken up by Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí in 1883.
The church, one of the greatest neo-Gothic buildings in the world, is uncompleted and the goal is to finish all the architectural work by 2026. It reportedly attracts three million visitors a year because of its rich architectural and religious history.
Gaudí’s intention was to express Christian belief through the church’s architecture and the beauty of the building, and communicate the message of the Evangelists.
Located in Montcada Street is the Picasso Museum, which houses 4,251 works by the famous artist.
Founded in 1963, the museum reveals Picasso’s relationship with Barcelona and showcases the formative years of the Spanish painter. It includes works such as Science and Charity (1897), Still Life (1901), and The Wait (Margot) (1901).
During the INTA Annual Meeting, two exhibitions to look out for are Other Artists In the 1970 Picasso Donation and Picasso Portraits.These showcase works that the artist donated to the museum, and include drawings, paintings, and prints.
The Metropolitan Cathedral Basilica of Barcelona is another of Barcelona’s breathtaking feats of architecture and is the seat of the Archbishop of Barcelona, Lluís Martínez Sistach.
Construction of the cathedral started in 1298 and was carried out in three stages over 150 years. The main façade was raised at the end of the 19th century.
Highlights of the cathedral include the pond with a fountain in the Cloister of the Cathedral, which is home to 13 white geese representing the age of Saint Eulalia when she died. Eulalia is buried in the crypt and the cathedral is dedicated to her.
Established in 1914 by Gaudí, this public park comprises gardens and architecture, and is a must-see for any registrant attending the Meeting this year.
Count Eusebi Güell, an entrepreneur, wanted to recreate a park similar to British residential parks and instructed Gaudí to draw up plans for developing an estate for wealthy families. This estate would become a large private garden, which Güell used for public events.
Park Güell was recognized as an artistic monument in 1969. Highlights of the park include the Dragon Stairway, the Nature Square, and the Hypostyle Room.
For the football fans, why not visit Camp Nou? It’s the home of professional football club FC Barcelona.
The largest stadium in Spain by capacity, with 99,354 seats, and the largest stadium in Europe, it has been home to many magical moments down the years.
Camp Nou hosted a 1982 FIFA World Cup semi-final match and the football competition of the 1992 Summer Olympics.
The football stadium offers a range of services such as a VIP Tour, where visitors can go behind the scenes of the club accompanied by an official guide. Visitors can also learn about the history of the club, the players, and its fans.
The Magic Fountain of Montjuïc
Registrants who wish to see a spectacle should head to the Font Màgica, also known as the Magic Fountain of Montjuïc.
The fountain, Barcelona’s biggest, which was built in 1929 for the International Exposition, offers a musical display with lights and water acrobatics. It was designed by Catalan architect and engineer Carles Buigas in 1922.
To see a “piromusical” reminiscent of the Fountains of Bellagio in the United States, head to Avinguda Maria Cristina in the Montjuïc neighborhood and experience the magic.
Barcelona, cathedral, Picasso, football