Corner of Avinguda Diagonal and Passeig de Sant Joan
Even on a bland, traffic-heavy street like Avinguda Diagonal you might get surprised. The owl on top of that building should have disappeared a long time ago: the company it advertised for doesn’t exist anymore and the use of neon at night became forbidden. But the people liked it, so now the owl is just an owl, no publicity, no neon. It overlooks with stern annoyance the hustle and bustle below.
La Casa de los Paraguas
Les Rambles 82
One of the most easily recognisable landmarks on Barcelona’s iconic Las Ramblas boulevard, Casa Bruno Cuadros is located halfway between Plaça de Catalunya and the Columbus Monument, entering the Gothic Quarter.
Casa Bruno Quadros is better known as the ‘House of the Umbrellas’. There was an umbrella shop on the ground floor, when architect Josep Vilaseca started renovating the house in 1883, riding the first wave of modernist creations. The building doesn’t just show umbrellas, there are also oriental elements, including a large forged-iron dragon jutting out of the corner.
Torre del Reloj
Moll dels Pescadors
An overlooked Barceloneta beauty, the Clock Tower. It was back in the 18th century that the engineer Jorge Próspero de Verboom established the Torre del Rellotge in the area known as the Moll de Pescadors (fishermen’s wharf), which was a very important area in Barcelona’s port. The lighthouse gradually fell out of use over time and became the clock tower it remains today, which can be seen from many areas in the port.
As a new feature of the Barceloneta area, the Torre del Rellotge was very important: it was one of the first lighthouses in the Mediterranean. Designed in 1772 by the engineer Jorge Próspero de Verboom, who was in charge of renovating the entire port, it became an important symbol of the neighbourhood in the 18th century.
Torre de les Aigües del Besòs
Plaça de Ramon Calsina
This one isn’t overlooked but overshadowed: by nearby Torre Agbar. This water tower is one of the last remains of Poblenou’s industrial past and can be visited.
Curiosity: The Tower of the Aigües is unique in its kind because it is built only with bricks, without any element or beam of iron. Despite being a technical construction, the architect wanted to provide it with ornamental architectural elements, so that none of the floors looks the same.
Post Office Building Dome
Via Laietana 1
The central post office building is a mastodont on the outside and inside it looks like the perfect place to shoot a Franz Kafka movie adaptation. Take a ticket and while you are waiting to buy some stamps for your postcards, look up towards the glass dome, the semi-Graeco-Roman murals and (a bit lower) the gilded lanterns. In the vestibule are two antique bikes, used by the Spanish postal services to deliver mail and telegrams.
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